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Jordan Brand Classic Scrimmage (Day Two)
by: Jonathan Givony - President, Joseph Treutlein - Director of Scouting/Analytics
April 19, 2008
We had a chance to evaluate the two teams in action in a semi-competitive 40 minute scrimmage with a running clock. The players played somewhat (but definitely not extremely) hard for the most part, and it gave us a good opportunity to take another look at their physical tools and basic skill-level. Kevin Durant was sitting on one of the benches, Worldwide Wes was just a few feet away in the bleachers, and a few agents and Nike marketing people made up the very sparse crowd.

Jonathan Givony

For the Blue team, the center of attention as always revolved around the flamboyant presence of their point guard Brandon Jennings. He dominated the ball for every minute that he was on the floor, pounding it excessively during certain stretches and making phenomenal plays in others, showcasing his outstanding athleticism and talent level, but also making some of the people in attendance grumble about his somewhat selfish style of play.

Quick shots early in possessions, a little mano a mano with the pesky Kemba Walker (who went right at him), and some incredible flurries of imagination all typified the high-usage, high-octane play of Jennings. He was awesome splitting the defense and finding cutters with his lightning quick bounce passes, incredibly flashy with his ball-handling skills, and also played absolutely zero defense on the other end of the floor.

The problem with Jennings is that he seems more concerned with looking good than playing winning basketball. This is not something that we came up with from watching him in the all-star game setting, but also very much evident when we went out to watch him play with Oak Hill back in December. He only seems interested in passing the ball if he will definitely get an assist, which causes a lot of standing around from his teammates and probably doesnít make him the most fun guy to play with. Itís way too early to make any definitive conclusions about how he will turn out, but Lute Olsen and Arizona will most certainly have work to do regarding the way he runs a team, because itís just not a style that is conducive to winning games, despite the incredible amount of talent that Jennings possesses.

Amongst the wing players, possibly the most impressive of the bunch today was Malcolm Lee, a super-long armed athlete who brings tons of versatility to the table as well with his defense, unselfishness, playmaking skills and transition play. He got in the passing lanes on a few occasions and didnít have a problem giving the ball up, while also knocking down a couple of not-so-pretty looking spot-up 3-pointers. He looks to us like a shorter version of Corey Brewer, lanky frame and all.

Wesley Witherspoon did much of the same, playing strong defense, taking the ball coast to coast nicely on another occasion, looking smart and athletic and probably much better than the recruiting services are giving him credit for. He is ranked as the 56th best prospect in his class by both Scout and Rivals, and #72 by ESPN, but has a bigger upside than a lot of guys slotted ahead of him. The main thing he needs to work on from what we could tell is his jump-shotóhe shoots the ball on the way down and generally has questionable mechanics. He was getting the full-court press from Worldwide Wes (probably recruiting for Memphis) at the end of the game, and also mentioned to us yesterday that recent Memphis signee Tyreke Evans has also had some words of advice for him.

For the second straight day, there was very little to see out of Demar DeRozan, which is disappointing considering how well he played at the Nike Hoop Summit. He hit one 3-pointer and had another finish in transition, but besides that did very little in the half-court, looking fairly passive throughout.

Greg Monroe again dropped some awesome glimpses of potential from the perimeter, knocking down two 3-pointers and making an incredible pivot move from the high post where and drained a spinning and extremely fluid turnaround jumper from the elbow. There are very few 6-10 players in college basketball right who can execute such an advanced move. Defensively and on the glass he offered very little, getting outhustled inside and showing very little intensity.

Joseph Treutlein

On the Red/White Team, Tyreke Evans was the story once again, as he continues to show just how talented and versatile a player he is, and how his game is absolutely tailor made for the Memphis system. He ran the point for his team once again when he was on the floor, driving and dishing, setting up teammates, and showing his ability to penetrate to the basket, change directions, and move the ball from one hand to another while in mid air, making him an exceptional finish at the rim. He also hit one pull-up three-pointer, with his strange but effective mechanics, though he didnít hit on his other attempts from deep.


Kemba Walker is one player we noticed the previous day but didnít receive a write-up, as he just never really got going with his own offense, playing more of a facilitator role in the intrasquad scrimmage. That was not the case at all in the intersquad scrimmage, as he was probably the gameís leading scorer, doing it in a very flash-free, efficient manner. He hit an incredible 5-for-5 on his three-pointers, including one straight pull-up and two pull-ups off crossover dribbles. He set up open shooters on his team, showed some nice misdirection abilities on passes, and made good decisions overall, running his teamís offense. Itíll be interesting to see where he fits in UConnís point guard rotation, but he looks like someone who could make an impact immediately if given the opportunity.

After missing the first day of practice, Samardo Samuels arrived today, and it was hard not to notice, given how assertive he was on the floor, calling for the ball on every possession and showing no hesitancy to dribble the ball excessively when he got it. His dribble doesnít look that great, and itíll be interesting to see how his face-up game translates to the college setting where real defense is played, but it worked here, as he had some nice drives finishing with right-handed lay-ups. In the post, he established dominant position frequently and often dropstepped for easy buckets or got to the free-throw line, though his not so great explosiveness and athleticism in general stood out on occasion, with him getting his shot blocked twice, once by a wing rotating over. With his dominant strength and assertiveness, he is someone who could also make an impact fairly quickly in the college game.

Al-Farouq Aminu also showed up for his first action today, though wasnít nearly as impactful as Samuels, not really getting into a rhythm, something that can be hard for bigs in this setting If they donít really demand the ball, as we saw many of them generally blend into the background in this game on both teams (Michael Dunigan, JaMychal Green, B.J. Mullens). That said, Aminu did show some nice flashes with a pumk-fake and 1 finish at the basket and a nice drive with his left hand where he showed very good body control to adjust and finish with his right hand.

Iman Shumpert continued to play his relatively quiet, but efficient style of basketball, never forcing the issue, but doing well when he picked his spots, finishing at the rim with a nice left-handed lay-up, showing some nice passing ability hitting a cutter off a crossover dribble, hitting a three-pointer with his nice mechanics, which are among the better here, and showing off his athleticism on an alley-oop dunk in the last minute the game when the scrimmage boiled down to a glorified dunk contest.

Devin Ebanks played a much more controlled game here today, not relying too much on his developing ball-handling and generally taking high efficiency shots, helping his team in multiple ways, slashing to the basket, finishing with both hands, getting out in transition, and hitting two very nice three-pointers, both pull-ups, with one coming on a stepback. His shot looks a lot smoother when he has the operating room and isnít pulling up off a fancy, unnecessary crossover, and it was nice to see him make that adjustment here today. He wasnít as noticeable over the course of the game, not being his teamís center of attention, but he still had at least 14 points, near tops in the game, while not forcing the issue at all, possibly not even missing a shot by our charting. Wherever he decides to go, he should have an immediate impact, and in a very good way if he plays the way he did here.

Lastly, Tony Woods again showed some very nice flashes of ability, and is starting to look like one of the more intriguing players in this class, with his size, athleticism, and developing coordination along with post-up and face-up skills. His moves arenít always especially fast at this point, and his reflexes arenít great, but he occasionally gets into a zone where his instincts kick in, and he pulls off an incredible dropstep spin move with an athletic extension on the other side of the rim for a finish. He also showed some nice shot fakes in the post, and got out in transition to finish on some explosive dunks.
 


Feedback for this article may be sent to jonathan@draftexpress.com joe@draftexpress.com .

 

Kevin Durant
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 10"
Weight: 215 lbs.
Birthday: 09/29/1988
25 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Montrose Christian
Previous Team: Texas , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #2 in 2007 Draft
by the SuperSonics
Positions:
Current: SF/PF,
NBA: SF/PF,
Possible: PF
Quick Stats:
32.0 Pts, 7.4 Rebs, 5.5 Asts


Brandon Jennings
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 1"
Weight: 169 lbs.
Birthday: 09/23/1989
24 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Oak Hill Academy
Previous Team: Roma , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #10 in 2009 Draft
by the Bucks
Positions:
Current: PG,
NBA: PG,
Possible: PG
Quick Stats:
15.0 Pts, 3.0 Rebs, 3.0 Asts


Kemba Walker
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 1"
Weight: 184 lbs.
Birthday: 05/08/1990
23 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Rice
Previous Team: Connecticut , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #9 in 2011 Draft
by the Bobcats
Positions:
Current: PG,
NBA: PG,
Possible: PG
Quick Stats:
17.7 Pts, 4.2 Rebs, 6.1 Asts


Malcolm Lee
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 5"
Weight: 198 lbs.
Birthday: 05/22/1990
23 Years Old
Teams:
High School: John W. North
Previous Team: UCLA , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 2, Pick #13 in 2011 Draft
by the Bulls
Positions:
Current: SG,
NBA: SG,
Possible: SG
Quick Stats:
Pts, Rebs, Asts


Corey Brewer
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 8"
Weight: 185 lbs.
Birthday: 03/05/1986
28 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Portland
Previous Team: Florida , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #7 in 2007 Draft
by the Timberwolves
Positions:
Current: SF,
NBA: SF,
Possible: SG/SF
Quick Stats:
8.5 Pts, 2.2 Rebs, 1.3 Asts


Wesley Witherspoon
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 9"
Weight: 212 lbs.
Birthday: 01/27/1990
24 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Berkmar
Previous Team: Memphis , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: SF,
NBA: SF,
Possible: SF
Quick Stats:
9.6 Pts, 3.4 Rebs, 1.1 Asts


Tyreke Evans
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 5"
Weight: 221 lbs.
Birthday: 09/19/1989
24 Years Old
Teams:
High School: American Christian Academy
Previous Team: Memphis , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #4 in 2009 Draft
by the Kings
Positions:
Current: PG/SG,
NBA: PG/SG,
Possible:
Quick Stats:
6.5 Pts, 3.0 Rebs, 2.0 Asts


Demar DeRozan
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 6"
Weight: 211 lbs.
Birthday: 08/07/1989
24 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Compton
Previous Team: USC , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #9 in 2009 Draft
by the Raptors
Positions:
Current: SG/SF,
NBA: SG/SF,
Possible: SG/SF
Quick Stats:
22.7 Pts, 4.3 Rebs, 4.0 Asts


Greg Monroe
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 11"
Weight: 247 lbs.
Birthday: 06/04/1990
23 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Helen Cox
Previous Team: Georgetown , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #7 in 2010 Draft
by the Pistons
Positions:
Current: PF/C,
NBA: PF/C,
Possible: C
Quick Stats:
15.2 Pts, 9.3 Rebs, 2.1 Asts


Samardo Samuels
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 8"
Weight: 240 lbs.
Birthday: 01/09/1989
25 Years Old
Teams:
High School: St. Benedict Prep
Previous Team: Louisville , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PF/C,
NBA: PF,
Possible: PF
Quick Stats:
9.9 Pts, 4.5 Rebs, 0.7 Asts


Al-Farouq Aminu
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 8"
Weight: 216 lbs.
Birthday: 09/21/1990
23 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Norcross
Previous Team: Wake Forest , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #8 in 2010 Draft
by the Clippers
Positions:
Current: SF/PF,
NBA: SF/PF,
Possible: SF/PF
Quick Stats:
7.2 Pts, 6.2 Rebs, 1.4 Asts


Michael Dunigan
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 10"
Weight: 238 lbs.
Birthday: 07/02/1989
24 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Farragut Academy
Previous Team: Kalev , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: C,
NBA: C,
Possible: C
Quick Stats:
9.8 Pts, 4.0 Rebs, 1.5 Asts


JaMychal Green
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 9"
Weight: 217 lbs.
Birthday: 06/21/1990
23 Years Old
Teams:
High School: St. Jude
Previous Team: Roanne , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: PF/C,
NBA: PF,
Possible: PF
Quick Stats:
0.0 Pts, 3.0 Rebs, 0.0 Asts




Iman Shumpert
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 5"
Weight: 222 lbs.
Birthday: 06/26/1990
23 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Oak Park
Previous Team: Georgia Tech , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 1, Pick #17 in 2011 Draft
by the Knicks
Positions:
Current: PG/SG,
NBA: PG/SG,
Possible: PG/SG
Quick Stats:
6.7 Pts, 4.2 Rebs, 1.7 Asts


Devin Ebanks
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 8"
Weight: 208 lbs.
Birthday: 10/28/1989
24 Years Old
Teams:
High School: St. Thomas More
Previous Team: West Virginia , PRO
Drafted: Rnd 2, Pick #13 in 2010 Draft
by the Lakers
Positions:
Current: SF/PF,
NBA: SF/PF,
Possible: SF
Quick Stats:
24.1 Pts, 8.9 Rebs, 2.5 Asts


Tony Woods
Full Profile | Player Stats
Physicals
Height: 6' 11"
Weight: 239 lbs.
Birthday: 01/24/1990
24 Years Old
Teams:
High School: Rome
Previous Team: Oregon , PRO
Drafted: Undrafted in Draft
Positions:
Current: C,
NBA: C,
Possible: C
Quick Stats:
6.6 Pts, 4.6 Rebs, 0.2 Asts


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