Yes, we all know the story Canadian Basketball is on the rise. Tristan Thompson, Myck Kabongo, Cory Joseph, Andrew Nicholson, Kyle Witjer and of course the main event Montreal’s own and Pitt Panthers bound Khem Birch.
The 2011 McDonald’s All-American Game featured a star studded line-up and a record crowd on hand that most major sports owners would envy for.
The finale of the 2011 Burger game recorded its highest attendance in the history of the event with just over 20000 people in the building as the DRose and the Chicago Bulls hit the road and made way for the next generation of NBA stars to shine at the United Center.
Scouts, media, coaches and the hall-of-famers where all on hand to get a early glimpse of the next great one.
Canadian Basketball was well represented by a record setting three players who took to the hardwood to display their skills.
The game was exciting from the jump as both teams got up and down and scrapped for every possession and loose ball.
In the end the East squad pulled off a 101-96 victory over the West behind North Carolina bound James McAdoo and Kentucky Wildcats Michael Gilchrist 17-points.
The game featured 21 dunks and was the most successful since King James made his appearance and won the 2003 MVP award in his hometown of Cleveland.
Coming into the week a lot of buzz was on the three Canadian Basketball kids who made history.
Myck Kabongo, Kyle Wiltjer and Khem Birch all got their fair share of buzz through the event. All three players participate and faired well on the pre-game activities. Kyle Wiltjer was crowned three-point king despite his 6-10 frame, Myck Kabongo finished a not so distant second in the skills competition, while Khem Birch competed well in the dunk contest.
The soft spoken and humble Birch promised a strong performance after taking it easy and cruising for much of the week due to an eye injury which occurred during practice.
Montreal native Khem Birch had the most impressive game out of the three Canadian Basketball Players.
Birch a 6-8 freak of nature is considered the top Canadian basketball prospect and sure enough he left many in awe after his near triple double of 15 points, 10 rebounds and 6 blocks in a losing effort.
Birch will most certainly be in consideration for the 2012 NCAA Freshmen of the year award and made a case for Mcdonalds Game MVP with his performance at the biggest stage.
His impact on the court is felt on both ends, his superior athletic ability and raw talent allow him to disrupt shots on the defensive end and cause nightmares for opposing bigs trying to keep him off the offensive glass.
In a game which featured 2011 player of the year Austin Rivers and co-game-MVP recipients James McAdoo and Michael Gilchrist amongst other studs its worth noting that a Canadian stole the show. All by himself.
“I worked hard to get position and scored without any plays being called for me.” I got everything myself,” Birch said.