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Basketball Tue May 21 2013

Champions Classic Pits Parker Against Wiggins in Chicago

phpnOBoYSPM.jpgJust seven months after putting on a show at the McDonald's All American Game, Jabari Parker and Andrew Wiggins will return to the United Center floor. As before, it'll be head to head, but many more will watch Parker's Duke Blue Devils and Wiggins' Kansas Jayhawks headline the State Farm Champions Classic.

Parker's Duke Blue Devils were a sizable favorite against the Jayhawks before Wiggins surprised many with his low-key announcement that he'd play for Bill Self at Kansas. For Parker, a soon-to-be Simeon graduate and four-time Illinois state champion, it'll be another opportunity to knock off Wiggins, who single-handedly stopped the Parker Hype Machine the moment he re-classified as a member of the class of 2013.

Their first match-up in the exhibition McDonald's game was sloppy, as expected, but still satisfying. Parker, playing before a loyal crowd, seemed anxious from the opening tip to take it to Wiggins. But those moments were few and far between after the first few minutes, as Parker and Wiggins blended in during the hectic iso-fest that ensued throughout. Given that Self and Chicago native Mike Krzyzewski are arguably the college game's greatest coaches, this game ought to be a lot prettier.

Though Duke and Kansas will headline, the opening game between Michigan State and Kentucky will have plenty of local intrigue. The Spartans' 2013 two-man recruiting class features Chicago natives Gavin Schilling and Alvin Ellis. And though Anthony Davis is no longer a Wildcat (soon a Pelican), Kentucky coach John Calipari is probably very excited to show off his number-one ranked recruiting class to Whitney Young's Jahlil Okafor and Crane's Cliff Alexander.

Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

 
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