Trust me. We understand your frustration with the lack of hoop being played since NBA Summer League ended, but this weekend in NYC features two of the best events of the year: Boost Mobile Elite 24 and Nike Tournament of Champions. And it all starts this Friday up at Rucker Park.
In just four years, Elite 24 has become one of the best games of the year featuring some of the top talent out there at the high school level. Of the 24 players participating, eight of them have already committed to schools – Austin Rivers to Florida, Dion Waiters to Syracuse, Jared Sullinger to Ohio State, Kendall Marshall to North Carolina, Myck Kabongo to Texas, Terrence Ross to Maryland, Tristan Thompson to Texas and Will Barton to Memphis – and the rest of the guys will have all the scouts that make the trip the legendary Rucker Park trying get an inside edge.
The guys I’m most excited to see are Iowa’s Harrison Barnes (arguably the best player in the nation – click this link for the video evidence), Tennessee’s Joe Jackson (who has been murdering on the summer circuit), Washington’s Tony Wroten Jr. (the second-coming of Dwyane Wade) and Kansas’ Perry Ellis (who I wrote about in Dime #49).
Nowhere else do you get to see this much talent on the playground, and the game this year will be coached by two-time Elite 24 MVP Brandon Jennings, along with Rajon Rondo, Kevin Love and Tyreke Evans.
If you want to catch a glimpse this Friday, August 21, I’d say pack a lunch and arrive early as the park will be packed. The Slam Dunk Contest will begin at 5:30 PM, with the game schedule for 7:00 PM. If you can’t make it, the game will be televised on Saturday, August 22 at 7:00 PM on ESPNU.