Jeweler suing Lance Thomas has no interest in talking to NCAA

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The jeweler suing former Duke forward Lance Thomas isn’t looking to be of any help to the NCAA, according to his lawyer, the Associated Press is reporting.

Thomas bought close to $100,000 worth of jewelry from the New York-based man during his time with Duke, allegedly still owing him close to $68,000. But, reportedly because of the pending litigation, the NCAA won’t be getting much from the jeweler.

“My client has no interest in going beyond the merchandise Mr. Thomas took and didn’t pay for,” his attorney, Mike Bowers, said this week.

Thomas reportedly put $30,000 down toward the purchase of the jewelry, then being extended $67,800 in credit. The purchase took place on Dec. 21, 2009, right in the middle of Duke’s 2009-10 championship season.

The Associated Press details the situation that concerns the NCAA:

NCAA rules prohibit athletes from receiving benefits that aren’t available to the student body as a whole. If a violation of that kind is found, a school could be forced to give up a championship in which the athlete competed.

Thomas averaged 4.8 points and 4.8 rebounds per game during that season, appearing in 40 games for the Blue Devils.

The difficulty for the NCAA, though, comes in trying to attain information because the NCAA has no binding power that compels non-school officials or personnel from cooperating with the investigation, thus the reason they could run into a dead end with Thomas’ jeweler.

The inquiry is ongoing.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

VIDEO: Zion Williamson vs. LaMelo Ball highlights

Photo by Josh Lefkowitz/Getty Images
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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.

 

VIDEO: Zion Williamson’s coach is holding a sleeping baby

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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.

PHOTOS: Zion Williamson, LaMelo Ball showdown was, of course, insane

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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)

Puerto Rico Tip Off bracket revealed

AP Photo/Sean Rayford
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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.

VIDEO: Michigan State’s Miles Bridges is dunking again

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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: