Teddy Allen likes being the ultimate team player at Desert Ridge

Arizona Sports News online

Talk about making your presence felt right out of the gate.

Last season, Teddy Allen played 10 games as a freshman for the Desert Ridge basketball team.

The team played 25 games overall.

In those 10 games, Allen managed to become the team’s second leading scorer at 14.6 points per game.

Allen also showed his deadly accuracy behind the arc, hitting 51-percent of his three-point shots.

At 6’4″ and 215 pounds, Allen bounces between the “2-guard” and the power forward positions. He’s got excellent ball handling skills and athleticism for a young man his size. With his skill level, and him only being a sophomore, the sky truly is his limit.

Allen would tend to agree with that statement, but he’s not going to rest on his laurels and on one pretty good season with the Jaguars. He’s still working on his game over the summer with his team and with his AAU club team to continue to move his game levels above where it is now.

Allen thinks his free-flowing, versatile style of basketball serves him well.

“It helps me out, especially in club, when you play for a different team,” Allen said. “I can do whatever my coach asks me to do, like score, rebound, pass, whatever he needs.”

Allen’s been playing down in the post for quite a few years, but in recent years, he discovered the art of the dribble from one of his club coaches.

“My coach was like, ‘You know you can dribble,’ and I was like, ‘Oh I can?'” Allen said. “So I started dribbling the ball up the court [and] passing. I just love it, I love handling the ball and having my team count on me.”

Most young men, or adult men playing basketball who are his size or bigger don’t readily take to the pass first mentality, but Allen has no problem with that. In fact, he relishes in the fact that he can get his teammates involved in the offense, because to him, it makes the unit that much stronger when everyone’s involved and scoring and filling up the stat sheet.

“I just try to do whatever my team needs,” Allen said. “If they need me to score, I’ll score. If they need me to break the team down and pass, I will.”

His lateral quickness would be the weakest part of his game right now, and it’s something Allen is hard at work to try and strengthen.

“Sometimes I struggle guarding quicker defenders,” Allen said. “If you want to play at the next level and higher, you need to know how to defend, and coaches have told me I need to defend my position.”

Translate his style and his game to the NBA, and Allen comes up with LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony as two guys he looks up to.

“Maybe push the ball like LeBron, have a nice little mid-range post game like Carmelo,” Allen said. “I just try to take pieces of everyone’s game and put it into mine.”

Allen’s got a few schools who are showing up on his radar, including NAU and the University of Minnesota-Duluth, who were in town last week to check him out at a basketball tournament in Gilbert, Ariz.

He’s got a ways to go before he even hits a college campus and before he fulfills his ultimate dream of playing in the NBA. Allen is very likely to have both of those things happen in his life because he’s willing to put the extra time in now on the court, which will continue to elevate his game in the long run.

“If I don’t get there, it’s my fault,” Allen said. “I gotta work hard and see what I can do, [because] that’s my dream.”