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Duke Basketball’s Cooper Flagg among the stars

Vaseline 3 months ago

Five of Duke Basketball’s six incoming recruits and UNC basketball recruit Drake Powell got to showcase their skills at the Jordan Brand Classic in Brooklyn on Sunday.

Cooper Flagg, Kon Knueppel, Isaiah Evans, Darren Harris and Patrick Ngongba II are part of head coach Jon Scheyer’s 2024 recruiting class, the highest-ranked group according to the 247Sports Composite rankings.

Flagg, Harris and Knueppel suit up for Team Air. Evans, Ngongba and Powell – one of the Tar Heels’ top recruits in the class of 2024 – were on Team Flight, which posted a 119-113 win at the Barclays Center.

Rutgers recruit Dylan Harper was the star of the showcase with 30 points for Team Flight. Flagg had 19 points and 10 rebounds for Team Air.

This is the 23rd edition of the event, which was created to honor the legacy of UNC legend Michael Jordan, who was born in Brooklyn.

Here’s a look at how each of Duke’s recruits and Powell fared in Sunday’s showcase, which featured some of the best high school basketball players in the country.

Cooper Flagg, Duke basketball

The 6-foot-4 wing from Maine was among the top players at the McDonald’s All-American and Nike Hoop Summit games. Flagg continued that trend as one of Brooklyn’s stars, showcasing his skills as a scorer, rebounder and defender. With his talent as a two-way player, it is clear why Flagg is expected to be a top pick in the 2025 NBA Draft.

Drake Powell, UNC basketball

Powell, a McDonald’s All-American, showed off his length and motor as a 6-foot-1 wing with defense not normally seen in all-star games. He had several deflections, steals, rebounds, a pair of dunks, a 3-pointer and a layup. The Pittsboro native’s athleticism will make him a fan favorite in Chapel Hill.

Isaiah Evans, Duke basketball

Evans, a McDonald’s All-American and Nike Hoop Summit participant, became one of the top scorers in North Carolina during his time at North Mecklenburg High School. The 6-foot-4 wing from Huntersville showed off that scoring prowess in Brooklyn with several treys, pull-up jumpers and a finish at the rim. Evans will immediately give Durham offense.

Patrick Ngongba II, Duke basketball

The 6-foot-2 Ngongba spent most of his senior season recovering from a broken foot and was unavailable in the Nike Hoop Summit game. He got some time on the court at the Jordan Brand Classic and showed his potential in the second half with several rebounds and three buckets in the paint. With Duke’s depth in the frontcourt, Ngongba will have a chance to take time for his recovery.

Kon Knueppel II, Duke Basketball

Knueppel, a 6-foot-4 wing from Wisconsin, averaged 26.4 points, 8.8 rebounds and 5.1 assists in his senior high school season. He is more than a shooter, as he showed at the Barclays Center. Knueppel had a few jumpers in the paint and a pair of two-handed dunks in the Jumpman Classic.

Darren Harris, Duke basketball

Harris, a 6-foot-1 guard from Virginia, is known as one of the best shooters in the country. With its range, Harris can quickly replenish it. He nailed a 3-pointer from the wing, played some excellent individual defense and found Flagg on a three-quarter field pass for a dunk in transition.

Staff writer Rodd Baxley can be reached at [email protected] or @RoddBaxley on X/Twitter.