1 on 1 with Jontay Porter

Interview from last year that got lost in the shuffle. Here's L.J.s 1 on 1 with Jontay Porter:

Jontay Porter is a super gifted and silky smooth player who is currently ranked as the 16th ranked prospect in the 2018 NBA Draft by NBA Draft Room. At 6-10, 240 he is an explosion waiting to happen. He is as quick as they come for his size and is aggressive, with a smooth long range stroke. Jontay is also the brother of Michael Porter Jr., the no.2 ranked player by NBA Draft Room in the 2018 draft class.

Both Michael and Jontay de-committed from the Washington Huskies and both committed to Missouri. They come from a very basketball rich family with not only is his brother being a baller but sisters Bri and Cierra play for Missouri as well and his younger brother Coban is a talented 2020 prospect as a 6-3 170 guard. His mom, Lisa Porter scored 58.7 points a game as a senior in high school and shot 58.4 percent from the field as a freshman. His father, Michael Porter Sr. is an assistant coach for Missouri. Jontay comes from Nathan Hale high school by way of Seattle, WA. Due to the legacy of talent that the Porters have they are legendary in their community and Jontay is destined for stardom at the professional level.

I had a 1 on 1 with him last year before he committed to Missouri. NBA Draft Room was the only Mock draft that had him on 2018 NBA draft boards for a long time when he reclassified to the 2017 class to play with his brother Michael.


Let's go 1 on 1

LJ: Jontay whats going on my man how is school and how has this season went?

Jontay: This season has gone great. High school year we went undefeated and this summer I’ve seen a lot of success as well.

LJ: Crazy genes man just about everybody plays ball. Did your father play ball and what about your mom, is she an athlete too?

Jontay: Both my mom and dad played D1 basketball. It definitely runs in the family!

LJ: Its been a process what made you de-commit from Washington?

Jontay: The coaching change.

LJ: Is Missouri it or do other schools have a shot?

Jontay: Missouri

LJ: Is everybody competitive in your household and who is the best talent among you all?

Jontay: Everybody in the house is definitely competitive. We’re all talented in our own ways.

LJ: How did your parents influence your upbringing and how close are you and Michael? Are you two the same in anyway or night and day? Whats the difference?

Jontay: All the kids are super close to our parents. Michael and I are extremely close and similar in a lot of ways. We also have our differences though.

LJ: What does Jontay bring to a team and what is the strength of your game?

Jontay: I think I bring versatility to any team I’m on, both on offense and defense.

LJ: What do you feel you have to work on?

Jontay: I have to work on everything and get better in every aspect of my game to reach the goals I’ve set forth.

LJ: How is Seattle? I have heard things... what type of city is it?

Jontay: Seattle was a great experience for me and my family.

LJ: Great sitting down with you. You have a great family. Stay focused young leader.

Jontay: Thank you sir.

This article was contributed by NBA Draft Analyst Leader Johnson. Follow L.J. on Twitter
Follow Jontay on Twitter

Check out the full 2018 NBA Mock Draft

 

1 on 1 with Alex Antetokounmpo

Some athletes have it and some are born with it. Alex Antetokounmpo is a 6-7 190 small forward with unlimited potential. The fruit doesn’t fall too far from the tree in this family; he is the youngest brother of NBA superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo aka "The Greek Freak". He has two other brothers, Thanis Antetokounmpo who was drafted by the New York Knicks in 2014 and is now back in Greece playing in the Euro League with club Panathinaikos (Thanis was recently named MVP of the Greek All-star game) and Kostas Antetokounmpo who is a 6-10 4-star power forward who played for Dayton and has declared for the 2018 NBA draft (without an agent).

Alex is in the 2020 recruiting class and plays with the spotlight directly on him. The success of his brothers, especially Giannis, rests on his shoulders and he plays as if he has been here before. He has elite athleticism with a polished all-around game for his age. He is quick and fast in transition with a sweet stroke from long range. He has equal impact on defense; with his long arms and quick hands he has the potential to be an elite defender. Although he's a few years away from being draft eligible, he projects as a possible high draft pick thanks to his length, athleticism and great bloodlines.

Let's go 1 on 1
 

LJ: The life you have lived since your brother became the superstar he is. How has it been?

Alex: It has been great; a lot of excitement comes with playing basketball in the United States. Basketball in the U.S is fit for someone like me and my family.

LJ: When did you know your brother was a star?

Alex: I always knew my brother was heading towards stardom, but when I saw him on that stage being announced a two time all-star by Kevin Hart I knew he was something special.

LJ: How have you been doing this season? What are your averages?

Alex: Although this season I and my squad fell short in the Regional finals, I had a decent season averaging 16pt/10rbs/3ast.

LJ: You have two other brothers Thanis who is already in the league and Kostas who just entered the NBA Draft. You get to learn a lot. What is the relationship you have with your brothers?

Alex: My brothers push me every day to become the best version of myself either that is on or off the court.

LJ: How much has Giannis taught you about the game of basketball?

Alex: I am a self-taught and self-sufficient player, most of my basketball IQ has come from my natural feel for the game, but having my brother there to guide me through obstacles along the way has been a great privilege to have.

LJ: What do you feel is the strength of your game at this point?

Alex: My three point shooting as well as my defense and ability to drive the ball during transitions.

LJ: Are you thinking of going to college in the US? Are any college teams recruiting you?

Alex: I currently hold a Division l scholarship offer from Green Bay University and have interest from Santa Barbara, Tulane, Wisconsin, and UW-Milwaukee, Iowa etc.

LJ: What have been your best individual game stats wise? What were your numbers?

Alex: It was a travel circuit game, I remember I was upset the previous night because I felt as if I turned down a ton of shots, the next night we had an early morning game I dropped 39pts and 16rbs.

LJ: If you could choose your NBA team who would you like to play for? Why?

Alex: Any team that would be ready to put trust and dedication in me for I am a long term raw athlete.

LJ: You and your brothers ever dream of playing on an NBA team together? Have you ever talked about it a bunch of "Greek Freaks" on one team that would be fun?

Alex: We aspire to all one day play in the NBA, that’s our goal and we work very hard to reach it.

LJ: What is the strength of your game that gives you the most impact?

Alex: My three point shooting and my athleticism gives me an edge over defenders

LJ: What top young international talent have you played so far?

Alex: I have played against great talent, Jalen Green, Cole Anthony, Kyree Walker etc.

LJ Young Lamelo Ball is tearing up the international circuit. You think you can take him? How great of a match up do you think that would be for the international game?

Alex: What he is doing at such a young age in Lithuania is impressive, we are two different players that play two different positions there for that would be interesting to see.

LJ: Who is your favorite NBA player and why?

Alex: My brother off course but a close second is Devin Booker his three point shooting is unbelievable, some of the best in the league.

LJ: You are a top prospect on the 2021 big board by NBA Draft Room. Do you expect to come out in 2021? If not when?

Alex: I am a project, my goal is to be out by then but that takes a lot of hard work and a lot of hours in the gym which I’m willing to put fourth.


This article was contributed by NBA Draft Analyst Leader Johnson. Follow L.J. on Twitter
Follow Alex on Twitter

Here's a very early 2021 big board

1 on 1 with Jalen Smith

Jalen Smith is a 6-10 power forward with great skill and strength. He is coming out of the 2018 recruiting class heading to the University of Maryland. I have seen this kids game improve and his stock rise. He is a hard worker and the type of player that makes everyone around him better.

Jalen made the McDonald's All-American game, in which he recorded 12 points 4 rebounds and 2 blocks. He is currently ranked as the 22nd overall prospect and 5th ranked power forward in the 2020 NBA draft class, assuming he declares after two years in school. I had a 1 on 1 with the talented power forward.

Let's go 1 on 1

LJ: You love to be a winner. You have won in AAU and high school. What motivates you to be the best.
Jalen: I believe that it’s a desire that all kids have when they compete at anything that brings them face to face with their peers. I also was told that whatever I choose to do, give it my all.

LJ: Where did you grow up. How was it growing up?
Jalen: I was born in Portsmouth, Va., being the kid of a military father. I grew up in Baltimore County. Windsor Mills to be exact.

LJ: What made you commit to Maryland?
Jalen: I grew up watching Maryland with my dad and it’s the hometown team, so to be honest with you, it was an honor to have received an offer from Coach Turgeon.

LJ: You have had big games. What do you think has been your biggest game at the high school level and why?
Jalen: It was probably the game against John Carroll on senior day this year. I truly enjoyed winning

LJ: You are a monster in the post. What makes you an impact player down low?
Jalen: Well I am extremely long and tall, so that’s my advantage against some of the teams that I play against, combined with my skill set that I have adopted over the years during my time in the gym with my trainers and coaches and teammates.

LJ: What has improved the most about your game?
Jalen: I would have to say my jump shot, but it definitely needs to get better. That along with my dribbling, strength, and timing is something that I will be consistently working on over the summer.

LJ: You had 31 in a game against Dematha. Great game by the way. I noticed you were comfortable shooting that long range shot. Is your long range developing into a more fluid shot for you?
Jalen: Yes, it is especially during the long high school season when I am taking a beating every night from consistent double and triple teams, its nice to be able to depend on my outside shooting.

LJ: What NBA player do your feel resembles your game?
the BCL/M.I.A.A last year, but that was a big game and day for my teammates, coaches, family, and myself.
Jalen: I would like to compare my game to that of a Anthony Davis. Understand that I am not saying that I am Anthony Davis, but I like the way he plays the game.

LJ: Who is your favorite player in the NBA and why?
Jalen: Kobe Bryant, that guy is an assassin on the court and he is friends with you off of it.

LJ: We rate you a first round talent at NBA draft room for the 2020 class. Do you know at this time when you will enter the NBA draft?
Jalen: Well if you guys have me going that soon, then I have a lot of work to do between now and then on the court and inside the classroom, because I want to at least have my degree by then or at least be ¾ complete with it.

LJ: What about your character will a team like?
Jalen: I am a team player, but I believe that I am fun to be around also. I love to pick other peoples brain and game so that I can improve on mine.

LJ: I have seen you take a game over. What about your skill set allows you to make the most impact?
Jalen: I want to believe that it starts with my ability to alter and block shots on the defensive end, then get down the court as quickly as possible on offense and being able to stretch the court during offensive sets.

LJ: It's a lot of prospects who want your spot. How hard are you training to get to the next level.
Jalen: I train at least 5 days out of the week and now I have incorporated weight training in so that makes it 6 days out of the week.

LJ: If you could choose, what team would you love to play for in the NBA?
Jalen: Any team that would love for me to play for them. The chances of even making the NBA is slim, so it would be an honor to play for whomever selects me….did I mention the Lakers?

LJ: Overall what does Jalen Smith bring to an NBA team?
Jalen: The ability to learn, work hard, play hard, and improve night in and night out. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to do this interview and you take care.

LJ: You too my guy, always been a fan and I will be watching.


This article was contributed by NBA Draft Analyst Leader Johnson. Follow L.J. on Twitter
Follow Jalen on Twitter

Check out the full 2020 NBA Mock Draft

1 on 1 with Luka Samanic

Luka Samanic is a 6-10 215 power forward with serious skill. He can shoot it from outside and he can take you to the basket with quickness. He can post you up and has the potential to be a good two-way player.

He is one of the top international players in his age group and is currently projected as the no.2 international prospect and the no.14th overall prospect in the 2019 NBA draft class and could move even higher.  I had a conversation with him about his future.

Let's go 1 on 1

LJ: It's been great watching you develop. What part of your game allows you to make the most impact?
Luka: Well I think it’s my shot and ability to run and move as a small forward at 6’11.

LJ: What other top international players have you played against? What is the toughest international player you have played against?
Luka: I played against top European players and also top USA players but I can’t decide or point at someone in particular.

LJ: You are great in transition and your long range game is developing more. What part of your game is improving the most?
Luka: My opinion is my body and overall game. Passing, shooting and, dribbling.

LJ: Who is your favorite player in the NBA? Why?
Luka: Kevin Durant because he is just so long but also quick which allows him to pass through opponents and he shoots really well.

LJ: What will NBA scouts like about you the most?
Luka: I think mix of my length and mobility.

LJ: You were the MVP of the FIBA U18 European Championships. How many other MVPs have you
received?
Luka: I played in FIBA U18 this past summer and since than I was on junior tournament in Tenerife. I was also in Junior Euro league tournament also.

LJ: What team would you like to play for if you could pick an NBA team?
Luka: Well my goal is to reach NBA, but if I have to choose maybe Knicks, Lakers, Boston.

LJ: Have you ever thought about playing college ball in the U.S.?
Luka: I did and it’s still an option.

LJ: What NBA players have you played against?
Luka: I never played in game but on practice I did.

LJ: What makes you ready for the NBA level?
Luka: My mentality and hard work

LJ: We have you ranked as the no. 14th ranked player in the 2019 NBA draft class. Are you going to enter the 2019 NBA draft?
Luka: My plan is to enter 2019. But you never know.

LJ: Why would a team benefit from drafting you? What type of impact do you bring to a team?
Luka: I will do whatever it takes to win. I can rebound, assist, and steal. My first option is not only to score so it’s not limitation.

LJ: Can you impact your first year in the NBA?
Luka: I can


This article was contributed by NBA Draft Analyst Leader Johnson. Follow L.J. on Twitter
Follow Luka on Twitter

Check out the full 2019 NBA Mock Draft