The Emoni Bates Show is coming to Pinckney on Friday, and a capacity crowd is expected.
Bates, a 6-9 sophomore at Ypsilanti Lincoln who has already been on the cover of Sports Illustrated, is one of the top high school basketball players in the country, let alone Michigan, and is the featured player in a tough Railsplitters lineup when Pinckney plays Lincoln tonight in a Southeastern Conference game.
The game will be on The Livingston Post starting at around 6:45. Click here for a link.
“He’s such a hard matchup because of his skills,” Pinckney coach Tom Reason said. “He’s very aggressive. He’s pretty sneaky with his quickness. He keeps the ball nice and tight and his ability to get around people who are probably even faster than him is impressive. He definitely runs that show.”
The show also includes Braelon Green, a transfer who Reason said won a slam-dunk contest at a camp run by NBA star Chris Paul this summer.
“They have a lot of size,” Reason said.
But, he added, his team won’t back down.
“I think we’re pretty fired up,” Reason said. “I think our kids have a lot of excitement, so as a coach, I tell our guys, ‘Don’t be in awe of who’s in front of you. Let’s go play. Let’s go after him. Let’s pressure him and hopefuly be able to do things we want to do in our game and make a good game of it.”
The Pirates will be led by junior Dylan Reason, the coach’s son, who scored 27 points in a meeting with Lincoln last year.
“We’ve got nothing to lose, right?” said Reason, whose team is 2-0 this season. “There’s probably not anyone around here who thinks we’re going to win but us. There’s some challenges there, and I’ve been preaching all week that the first thing you’ve got to do is believe you can beat them. I want to go in there with a good game plan, which I think we have. He’s a player, guys. Yes, I know he was on the cover of Sports Illustrated, but I’m with the theory that if we play 10 times, they might beat us nine, but there’s that one night.”
It certainly will be a big night in the Pinckney gym, which holds 2,000 spectators in the main gym with bleachers being brought in for an expected overflow crowd.
“It’s our last day of school before break,” Reason said. “I think they’d be pretty fired up anyway. I think it will be a really fun atmosphere.”