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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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Tuesday / August 16.
  • SHAQBY CHIP MILLER

    On April 1, the United Center in Chicago will be home to the 38th McDonald’s All-American games showcasing some of the best boys high school basketball seniors from around the country.

    Highly recognized as the most prestigious All-American honor a high school player can receive, the McDonald’s All-American game has been the home to many future NBA stars.

    Names like Shaquille O’Neal, Alonzo Mourning, Jerry Stackhouse, Kevin Garnett, Zach Randolph, LeBron James and Kevin Durant are just a few of the stars who have worn the red and yellow. This year is no different with the 24 of the top boys seniors getting their chance to make a lasting memory.

    Jaylen BrownESPN.com issued their new rankings for the Class of 2015, and eight of the top 12 prospects have yet to declare for college.

    All eight are McDonald’s All-Americans.

    That should make for an interesting couple of months going into April and May, as these players will wait to evaluate coaching changes, early-entry NBA decisions and other factors before making their college choices.

    LSU-bound Ben Simmons is the No. 1 prospect in the ESPN rankings, Kentucky commit Skal Labissiere is No. 3, Marquette signee Henry Ellenson is No. 5 and Duke pledge Chase Jeter is No. 9.

    The other players in the top 12 are uncommitted.  Here’s a look at where they stand.

    EmbiidPhiladelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid denies he weighs 300 pounds and former No. 1 pick Pervis Ellison said he was impressed when he recently saw Embiid work out.

    “I don’t weigh that,” Embiid told Dei Lynam of CSNPhilly.com on Sunday.

    The Philadephia Inquirer, citing a source, said Embiid, the No. 3 pick in last year’s NBA Draft, is “close to 300 pounds after being 250 pounds at Kansas last season.”

    4_995450

    Burlington (N.J.) Life Center point guard Traci Carter certainly helped himself with his strong play at the HoopHall Classic.

    The 6-foot-1 Carter went for 18 points, 10 assists, 7 rebounds and 4 steals on Sunday in a 64-50 win over Thon Maker and Orangeville Prep at Springfield College.

    Carter’s performance came in front of a slew of high-major coaches, and immediately transformed his already strong recruitment.

    “I’ve heard from UConn, N.C. State and Xavier,” Donnie Carr, Carter’s Godfather, told SNY.tv by phone on Wednesday. “All of them were there and they all said they were going to watch him again.”

    NCAA Basketball: Vanderbilt at KentuckyWith Kentucky’s 65-57 win over Vanderbilt Tuesday night, coach John Calipari now has a record of 96-4 at Rupp Arena.

    That is the best record for any Kentucky coach through 100 games. Rick Pitino and Adolph Rupp both went 94-6, while Joe B. Hall and Tubby Smith were 88-12.

    Calipari attributed it to the number of future NBA players he’s coached.

    “It means we have had 19 draft picks,” he said after his top-ranked team improve to 18-0 on the season. “It means we have had a team full of draft picks now. That I’ve had the best players in the country here the last five years, now going on six years. And they have accepted being coached, they accepted each other. Selfless kind of kids.”

    VJ KingBy EDDIE GIBBON

    SPRINGFIELD, Mass — In the final game of the 2015 HoopHall Classic, Chaminade College Prep (MO) defeated Paul VI (VA), 88-78. In one of the best individual matchups of the entire tournament, 2016 small forwards V.J. King and Jayson Tatum went head-to-head.

    King, ranked 16th in the ESPN.com Super 60, led his team by erupting for a tournament-best 38 points. With UConn head coach Kevin Ollie sitting front and center, the smooth 6-foot-7 wing showed why he’s one of the most versatile players in his class. Tatum, ranked No. 1 in the ESPN.com Super 60, finished with a team-high 25 points. He is considering UConn among the schools on his final list of 10.