Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C. — There was a star-studded crowd on hand Monday night to watch Austin Rivers and his Each 1 Teach 1 team at the Peach Jam.
Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski and assistant Chris Collins sat in the middle of the packed coaches’ row, while Boston Celtics coach Doc Rivers, Austin’s father, sat against another wall.
In the end, though, Syracuse commit Michael Carter-Williams and the Boston Area Basketball Club (BABC) spoiled the party by handing Rivers’ team a 63-51 defeat in front of a charged crowd.
Carter-Williams, who dropped 44 points earlier in the day, put up 18 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists to go with 7 turnovers.
The 6-foot-4, 185-pound Rivers, considered by virtually every coach here as the top player in the nation, struggled in scoring 13 points on 6 of 15 shooting to go with 3 assists and 6 turnovers. He scored 29 points in his first game of the day.
“It’s just fun to watch,” Doc Rivers said. “I don’t get enough opportunity to watch him. Whenever I can, I do. I love this atmosphere. This is the best tournament to me of all of them because it’s only about winning. It’s not a showcase.”
Austin initially committed to Florida but says he’s now considering Duke, Florida and North Carolina. He wore Duke gear when he helped lead the USA U18 team to a gold medal in San Antonio.
Asked if that meant it was a done deal for Austin to Duke, Doc said, “It really doesn’t. He wears stuff all the time. He had a UCF shirt on yesterday so you just never know.
“They [Duke] are in it, there’s no doubt about it. And so is Florida though and probably a couple other schools. I just don’t think he knows right now.
“I thought there was a time when he was sure and now he’s not. Hell, I even ask him and he literally says, ‘I have no idea right now’ and that’s good.”
**Villanova-bound Tyrone Johnson of Team Final put up 40 points, 7 rebounds and 3 assists in an 85-82 double-OT win over the Playaz.
**Uncommitted 6-9 big man Rakeem Christmas had 11 points, 8 boards and 7 blocks in the same game. His coach declined to make him available to the media after the game, but Syracuse-bound teammate Trevor Cooney, who hit a 20-foot 3-pointer off the glass to force the first OT, said he’s working on bringing Christmas to Syracuse.
**Uncommited 5-9 point guard Myles Mack dropped 30 points, 5 assists and 0 turnovers in the loss to Team Final.
**Uncommitted 6-8 junior guard Kyle Anderson also was impressive with 20 points on 8 of 17 shooting, 15 boards, 3 assists and 3 turns.
**Omar Calhoun of Christ the King scored 22 points on 8 of 19 shooting in an 80-75 loss to Howard Pulley and had 22 again in an 85-65 loss to Team Takeover.
**Uncommitted senior forward Tyler Harris of Half Hollow Hills West tallied 16 points and 7 boards in a 58-53 Albany City Rocks win over Boo Williams. Harris lists N.C. State, Syracuse, Virginia Tech, Maryland, Michigan, Rutgers, Seton Hall and St. John’s, among others, and says he’ll cut his list to five in August.
**Galal Cancer scored 18 and Pitt-bound Jalen Bond tallied 11 points and 8 boards for City Rocks.
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Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.