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March 31, 2009
Buzz of uncertainty at McD's practice
MORE: Henry and Cousins talk Calipari | McDonald's Day 2 | McDonald's AA Game Roster
MIAMI - The third day of practice at the McDonald's All American Game was buzzing over the uncertainty swirling around Lance Stephenson and Memphis recruits DeMarcus Cousins and Xavier Henry.
In unpredictable Lance Stephenson fashion, the latest star out of New York City released a statement concerning a delay on announcing his college decision.
"I know everyone is here for me to make my announcement," said Stephenson. "But me and my family have decided to wait it out. It's a tough decision."
Stephenson also reiterated that it is still down to Kansas, Maryland and St. John's. He also refuted any speculation that Coach Calipari's possible departure from Memphis to Kentucky has anything to do with the delay of his decision.
Stephenson also gave no indication of when he will announce his decision.
Neither Cousins or Henry know whether Coach Calipari is staying or going, but if he does leave, neither prospect will have a problem severing ties with Memphis. Cousins has not signed a Letter of Intent, and Henry has language in his Letter releasing him from his obligation if Coach Calipari were to leave.
"In my Letter of Intent it is written that if Coach Calipari leaves, I can go anywhere," Henry said.
That means that both Kentucky and Kansas, who finished second behind Memphis last fall, would be options for Henry.
"I'll consider everybody," said Henry, when asked what he would do if Coach Calipari left Memphis. "I'll reopen everything."
Henry still has three official visits at his disposal.
Cousins acknowledge that Memphis would be eliminated from consideration if Calipari were to leave. He also said that Kentucky and in-state school Alabama would be considered. Kansas State and Washington were the closest competitors with Memphis for Cousins when he committed.
"I'm just waiting like everybody else," said Cousins about the Calipari situation. "If he leaves, I guess I'll have to start all the way over."
The East squad did not do any five on five work in its practice, instead just shooting the majority of the practice and going over some plays.
Lance Stephenson worked with the line up of Maalik Wayns, Kenny Boynton, Ryan Kelly and Alex Oriakhi during five on zero work.
It is still unclear if the East plans to start one of the grouping in practice or if they will switch up the line ups come game time.
Odds are strong that the West is planning to start Abdul Gaddy, Avery Bradley, Xavier Henry, John Henson and Renardo Sidney.
The West has an advantage over the East at the guard position, and the built in chemistry between Gaddy and Bradley makes the advantage even stronger.
The West did spend a portion of its practice scrimmaging, and Bradley once again stood out as a top performer.
Wally Judge was held out of practice against his own wishes. Unless Judge is cleared by a doctor, he will not be able to play Wednesday night. Judge suffered a bruised spinal cord in Sunday's practice.
Avery Bradley won the dunk contest. Ryan Kelly took home the three-point shooting championship. And Dante Taylor won the skills competition.