High-school basketball is pure and uncomplicated, free from pro ball's outrageous contracts or college coaches' locker-room readings of Nietzsche. Cheer on the innocence of youth with this GrouponLive deal to see the first session of the Chicago Elite Classic at the UIC Pavilion. For $13, you get one general-admission G-Pass (valid for 100- or 200-level seating) on Saturday, December 1, starting at 9 a.m. (up to a $27.01 value, including all fees). Doors open at 8:30 a.m. Because the ticket is a G-Pass, Groupon customers can use it to enter the venue directly; they will not need to redeem their Groupon at will call. The first session includes the following games:
- 9 a.m. – Wendell Phillips vs. De La Salle
- 11 a.m. – University High School vs. St. Vincent–St. Mary
- 12:45 p.m. – St. Joseph vs. Mater Dei
- 2:30 p.m. – Proviso East vs. Lone Peak
The Chicago Elite Classic brings together some of high-school basketball's brightest talent, splitting invites between top Illinois programs and schools from around the country. An intracity contest kicks off the weekend, as Chicago's Wendell Phillips takes on De La Salle, whose star shooting guard, Alvin Ellis—recently committed to Minnesota—looks to continue to improve his game after a bitter loss in 2012's regional title match, in which he scored a career-high 42 points. After running suicides down Interstate 90 all the way from Akron, Ohio, 2016 prospect Vincent King leads St. Vincent–St. Mary—LeBron James's alma mater—against U-High, whose own star forward, Keita Bates-Diop, Jr., dominates in the paint as one of the top juniors in the nation.
Later, the squad from Maywood's Proviso East hits the hardwood to take on Lone Peak, whose dominant program has captured four Utah state titles in the last six years. Proviso East's roster includes returning guards Sterling Brown and Paris Lee, whose on-court heroics garnered the team an undefeated 2011–12 record and their first postseason berth in 20 years. Led by legendary coach Gary McKnight—whose lifetime 926–83 record makes him the winningest coach in California history—Santa Ana's Mater Dei brings the heat against St. Joseph and 6'6" sophomore guard Paul Turner, whose imposing height eases dunks and complicates the team's annual submarine retreat.
Due to security restrictions, G-Passes must be printed out and presented in person at the event. They cannot be redeemed through Groupon's mobile app.