I have been at work a lot during the original broadcast of these games, so I have to watch them on my dvr and sit and breakdown the action. I will go from team to team and give you names of players who have caught my eye and why…..good or bad.
Jrue Holiday- Has been the best player on the court in all 3 games the Sixers have played. Took the momentum from the end of the season and has carried it over into the summer league. Can get anywhere he wants on the court, finishes well with both hands, and is a hound on defense. 5 years from now people will be saying he was the steal of the draft.
Jodie Meeks- I knew he was a knockdown shooter from deep, but I am also impressed with his ability to hit little runners and floaters in the lane. He is also a better defender than I thought also.
Trent Plaisted- Come on your 6’11 and had a total of 2 rebounds in 46 minutes of play over two games…..get your passport ready buddy. Europe it is for you.
Evan Turner-For not playing any 5 on 5 ball in over 90 days Turner hasn’t looked too bad. He’s getting accustomed to playing off the ball while being on the court with Holiday. He rebounds, makes good decisions with the ball, and defends. Once he gets his legs back the jumper will come back.
Cedric Simmons- Was a first round draft pick of the Hornets (15th overall) in the 2006 draft. Came out of college after his sophomore season at North Carolina State. Very long and active, a good finisher at the rim, and is good on the offensive boards. Has a outside chance to make the team.
New Jersey Nets
Terrence Williams- Not only a hell of an athlete, but a nice all around player as well. Facilitates his teams offense well, often driving to the hoop and kicking out to open jump shooters or players cutting to the hoop. His jumper his better then it was during the past season also. He uses his supreme athleticism to be a great one on one defender.
Derrick Favors-Has as much upside as any player I’ve seen in a while. 6’10 246lbs already and hasn’t turned 19 yet. Watched him make a jump hook with both hands, face up put the ball on the floor and get to the basket, and hit the 15 foot jump shot. Sky is the limit for this kid. He rebounds his position and defends as well.
Damien James-Is going to have a long career in this league. A glue guy- he defends, rebounds, and plays hard. His jumper is getting better also.
Luke Harangody-Not the best athlete, but has a high basketball IQ and knows how to play the game. He should take Brian Scalabrine’s roster spot this season. He has been rebounding the ball well and hitting the jumper off of the pick and roll. Has range out to the 3 point line as well.
Oliver Lafayette-Has been doing well running the offense and creating shots for himself and others. Is a good on ball defender as well. Has an outside chance of making the Celtics roster. If not he will get some looks from other teams.
Art Parakhouski- Led the NCAA in rebounding and one thing that transfers from college to the pros is the ability to rebound. Has been playing sound defense in the post, and even showed the ability to hit the 15 foot jump shot.
Daniel Orton- Has played brutal so far. I knew his offensive game wasn’t polished, so I’m not suprised that he looks lost on offense. But him 1.7 rpg is a flat out joke from someone with his size and ability. The good thing he has going for him is Patrick Ewing is on the staff with Orlando and he will go against Dwight Howard everyday in practice.
Pat Ewing Jr.-All I can say is wow, He has really worked on his overall game. His jumper has improved, he is creating off the dribble more, and you can just see the confidence in his game.
Byron Mullens-Is a young promising 7 footer out of Ohio State. Has a impressive offensive game, using his ability to hit the 15-20 ft jumper to set up his drives to the basket. I would like to see him post up more often, be more consistent defensively, and on the boards.
Mustafa Shukur-Has been playing really well, not turning the ball over and hitting the jump shot on a consistent basis. Uses his size and length to his advantage on the defensive end. Has really made strides as pro point guard over the last 2 years. Will end up on a NBA roster this season.
Derrick Brown-Very athletic and explosive player. Is a bit of a tweener though, will spend time playing 3 and some 4. Showed the ability to hit the mid range jump shot, setting up his drives to the basket. Should be a rotation player for the Bobcats this season.
Gerald Henderson Jr.- Has really worked on his offensive game since the end of the season. Has been hitting the jump shot out to the 3 point line consistently, shoot the ball well coming off of picks and off the dribble. He’s a great on ball defender which should get him minutes in the rotation this season.
Sherron Collins- Needs to get in better shape if he plans on playing in the NBA. His problems staying in front of guards compounds the fact that he’s very undersized for the league. Exploded for 32 points in the Bobcats final game of the week, showing his ability to score the basketball when hot. But he needs to show that he can run a team, get in shape, play defense, and take care of the ball if he plans on playing in the NBA.
Paul George- Is soo athletic he kind of looks like he isn’t trying out there sometimes. Has been knocking down the 3 point shot with ease, and shown the ability to create of the dribble also. Needs to put forth more effort on defense, with his length at 6’9 he could really be a great defender on ball and in passing lanes.
Lance Stevenson- As I told many people, his game is more fit for the NBA game and it has shown. The Pacers are trying him at the point to see how he does, I see him as a combo guard in the Jamal Crawford mode in the league. One thing is for sure “Born Ready” can flat out score the ball from pretty much anywhere on the court and has been doing well creating for others.
Magnum Rolle- Has came along way from the 6’11 190 lb freshman I seen at LSU. After transferring the La. Tech, Rolle has put on good weight (225lbs) and has really blossomed into a nice pro prospect. He showed the ability to hit the jump shot out to 18 feet , face up game from the triple threat, and post up a bit. His calling in this league will be his ability to defend and hit open jump shots (ie. Robert Horry). He has a shot at being a good role player in this league for a long time. It’s up to him to put in the work.
Sundiata Gaines- Showed why he was a D-League call up for the Jazz this season. Runs the team well, doesn’t turn the ball over, and gets in the lane to create for himself or his teammates. Needs to work on his free throw shooting though. Shot about 50% for the week.
Gordon Heyward- Showed an high basketball IQ, letting the game come to him and not forcing the action. Showed good footwork on defense, and rebounds the ball well also.
Kosta Koufos- Is starting to develop and understands what his roll will be in this league. Has good skills on the offensive end of the court, hitting the elbow jumper with regularity and showing good post moves occasionally. Rebounded the ball well(7.3 rpg in 23 minutes per game). With Carlos Boozer leaving via free agency and Memhet Okur coming off Achilles Tendon surgery, Koufos will be depended on heavily this season.