High School Hoops

VYPE hoops: Rankings after 10 days on the court

The Yates Lions are off to a roaring start to the 2017-2018 season. Vype

Originally appeared on Vype.com.

While the football playoffs are in full swing, the basketball tournament season is full of hot games over the Thanksgiving break. There was as appetizer last week as several top-ranked squads were on the courts.

Tompkins won the McDonalds’ Tourney in Pasadena, Texas, while Eisenhower won the Aldine ISD Tourney.

Stay tuned as the VYPE Thanksgiving Classic goes down this weekend, the HoopsGiving Classic on Wednesday night and the Texas Jamboree at Episcopal over the week.

Here’s a quick early-season breakdown.

Cy Falls Eagles — Coach Flores is doing an excellent job at showing trust in his seniors, getting every player engaged and designating roles. The Eagles’ squad look as if they have been playing together though the spring, summer and fall. We all know that there are pros and cons to being in midseason form early on, but only time will tell if that will be an issue for the reigning state champs. A 2-0 start is only the beginning to a very long road to state.

Sam Houston Tigers — Coach Barreras has been fortunate to have a few key pieces enroll who have been missing in the past. This is personally my favorite Tiger team of the Kendric Davis-era. Shooters who can spread the floor, guards that get after it and versatile inside guys who can step outside and make free-throw makes this Sam Houston team a very dangerous team. Taking an early loss to Eisenhower only hurts the record but can build character and hunger that only makes things worse for the next opponent.

Tompkins Falcons — Another year and another head scratching start for one of the most talented rosters in the state. Coach Sanders takes a lot of the pressure of off the players, rightfully so, but in the end, we need to see more consistent production from the cast. CJ Washington has been their most consistent player but with an ACC and BIG12 commit on the roster teammates, evaluators, and onlookers are expecting a lot more from those guys. After a humbling loss to Cy Falls in their season opener Coach Sanders was able to rally the troops to go 5-0 to and capture The McDonalds invitational championship.

Yates — The Lions have well-seasoned seniors to go along with young poised guards. The ability to go deep into their bench and have no drop off in productivity is what makes them dangerous. The Yates press has made national waves in years past but one focal point in this year’s group is not to have any wasted possessions. Coach Wise puts great emphasis into defense and not just because it's fun to watch but because at the end of the game, the team with the most points win.

Dickinson — The Dickinson Gators certainly continue to be a team to keep an eye on throughout the winter to see if the Coach Wilson can get all of his players onto the same page. After only a few games in, the team has already suffered a few internal blows. The Gators have the ability to be a top ten program in the area for the next few years but if they do not get it together soon, they will find themselves on the bottom of the list.

College Park — One of my favorite teams in the 2017-18 season for multiple reasons, but it's disappointing that this team does not know how to win. This roster needs to find balance and make winning plays. The look offs and creating something out of nothing will lead to bad news for all. Everyone in the country knows what Grimes is capable of and the supporting cast should be able to fill in all gaps as they a very talented bunch.

Clear Lake — The Falcons had a powerful statement game in their season opener only to lose their second game to Lamar. Not a knock against Lamar, but at some point teams recognize matchup advantages and expose them. There was a lot of talk about who is the most underrated guard in the city during the Season Opener, but losing a quality head-to-head match up and giving up 40+ points does not help the argument.

Eisenhower & Morton Ranch- Both are playing very well right now but I won't jinx it. Ill hold off my comments until next time.

Rank

Team (Record)

Comment
1 Cy Falls Rolling Opponents Early On
2 Yates Good Inside Out Game so Far
3 Dekaney Peavy’s Looking Solid
4 Eisenhower Won the Aldine Tourney
5 Sam Houston Great Balance with Davis Leading Way
6 Tompkins Won McDonalds’ Tourney in Pasadena
7 Bush Injury in Backcourt Could Hurt
8 Clear Lake Abercrombie, Sanni are Tough
9 Hightower Could They be Kings of Fort Bend
10 Klein Forest New Group Ready to Take Baton
11 Dickinson Athletic at Every Position
12 Morton Ranch Youngsters Living Up to Hype
13 Lamar Bynum Runs the Show
14 Shadow Creek New School Making Noise
15 College Park KU-Signee Grimes is Best in City
16 Dawson Eagles Could be Tough Down South
17 Cy Creek Cougars on Point
18 Klein Collins Montavious!
19 Ridge Point Could Get FB Kids Back as Well
20 Katy Not Just a Football School

 

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The media has mixed feelings about the James Harden trade. Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

James Harden was 100-percent exactly right earlier this week when he said the Houston Rockets were "just not good enough."

How could they be? Not when their moody superstar scorer, who makes about half a million dollars per game, shows up chubby, looking like a kielbasa about to explode in the microwave. Hey, some people eat when they're unhappy, it's a defense mechanism. In Harden's case, the only defense he's exhibited this season. At least he had a good excuse for missing pre-season training camp and alienating his teammates - he was busy partying with Cinnamon and Cherish in Atlanta and Vegas without a mask. Worst of all, he went into the tank his last four games in a Rockets uniform, standing around, arms folded, scoring fewer than 20 points each time, all Rockets losses. Fans in the front row were asking him to move, he was blocking their view of players who cared about winning. James Harden sabotaged his own team, a team that offered him $50 million a year to stay. Something that crazy could only happen in professional sports these days.

There's a saying that drives the American labor movement: "a fair day's wage for a fair day's work." It's the motto of the American Federation of Labor. The National Basketball Players Association is not a member. Harden's sulking on the court, cheating the Rockets and their fans, was unforgivable.

Harden, sitting out games while somehow being on the court, forced the Rockets to trade him - and quick - to Brooklyn. The trade, when you ignore the fine print and unindicted co-conspirators Cleveland and Indiana, sent Harden to Brooklyn in exchange for Caris LeVert (immediately flipped for Victor Oladipo), Jarrett Allen, three first-round draft picks and four swapped first-rounders. It's true, when you trade a superstar, you never get back equal value. The other team wins.

If it makes Rockets fans feel any better, the media in New York already has problems with their new problem child. I should say newest problem child. Kyrie Irving plays for the Nets.

"They (the Nets) gave up everybody! There's nothing left now. I just want to cry, It's awful," weeped WFAN Radio talk host Evan Roberts. For those who don't subscribe to weekly Arbitron ratings reports, WFAN is the most powerful, top-rated sports talk station in the Apple.

"You're leading down the road of doom. Harden and Durant could be gone in a year and a half. I'm not convinced this gives them a better chance to win a title. I'm living a nightmare again. They better freaking win."

Circle March 3 on your Rockets schedule. That's when the Brooklyn Nets, with their Big 3 of Kevin Durant, James Harden and possibly Kyrie Irving visit Toyota Center. I hear talk radio salivating over the record jeers that will cascade over Harden's name, although I'm not buying it. Fans don't think like the media does. I'm thinking that Rockets fans will welcome Harden back - one night only - with cheers.

Toyota Center public address announcer Matt Thomas: "Usually when former Rockets come to town for the first time since leaving, I give them a positive introduction. It's up to the fans how to react."

James Harden spent eight seasons with the Rockets. He is a spectacular player who watched other NBA players engineer trades so they could compete for a title. Harden didn't think the Rockets were good enough, and he's right. So he wanted out. We've all been there, a job we didn't like for a company we didn't like, for a boss we didn't respect. Harden wanting to be traded is understandable. How he went about it was deplorable. He hurt his co-workers.

Houston will make Harden pay for his disrespectful departure. He has an upscale restaurant set to open here. The name of the steakhouse will be "13." Harden's business partners may want to change that number ... before the restaurant's telephone number is disconnected. There are plenty of other restaurants in Houston. Rich people who can afford steakhouse prices hold grudges.

Rockets fans searching for a silver lining say, "We got two decent players and a whole bunch of precious first-round picks" for a malcontent who would rather be anywhere (except maybe Sacramento) than Houston." Yes, a bunch of first-round picks does bode well for the future. Anywhere, except maybe Houston.

Houston's draft war room isn't the most successful operation in the NBA. Over the past decade prior to 2000, under the direction of general manager Daryl Morey, the Rockets made 16 draft picks. Not one of them is still in a Rockets uniform, many of them have sought employment outside of America, some outside of basketball. Among their first-round whiffs: Nikola Mirotic, Terrence Jones, Sam Dekker - all out of the league. Best of all, Royce White, who played three whole games in his NBA career and finished with a scoring average of 0.00 points per game.

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