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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.
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Thursday / March 4.
  • Tony Parker spent part of Monday visiting with Coach K at Duke and listening to flattering comparisons about what type of player he might become.

    “We talked for a long time,” the 6-foot-9, 275-pound Parker said Tuesday by phone.

    “He was just telling me how I would fit in, how I would play in their system if I came to Duke. A┬álot of stuff was fairly true. He showed me tapes of Carlos Boozer and Elton Brand.

    Like most big men, Amile Jefferson wants to become a wing.

    At 6-foot-8, 197 pounds, Jefferson is the No. 12 power forward in the Class of 2012 according to Rivals.

    But he’s currently at the Kevin Durant Nike Skills Academy in Chicago in order to learn how to “come off screens, slicing, getting to that basket, creating a shot off less dribbles, instead of taking five dribbles, taking one.”

    After finishing up at Philly Friends Central, he hopes to play the wing in college.

    Among the schools on his list right now are Villanova, N.C. State, Temple, Ohio State, UConn, Maryland and Miami.

    Devonta Pollard lives in Mississippi, but he’s feeling some love for Kentucky.

    “Really everyone in Kentucky lives and dies basketball, so I like that,” Pollard, the No. 2 small forward in the Class of 2012 out of Porterville (Miss). Kemper County, said by phone from the Kevin Durant Skills Academy. “And I like the program that they have.

    “And they always build a strong relationship with all their players.”

    When he first heard he had been offered by Kentucky, he said, “I was a little surprised, and I was thankful.”

    At 6-foot-8, 193 pounds, Jerami Grant is one of the top power forwards in the Class of 2012.

    The DeMatha (Md.) Catholic big man is competing at the Kevin Durant Nike Skills Academy in Chicago, but he’s playing through a back injury.

    On June 21, Grant was competing in The Rock Summer League in the Washington, D.C., area when an an opponent undercut him while he was trying to dunk off an alley oop. According to The Washington Post, Grant was taken from the gym on a stretcher.

    “I went to the hospital,” Grant said Tuesday by phone. “I injured my back, so I came down here not 100 percent but I just tried to played through it.”

    After initially saying he planned to announce his college choice this week, Kareem Canty has opened up his recruitment and will take some time.

    “He was feeling pressured to choose a school,” Long Island Lightning coach Dana Dingle said Tuesday by phone, echoing comments he gave to the New York Post.

    “He’s a kid who shouldn’t feel that way. We talked and he’s got a better feel for what he needs to do.”

    Canty had narrowed his list to Seton Hall, Xavier, Miami and Florida State but has also heard from UCLA, Washington, Virginia and Baylor, according to Dingle.

    Kentucky coach John Calipari, fresh off signing an eight-year contract extension worth $36.5 million, says Josh Harrellson will be a “fan favorite” for the Knicks when, and if, NBA action resumes next season.

    “I see him playing in the league because he will go bang, rebound, Bill Laimbeer-ish,” Cal told Mike Lupica Monday on ESPN 1050 radio. “You know what I’m saying? He can shoot it better than you think.

    “And here’s why he didn’t shoot more last year, because I’ve had my best shooting team I’ve had in eight years, when you talk Darius [Miller], Doron [Lamb], Brandon [Knight], even Terrence Jones. I had a heck of a shooting team last year, so I didn’t need him to shoot. We used him in hand-offs and other things.