Tag Archives: Boost Mobile Elite 24

BDN checks in with Austin Rivers at the Elite 24

VENICE BEACH – Highly sought after rising senior, Austin Rivers, was recently ranked as the #1 prospect in the 2011 class by Rivals. After having a busy summer playing for USA Basketball, and bringing home the gold, the rising senior gets a chance to end his summer with a bit of fun out in Venice Beach, California. Austin took some time after the Midnight run to talk with BDN and here’s what he had to say.

We’ve got Austin Rivers here at the Elite 24 Midnight Run. First off, congratulations on being invited to the Elite 24 for your second year in a row, that’s a big accomplishment. Last year, you were out at Rucker Park; this year, you head out to the West Coast for Venice Beach.

Thanks man, appreciate it.

Now, you’ve been playing AAU for a few years now, do you find at events like this that you bond with players? And have you been hanging out with anyone particular over the summer?

Definitely. I think being with the best players in the country just hangin’ out with them you get to bond with them and create relationships with people you’d never get to meet. I’ve become best friends with Myck Kabongo, he’s one of my real good friends, Brad Beal, Quincy Miller, Quinn Cook, all of the guys out here. I’ve became friends with [private] all of them even just today, and I know most of them already but just today I met new people and I’m already friends with them. Just to be out here and bond with them and connect is cool.

So you’ve had quite a busy summer so far and you’ve been quite successful. You won the Disney Showcase. Do you have a favorite moment throughout this summer?

Yea I’d say the Disney Showcase just because how my team got to enjoy the W. Ya know I played pretty well over the summer overall but just to win is obviously the greatest feeling. We went in there with our heads high and came out winning; it was good for our team and was kind of our last hoorah, if you will. I’ve been with that team for like 9 years so just to end on a good note like that was nice.

Now another big thing you did this summer was playing on the U18 Team USA. Congratulations on bringing the gold over here! Can you talk about that experience and what it means to wear the USA across the chest?

Oh yea man I totally forgot, I didn’t even think about that when you asked me what was the greatest moment (smiles and laughs). Now that was probably the greatest moment of the summer, winning for my country. You know it’s one thing when you represent your town or your city or state of Florida, but it’s another when you represent the whole country. So just going out there with your country across your chest and for us to win the gold medal meant a lot. Getting to play with great players like Patric Young and Kyrie Irving and go out there and getting the victory was big.

I’m sure it was a great feeling. You got to play with those great players in Kyrie, Quincy, Lebryan Nash. Is playing with great players something that will come into play when you make your big decision for college?

You know of course. To win championships you got to have great players, you know there’s never really been a team that I’ve known in college basketball that has won with just one great player and everyone else is bad. They’ve always had three or four or even five great players. So that’s one thing you always have to be looking at is who you’re going to be playing with and who’s going to help you and get you better.

Yea definitely. Now recently in an interview, Kyrie Irving said that if he was so fortunate to be in a position to be a one and done, and if you were to commit to playing with him, that he would definitely consider staying to play with you. Is that something you guys talk about often?

You know we definitely have talked about it, if I was to come there he’d love to stay. But then again, you know a player like Kyrie if it’s time to go I’m sure he’s gonna go. I’m pretty sure he’s going to leave after this first year, you know I wish the best for him, I don’t wanna jinx him or anything like that. Just playing with him this summer he’s already kind of ready, he’s a hell of a player. I think Coach K will put him in a position to succeed there.

Now in my opinion you have one of the better offensive games I’ve seen for a player your age. My favorite move of yours I think is the little jab step/head fake that I saw you doing a little earlier. Would you say those are your go to moves? Or do you have any other ones you use a lot?

Really I just read the defense, and those are kind of my go to moves, the jab step. You know John Wall told me earlier (as he laughs) “I don’t wanna see none of them jab steps out here!”. Yea that’s kind of my go to move, I like to shake them with my jab and kind of get people off of their feet. But as far as in the open court I just read the defense and I try to go to the side where the players are weak and try and attack.

One thing you’ve talked about is your defense. Is there anything you try and do to get better? Perhaps taking on the best perimeter player each night?

Yea definitely, that’s what I did for USA Basketball. They stuck me on the best player, and coach actually saw me as the best defender on the team. He saw that I had the potential and said “you’re a great defender, you just gotta do it”. Just for Coach Capel, Coach Hewitt, and Coach Witherspoon to have the confidence in me to play defense really helped me and I think I’ve become a pretty good defender over the summer and I think I’m a good defender now.

I definitely agree. You’ve got a big year ahead of you coming up. You’ve got to defend your state title and I know that was a special moment for you. Can you talk about how you want to repeat and what steps you try to take to accomplish that?

Yea, you know, it’s always harder to repeat something cause after you win your next year people maybe start slacking off or teams start coming at you a little harder. I think it’s going to be special if we can win this year and I think we have a great chance to. We have some new guys coming in and we still got people returning and we have some good players around me.

Are you going to be used in a similar way as last year?

Yes, but I think this year I’m going to average a lot more rebounds because we’ll miss our big man, Adam Jones, who graduated last year. I’m definitely going to have to board more and average around 7-8 rebounds a game. And I’ll probably have the ball in my hands a little bit more this year, just attacking the defense more and getting people open a bit more, so just to try and be an all round stat-sheet filler.

Going into your senior do you have any personal or team goals that you’d like to achieve?

Yea I’d say our team goals are obviously to win the state championship and I’d just say have everybody be open-minded. You know not everybody is going to be playing as much as they wanted to or doing as much as they can. But I just think as a leader of the team I kind of have to set an example, and I’d say my goal is just to try and establish a good chemistry with my team. I just hope we can come into the season with no ego’s and just come in ready to play and win.

Everybody has their own role type of thing?

Yea, yea exactly.

Now originally you had made an August date to announce. That got moved back a little bit. Is that something that you and your family talked about?

Yea, exactly, definitely. My brother rushed it two times actually, in Indiana he’s still kind of not comfortable there. It’s just my families had tough times with those schools and I just thought it’s too early, and I was already so busy with my summer, I just thought I needed to slow down and think. I’ve already set some visits. I think it’s October 1st I go up to Duke and uhh I think October 16th I go to North Carolina.

For their Late Night?

Yea, I’ve already set up dates for that, both of their Midnight things, whatever their dates are. My parents set that all up, I don’t know the exact dates. So I’ve already set up dates for Duke and North Carolina, and Kansas, Kentucky and Florida will be up next.

Will your visits be a situation where you will visit everyone of your schools, or will you perhaps pull the trigger if you feel it’s right?

Yea, you know it could be. If I have the right feeling for a school I think I would pull the trigger. It’s just a matter of where I feel comfortable and where I feel I could really succeed. Um I might wait just a little bit just to see the season you know. I wanna see how they use Kyrie. I wanna see if they let Kyrie go, I wanna see how North Carolina plays with Harrison, you know you wanna see how colleges do with their players. How Kansas does with Shelby (Josh Selby), just to see ya know. The schools I’m looking at all kind of have players at my position, so I’d like to just see how they let them go let them play, and it’ll help determine where I go.

Yea I understand that. Now one last question, if I was to take your iPod and check it out, what would you be listening to recently?

Well right now I’d probably be playing a little bit of Roscoe Dash, little bit of Lupe (Fiasco), and I’m a big Kanye dude. Oh and Jurzey. But I’m a big Lupe guy, I love listening to Lupe.

Thanks a lot Austin.

Sure man, no problem. [/private]

Boost Mobile Elite 24 Recap

VENICE BEACH – From the concrete jungle of New York to the sunny beaches of L.A, the Boost Mobile Elite 24 concluded the summers AAU schedule with an All-Star game in Venice Beach.  While we didn’t have Billy Hoyle and Sidney Deane running the courts, we did have the top 24 high school prospects in the nation.

The event kicked off Wednesday with a Midnight Run at the Hanger Athletic Xchange, also known as the HAX.  Starring in the game were the elite high school prospects along with some of the youngest talent the NBA has to offer.  Reigning Rookie of the Year Tyreke Evans teamed up with DeMar DeRozan, Brandon Jennings, Bobby Brown and recent #1 draft pick John Wall to take on the youngsters. While the game was full of crossovers and fadeaways, one in particular has gotten fans across the internet buzzing.  Austin Rivers, the 6’4 guard from Winter Park High School in Florida, crossed up recent #1 draft pick John Wall and took it straight to the basket for a lay in. Regardless of the big play, the pros dominated most of the games they played in.

The second day of the event offered a training and combine session followed by a scrimmage.  Conducting the training session was current Denver Nuggets strength and conditioning coach, Steve Hess.  Now, if you’ve never met the guy, all you need to know is he is one of the most intense people you will have ever met. While most players struggled with the core exercises, one particularly stood out, 2011 point guard Myck Kabongo.  Ending the combine session was Brandon Jennings discussing his struggles to get to where he is, as well as reminding the players to keep an open mind when it comes to signing a shoe deal. While no one completely dominated the scrimmage, there were a few standout players. 2012 prospect Shabazz Muhammad did show off some of his strong inside moves.  The talented wing-forward grabbed multiple rebounds inside showing off his strength, which lead to easy put backs. The other standout was 2011 Findlay Prep point guard Myck Kabongo.  Myck displayed his advanced dribbling skills and excellent court vision often making passes you wouldn’t think possible.

The third day offered the skills and dunk competition.  2011 guard Brad Beal of Chaminade College Prep School in St. Louis, Missouri, won the skills competition over Oak Hill point guard Quinn Cook. The dunk competition featured 8 contestants including Deuce Bello, Jahii Carson, Amir Garrett, Nick Johnson, LeBryan Nash, Norman Powell, Gabe York and Stephen Maxwell.  Deuce Bello edged out local prospect Stephen Maxwell in the finals, although his most impressive dunk was in the second round when he teamed up with fellow Westchester Day player, Quincy Miller. Quincy, seated under the net, bounced the ball and Bello completed a full windmill over Miller to bring the Venice Beach crowd to their feet.

Concluding the Boost Mobile Elite 24 event was the All-Star game on Saturday.  Clear and sunny skies offered the perfect weather for an outdoor basketball game.  While the crowd on Friday was much more laid-back, Saturday’s crowd created a much better atmosphere. There was a certain buzz in the air throughout the game.  The game offered a typical All-Star feel, big dunks and little to no defense, except in the final minute.  Kyle Wiltjer, who committed to Kentucky at halftime, was the games leading scorer with 20. In the end, The Raymond Lewis East Squad beat The Marques Jackson West squad 131-128.

Stay tuned for more interviews with Duke recruiting targets which will be feature this week in BDN Premium, your inside source for on the spot coverage Duke Athletics.

BDN checks in with Alex Murphy at the Boost Mobile Elite 24

Duke prospect Alex Murphy took time to chat with BDN during the Mobile Boost Elite 24 event in Venice Beach, California. Photo- BDN, Rick Crank

VENICE BEACH – Fresh off battling some of the brightest and youngest stars the NBA has to offer, BDN caught up with the rising junior from St. Marks Prep School, Alex Murphy. The young prospect more than held his own in the Midnight Run game which starred NBA talents Brandon Jennings, current NBA Rookie of the Year Tyreke Evans, DeMar DeRozan and recent #1 pick John Wall.
 
BDN: We’re here with Alex Murphy at the Elite 24 Midnight Run.  First things first Alex, could we please get your height and weight?

AM: Yeah, yeah, 6’8 about 210lbs.

BDN: So, you’re a rising junior, how excited are you for this game? Could you give us some thoughts on it?

AM: Yeah, absolutely, I’m definitely excited.  It’s an honor to be picked for this game.  Obviously it’s the Elite 24, the top 24 players are picked.  I think I’m one of 3 juniors picked for the game.  It’s definitely exciting.  It’s a lot of fun out here in L.A. so far, so hopefully it continues.

BDN: That’s good, man, I hope so too.  So you’ve had a pretty good summer so far and this is a nice way to end it with the Elite 24.  Do you feel like you’ve [private] played as well as possible?

AM: Uh, yeah, I think I had a good summer.  I’m always hard on myself though. I think there’s always room for improvement no matter what people tell you how well you played, in my head I think I could have definitely played better.  But like I said I was happy with it and I think I had a good summer individually and we had a good summer as a team too.

BDN: So you’ve got a big season ahead of you, do you have any specific goals, either personal or team, that you’d like to achieve?

AM: Oh well, as a team definitely we want to win the NEPSAC Class B championship, which is the league we’re in.  It’s a big league we’re in with all the prep schools. And, individually, I think I just want to get better and just take my game to the next level and do whatever I can to do that.

BDN: Right, right.  Now is there anything specific on offense or defense that you’d like to work on?

AM:  Yeah, well, strength and quickness.  Those are two things that at each level you go up those take a step up too, so I got to keep improving on those and just all aspects of the game, nobody’s a complete player.

BDN: Absolutely.  So you’ve had a pretty hectic AAU schedule but you spent a lot of time in Gainesville earlier this summer.  Could you talk about how he has helped with your game or with any tips in recruitment?

AM: Yeah, I was down there for about a week visiting with him, just hanging out with him.  I don’t get to see him a lot now cause he’s down there obviously, so that was good.  Yeah, he’s definitely helped me with the whole recruiting process.  Obviously he went through it himself, so if I ever have any questions or concerns or anything like that I can always talk to him about it, he’s really good about it. 

BDN: Do you guys ever get to play a little one on one? And does it get pretty competitive?

AM:  Yeah, it is, it’s real competitive; we play all the time whenever we get the chance.  I mean, I’ll beat him in games here and there, but usually when we play serious he’ll end up getting me cause he’s older than me and stronger than me, but I’ll get him soon.

BDN: So you and Shabazz Muhammad spent some time earlier this summer taking in the Team USA training camp.  Could you talk about that experience and how it went? Did you watch anyone specific or get to play with them?

AM:  Yea me and Shabazz were there on different days, we didn’t get to play with any of those guys.  Obviously we saw all those guys that are on the USA team right now over in Greece and Turkey:  Durant, Derrick Rose and all of them.  Kevin Durant is probably my favorite player in the NBA, so seeing him and getting a chance to meet him was really cool.

BDN: Oh, definitely.  You had the chance to play in the Adidas Nations earlier this summer, could you talk about that experience a little bit?

AM: Yeah, that was a great experience; it was a lot of fun, you got to play against the best players in the class.  The most recent Nations program was in Chicago where all the countries from around the world were there, so we got to play against the European team, the Asian team, the African team, the Latin American team, so you got to play against guys all over the world, so that was really cool and a good experience.

BDN: Yeah, that must have been very cool.  Now playing the AAU schedule you get to play against a lot of tough players night in and night out. Is there anyone that you would say was the toughest?

AM: I wouldn’t say there was one player. I played against a lot of good players.  Like I said, a lot of good players in 2011 cause I played up in the 17’s this year, and then in my class as well, all the top guys are here and I played against pretty much all of them.

BDN: So just to switch focus to recruiting a little bit, could you talk about who is coming after you the hardest right now?

AM: Yea I think a couple of schools are coming after me hard now after this summer:  Duke, Florida, Arizona, North Carolina, Texas, Villanova, Butler, Boston College.  Those are just some of the schools that are coming to mind.

BDN: That’s a nice list.  Now, most recruits cut their list down usually.  Do you think you’ll follow suit with that or just commit when you’re ready?

AM: I think after I get back from here I’ll probably sit down with my parents and discuss that.  I’ll probably cut the list, well I wouldn’t say cut it down but I’ll have a list of about 7-10 schools or somewhere in that range.  Now with the timetable, there really is no timetable, just whenever the decision feels right and I know where I want to go.  I definitely still want to visit some more places, so hopefully I’ll do that this fall.

BDN: Could you talk about what factors will go into your decision of picking a school?

AM: I think ultimately my goal is to one day play in the NBA, so, obviously, all the schools that are recruiting me can help and offer that. I think it’s where you feel most comfortable and I think that starts with the relationship with the head coach; style of play is import as well. I think another important factor is am I going to be able to go in and play right away, or am I going to have to come in and sit. Obviously in some situations that has worked out great for people, but in my mind I don’t think I can go anywhere and just sit out and sit my freshman and sophomore year and not play.  I mean I love to play the game so there’s a lot of different factors that come into it.

BDN: Absolutely. Do you have any visits planned for this upcoming college season?

AM:  I don’t have any planned as of right now, but obviously, like I said, I want to visit some places before I make a decision, but I’m not sure when and where yet.

Thank you Alex.
AM: Sure, no problem man. [/private]

Kyrie Irving talks of his relationship with Harrison Barnes, cutting his list and much more

Kyrie Irving defends Brandon Knight - c/r BDN Photo
Kyrie Irving defends Brandon Knight - c/r BDN Photo

BDN’s Andrew Slater was on the scene during the Boost Mobile Elite 24 this weekend, where he caught up with Blue Devil target Kyrie Irving for another in detailed depth interview.  Join BDN Premium for full site access and be in the know.

After a morning of community service in the Bronx, the twenty-four players in the Boost Mobile Elite 24 were bussed to The Sports Club/LA on the east side of Manhattan, where they began what was referred to as a training and combine session.

The staff initially had the players separate into 24 various stations designed to work different aspects of strength and conditioning. The stations included boxing, pulling a tire with a rope, lateral platform jumping exercises, etc. After the players went through the various stations, they divided the kids into four groups and measured them, in terms of their standing and running vertical leap, the number of repetitions they could lift in a row with two dumbbells of moderate weight, and how fast they could run the entire court, both with and without dribbling a basketball.

The players then were taken to another gym in the same facility to have a Question and Answer session with a panel of Peter Vecsey , Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, Kevin Love, Brandon Jennings, and Tyreke Evans. The Q and A was moderated by Chris Broussard.

Vecsey tried to lecture the kids on the history of the tournament and the players that had graced the court before them. Love talked about his experience at the inaugural game, the transition to both the college and pro game, and pointed out the number of players that have reached the NBA as well as the others that will follow from the initial game. Jennings talked about his year abroad in Italy, while making notice of his relative success, the difficulty of coming off of the bench, and the women. Evans attempted to communicate his thoughts on his transition from shooting guard to point guard at the University of Memphis. Rampage said he liked the WWF, while growing up in Memphis, and therefore tried to do wrestling in high school. He mentioned that he loved to fight as a kid, but cautioned the kids that you can’t always walk around looking for a fight as an adult.

Following this session, the kids broke into their two predetermined teams and began a competitive scrimmage, as a means of practicing for the following evening at Rucker Park in Harlem. Roscoe Smith, a Duke recruit from Baltimore, swished a three-pointer with 3.4 seconds remaining to give his team the win, 99-98. Subsequently, the twenty-four prospects broke into separate areas of the court for individual interview sessions.

Kyrie Irving, the smooth and pensive New Jersey guard, spoke with Blue Devil Nation about a variety of issues, including his goals for the upcoming year, the decision process that went into his recent trimming of teams to a far more manageable six, his relationship with Harrison Barnes, what he will be looking for on his official visits, and the utility of Twitter, amongst others.

I’m going to assume that you already have decided upon your five schools… [private]

My six schools.

Six schools and you should save them for your ever growing Twitter audience, but can you talk about the decision process?

Yeah, yeah. I’m going to save them for tomorrow, even though some people around here have been pressuring me to get it.

No pressure here ..

I’m not talking about you, but others.

Can you talk about your decision process?

Yeah, sure. It took a while. Me and my father sat down, along with my uncle..

That was going to be another question.

Yeah, you know we sat down and we evaluated each school. We were going through, well, who had the best to offer. That’s what came down to my six schools that I’m going to announce tomorrow.

Sure, what were the factors that most contributed to your final six?

Family atmosphere, the academics, the academic stature

So, academics were actually important to you?

Oh, yeah, of course.

Because there are always a lot of people, fans included, that are skeptical when they read that kids are actually interested in academics. Personally, I always try to keep an open mind and treat everyone as an individual case. I assumed you were, but I didn’t know for sure.

No, no, no. Me, as a person, I have…

I knew you did well in school.

Exactly, I have a 3.5 GPA, but people don’t really know that because…

No, I knew that number because you mentioned in an earlier interview.

Yeah, I don’t really talk about it that much.

I guess they’re not that concerned with your off-the-court life.

(Player dunks over small publicist to our immediate right)

So… family atmosphere, academics

Yeah, family atmosphere, academics, and just how comfortable I am with the coaching staff and just everybody coach wise because when I see the school, it’s going to be where I’m not signing with them for four years, I’m signing with them for a long time.

A long lifetime, God willing. Who did you ultimately seek input from? Well, I guess you answered that one.

Yeah, my father and my uncle. They’ve been there throughout.

Was it a family/group decision or much more of a personal one?

It was more of a personal one I would say.

By the way, was your sister involved in the decision at all too?

No, no way. It was more of a personal decision because I talk to most of the schools. They call me all of the time. Yeah, it was more of a personal one.

Other than “a home away from home,” as you’ve mentioned in the past, what will you be looking for on your official visits?

I’m just going to be evaluating everything. Just when I step on the campus..

Anything specific or more of a feel?

It’ll be more of a feel. Just how comfortable I am, how the players interact with the coaches and how the players interact with themselves. Just everything about them. I’m going to evaluate.

Sure.

But I’d say mainly with the coaching staff and the players. That’s it.

Well, they’re going to be the ones that you’re going to be spending most of your time with.  Having been a kid that was under-recruited at Montclair Kimberley, how has the reality of the process or experience been, compared to what you expected a top-ranked player to have? Now that you’ve seen the other side, is it kind of what you expected or is it more?

Um, well..

Let’s say last summer versus now, when the “gurus” have discovered you and you’ve shot up the charts. I’ve got to say I’m really proud of you.

Thanks, man. I have to say it’s been great. Especially this time last summer, I was really barely even known. Having the opportunity, you know, to be a top ten or whatever they say I am now, I feel like I don’t want to let them take that away. I feel like I have to kind of step back and just..

Was it what you thought it would be like?

(laughing) It’s even a little bit more.

Better?

Yeah, it makes me really happy and I’m proud to be a top ten player because I worked hard all summer.

Yeah, you did. Is your family enjoying your success?

Yeah, no, they definitely are. My family has been there since I was just a little kid playing in my backyard. It’s just been great. I’ve just enjoyed this whole entire summer.

That’s great that you are all enjoying it. To clarify and potentially squash some concerns, there was a video interview that you did in Portland with Selby and he was strongly hinting that Indiana was going to be your choice. Did he know something or was he just purely speculating?

(laughing) No, no, he was just joking around.

Yeah, I wanted you to touch on that because a video like that can cause people to panic. (laughing)

No, that was nothing.

Of all things that you accomplished this year, what are you most proud of?

I’m proud of everything. I can’t name a specific thing because there have been so many moments, particularly this summer. It started off when, well, it actually started when I went to…well, it was a learning experience for me when I was at the NBA Camp. That was the first time I came to a camp and there were so many top players there. It wasn’t like there was one player that wasn’t any good. That was definitely an eye-opener. It made me even hungrier.

As you often write, “humble and hungry”

Yeah, exactly, the two “H”s that I live by. It just made me humble and hungry to just go out there and destroy the whole AAU circuit.

What’s your relationship like with Harrison Barnes? Can you provide a scouting report? I saw you two sitting together.

(laughing) Oh, yeah, well, I mean he calls me his “little brother,” but I..

Oh, yeah?

Yeah, I don’t know, but I’m close with him. We developed a relationship over the summer. It started at NBA Camp. We don’t really discuss Duke to a large extent, but we do discuss it and we have a very good relationship.

So there’s definitely a connection between you two..

Oh, yeah, definitely.

What are your goals and hopes for the next twelve months? McDonald’s All-American? Repeat as state champions?

Those are personal goals, but, as a team, the national championship and the state championship. Before every season, well, you know, even before every summer, I always set goals. On a personal level, I want to make the Jordan Classic and do all of those all-star games. On a team level, I need to continue to develop my leadership and do the intangibles that my team needs, which will hopefully prepare me for college.

You apparently played very well in both Orlando and Portland for the USA team at the end of the summer. Do you feel that the workouts that you put in and endlessly write about are starting to pay the major dividends that you‘ve hoped for? When other guys are breaking down or getting worn out…

Yeah, well, my father had to like beg me to take a break. For some reason, it’s just a mental thing with me, but I just can’t take breaks. I just can’t. I still have that feeling that if and when I take a break, that’s when other people will start to work harder than me. So, I barely take breaks and it really takes a toll. My body is hurting right now.

In your writing, there’s always a series of cycles, where you initially do lengthy, intense workouts, then play in tournaments where you carry a heavy burden and play a lot of competitive games in a short period of time, and finally there are periods where you crash and “chill.” Is it a matter of trial and error with knowing when to push your body or is it more a matter of planning and scheduling?

No, I don’t schedule it. It got to a point, earlier in the summer, where I wouldn’t even know what or where games or tournaments were. I would just go. It really takes a toll on my body, but, after a while, you kind of get used to it. You know, towards the end of the summer, you start taking a lot of breaks and you get ready for the high school season.

Ideally, what would you like to do with your body to further enhance your overall game? Strength? Cardio?

My strength. My cardio is fine.

kiYou can run all day.

Yeah, I can, but, when it gets to, like, that third or fourth game, then you have to deal with the players that are bigger and stronger than you…

Especially when you have to bear a heavy burden with Roadrunners.

Yeah, it is, but I really don’t want to talk about them or that right now (laughing)

Well, I mean people, who have watched you on that team, can judge for themselves.

Yeah, I don’t want to go there right now.

Being an articulate, consensus top ten recruit, can you shed some light as to what the mindset is like for an elite-level recruit, as you enter your senior year? What are some different things that are on your mind, when you have quiet moments? If you can allow the audience to live vicariously through you.. (Doron Lamb, a Queens guard that currently plays for Oak Hill, comes next to us and is looking for attention)

Well, I don’t really plan anything, you know, when I’m by myself, I’m kind of a laid-back kid. I like to joke around too, but, um, stop. No stop, man. (Lamb has his arm around Kyrie’s neck)

Hi, I’m Doron Lamb. (sticks out his hand for a shake)

Yeah, I know who you are. How’re you doing, Doron?

KI: I just trying to be a normal kid because you know coming to all of these events they, well, try to treat you like you’re a pro already. (Lamb slaps both of us on the rear end and moves along)

Can you talk about your mentality as you prepare to play at the Rucker and the GOAT? Are you definitely going to be at the GOAT on Saturday night?

Yep, I’m going to play in that. My mentality tomorrow night is going to be…

Are you looking to pick your spots? Showcase? Go in with an open mind and have fun?

Well, you can tell that people are going to be putting up shots and that there are no positions out here. People are going to be looking for theirs. I’m not going to stress out over it or anything.

No, no, don’t.

People are trying to, well, it’s a whole political thing.

Are people really stressing a little bit?

Yeah, behind the scenes, they are a little bit, but they shouldn’t.

Whether on the Roadrunners or the Celtics, do you ever look to try to help your teammates out, in terms of generating scholarships or offering advice?

On the Celtics?

Whichever.

Yeah, when I play with the NJ Celtics, I think it benefited some of the players on the team because, you know, I don’t want to sound arrogant, but a lot of college coaches came to see me play so..

That’s my point. There’s an opportunity to be generous and some guys, who already have all the scholarships they need, won’t.

Yeah, especially on the Roadrunners too.

Absolutely, but also on the Celtics, for example, I know towards the end of the high school season that Kevin Boyle’s son didn’t have any Division One scholarship offers.

No , he didn’t.

God knows if he does now, but..

Yeah, exactly, but then when we play Team Final,

Right, right, he goes for almost thirty.

Yeah, in front of everybody there that day

Can you talk about Twitter and its usefulness in trying to get your messages out there?

It’s just a way to update people on what’s going on in my life and in my mind.

It’s acting as a virtual megaphone to get your words to a mass audience that‘s interested in what you have to say.

Yeah, that’s exactly what it is.

This may be the last time I speak with you and I always try to be objective, but you’ve become my guy and I just wanted to thank you for your help with the interviews and wish you the best of luck in the future.

Oh, no, no, thanks. Thanks a lot, man. [/private]

Barnes and Irving shine in Boost Mobile Elite 24 game

Harrison Barnes
Harrison Barnes

(For complete coverage, join BDN Premium for coming interviews with Irving and Rivers)
ESPN RISE held the fourth annual Boost Mobile Elite 24 game tonight at the Gaucho’s Gym, Bronx, N.Y., after a two-hour rain delay forced the game to its alternate site from the planned Rucker Park location (where the game was played its first three years).  The game featured 24 of the nation’s top prep players, regardless of grade or shoe affiliation, from across the country; Boost Mobile Elite 24 players are selected by a committee of high school basketball experts: ESPN RISE Magazine, ESPN Scouts, Inc. and other leading talent evaluators.
Before a standing-room-only crowd of approximately 1,800, that included Celtics Coach Doc Rivers and New York Knicks’ Wilson Chandler, the Skip to My Lou/White Team, coached by Celtics’ Rajon Rondo and Kings’ Tyreke Evans, defeated The Goat/Orange Team coached by Timberwolves’ Kevin Love and Buck’s Brandon Jennings 133 to 120.  Doron Lamb and Tobias Harris stood out on the winning team garnering co-MVP titles; Josh Selby and C.J. Leslie were co-MVPs for The Goat/Orange Team. Skip to My Lou’s Doron Lamb was the game’s high scorer with 23 points; he also had six total rebounds and five assists.  The Goat’s C.J. Leslie had a double/double with 15 points and 11 total rebounds; he had two assists.
BOX SCORE
Name High School Pos. Class Rank Score
Austin Rivers Winter Park (Winter Park, Fla.) PG 2011 No. 2, ESPNU Super 60 9
CJ Leslie Word of God (Raleigh, N.C.) PF 2010 No. 9,  ESPNU 100 15
Cory Joseph Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.) PG 2010 No. 30, ESPNU 100 2
DaJuan Coleman Jamesville-DeWitt (DeWitt, N.Y.) PF 2012 No. 1, ESPNU Terrific 25 0
Dion Waiters Life Center (Burlington, N.J.) SG 2010 No. 14, ESPNU 100 15
Doron Lamb Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) SG 2010 No. 33, ESPNU 100 23
Harrison Barnes Ames (Ames, Iowa) SG 2010 No. 1, ESPNU 100 18
Jared Sullinger Northland (Columbus, Ohio) PF 2010 No. 2, ESPNU 100 8
Joe Jackson White Station (Memphis, Tenn.) PG 2010 No. 21, ESPNU 100 10
Josh Selby Lake Clifton (Baltimore, Md.) PG 2010 No. 8, ESPNU 100 18
Josh Smith Kentwood (Covington, Wash.) C 2010 No. 10, ESPNU 100 4
Kendall Marshall Bishop O’Connell (Arlington, Va.) PG 2010 No. 19,  ESPNU 100 2
Kyrie Irving St. Patrick (Elizabeth, N.J.) PG 2010 No. 6, ESPNU 100 16
Myck Kabongo St. Benedict’s (Newark, N.J.) PG 2011 No. 14, ESPNU Super 60 16
Perry Ellis Wichita Heights (Wichita, Kan.) PF 2012 No. 2, ESPNU Terrific 25 2
Phil Pressey Episcopal School (Dallas, Texas) PG 2010 No. 31, ESPNU 100 4
Rakeem Christmas Academy of the New Church (Bryn Athyn, Pa.) PF 2011 No. 13, ESPNU Super 60 6
Roscoe Smith Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) SF 2010 No. 16, in ESPNU 100 22
Terrence Jones Jefferson (Portland, Ore.) SF 2010 No. 15, ESPNU 100 8
Terrence Ross Montrose Christian (Rockville, Md.) SF 2010 No. 39, ESPNU 100 2
Tobias Harris Half Hollow Hills West (Dix Hills, N.Y.) PF 2010 No. 7, ESPNU 100 20
Tony Wroten Jr. Garfield (Seattle, Wash.) PG 2011 No. 5, ESPNU Super 60 9
Tristan Thompson Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.) PF 2010 No. 11,  ESPNU 100 6
Will Barton Brewster Academy (Wolfeboro, N.H.) SG 2010 No. 5,  ESPNU 100 18

**A complete Box Score is attached.
Due to the rain delay and change of venue, the tape delayed telecast of the game, scheduled to air on ESPNU today, Saturday, August, 22 was canceled.  The ESPN RISE All-American Slam Dunk Contest was also canceled due to the weather.
Former Rucker player/coach and New York Post NBA columnist Peter Vecsey was a co-coach for The Goat and Brooklyn’s Lincoln High School coach Dwayne “Tiny” Morton co-coach for winning team Skip to My Lou.
The Boost Mobile Elite 24 game was the culmination of a three-day event which featured a late-night run at Madison Square Garden, a community service project at the Madison Square Boys & Girls Club (Bronx N.Y.), media day: panel discussion, practice session and scrimmage, and game.
Eight of the players have committed to colleges: Dion Waiters to Syracuse, Terrence Ross to Maryland, Myck Kabongo to Texas, Austin Rivers to Florida, Jared Sullinger to Ohio State, Kendall Marshall to North Carolina, Tristan Thompson to Texas, and Will Barton to Memphis.
Five of the players in the 2009 game also played in the 2008 game: Dion Waiters, Doron Lamb, Josh Smith, Jared Sullinger and Tristan Thompson.
The 2009 Boost Mobile Elite 24 consists of players that represent 16 states: Florida – 1; Iowa – 1; Kansas – 1; Maryland – 2; Nevada – 2; New Hampshire – 1; New Jersey – 3; New York – 2; North Carolina – 1; Ohio – 1; Oregon – 1;  Pennsylvania – 1; Tennessee – 1; Texas – 1; Virginia – 3; and Washington – 2.
About Boost Mobile Elite 24
Launched in 2006 by RISE Magazine, the Boost Mobile Elite 24 is the only basketball event in the country to feature the top 24 high school male basketball players regardless of class year or shoe affiliation.  Played at New York’s famed Rucker Park, Boost Mobile Elite 24 touts alumni that include NBA players Michael Beasley, Jerryd Bayless and Kevin Love, Brandon Jennings, Tyreke Evans and Jrue Holiday and college bound Lance Stephenson, Derrick Favors and John Wall.  The game has featured guest coaches that include current and former NBA stars Chauncey Billups, Kenny Anderson, Ben Gordon, Jason Kidd and Baron Davis; and its inaugural game was the subject of the documentary “Gunnin’ for that #1 Spot”, which debuted at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival, and was produced by Beastie Boy Adam Yauch and his production company Oscilloscope.
About ESPN RISE
ESPN RISE represents ESPN’s commitment to engage and elevate high school athletes by providing them with recognition, resources, information and inspiration that can motivate them to improve their skills and achieve their goals to be the best athletes they can.  ESPN RISE assets include ESPN RISE, GIRL, Hardwood and Gridiron magazines; ESPNRISE.com, Hoopgurlz.com and DyeStat.com; and more than 160 high school events including Elite 11, Elite 24, ESPN RISE Games, ESPN RISE National High School Invitational, Faster to First, Area Code Baseball and Nike Combines/Nike SPARQ Mini Camps.  ESPN RISE is uniquely positioned to provide high school athletes and the company’s core fans with compelling high school sports content across all ESPN platforms.
(Printed with permission from ESPN Rise, see web site links for further details)