CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – LaSalle’s Tyrone Garland popularized it, Ja’Quan Newton utilized it. The “Southwest Philly Floater,” the darling of the NCAA tournament, was Newton’s go-to weapon in a 31-point, 7-rebound, 7-assist performance to sink Karl Towns and the favored Mavericks in the championship of the NBPA Top 100 Camp.
Newton was far and away the best player on the floor in Saturday’s championship game, pacing the Celtics attack for 48 minutes en route to the camp title. Matched up with Kansas target Josh Perkins, Newton attracted two, sometimes three defenders every time he touched the ball, reaching the free throw line ten times. Newton’s decision-making on the offensive end was most impressive on Saturday, as he continually found open teammates and made the correct play.
For the Mavericks, North Carolina commit Justin Jackson led the way with 15 points. Highly-touted center Karl Towns had a decent performance, scoring 13 points, in addition to four rebounds. Towns had a tough matchup with 7’0″ center Satchel Pierce, who defended the Kentucky commit better than anyone this week. Pierce finished with six points and five rebounds.
According to our count, the Celtics enjoyed a 26-15 advantage on the boards, which proved to be monumental. Minnesota forward Reid Travis was the only other Celtic starter in double-digits, finishing with 10 points, two rebounds and three assists. Newton’s supporting cast was efficient on Saturday as Riley Norris, Devin Robinson and Cheick Diallo each scored eight points.
Newton, who has received offers from the likes of Georgetown, Syracuse and Villanova, among others, captured a high-profile audience inside the John Paul Johns Arena. Following the victory, Denver Nuggets point guard Andre Miller and former NBA forward Erick Strickland were in awe of the guard’s command of the game and finishing-ability around the rim. When you have two long-time veterans praising your game, as Garland said, you’re “really out here.” After Saturday’s performance, it is safe to say that Ja’Quan Newton is really out here.
- Zach Fleer / @ZachFleerSP