Being an All-American just isn’t what it used to be. At least for predicting NBA stardom.
This interesting post by Neil Paine over at Basketball Prospectus lists the First- or Second-Team All-NBA players and their college status since 1963 and finds the last few years to be awfully bleak.
Only Kevin Durant (2007), Chris Paul (‘05) and Dwyane Wade (’03) did the All-American superstardom double since 1998. Only 12 All-Americans have been NBA All-Stars since 2000.
The college stars and pro stars don’t always align – different styles, etc – but that still seems odd. Blake Griffin’ll join the superstar list soon (I’d think) and John Wall could do the same if the Wizards ever filled the roster with a semblance of competent players, but still.
Just three superstars since ’00? And 16 guys who are NBA scrubs and 11 who didn’t even play? That’s nuts. Have there been that many upperclassmen who worked their way onto the All-American lists in that span who couldn’t cut it in the NBA?
Among this year’s crop of college basketball All-Americans – Anthony Davis, Thomas Robinson, Draymond Green and Doug McDermott are the four shoe-ins – Davis is the only one who seems to fit the superstar bill. Robinson could get there, but he’ll need a more consistent jumper. I’d guess Green and McDermott need to find the right fits to be regular players.
It’s a strange transition from college to pro. Even for the stars.
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It was the most anticipated matchup of the summer.
Zion Williamson vs. LaMelo Ball.
People were turned away at the door – and LeBron James reportedly came and went – as the gym reached capacity for SC Supreme’s 104-92 victory over the Big Ballers. That’s Williamson over Ball (LaMelo and LaVar).
The game was mostly spectacle, and you can see it’s top moments right here.
LaMelo Ball vs. Zion Williamson was insane, but it wasn’t quite crazy enough to wake up the sleeping toddler that Williamson’s coach is holding in his arms:
This is peak AAU basketball.
It will never be more AAU than that.
In a showcase game in the adidas Uprising event in Las Vegas on Wednesday night, LaMelo Ball — the youngest member of the Big Baller Brand — faced off with Zion Williamson, who is a force on youtube and a highlight machine.
The crowd was insane for the game:
According to a report from ESPN, there were even concerns about whether or not the game would actually be allowed to be played; the police and fire marshall considered shutting the event down.
Williamson, of course, put on a show in warmups:
At the time of this posting, there were more than 60,000 people watching a livestream of the game on BallIsLife’s facebook page:
(UPDATE: It’s now over 70,000)
The bracket of the 2017 Puerto Rico Tip off was revealed Wednesday, setting up a showdown between a 2016 Final Four participant and the 2016 Big 12 tournament champion.
South Carolina and Iowa State headline the event, which will be played Nov. 16-19, in Fajardo, Puerto Rico.
The Gamecocks are on the top half of the bracket, opening against Illinois State while the Cyclones are on the bottom half, squaring off against Appalachian State.
Boise State vs. UTEP is the other top-half quarterfinal while Tulsa vs. Western Michigan is the other.
The championship game of the Puerto Rico Tip Off on Sunday, Nov. 19.
Just what you wanted to see, a video of former Michigan State star Denzel Valentine throwing an alley-oop off the glass to current Michigan State star Miles Bridges in a Pro-Am in Michigan: