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Cooper Flagg highlights from USA Basketball vs. Select Team show why Duke freshman is likely No. 1 pick in 2025 draft | Sporting News

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Cooper Flagg highlights from USA Basketball vs. Select Team show why Duke freshman is likely No. 1 pick in 2025 draft | Sporting News

Incoming Duke freshman Cooper Flagg is putting some of the best players in the world on notice at USA Basketball training camp.

Team USA has begun its preparation for the 2024 Paris Olympics, sparring with the United States Select Team in Las Vegas. Highlights of their scrimmage went viral on Monday after Flagg showed exactly why he’s the projected No. 1 pick in the 2025 NBA Draft.

At just 17, Flagg is the youngest player at USA Basketball training camp. He became the first college player chosen for the Select Team in over a decade.

“I was pretty surprised just because it’s not like a normal thing,” Flagg told ESPN’s Tim Bontemps. “So, I was definitely really honored and just excited that I had this opportunity.”

Flagg is going up against one of the most star-studded teams the United States has put forth on the Olympic stage. Generational talents like LeBron James, Stephen Curry, and Kevin Durant are just a few of the NBA icons who the teenager likely grew up idolizing.

“At first, I was a little bit blown away when I first walked up here,” Flagg told ESPN. “But then once the ball went up, it’s basketball to me at the end of the day.”

That became very clear once highlights surfaced of his scrimmage against Team USA.

MORE: Cooper Flagg scouting report: Strengths, weaknesses, NBA player comparison

Cooper Flagg Select Team highlights vs. Team USA

Word traveled to social media quickly once Flagg started lighting up Team USA during a scrimmage on Monday.

The 17-year-old had an impressive stretch that was caught on camera by several media members in attendance.

He knocked down a pull-up 3-pointer in Anthony Davis’ face, hustled back to challenge a hit-ahead pass to AD, then hauled back down the other end for a putback and-one over Bam Adebayo to give the Select Team a late lead over Team USA.

Earlier in the exhibition game, Flagg got Jrue Holiday on a turnaround jumper out of the post.

Even in a scrimmage, three highlights like that against three of the best defenders in the NBA is … not nothing for a teenager who has yet to play a single college game.

This was just a day after he threw a dime of a behind-the-back pass off the dribble…

…and had a nice dunk after recovering from being blocked by Davis.

After Flagg’s big day Monday, ESPN’s Marc Spears reported that one current NBA head coach called the future Duke star the best player on the Select Team.

That roster includes recent top-five picks like Brandon Miller, Keegan Murray, Jabari Smith Jr., Jalen Suggs, and Amen Thompson, as well as other young impact players like Jalen Duren and Trey Murphy.

Select Team head coach Jamahl Mosley, who was a finalist for NBA Coach of the Year with the Magic this season, had nothing but praise for Flagg, too.

“Well, I hadn’t been around him, so just meeting him and talking to him the first day in practice the other day, you can just see the quiet confidence that he carries himself,” Mosley told ESPN.

“… [He has a] high basketball IQ, tough, willing to learn. He gets to the spots that he needs to for a shot a lot, able to get to the rim, great touch on his shot.

“I mean, he can play. There’s no in between. There’s me saying, in many different forms, he can just flat-out play.”

Flagg is already finding ways to stand out and show why he’s touted as the best American NBA prospect in over a decade just days into USA Basketball training camp.

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