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LIVE BLOG: Canadians @ McDonald’s All-American Week (Chicago, Illinois)

Posted on 30. Mar, 2011 by Nolan Shulman in Canada Spotlight, High School, Tournaments

One year ago today, Flagrant Fouls traveled to Columbus, Ohio to take in history and watch Tristan Thompson and Cory Joseph compete against the best players in the world on high school basketball's biggest stage.  Their performance in practices and scrimmages cemented what we already knew !! The Findlay Prep stars were capable of playing at the highest level under the brightest lights.  With NBA scouts and General Managers looking on, they went to work and proved they belonged among the 20 best players at their age group. 

This year we're in Chicago, Illinois, where once again Canadians have the opportunity to prove they have the talent, passion, competitiveness, and talent to shine among the best of the best.  Khem Birch, Myck Kabongo, and Kyle Wiltjer will have a life experience they'll never forget the rest of their lives.  We'll be at all the practices, scrimmages, media day, Jam Fest, and Wednesday night's game, letting you in on any secrets taking place behind the ropes.

Check back in all week for everything you need to know at the biggest week in high school basketball ight here in the Live Blog. 




If these updates aren't enough for you, FOLLOW US ON TWITTER for way more !!!

***Please note that these videos in the live blog are just some quick clips so that you guys can be a part of what we're seeing in the gym.  They are not our typical POTD's***


Tuesday, March 29 (4pm)

Austin Rivers talks about his relationship and battle with Myck Kabongo at media day.



Tuesday, March 30 (11:06am)



Was looking forward to taking a picture of the Jordan statue since last week.  Was pleasantly surprised to find it wearing a McDonald's All-American flag.  Check out Matt and the GOAT. 




Tuesday, March 29 (7:31am)

Up early and off to the final McDonald's practice.  This is usually where the players scrimmage gets a little more serious.  Last year Tristan was matched up with Fab Melo and ate his food.  Looking forward to seeing who Kabongo, Wiltjer, and Khem will be guarding this year.  After practice at ATTACK Athletics we'll slide over to the United Center for Media day.  Me and Matt can't wait to take a picture with the Michael Jordan Statue.  Should be an exciting morning. 

Monday, March 28 (7:39pm)


Austin Rivers took off his warm up and had a throwback Doc Rivers Atlanta Hawks jersey on for his first dunk.  He definitely had the crowd behind him.  For his second dunk he tried to get Kabongo to throw him an alley oop from 20ish rows up in the crowd but it didn't work out.  LeBryan Nash won the dunk contest over Marshall Plumlee in a very debatable decision.  The contest definitely wasn't as good as last years, but we had a great time.  Without a doubt, the highlight of the night was Kyle putting on for Canada and his fellow big men in the three-point shootout.    


\Monday, March 28 (7:20pm)

While Khem didn't advance to the finals of the Slam Dunk Competition, here was his 2nd dunk.  This wasn't a great setting to display Khem's ability to finish at the rim.  He's much more of a game dunker than he is a creativity guy.  




Monday, March 28 (6:40pm)



Kyle WIltjer just won the three point shootout !!!!!!!!  He needed 17 points to win and made his final two shots to win by 1.  He's shot the heck out of the basketball all week and we're not surprised one bit.  Check out the raw footage of Kyle's winning round.  




Monday, March 28 (6:09pm)




Check out LeBryan Nash modeling this years shoes.  They are Reebok Zigs.    






Monday, March 28 (6:07pm)




First up was the skills competition.  This performance by Myck earned him a spot in the final three.  Not entirely sure what his time was as the announcer forgot to announce it.  






Monday, March 28 (5:30pm) 

Lights just went out for announcements of the All-American rosters.  Check out Kabongo as he gets introduced to the crowd at Chicago State.  



Monday, March 28 (11:00am)




No post player in the gym has displayed a more polished skill set than Kyle Wiltjer.  He made three's, got to the rim, and demonstrated high level back to the basket post moves turning over both shoulders.  





Monday, March 28 (10:22am) 

Scrimmage starts with Kabongo showing his flare and vision in the open court and finding Kyle in transition for the two handed flush.  



Monday, March 28 (10:00am)




Khem is matched up with Anthony Davis in the post.  Really curious who has a longer wingspan ??  Myck is matched up with Marquis Teague.  Two quickest high school players in the world with the ball in their hands.  



Monday, March 28 (9: 38am)


West squad going through their offensive schemes.  Fun to see how fast these guys pick it up and develop a chemistry playing together.  Myck, Khem, and Kyle are grouped together as the coaches split the teams into offense and defense to implement their sets.  Keeping it simple and letting great players make plays.    



Sunday, March 27 (11:53pm) 

Just received word that Khem will be participating in the Dunk Contest at tomorrow nights POWERADE JAM FEST.  Wiltjer will be a contestant in the three point shootout, while Kabongo will partake in both the 3-point shootout and the Skills Competition.  

Sunday, March 27 (4:22pm)




While nearly every player is on the far left court doing dunks for the mix makers, Kyle is on a different court working on his jumper with his dad.  He just made 13 of his last 15 three point attempts and didn't get much iron on any of his makes.    




Sunday, March 27 (3:09pm)

Austin Rivers is one of 5 basketball players on the planet I would pay to see (Melo, Wall, Jimmer, Griffin are the others).  He's got his offensive mojo on display right now !!  His shoulder fake gets the defense off balance every single time while his jumper is absolutely soaking wet.  



Sunday, March 27 (2:52pm)

Just spotted Larry Bird about 7 seats over from me.  Got to pick his brain for a few minutes last year in Columbus which was my best memory of the 2010 McDonald's game.  Would love to see him and Austin Rivers have a shooting contest right now.  Not sure how often he still shoots, but I'd still rather have Larry Legend shoot a last second shot for my team than anyone else in the building.  

Sunday, March 27 (2:47pm)

Canadians hookup during drill work……. Kyle to Khem !!!!!!!



Sunday, March 27 (2:44pm)

Myck starting to have some fun with the guys during drills.  His energy is contagious !!



Sunday, March 27 (2:07pm)

After a pretty smooth drive and quite a bit of rushing (just changed in the parking lot), we've finally arrived at Chicago State University for the first practice. It was nice to see some of my friends that I hadn't seen in a while, but now it's time to get down to business. All three Canadians are on the West squad, as well as Austin Rivers, Marquis Teague, and Anthony Davis. Going to go out on a limb and say the West gets it done and gets it done big.   They have the two best point guards (Kabongo and Teague), the best scorer (Rivers), and two of the three best shot blockers (Anthony Davis + Birch).  

Sunday, March 27 (1:43pm)



Just rolled into The Westin Hotel to pick up my media credentials.  McDonald's is first class all the way and as usual have given me more rosters and paperwork then I know what to do with.  


Sunday, March 27 (5:00am)

Just hit the road for Chicago with our Media Director Matt Berdan and my good friend Gilbert Muako (National Editor/Recruiting Analyst with CROWN).   We may be competitors but we have a tremendous amount of respect for the work they do and the effort they put in.  We've got a 9 hour drive ahead of us and I'm a little worried I may have to listen to the same Lupe song on repeat the entire time.  Practice starts at 2pm (not sure if we'll make it), but I've got my hard hat on and am ready to get it done !!


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