An ankle injury sidelined 5-star small forward Michael Porter Jr. for the Saturday evening session of last week’s Nike EYBL in Hampton, Virginia. The ankle was still sore on Sunday morning, but the 6’8” rising senior took the court anyway and helped MOKAN Elite to a 93-74 win over Phoenix Phamily.
“It hurts a lot,” Porter Jr. said of how his injured ankle felt following the 19-point win. “This is a game I felt like I needed to play in. My team’s good. Who knows, they could have won this game without me. This game put us in the Peach Jam, so I had to give it a go.”
Porter Jr. poured in 29 points on 13-of-17 shooting in the win.
“I couldn’t do everything I usually do, but I guess I did okay,” Porter Jr. said.
Porter Jr. hopes to be fully healthy by the time he arrives in Atlanta next week for the fourth and final EYBL Session before Peach Jam. This week, in addition to getting healthy, Porter Jr. may be focusing on narrowing his college choices down.
“Later this week I’m going to come out with a top five,” he said.
Washington Huskies head coach Lorenzo Romar made headlines recently when he hired Michael’s father as an assistant coach. Romar, who is Michael’s Godfather, has also received a commitment from Michael’s younger brother, Jontay. All signs point to the star class of 2017 prospect signing with the Huskies, right?
“A lot of people think it’s a lock that I go there with coach Romar being my God-father and my dad being an assistant coach, but I’m still considering a few other schools on my list,” said Porter Jr., who will move to Seattle for his senior year of high school.
UVA is still vying for the talented wing’s services, but what are the Cavaliers’ chances of making the top five?
“UVA is still a school that I really like,” said Porter Jr., who, along with his father, toured the Grounds unofficially last June. “One of the reasons that I probably won’t commit this summer is because I want to watch UVA play a little bit next year. Coach Bennett told me he has some offensive pieces coming in and I really want to see how he uses those players. Yeah, it’s a great program.”
Another plus for the Hoos is soon-to-be first year combo guard Kyle Guy, Porter’s best friend.
“[Kyle] was the one that actually convinced me to just take a look. [Bennett] has his system, of course, but he has never had elite offensive players and I really want to see what he does with those types of players,” Porter Jr. said.
Porter Jr. detailed what the most important factors will be in his college decision.
“Really just player development and if it’s somewhere where I feel I would thrive. I want to go to the league, so I want to go to a place that will develop me,” Porter Jr. said.
Given the situation at Washington, it’s really tough to best against the Huskies ultimately. Another sticking point as far as Virginia is concerned is the fact that Porter Jr. says he wants to play alongside class of 2017 point guard Trae Young on the next level. UVA has offered Young; however, at this point the Hoos have only one scholarship available in 2017 and Young does not seem that interested.
UVA fans should not get their hopes up at this point. I do believe, though, that Virginia has a good chance to make the top five and, if the Hoos keep hanging around, who knows.