Monday, May 26, 2014

Zion Harmon & Jaden Springer – A Glorious Pairing in the Nations Capitol

Zion "The Lion" Harmon & Jaden "The Beast" Springer

To win a championship, you need a team effort. This has been proven time and time again in the sport of basketball.  Yet for all of 2014 in the class of 2021 the premier match-up talked about all season long has been Harmon vs. Springer – this was even highlighted and featured on Middle School Hoops.

So for now, let’s forget about team effort and focus on two players who have made history with the amount of success that they have either brought amongst each other or to their teams.  There has not been an event in the country this year that Team Glory and W.A.C.G have played together in that they have not met in the championship.  In Washington DC this past Memorial Day weekend these two top players in the class of 2021, Zion Harmon and Jaden Springer came together; this time not to compete against one another but to play alongside each other UP AN AGE GROUP IN THE 2020 CLASS!

As individuals each are prolific scorers, prime time time defenders, and leaders on the floor.  As teammates this dynamic duo creates possibly the best 1-2 punch in any class in the country.  As the national rankings are perused we see no other case outside of the Oakland Soldiers (2020) who have not lost all year at their age group with their full roster and the USA National Select Team which is not a formal AAU group, where two of the top players in a particular class are paired together.  This shows you truly how special these types of pairings can be.  This weekend was no exception and was no let down as the two played beautifully together and complimented each other as they terrorized the opposition while winning the Championship in the 6th grade age group as 2021 kids.   

Springer remains a lethal combination of size and skill and is a site to see in the open court, his motor is next level and he is a man-child on the offensive and defensive glass.  We are equally impressed by the athleticism he exhibits and his ability to guard multiple positions.  He can beat defenders off the bounce and has an improving mid-range game. He continues to punish opponents going to the basket on the break and in the half court where he finishes as well as any player in the class.  Defensively he uses his length to dominate the passing lanes and is an excellent shot-blocker especially from the weak-side.  He is a game-changer and his ability to affect the game is multiple ways and categories is next level - points, rebounds, steals, assist, blocks he does it all, Springer is the ultimate stat sheet stuffer.

Harmon most often defined as a scoring combo-guard, and while he has the ball skills and capability to play the point, he's in his natural habitat when he's looking for his own offense. While he puts points on the board in all three ranges/levels, his mid-range game is especially impressive especially as you watch him adjust his attack depth levels during the course of game - never allowing defenses  to get a read on him.  As a 5th grader Harmon has been playing an abundance of games; successfully we might add, at the 7th grade level where he has shown his ability to act as a facilitator and floor general in addition to remaining an effective scorer.  Bringing this experience back down to the 5th grade level he  continues to make and impact, but the way in which he is making the players around him better has expanded to an out of this world level.

Needless to say seeing these two together live is better than anything we can put on paper - we can only hope that there will be more opportunities to see the “Beast” and “Lion” on the court together in the future.  For true basketball junkies if you need an immediate fix; Harmon and Springer will be teaming up in Charlotte, NC at the Southeastern Cup with USA National Select 2021 May 31st and June 1st 

Until then enjoy the video below courtesy of Middle School Hoops.

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