Here's what we learned Monday at practice for the McDonald's All American Game and the Powerade JamFest.
CHICAGO – Chris Walker of Holmes County (Bonifay, Fla.) doesn't tire easily.
Walker won the dunk contest with four solid dunks, including a windmill for 54 points to start, a nice one-handed slam for a perfect score of 60 and two solid dunks to close the competition. Not a big talker, Walker said most of his dunks were "regular dunks."
The future Florida player finished with 226 points to top Aaron Gordon of Archbishop Mitty (San Jose, Calif.), who had 213 points, and Jabari Parker of Simeon (Chicago), who had 211.
Gordon set to announce
Gordon will announce where he’ll play in college next season at Tuesday’s McDonald’s All American media day event.
“I’m ready to get it over with,” said Gordon, who will suit up for the West. “It’ll be a relief.”
Gordon will decide between Arizona, Washington, Oregon and Kentucky.
Nigel Williams-Goss shoots well under pressure
Williams-Goss, a guard from Findlay Prep (Henderson, Nev.), won the three-point shooting contest with 18 points in the deciding round to top Matt Jones of DeSoto, Texas.
Williams-Goss, a four-year starter for Findlay Prep, is headed to Washington. He came up with a big three-pointer to help No. 1 Findlay Prep defeat No. 2 Montverde (Fla.) Academy in January at the Hoophall Classic in Springfield, Mass., but Findlay hasn't played since March 2.
"We haven't played in like a month, but other than six days we had off, we've put a lot of time in the gym and I think it paid off."
James Young’s hip will be fine
Everyone wanted to know why Rochester (Rochester, Mich.) wing James Young was sitting off to the side while the rest of his McDonald’s All American teammates on the West squad were practicing.
“Aaron (Gordon) bumped into my hip really hard in practice on Sunday,” said Young, a Kentucky signee. “It was pretty sore so they told me to sit out today. I’ll probably practice tomorrow, but even if I don’t I’ll definitely play on Wednesday. No worries.”
Wiggins knows who “would’ve” won NHSI
Huntington (W.Va.) Prep wing Andrew Wiggins has no doubt that the Express would’ve taken home the ESPN National High School Invitational title had they been invited.
The tournament cranks up Thursday at Georgetown Prep (North Bethesda, Md.).
“We didn’t get in, but if we did I know we would’ve won,” said Wiggins, who will run with the East in the McDonald’s All American game. “None of those teams could match up with us.”
He stuck with his prediction even after being reminded that Prime Prep (Dallas) knocked off the Express 59-46 at the Cancer Research Classic in January.
Prime Prep was one of eight teams to receive an invite to the NHSI.
“They ran that triangle-and-two defense,” Wiggins said of Prime Prep. “It caught us off guard because, I mean, who doesn’t play man-to-man? But now, trust me we’d have that taken care of. I promise we would’ve won that tournament.”
Dunk contest doesn't indicate future greatness
Alonzo Mourning, who was a player in the 1988 McDonald's All American Game, sat courtside for the McDonald's Jam Fest. Mourning remembered that Matt Steigenga won the dunk contest in 1988, despite Mourning's one-ball-in-each-hand effort.
"I enjoy good talent, so I appreciate watching these kids under these circumstances," Mourning said.
Steigenga went on to a solid career at Michigan State and played overseas and in the CBA after college. He also played briefly with the Chicago Bulls, scoring his only two NBA points on a dunk.