The 31st edition of the McDonald's All-American game was won by the East in a 107-102 edging of the West squad.
With both eyes fixed on the MVP trophy, the West's Willie Warren and the East's Tyreke Evans went on runs to score enough points to put themselves in contention should their teams win. Evans finished with 21 points (9-15 FG) and the win. Warren was the game's high scorer with 23 points.
The West, behind a run of 10 points from Warren, was creeping back into the game when point guard Brandon Jennings was whistled for a charge.
"That charge changed the whole game and messed up one of my assists," Jennings said at the press conference. It had been common knowledge that the L.A. native wanted the assist record. In fact, he crafted a plan that removed him as a scorer and turned him into the game's most committed passer.
Jennings began the game with 5 assists in 5 minutes. A few tough finishes weren't converted and the run at the record was toast. He finished with 12 points and 6 turnovers; he didn't score in the first half, almost by design.
While the guards were getting their grove on, the bigs weren't getting much attention at all. In fact, the West's bigs combined to score 23 points while the East's did muster up 37. Sure it's an all-star game but when the big fellas combine to score just 60 of the 209 total points, something's out of whack.
Holiday vs. Evans - Tyreke Evans lined up against Jrue Holiday and clearly wanted to test his mettle against the best in the West. Evans' first half, though strong in the points column, contained a few forces. Holiday picked him once in the second but overall when Evans can lean that shoulder in and creep by he could finish with athleticism and contact. Both had their moments. Holiday had 14 and 5 steals; Evans went for 21, 4 assists and 5 turnovers.
Move of the night - Without question the move that will stand out from this game was the lefty hook from Tyler Zeller. It was only one play but it was big time.
Warren Goes On Run - Fueled by a commitment on defense, Warren got loose offensively and was key in the West even making a game of it late.
Silencing The Critics -- Let's be honest, there was plenty of debate as to Mike Rosario's candidacy for this game and he probably heard some of the whispers. Give the kid credit for playing hard and loose. He's got a lot of pride and made plays. The next step is developing a burst to get by guys on offense. His triple gave the East an 11-point cushion and essentially ended the West's hopes. Rosario worked his way to 18 points.
We Had No Idea -- There are some things you come to expect and others you can't predict. From the "Who Knew Department" we give you Kemba Walker. A tough guard from Rice High School, his flush over Jrue Holiday was, shall we say, unexpected? Walker's floor game was on point as well.
Rough Night -- These games aren't typically big man friendly and we understand that concept. Regardless, it was a tough first half for Greg Monroe who didn't scratch and turned it over 5 times. Monroe finished without a bucket, 1 point and 6 rebounds.
Unanimous -- At the press conference the question was asked of Warren, Evans, Jennings and Rosario: who impressed you the most this week? The unanimous answer was Samuels.
NBA Spin -- We caught up with an NBA scout in the elevator after the game. He wasn't impressed with the overall talent in the game. He believed Jennings to be the most naturally talented prospect in a group that is unlikely to produce many stars beyond college. See Class of 2005.
No Fear -- Luke Babbitt ain't afraid. On his first possession he challenged Jamychal Green. Next up, he took Ed Davis off the dribble and put a foul on him. He belongs. After the game was frustrated with his 1-for-5 from the field. There wasn't a need to be critical, he's a tough kid.
Missing You -- It had to be tough for Delvon Roe to watch this game from his living room. Here's to remembering one of the best power forwards in the class on a night he would have participated if not injured.
In The House -- Alonzo Mourning, 1988 McDonald's participant; Wesley Matthews, Dominic James, Marquette guards. Robert Jackson, former Marquette center from the Final Four team. Lots of agents in the house including Bill Duffy.
There's buzz about him coming back to college buckets but not tonight. Michael Jordan's college roommate Buzz Peterson was in the house working for the Charlotte Bobcats alongside Bernie Bickerstaff. …
WEST -- Shumpert 0, Jennings 12, Babbitt 4, Monroe 1, Lee 3, Warren 23, Holiday 14, Drew 7, DeRozan 10, Hopson 10, Mullens 12, Dunigan 6.
EAST -- Evans 21, Rosario 18, Walker 13, Landesberg 2, Williams 10, Singleton 0, Davis 11, Zeller 6, Aminu 0, Buford 6, Green 12, Samuels 8.
BRO's Comments: It's absolutely futile to draw any conclusions from this game in terms of a recruit's potential as a college player.
It was encouraging, however, that Holiday and Lee both showed some aggresiveness on defense, something that is very rare for the McDonald's game.