2013 McDonald’s All-American Game

Posted on April 7, 2013. Filed under: Basketball, Boys High School Basketball, Girls High School Basketball, High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Girls and Boys… East meets West for braggin rights!!!

April 3, 2013

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Playing in the 36th annual McDonald’s HS All American Game (McDAAG) is almost a golden ticket to super-stardom on the collegiate or professional level. Since 1977, legendary players like Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Shaquille O’Neal, and more have all gotten their initial national exposure from playing in the McDonald’s Game.

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There is no such thing as a sure thing in sports, but that hardly has us putting down our crystal balls in the form of amateur tournaments and all-star exhibitions. The McDAAG is no different, and has always been a chance to see the special young stars of today and daydreaming of where they will land just a few years from now.

The McDAAG is always about looking into the future, to see what these kids will do when they become men. In the case of Taya Reimer and Jabari Parker, Players of the Year, it’s safe to say that it will be all good things.

Indiana standout Taya Reimer, and Four-time Illinois state champion Jabari Parker hold up their McDonald's All American jerseys accompanied by Joe Wootten, left, the son of Morgan Wootten, and Douglas Freeland, right, Director of McDonalds All American Games after being picked as the national prep basketball players of the year Monday, March 18, 2013, in Chicago. The award, named for legendary Maryland high school coach Morgan Wootten, is awarded annually to the top male and female McDonald's All-American players. (caption provided by AP)

Indiana standout Taya Reimer, and Four-time Illinois state champion Jabari Parker hold up their McDonald’s All American jerseys accompanied by Joe Wootten, left, the son of Morgan Wootten, and Douglas Freeland, right, Director of McDonalds All American Games after being picked as the national prep basketball players of the year Monday, March 18, 2013, in Chicago. The award, named for legendary Maryland high school coach Morgan Wootten, is awarded annually to the top male and female McDonald’s All-American players. (caption provided by AP)[/caption]

GIRLS: West 74, East 55

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Final high school game…. what a way to end this chapter, and prepare for the next…. Senior guard Linnae Harper stood in the middle of a huddle of McDonald’s Americans at the United Center and initiated the celebratory cry.

“Whose side? West Side!” as the West defeated the East 92-64 in the girls McDonald’s All-American game.

Harper, a Kentucky-recruit, did a lot for the players visiting Chicago, including giving a tour of the city and recommending places to eat, but on Wednesday night, she pushed the pace of the game and helped her team snag a big victory adding eight points, five assists, three rebounds and two steals.

“Usually when I start the games, my first goal is to get a steal,” Harper said. “That brings intensity and energy to the game, and eventually that affected the team. We were just on a roll.”

At the half, the West led 45-35 and didn’t relinquish the comfortable lead. Harper directed a 7-0 second-half spurt in which she had a steal, two assists and a long jumper.

Also at halftime, Harper was given a different award, the Jack Daly Sportsmanship award, which she shared with Erica McCall and Kelsey Plum. It was a tribute, she said, to her desire to make sure her teammates enjoyed her city.

“I’m going around and showing them the best of Chicago because I would hope if I went to their state, they would give me the best of where they live at,” Harper said. “It’s all about giving back.”

“She did a great job coming out, anticipating, getting steals and buckets for us,” said West coach Anthony Smith, of Bolingbrook. “That’s the type of kid and player she is. It was great to see.”

Tennessee recruit, Mercedes Russell (Springfield, OR), was named the game’s MVP after finishing with 16 points, 12 rebounds and three blocks for the West.

North Carolina recruit Diamond DeShields led the East with 15 points and five rebounds, while Harper’s future Kentucky teammate, Makayla Epps, added 13 points.

High School Player of the Year Notre Dame recruits Taya Reimer (2 points, 3 blocks) and Lindsay Allen (4 points, 6 rebounds) teamed up for the losing side with Northwestern recruit Nia Coffey (2 points, 6 rebounds).

“I could have done a lot better personally, but it’s really not about individual stuff,” Allen said. “It’s playing together, having fun.”

NOTABLE PERFORMERS: West — Tyler Scaife, 15 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists; Jordan Reynolds, 10 points, 11 rebounds. East — Diamond DeShields, 15 points, 5 rebounds, 4 steals; Makayla Epps, 13 points.

Harper’s, now famous pre-game meal of the chicken skin mixed with ranch and french dressing, continues to help her basketball performances now for the Lady Wildcats.

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BOYS: West 110, East 99 Game

Talk about a stellar high school basketball career for Duke-recruit, Jabari Parker, from Chicago Simeon. And on Wednesday night, helped his All-American Squad (West), to a 110-99 victory over the East in front of his base-fans in Chicago at the United Center.

“It was the best experience so far,” Parker said. “Getting a chance to play in front of a lot of family. I saw a lot of my coaches out there, having Coach Mike coach me. A lot of people don’t know I was about to go to Mount Carmel if I didn’t go to Simeon.”

Matched against the number 1 ranked, undecided player, Andrew Wiggins, Parker immediately made his presence felt defensively. He had two quick blocked shots, including Wiggins’ first attempt from the perimeter. He managed to stay in front of Wiggins more often than not, but did commit five fouls in the process.

“It went pretty good,” Parker said. “He is super athletic so I had to over-commit on the drive, but he can shoot so it was kind of difficult. He is a great player.”

Parker didn’t have a problem getting his shot off on the other end, but getting the ball to drop was another matter. He was 4-for-13 shooting from the field and 2 of 2 from the line. Wiggins, on the other hand, was 6 of 10 and 7 of 8 for 19 points.

“Going against Jabari is the best going against the best,” Wiggins said. “I look forward to doing it in the future.”

Parker was asked if the evening was bittersweet because it was his final high school game. Parker replied “I think I have another game,” Parker said. “It is on the D.L. (down low) right now. It will surprise a lot of people.”

Parker finished with 10 points, eight rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocked shots.

Arizona-bound forward Aaron Gordon, California’s Mr. Basketball, had 24 points and eight rebounds to claim MVP honors.

Attendance: 15,818 at the United Center.

FUN NOTE: Record number of fans who attended the 2011 game at the United Center in Chicago. Last year’s attendance, also at the United Center, was 16,308. The attendance for the 2013 game was 15,818.

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Another successful McDonald’s All-American event and this clearly means the future of college hoops is in good hands!

JABARI PARKER CAREER

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2010 National Freshman of the Year (ESPN HS)
2011 National Sophomore of the Year (ESPN HS)
2012 National Junior of the Year (ESPN HS & MaxPreps.com )
2011 USA Basketball’s Male Athlete of the Year
2012 National Player of the Year (Gatorade)
2012 Statewide Player of the Year (Gatorade, Illinois Mr. Basketball)
2012 First team All-American (ESPN HS, SLAM, USA Today)
2013 All-American (Jordan, McD’s)
2013, 2012, 2011, 2010 IHSA state champion
2013 National Player of the Year (McD’s/Wootten)
2013 Statewide Player of the Year (Gatorade, Illinois Mr. Basketball)

****McDONALD’S ALL-AMERICAN GAME****

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The McDonald’s All-American Game consist of the top players, each team plays a single exhibition game after the conclusion of the high-school basketball season, in an East vs. West format. As part of the annual event, boys also compete in a slam dunk contest, a three-point shooting competition, and an overall timed skills competition. The girls compete in the three-point shooting competition and the overall-skills competition. The boys’ game has been contested annually since 1978, and the girls game has been played each year since it was added in 2002.

The McDonald’s All-American designation began in 1977 with the selection of the inaugural team. That year, the All-Americans played in an all-star game against a group of high school stars from the Washington, D.C. area. The following year, the McDonald’s game format of East vs. West was begun with a boys contest. In 2002, with the addition of a girls contest, the current girl-game / boy-game doubleheader format began.

The McDonald’s All-American Team is the best-known of the American high-school basketball All-American teams. Having the designation of McDonald’s All-American instantly brands a player as one of the top high-school players in the United States or Canada.

The teams are sponsored by McDonald’s, the fast-food chain. Proceeds from the annual games go to local Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) and their Ronald McDonald House programs.

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2013 McDonald’s American Game Preview

Posted on April 3, 2013. Filed under: Basketball, Boys High School Basketball, Girls High School Basketball, High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Best of the best on one court…

April 2, 2013


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The 36th annual McDonald’s All-American games activities kicked off Sunday with the players’ visit to the new Ronald McDonald House in Streeterville, where boys and girls players spent time with families.

This is definitely an event I’ve been mentally preparing myself for almost as if it were the opening tip of the NBA playoffs due to the level of players selected on one floor in the house Michael built at United Center.

Things get started with Chicago’s lovable son, Jabari Park, Player of the Year from Simeon, who just completed a 4-peat in the Illinois High School Association Title run. Mr. Parker is being recognized as one of the best out of Chicago since Derrick Rose, Ben Wilson, Tim Hardaway and Mark Aguirre.

Then you have what is now being called the “new Fab Five…” Kentucky Wildcats recruits. Coach John Calipari has six of the 25 players selected to participate on the boys roster will be playing ball for him in Kentucky this fall. No college has drawn this many McDonald’s All-Americans in a single class.

Kentucky-bound McDonald’s All-Americans in the ESPN rankings also include No. 3 Julius Randle, No. 5 Andrew Harrison, No. 6 James Young of Rochester (Mich.), No. 7 Aaron Harrison, No. 11 Dakari Johnson of Montverde (Fla.), and No. 18 Marcus Lee of Deer Valley (Calif.).

“It’s our way to start off our season for next year,” said Kentucky recruit Julius Randle, of Prestonwood Christian in Texas. “It’s good to hang out with everybody and get a good feel for each other, just have fun while we’re doing this.”

Randle, a 6-foot-9 forward ranked the No. 3 recruit in the country by ESPN, had planned for a couple of weeks to make his college announcement on March 20. The day before he committed, Kentucky suffered a shocking 59-57 loss to Robert Morris in the NIT, ending a season in which it lost star Nerlens Noel to an ACL tear en route to a 21-12 record.

MEDIA DAY COVER
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Randle’s announcement — spurred by his desire to win a national championship, he said — immediately turned the page and sparked debate about whether the Wildcats’ recruiting class could be considered the best in history.

“If you go by paper and rankings, maybe you can say (it’s the best class), but we haven’t done anything yet,” Randle said. “We have to prove ourselves.”

The recruits learned that watching Kentucky this season.

“They had a good amount of talent on their team. I guess they just couldn’t put it together at the right times,” Andrew Harrison said. “I feel like the team this year lacked a little bit of leadership. Coach (Calipari) told me he’s depending on me to bring that, so I’m definitely going to try to do that.”

McDonald’s All-American Andrew Wiggins, a 6-8 forward from Huntington Prep (W.Va.) and the nation’s top recruit, said Sunday he will decide by mid-May between Kentucky, Kansas, North Carolina and Florida State.

Click below to read recap….

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Despite the neverending comparisons to Lebron James and Kevin Durant (for his quiet, yet relentless approach), Wiggins’ game is unique to only him, with his own true deficiency being he gets “bored” at times playing kids his own age, according to his high school coach Rob Fulford. Those not yet willing to sip the kool-aid on Wiggins should take a gander at this highlight mixtape.

While the game Wednesday night won’t make or break Wiggins, Parker, Randle or any high school senior suited up, calling the All-American Game a “stepping stone” is short-changing the power of the moment. Stages like this can and have accelerated the process of morphing phenoms into stars, and stars into walking, breathing brands.

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Other McDonald’s All-Amercan Game Notes:

The rosters for the 2013 boys and girls McDonald’s All-American game can be found at http://www.mcdonaldsallamerican.com/aag/en/gamescenter/2013-Team.html.

The games will be played on April 3, in Chicago (Ill.) at the house Michael Jordan built (United Center), with the girls’ game starting at 6 p.m. CDT on ESPNU and boys’ game beginning at 8:30 p.m on ESPN.

– The selection of Taya Reimer to this year’s game made McDonald’s All-American history as she became half of the first father-daughter duo to be selected to the game. Her father, Ben Davis, was selected to the game in 1991.

– Duke and North Carolina each have three recruits playing in this year’s game while four other schools teams also have multiple selections. The other four teams with multiple selections are Notre Dame, Stanford, Kentucky and Tennessee.

– Kaela Davis, the number two-rated prospect by ESPN Hoopgurlz, missed a good chunk of her high school season to get treated for Meniere’s disease. Davis has battled the disease, which is an inner-ear disorder characterized by hearing loss and vertigo, since she was 11. Davis is expected to play in the McDonald’s game as well as for Georgia Tech next season.

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McDonald All-American Games

Posted on October 29, 2012. Filed under: AAU, Basketball, Basketball, Boys High School Basketball, Girls High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

High School Basketball best is Chicago-bound at least for a few years….

August 2012

McDonald’s announced on Wednesday that the boys and girls All American Games will stay in Chicago at the United Center through 2015, with an option for 2016.

Bottom line, the fans keep turning out to watch the best-of-the-best in high school basketball.

“Fans throughout the U.S. can now make Chicago their destination to see the greatest high school basketball players participate in this annual rite of passage,” Douglas Freeland, director of the games, said in a release.

According to McDonald’s, Chicago ranks first in average attendance with 17, 388 in the three years it has hosted the game (1982, 2011, 2012). Philadelphia is a distant second with 11,610 in two years hosting.

The 2013 game will take place on April 3. Tickets will be available in January and the rosters will be announced in February.

For more, click here.

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2012 Boys McDonald’s All-American Game

Posted on March 28, 2012. Filed under: Basketball, Boys High School Basketball, High School Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

2012 Boys Best of the Best

March 28 2012

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In the 2012 McDonald’s All-American game featuring the best of the best in Boys basketball, things got started with a fast-pace featuring top-ranked Shabazz Muhammad, who scored 9 of the teams opening 11 points, including a 3-pointer and a monster dunk that brought everyone to the feet.

In the end, it was the West that was on top 106-102.

The West stretched their lead out even more in the second half to 80-56 with 11:50 left to play. The East battled back and got the game within 4 points with 4.1 left to play in regulation, but the clock ran out on them.

Muhammad of Bishop Gorman in Las Vegas, NV (West) led all players with 21 points, followed by teammate Rasheed Sulaimon who added 18. On the other side of the ball, Alex Poythress, Kentucky-recruit, knocked down 19, 11 of which came in the first half.

Seeing 6’6″ Muhammad live for the first time, he’s is explosive in the open-court and never shy to attack the rim either. In addition to that, his size and strength makes him a force on the court at a couple of positions. Muhammad is scheduled to make his college decision next month and is considering Kentucky, Duke, Kansas, UNLV and UCLA.

Muhammad was name Morgan Wootten Award winner (Player of the Year), as well as MVP of the game.

The McDonald games began in 1977 when they selected the best high school basketball players in the country. This team competed against the best players from the Maryland-DC-Virginia area. The following year, McDonald’s launched its very own all-star high school game that was played in Philadelphia at the classic Spectrum. Over the years, these games have featured Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Patrick Ewing, Lebron James, Chris Paul, Dwight Howard, Shaq O’Neal, Vince Carter, Kevin Garnett, to name a few. Today, 35 years later, the games took place in Chicago at the United Center.

The McDonald’s All-American Basketball Game distinguishes itself from other all-star games by raising funds for Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC), with proceeds from every game going directly to local Chapters and their programs. For more information or to contribute visit RMHC.

Be sure to bookmark our site, as well as follow us on Twitter at @ASNN365 (like us also on Facebook – @ASNN365).

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2012 McDonald’s All-American Girls Basketball Game

Posted on March 28, 2012. Filed under: Basketball | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

2012 Girls Best of the Best

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March 28 2012

In the 2012 McDonald’s All-American game featuring the best of the best in Girls basketball, it was the East on top,79-78, behind the fine play of Alexis Prince who knocked down a team high of 15, followed by Brittney Holmes who added 13. The game ended with a little controversy due to a late foul being called on Katie Collier of Seattle Christian as the buzzer sounded. The foul put Bashaara Graves on the charity stripe, where she knocked down the first shot and missed the second on purpose. This would have been the first ever overtime Girls’ All-American game.

“I thought it was a foul,” said Graves, a Tennessee-recruit, who had seven points and 10 rebounds. “But I was surprised that it was called. It was kind of iffy.”

One could assume since the game was televised, girls game is on ESPN2 and the boys game is on ESPN, overtime would possibly push back the boys broadcast, considered they are the bigger draw.

“I didn’t want it (the game) to end,” Graves said with a big smile. “But it was more important to get the win so…”

Teammate Prince shared the same view of the conclusion of the game. “I wanted to keep playing especially with the best of the best.” Prince is headed to top-ranked Baylor in the fall.

The West were led by Nirra Fields, who finished with 20. Ms. Fields became the first Canadian-born girls’ player to participate in the McDonald’s All-American game. After the game, she shared with us that “I’m just pleased to play here. This was my goal and I wanted this to be an all American.” Fields will be playing ball next year at UCLA.
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Local All-American Morgan Tuck (UConn), out of Bolingbrook, added 18 points, 3 boards in 23 minutes of play. “It was fun to play on the same court as Michael Jordan and now Derrick Rose,” she shared with us after the game. ”

The East jumped out to as much as 16 point lead in the first period (7:36) including an 11-0 run to start the game, but the West slowly picked away at the lead and got it down to six with less than a minute left to play in the first half, but Syracuse-bound Brittney Sykes, knocked down two of the last baskets to closed out the half (40-31).

The West squad never led and trailed 11-0 early on, they stayed with the East for the entire second half. In the second half, the West was able to tie the game on two separate occasions with the inside play of 6’2″ Tuck, once at 50 and another at 78 with 16 seconds left in regulation, but each time they made their run, Breanna Stewart (UConn) was able to stop them by knocking down shots including 7 of the 8 remaining points.

“This was one of the better played all-star games I’ve seen,” said East coach Anne Long of Spring Valley (Columbia, S.C.). “There was a lot of unselfish play.”

Ms. Stewart was name Morgan Wootten Award winner (Player of the Year), and Ms. Prince was named MVP of the game.

As for the other Chicago girls, Janee Thompson, Kentucky-recruit, had 7 points and 2 steals including one 3-pointer; Jewel Loyd finished with 4 points and 8 boards – next stop for her, Notre Dame.
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“We are blessed to play this game and be able to give back like this through the Ronald McDonald game,” Loyd shared after the game. “Right now I’m looking forward to playing with Notre Dame next year. I will be cheering for them in the Final Four game (this weekend in Denver).” In fact, a few of the girls are making a trip to see the game live including Loyd.

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With the 40 year anniversary of Title IX coming, coach Long shared her thoughts “we should be blessed with where we have come from an build on it. The pioneers put us in the right track and we are simply following their paths.”

The McDonald games began in 1977 when they selected the best high school basketball players in the country. This team competed against the best players from the Maryland-DC-Virginia area. The following year, McDonald’s launched its very own all-star high school game that was played in Philadelphia at the classic Spectrum. Over the years, these games have featured Sylvia Fowles, Candace Parker, Ashley & Courtney Paris, and Maya Moore to name a few. Today, 35 years later, the games took place in Chicago at the United Center.

The McDonald’s All-American Basketball Game distinguishes itself from other all-star games by raising funds for Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC), with proceeds from every game going directly to local Chapters and their programs. For more information or to contribute visit RMHC.

Be sure to bookmark our site, as well as follow us on Twitter at @ASNN365 (like us also on Facebook – @ASNN365).

Amateur Sports News Network
Capturing the Art of Sport in Motion
www.AmateurSports365.com

info@ASNN365.com

twitter.com/ASNN365
facebook.com/ASNN365

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