Article originally published 4/15/17
Lonnie Walker saves the day for the East Team.
Lonnie Walker scored 19 points and Grabbed MVP honors as the West Team surged past the East Team 124-116 at the 2017 Jordan Brand Classic.
It was a game that was heavily in favor of the East Team for most of the game until late in the 2nd half. The East Team was up 92-89 when Lonnie Walker scored seven straight points to give the East a 96-89 lead.
As walker continued to go on a tear, he often heard chants from the crowd of family members and fans who came all the way from Pennsylvania to see him play. All of them sat in section 31 to see him at play. The presence of his friends and family gave him a sense of being home. “That’s what Reading, Pennsylvania does. Even though we are three hours away, no matter how close we are, we still find ways to be a family.” Same with high school, every single game we played was almost sold out. Mainly we’re just reading fans. So seeing them, it just gave me a lot of energy. It made me so much more active, hyper, and I was motivated by them”. Walker said
When it came to the late run in the second half Walker was very strategic on how he was going to get points . “It’s just knowing my strengths are and knowing what the other team’s weaknesses are. Their defense started to slow down and my transition offensive game it doesn’t take a lot to make those easy buckets I made the game a lot smaller and a lot easier for myself and those points started to come like free candy whatever they gave I took it”. Lonnie’s high IQ showed in this game and it’s something that many Miami fans are going to like about him when he suits up for the hurricanes next season.
One of the top uncommitted seniors Brian Bowen was the Co-MVP as he scored 26 points to lead the East squad, and at that point, his pending college decision was the least of his worries. “During these all-star games, I haven’t been worried about this, just having fun overall. Now it’s a business, and it’s a business decision that I’ll be making this month. Plenary of schools, a lot have tried to get involved since I’m not committed. From winning a championship at the Dick’s nationals in Queens to winning the Co-MVP at the Jordan Brand Classic, NYC has been good to the 6-7 forward from Saginaw, Michigan. “It means a lot. New York is the Big Apple, the big city; it’s a great city. The atmosphere was alive, and I fed off that. I truly had a great time tonight”.