McDonald's All American Practice Notes
After two days of practice, the top high school players from the 2017 high school class competed in front of media members and NBA scouts. With some of the players being on the radar since their freshmen year while others still in the process of making a name for themselves, here are some of the prospects who made an impression, heading into Wednesday's McDonald's All American game in Chicago.
Michael Porter 6’10 215 SF - Missouri
Porter shot very well in the drills but his pull up is a bit predictable when defended, however, his size and lift allow him to get it off. His ball handling has improved but he could stand to expand this aspect of his game as at times he doesn't get anywhere with it. With high level athleticism, he finished above the rim on multiple plays and had a solid showing. He took a fore arm in the televised scrimmage from Wendell Carter and had to sit out for a bit and receive treatment for a bloody nose.
Mohamed Bamba 6’11 210 C - Undecided
Although Bamba played well in the scrimmage, he didn’t have a great set of practices. He obviously makes an impact defensively but his offense is still in its infancy stage. He showed some face up ability in the shooting drills with proper mechanics and solid foundation but still has a way to go to be a consistent threat.
Kevin Knox 6’9 205 SF/PF - Undecided
Knox scored from everywhere on the floor, in spurts. He didn’t consistently score with ease but with his shooting stroke, size, and athleticism; he’s extremely versatile. The second youngest player in the game; once he develops, he can be a big-time player as he has so many tools to work with. He defended multiple positions and has similar size as the bigs but competed in drills with the perimeter players because of his skillset.
Lonnie Walker 6’4 205 SG - Miami
Walker had a very good showing at practice. He displayed high level athleticism and slashed into the paint very effectively. He got hot in day two, knocking down three pointers on four plays in a row. He’s a very good perimeter scorer and has very translatable skills. Walker showed he belonged with the nation’s best and may not be at Miami for long.
DeAndre Ayton 7’0 250 C - Arizona
Ayton didn’t shoot well and didn’t do much in the scrimmage but was solid overall over the two practices. He didn’t loaf or pull up too quick for three; he played in the post, being physical, and competed with the other bigs. Of all the talented power forwards and centers, Ayton clearly stands out physically and athletically among this class.
Troy Brown 6’6 210 SG - Oregon
In my opinion, Brown had the best two days of practice of any player. He played aggressive and initiated contact on drives. He looks to have improved as a jump shooter, looking to pull up with confidence at every opportunity and connected from deep without hesitation. Brown has multiple dimensions to his game and looked to utilize them. He ran the point, impressed with his passing, and made something happened nearly every time he had the ball.
Brandon McCoy 6’11 245 C - Undecided
McCoy has improved as a shooter but seems to have fallen in love with his shot a bit too much. He did shoot well in the scrimmage but throughout the practices he settled for contested shots from midrange, getting blocked a few times. He didn’t play in the post as much as you would like and loses balance when he feels contact. Overall, he has improved but still has a way to go to reach his potential.
Billy Preston 6’10 240 PF - Kansas
Preston played well, facilitating and running the point at times. It’s not an ideal position for him but he did a solid job. He also shot well and looked comfortable playing alongside other big men allowing him to work the midrange. His versatility was on full display while showcasing his offensive skills.
Jarred Vanderbilt 6’8 215 SF - Kentucky
Vanderbilt can make plays that you don’t see often at the high school level. Similar to Knox, he defends multiple positions. His shooting has been a concern; he did shoot well in the games and contact drills, including step backs from three and well defended shots but for whatever reason he struggled in the drills shooting by himself. He did overdribble at times but made some impressive passes and set up others to score as a lead facilitator.
Collin Sexton 6’2 180 PG - Alabama
Sexton played with a lot of passion. He got to the rim and scored at will with his quickness and outside shot. He did his best to prove his ability to run the point and he did a solid job of facilitating. He scored in a variety of ways and in a class that is loaded with big men, with his athleticism he has no problem challenging any of them at the rim.
I see you guys put Lonnie Walker in the 2018 mock draft finally. He has way more potential than Trent Jr. and Brown in my mind. He is a top 8 player in this class in my mind.
He was just under the radar because he didn't even consider the offers from the Oak Hill's and Findlay Prep's of the world. For him to stay in Reading PA one of the poorest cities in the US and bring them their first state title (something neither Stu Jackson or Donyell Marshall could do) was incredibly special. If you aren't from the area it is hard to understand how awesome this kid truly is.
He is certainly a one and done talent but I am not sure that he is a one and one personality. His reasons for picking Miami make it seem like he might not bolt for the pros ASAP. Lonnie attacks the basket like DeWayne Wade but can also light it up from three when he is on.
I would not be surpised at all to see Miami win the ACC next year and compete for a national title.