To kick off the event, Metta World Peace’s Celebrity Team, stacked with a roster consisting of himself, Lenny Cooke, Anthony Glover, Tim “Headache” Gittens, and more, lost by one point to a team of young professionals, led by Fordham’s Ryan Rhoomes and two Division 1 bound CM3 AAU graduates.
A.J. Williams was unstoppable, dropping a light 58 points for the CM3/ Heroes All-Stars. He is a product of Lincoln High School, and will be playing at Clark Atlanta University next year.
The celebrity game and dunk contest was just the start of a weekend AAU basketball tournament that featured top basketball talent from around the city.
“I’m interested to see how these players deal with the physicality of playing on a smaller court,” said scout Tom Konchalski, who was in attendance. “You have two choices when playing a physical game, you can complain to the refs or you can play tougher. Many times, that choice will determine your success in the basketball world.”
In the 14U division, Harlem United beat Long Island Lightning in the championship game, making them the first champions of the Artest Summer Classic. The talent and level of basketball played by Coach Melone’s CM3 Elite, Team Storm from Bayside, and Coach Olivera’s Queens Pythons, proved that their programs are among the top in NYC.
In the 17U Division, Coach Melone’s CM3 Elite took home the trophy, defeating two teams with multiple Division 1-bound athletes in NY Pride, and Team Underrated. The MVP of the 17u division was Steven Cherry, who will be suiting up for the University of Albany next year.
The All-Tournament Team consisted of Roland Jefferson (Christ The King ‘16), Khayri Dawson (Charlotte Basketball Academy ‘17), Gerald Williams (George Westinghouse HS ‘16), Tyres Desinor (Canarsie HS ‘17), Anthony Torres (Wadleigh HS ‘17), Jamel Kearney (Campus Magnet HS ‘17), Rodney Ray (Hyde Prep ‘17), Brandon Redendo (Lee Academy ‘18), Souleymane Kouressi (Iona Prep ‘18), Evan Goldberg (Canterbury Prep ‘18), Jasaiah Lewis (Lincoln HS ‘18) and Henry Gardner (Calhoun HS ‘17).