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Jordan Brand Classic: Scouting NBA draft prospects

Due to budget cuts (a theme in the grassroots world this year), the Jordan Brand Classic was significantly compressed this year compared with years past. Both the regional and international games, which were beloved by NBA scouts and draftniks alike, were canceled, and just one day of practice was conducted, compared with the usual two. This lessened the intrigue of the event to a degree, and the turnout of NBA scouts. It may have also been reflected in the relatively smaller crowd that attended the game, which was partially due to the absence of a marquee halftime performer, as in previous editions.

It didn’t help that injuries and withdrawals took a bite out of the roster as well, with the likes of R.J. Barrett, Zion Williamson, Keldon Johnson and Jalen Carey unable to participate.

Nevertheless, this was a good opportunity to get eyes on a number of players who weren’t invited to the McDonald’s All-American or Nike Hoop Summit events, which we covered in Atlanta and will cover in Portland this upcoming week.