Pinnacle High School's superstar 6-foot-3 sophomore guard Niko Mannion has been on a tear throughout his high school career - quickly becoming the state of Arizona's top overall prospect in the AIA, and ranking among the elite overall prospects in the country. After a stellar sophomore high school season, and a big spring evaluation period, Mannion finished off the spring for himself with another big weekend - dominating the competition this past weekend in Las Vegas at the Memorial Day Classic.
In the process, Mannion teamed up with fellow star guard and former Arizona product Josh Green and a very talented group of young prospects with the West Coast Elite, organized by tournament director and basketball aficionado Ryan Silver. The group dominated their competition en route to winning the tournament championship, led by the superb play of Mannion.
Mannion was almost unguardable as he blew past defenders at will and finished strong at the basket with strong driving layups and high-flying dunks on the break and in traffic. He shot the basketball consistently and with range - making it extremely difficult to defend him, as he set up his teammates for nice and easy scoring opportunities. While everyone that guards Mannion gives him their best effort, the slick ball handling prospect proves consistently that he is on another level and playing chess, while his opponents are playing checkers.
Mannion is a joy to watch for many reasons, but it is always exciting to see a young man at the top of his craft that has worked hard to develop as a player and a prospect. Mannion is a tremendous talent, but the time that he has put into his game is proven. While he still has time to develop much more and will definitely do so, in a short period of time Mannion has become a household sensation nationally and looks to be headed for stardom at any level of basketball over time.
Mannion has already received division-I offers from just about every top college program in the country, and this spring he received two offers from national champion Villanova and Duke. He is also currently rated among the Top 25 players nationally in America's 2020 Class, and has become an extremely hot commodity for all high-major college programs across the country.
Mannion now will be leaving for Italy, and will spend the month of June playing for the national team in his native country. The sky is the limit for this young man, and I am eager to continue watching him develop and blossom as a college prospect.
Arizona Hoop Review Scouting Report: Mannion is a high-powered guard talent that plays inspired basketball, pushing the basketball every chance he gets and looking to make plays for himself and his team. He is a very slick guard prospect with an excellent handle of the basketball and a superb overall offensive skillset. A very shifty guard prospect with excellent explosion and a second gear that allows him to burst past defenders in the open floor or half-court set. An excellent finisher that can score with either hand and has excellent body control and nice pace. He has excellent quickness and athleticism, and pushes the basketball up the floor hard. He is a terrific shooter of the basketball with range on his shot and a quick release. A fundamentally sound performer, Mannion has a developed knack of scoring the basketball at a young age. He is also a very good passer that sees the floor and makes players around him better. A good on the ball defender with good lateral quickness. An active rebounder for his size. The son of a former professional player, Pace Mannion, Niko is a sure-fire prospect for the future and is among the nation's next elite prospects.