Thursday, June 12, 2008

Christian Leach- 2011 Baller is a Flat-Out Scorer

Christian Leach, a 6'1 guard for National Christian Academy (MD), is a talented basketball player, and the freshman knows how to put the ball in the hoop. I saw part of Leach's U-15 NCA squad's wins against D-One Sports (NC) and the Fairfax Stars (VA) in pool play at the Southern Jam Fest. In both contests, Leach had 20+ points, dropping 27 against D-One and 20 versus Fairfax. Clearly, the rising sophomore is a talented offensive player. I spoke with him after his team's win over Fairfax.

NB: Where does your scoring ability come from? [You have scored] . . . 20+ points in two straight games. How do you have that ability just to put the ball in the hoop?
CL: Well, I try to get my teammates involved first, but . . . it just comes naturally I guess.

NB: What do you consider to be the strongest point of your game?
CL: My ability to score.

NB: What do you think you need to work on the most?
CL: Defense.

NB: With the defense, what specifically is it? Is it more of the perimeter defense, down low with the bigs, . . . what specifically is it that you have to work on so you can help out on both sides of the court?
CL: Staying up close with my man.

NB: Have you been receiving any college interest at this point in any form?
CL: No, not yet.

NB: Do you have a school that you’ve always dreamed of going to?
CL: [The] University of Connecticut.

NB: Why UConn? What puts [it] at the top of your list?
CL: [Pause] Well, the amount of players that go to the NBA that come through that school, . . . and I [have] just always dreamed of going there.

NB: Do you have a player that you compare yourself to skills-wise in the way you play either in the NBA or in the NCAA?
CL: No, I don’t [have one].

NB: Do you have a favorite NBA team as well that you also watch and [and whose players] you try to emulate some of the guys on that team?
CL: [The] Los Angeles Lakers.

NB: Who are some of the players that you try to [emulate and] pick up some of their moves and try to use that in your game?
CL: Kobe Bryant.

NB: What makes basketball . . . an enjoyable sport for your to play? What makes it appealing for you to just go out and play basketball, . . . get to all these tournaments [and] take up your spring [and] summer and just play basketball?
CL: Oh man. [Pause] . . . Just [to] work hard. I [have] always dreamed of playing since I was young, [and] my father . . . brought basketball in my life.

NB: If you had to give me one word to sum up your game what would it be?
CL: Shooter.

It is good to see that Leach knows he needs to work on his defense, and assuming he does so, he may well develop into one of the top guards in his class. The scoring ability is already there for Christian, and once he develops a more well-rounded game on both ends of the floor, he will be a scary player. It's hard to tell right now whether or not he will become a UConn-caliber player, but every team needs a scorer. Christian Leach is just that, a flat-out scorer.

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