Anthony Mason last played for the Knicks in 1996, way back when his son, Antoine, was barely more than a baby. But the New Rochelle senior still spent many an idle minute shooting around at the Garden, so today was sort of a return home.
Coach Bill Murphy made that point to Mason earlier today. “He’s been here more than all of ’em put together,” Murphy said. “He was here with his dad shooting. That was what I said to him, ‘Mase, this is your home court.'”
Mason played like it, so did a former classmate of his, Iona Prep’s Brian Voelkel, the slick-passing forward who thrived on the big floor in the Suburban team’s 137-133 over the City.
Mason finished with 17 points on 8 for 13 shooting and added six rebounds, three assists and two steals. He had three hoops that stood out: a 3-pointer that opened all the scoring, a scoop layup as he was fouled and a thunderous two-handed dunk late in the second half.
“When I was younger watched my brother and watching my dad,” Mason said. “It was just fun to get out there on the big court.”
Mason played here in a game once, back when he was younger. It was during halftime of a Knicks game in a youth game.
His father skipped the game because he was away. His brother, Anthony Jr., who just finished his senior season at St. John’s, sat courtside and hung out with Antoine afterward.
Voelkel took fewer shots than anyone on the Suburban team other than Newburgh’s Marcus Henderson but still had a major impact. He scored five points with nine rebounds, seven assists and three steals.
Many of Voelkel’s passes were the awe-inducing types he’s known for. They included: an 80-foot inbound pass, a lob from just inside halfcourt and a behind-the-back pass and they all went for wide open hoops.
“With Brian you feel like you don’t have to coach him much,” Murphy said.
After watching Voelkel at the CYP, you could tell his game suffered on the small court. The wide open spaces at the Garden were exactly the opposite.
“All that spacing just opens it up,” Voelkel said. “I was surrounded by athletes. They were just filling the lanes and that made it easy.”
Derrick Williams of St. Anthony’s (Richmond) was named MVP for the Suburban team. He had 19 points and five rebounds, hitting a pair of clutch free throws with 10.9 seconds left. J.J. Moore of South Kent (Pitt) and Fuquan Edwin of Paterson Catholic (Seton Hall) each scored 26 points to lead the way. Gil Biruta of St. Benedict’s (Rutgers) had 10 points and 14 rebounds.
Ryan Rhoomes of Cardozo (uncommitted) had 26 points and 10 rebounds to win MVP for the City team. Kadeem Jack of Rice (uncommitted) added 21 points and eight rebounds.