Former Maryland men’s basketball star Dez Wells will play in the $1 million winner-take-all The Basketball Tournament, a 24-team single-elimination competition that will be played over 10 days in Columbus, Ohio, starting July 4.
Wells will play for Team CP3, which includes former members of NBA star point guard Chris Paul’s Amateur Athletic Union program. The team reached the Greensboro Regional Final in 2019 and will also feature former North Carolina players Kennedy Meeks and P.J. Hairston. No. 13 seed Team CP3′s first game is July 4 against No. 20 seed Mid-American Unity. All games will be televised on ESPN’s family of networks.
Wells, who played from the Terps from 2012 through 2015 after starting his college career at Xavier, recently played professionally for the San Miguel Beermen and led the Philippine Basketball Association in scoring at over 37 points a game. He left the team in November after being involved in a reported fight with three teammates.
The Philippines was the fourth overseas stop for Wells since graduating from Maryland after the 2014-15 season, in which he helped lead the Terps to a 28-7 record and their first appearance in the NCAA tournament since coach Mark Turgeon was hired in 2011. He was named first-team All-Big Ten by the coaches as a senior, and also spent time in the NBA G League with the Oklahoma City Blue.
Daxter Miles Jr., a former star at Archbishop Curley and Dunbar, was set to play with other West Virginia alums for Best Virginia, but the squad pulled out of the tournament Tuesday after one of its members tested positive for COVID-19. The team has been replaced by Playing for Jimmy V, which features former Gonzaga star Josh Perkins and 2018 Final Four standout Marques Townes.
The tournament was condensed from nine locations to one to limit the spread of coronavirus, and fans will not be permitted to attend games. The tournament said that “all participants will adhere to strict health and safety guidelines.”
“This is a safety-first event,” Jon Mugar, TBT’s founder and chief executive officer, said in a news release. “We’re disappointed for the Best Virginia players and fans that they won’t get an opportunity to compete in TBT 2020, and our thoughts are with the player for a speedy recovery.”
Jamel Artis, a Baltimore native who played in college at Pittsburgh, will compete for No. 23 seed Sideline Cancer alongside Indiana’s Maurice Creek and Central Michigan’s Marcus Keene. Artis spent time with the Orlando Magic in 2017 and is currently playing for French professional team Metropolitans 92.
Isaiah Miles, a former star at Milford Mill and Saint Joseph’s University who plays for Cholet of LNB Pro A, will be part of Team Hines, which reached the final four in its first year in the competition.