In what was officially the final games in the high school careers of elite level recruits Shabazz Muhammed and Nerlens Noel, Muhammed’s 20 points helped the West squad overtake the East 99-95 in the 2012 Jordan Brand Classic.
Muhammed, who recently committed to play for UCLA, didn’t have his customarily lights out, high scoring game but got it going in the 2nd half to score 20 points and grab 4 rebounds, helping to lead a spirited West comeback down the stretch.
Arguably, the game’s best player was NC State bound SG Rodney Purvis, who scored a game high 22 points on 10-13 shooting and tallied 3 steals, in earning the game’s Co-MVP honors with Muhammed. Purvis was spectacular, showcasing his offensive prowess on continuous drives to the basket for and 1 finishes and a toughness that will make him a likely one-and-done performer for the Wolfpack.
For the winning West squad, Kentucky bound SF Alex Poythress looked ready to replace the departing Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, with 16 points and 4 boards, while fellow UK signee SG Archie Goodwin added 14 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists. Austin Rivers’ replacement at Duke, guard Rasheed Sulaimon, chipped in 13 points, 7 rebounds, and made 3 NBA range threes.
For the losing East squad, UCLA bound Kyle Anderson showed again why he was so sought after in the early recruiting period by having a great all around game consisting of 14 points, 9 rebounds, and 2 assists. Arizona bound big man C Kaleb Tarczewski was impressive, putting up 14 points and 10 boards, while still uncommitted PF Tony Parker scored 8 points and grabbed 12 rebounds. Incoming Syracuse SF Jerami Grant, the nephew of former Chicago Bulls forward Horace Grant, added 10 points in the losing cause.
Nerlens Noel, the nation’s #1 ranked prospect who recently got creative in his commitment to National Champion Kentucky, had 4 points, 5 rebounds, and 3 blocks for the East. In a made for TV moment, last year’s Jordan Brand Classic MVP and this season’s NCAA POY Anthony Davis was courtside, and offered up some advice to UK’s newest recruit(Noel) on what to expect from Big Blue Nation this fall.
Check out a 2012 Jordan Brand Classic Recap:
Allen Moll has been a lifelong NBA and NCAA College Basketball fan who watches and studies games religiously, and coaches youth basketball in his native Lehigh Valley region of Pennsylvania. Allen has also provided content to Bleacherreport.com, Upperdeckblog.com, Cleveland.com, CSN Philly.com, Buckets Magazine, in addition to being a tenured NBA and NCAA columnist for TheHoopDoctors.com.