N.C. State recruit Rodney Purvis scored 22 points for the East, but that wasn’t enough to hold off the West, which prevailed 99-95 at the Jordan Brand Classic high school all-star game at Time Warner Cable Arena.
Tony Parker made a put-back basket for the East with 22 seconds left to trim the deficit to two.
UCLA recruit Shabazz Muhammad led the West with 20 points. But he missed the front end of a one-and-one that gave the East a chance to tie it. The East missed three shots before the West grabbed a rebound. Muhammad then redeemed himself, making two free throws with 1.9 seconds to clinch the game
The East led throughout the first half, by as much as 14 points. But the West came back dramatically in the first nine minutes of the second half, with Muhammad making consecutive transition tomahawk dunks for an 83-65 lead.
The East recovered with a 12-0 run completed on Kris Dunn’s three-point play, as he muscled up a layup and added a free throw.
The need to show off definitely hurt the quality of play. The West’s Danual House grabbed a steal, drove to the rim alone, and tried to dunk so spectacularly the ball bounced off the rim and into the stands.
Noel, who is headed to Kentucky next season, was supposed to be a headliner, but committed three fouls in the first half that greatly limited his play. He had four points and two rebounds in 11 minutes, and missed a wide-open dunk.
Perhaps the most productive player in the first half was Duke recruit Rasheed Sulaimon, who had seven points and seven rebounds in 11 minutes. The best shooter was Rodney Purvis, who made five of six attempts for 10 points.
A number of former Jordan Classic players showed up as spectators, including Kentucky’s Anthony Davis, the likely No. 1 pick if he turns pro and possibly a future Charlotte Bobcat. Others included North Carolina’s Harrison Barnes and James McAdoo.
The Jordan Brand Classic came to Charlotte last season, featuring a spectacular big-man matchup of Davis and McAdoo.