McDonald's game is loaded with talent
I've heard NBA scouts complain for months that this year's draft will be weak at the top, which is one reason why Kentucky freshman Nerlens Noel might be the No. 1 pick despite suffering a torn ACL during the college season.
The 2014 draft should be different, thanks to a loaded group of incoming college freshmen. All of the top players are scheduled to play in Wednesday's McDonalds All-American Game at the United Center. Basically, this game could be a 2014 lottery-pick preview.
Topping the list is 6-8 Andrew Wiggins, who grew up in Toronto and attended Huntington (W.V.) Prep. He's smooth, athletic with guard skills. I've seen him compared to many NBA superstars, but Tracy McGrady might be the best match. He's undecided for college, reportedly considering North Carolina, Kentucky, Kansas and Florida State.
Then there's 6-9 Julius Randle from Texas. He's the main guy in Kentucky's loaded recruiting class, which also features twins Andrew (6-5 point guard) and Aaron (6-6 shooting guard) Harrison, 6-6 James Young, 6-10 Marcus Lee and 6-11 Dakari Johnson.
Another player with draft potential is 6-8 Aaron Gordon from San Jose. He's also undeclared, but might be headed to Arizona. Analysts love comparing him to Blake Griffin and it does seem justified.
Hometown favorite Jabari Parker from Simeon saw his ranking drop this year after suffering a foot injury and probably due to the strong competition. The Duke recruit could use the McDonald's game as a chance to show he's still a potential top-10 draft pick for 2014.
The only Big Ten commit at the McDonald's game is future Indiana forward 6-9 Noah Vonleh, a potential one-and-done. Guard Demetrius Jackson is headed to Notre Dame.
Bulls fans reading this are no doubt wondering about the status of the No. 1 pick coming from Charlotte in the Tyrus Thomas trade. It is top-10 protected in 2014, top 8 protected in 2015 and unprotected in 2016.