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2013 McDonald's All-American Game: What did we learn from the incoming Kentucky freshmen?

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The 2013 McDonald's High School All-American was loaded with talent from top to bottom. Six players were already committed to the University of Kentucky.

Jonathan Daniel

The McDonald’s High School All-American game has been an exciting blend of talent for a while but this year’s match up featured one of the best high school classes of the last decade. Scouts have already compared the group to the 2007 high school class that featured NBA players like Kevin Love, Eric Gordon, OJ Mayo, Derrick Rose, Blake Griffin, Evan Turner, and others.

Just some quick thoughts on the game, unrelated to UK:

  • Those jerseys have got to go. Not the camo ones – those are slick. The red jerseys are rough on the eyes and it’s incredibly difficult to differentiate players (especially if you’re like me and had to watch the game without sound).

  • Aaron Gordon! My man, remember, you have to finish in these events. You can’t take back a first impression and that missed dunk was a first impression for thousands of folks out there. EDIT at 9:57: I wrote that first part in the first half. I apologize; that 360 windmill was insane. Do you, kind sir. EDIT at 10:28: That oop he just caught was amazing. I should have never said anything. EDIT at 10:30: Gordon just won the MVP, I apologize for ever laughing at your missed dunk.

  • The hype around this high school class is real. Granted, the defense was obviously lacking but the overall athleticism and skill sets of these kids is unreal. It’s probably too early to heed to the comparisons of the 2007 class but it sure is fun.

  • Andrew Wiggins is clearly a notch above everyone else. If he left this year, he’d be the No. 1 overall pick without a doubt.

What did we learn about the guys coming to Kentucky?

The Harrison Twins:

Apparently these twins enjoy playing with each other. Sources say they’ve played together for years and even to the untrained eye it becomes glaringly obvious. The second play of the game when Aaron slipped backdoor for the alley-oop from Andrew felt like something we’ll be seeing a lot next year.

Julius Randle:

Julius Randle is a freak. His combination of size, strength, ball-handling and athleticism is rare and will be a joy to watch next year. That 180 degree alley-oop he caught was the best play of the night and really highlighted his intriguing skill set.

Dakari Johnson:

An exhibition game like this doesn’t suit well for tradition low post scorers but Johnson had a few shining moment’s in Wednesday’s games. He found opportunities to show off footwork and his turnaround hook shot so that was nice. I’m a sucker for skilled low post big men so I especially enjoyed Johnson’s night.

James Young:

Young had a nice outing. He looks silky smooth from the perimeter (his left-handed jump shot only enhances that) and he was one of the few guys out there fighting on defense. He reminds me of a stronger Jeremy Lamb in the sense that he understands how spacing the floor works in basketball.

Marcus Lee:

MARCUS LEE GOT A DUNK IN THE FINAL SECONDS. THAT’S ALL I CAN REMEMBER. But seriously, the guy’s a pogo stick and looks like he could compliment Dakari Johnson well with his knack for weak-side defense. He’ll need to add weight but hey that’s what college weight training is for.

Overall:

If you call yourself a Kentucky basketball fan and you aren’t excited then I highly question your fanship. This team looks, if anything, to be extremely athletic and will be a lot of fun within coach Cal’s dribble drive offense. If Wiggins chooses the Kentucky blue, then you can go ahead and shut down college basketball. It’ll be Kentucky’s championship to lose.