It was a good weekend for UK’s signees at the Jordan Brand Classic. De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk were named MVPs, and Bam Adebayo was 7-8 from the floor for 15 points. Wenyen Gabriel did some good stuff on defense, but never really got involved on the offensive side. RealGM’s Andrew Jerell Jones has a good breakdown of each player’s performance, starting with De’Aaron Fox, who Jerell Jones said raised his NBA stock considerably:
The newest point guard superstar recruit for John Calipari showed at all three all-star games that he, along with Miles Bridges, are the best defenders on the perimeter in this class. For another contest, the Texas native showed his innate ability to pick anyone’s pocket, whether it being a mid-level high school player or someone on his level like future Kentucky teammate Malik Monk.
But what was refreshingly impressive for Fox this time around was the fact that he showed a true shooter’s touch. A rough performance at the McDonald’s game (1 for 8, 0-2 for 3 and 0-1 at FT line) was replaced by a near total opposite display by him at the Jordan game. He showed scouts an ability to hit the three (2 for 6) and stability at the charity stripe (5 for 5 on FTs) to combine with his top left athleticism and secured co-MVP honors with a game high 23 points.
Meanwhile, Jerell Jones said Malik Monk showed that he has “arguably the best handle of the entire class to combine with elite hops,” but he needs to work more on his shot. Bam Adebayo? “There’s no question the future Kentucky power forward is the strongest rim finisher in the class.”
I like the sound of that. Check out RealGM for notes on everyone else, including Marques Bolden.