By Kamal Hylton
In their second game at the Powerade Centre in Brampton as the appetizer to a Brampton A’s NBL Canada game, Orangeville Prep defeated Hamilton’s Sir Allan McNabb 89-54 to improve to 6-0 on the season. Stacked with talent and highly sought after recruits, one of Orangeville’s emerging talents is point guard Jahvon Blair.
The latest in a line of Brampton hoops products, Blair finished with 10 points, four rebounds and two assists off the bench. Beyond what shows up on the stat sheet, Blair displays all the characteristics of a floor general. An aspect of the game he thrives on. “I like to think of myself as a pass first point guard,” the promising prospect told ON POINT. “I like to get everyone involved before I get going, but when needed I can take it to the hole and do something special.”
His coach Larry Blunt sees a bright future for Blair, developing steadily with increased competition.
“He’s a young fella coming along,” Blunt said following the game. “He has an incredible feel for the game of basketball. I feel he’s gotten better playing against older and more mature guys that are physically stronger. His upside is through the roof and we’re excited about where he is and where he’s going.”
One of those special performances came at the 2014 Jordan Brand Classic in New York where he earned International Game MVP honours finishing the game with 16 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists and 4r steals, a distinction shared by rising stars currently gracing NBA courts like Dwight Howard, Anthony Davis, Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant and LeBron James.
“It was a really good experience,” Blair said. “It was my first time being there so I just went with the flow. It was fun playing against some of the best guys around the world, I just showed what I can do and ended up taking home MVP.”
Jahvon Blair right (9) Team White International Game MVP
Playing at such a high level there are surely a long list of schools jumping at the chance for his signature of commitment. He hasn’t chosen a school as of yet, but when thinking of what programs would best fit his style of play he mentioned a few that will be familiar to followers of Canadians in the NCAA.
“I don’t really think about that too much and just play my game,” the six-foot-three guard said to ON POINT. “Whichever school is the best fit is the one I’ll attend, but I like Syracuse or Oregon as two schools.”
Syracuse is a school known for bringing through quite a few Canadian talents, none more so than fellow Brampton native and friend in Phoenix Suns point guard Tyler Ennis. The former star for the Orange is a player that has helped Blair’s approach to the game as well as one that coach Blunt feels shares similar styles.
“It’s still early,” said Blunt to ON POINT. “However, a lot of the high major schools have expressed interest in him coming off the MVP of the Jordan Brand game. His pedigree puts you in mind of a Tyler Ennis, both find joy in getting people involved, facilitating the offence and distributing the ball evenly but can also score.”
“Me and him [Tyler Ennis] are cool,” Blair said. “When I see him we catch up and he’ll help me with my game, like at Jordan Brand when he helped guide me and I came out successful.”
By Kamal Hylton
Photos Courtesy of North Pole Hoops & Kamal Hylton