Since I've been going through the work of updating the pre-draft workout schedule, I decided I'd make it a daily feature. Therefore, here is the first edition - today's edition of the NBA Pre-Draft Workout Primer. If you have knowledge of any workouts that I'm unaware of (or any players that I'm missing), feel free to e-mail me at the address listed here. Since the majority of these workouts aren't made public knowledge, there may be more players involved in each - this is just a synopsis of the players I've been able to find out about.
Detroit Pistons - Darington Hobson, Sylven Landesberg and David Kool
Darington Hobson has been everywhere, man. Not quite as many places as Johnny Cash described in his song, but the linked Jeff Goodman story shows that he's been pretty much everywhere but Winnemuca - and he may have even visited there since he grew up in Las Vegas. The best thing I've read about the 6-foot-7 forward out of New Mexico was when ESPN's Chad Ford described him as a "poor man's Evan Turner," saying "he's played three positions on the floor, will get assists, rebounds and buckets and like Turner, isn't an off-the-charts athlete or shooter." Draft Express's Jonathan Givony isn't quite as high on the lefty, however, as he recently wrote that Hobson "ultimately may find more success in Europe where he could be extremely effective mismatch threat as a face-up combo forward, ala Kasib Powell." Count me in the Ford boat as Hobson's assist and rebounding rates both rank very well for a small forward prospect coming into the NBA.
Sylven Landesberg has the "knuckle head" red flag after deciding not to attend classes at Virginia during the second semester, though it seems that's just because he planned to go pro after the season regardless. As a versatile, play-making slasher with an improving jump shot and meddling defense, it's not terribly difficult to see what type of player the Pistons might be looking to draft with their second round pick. As the ACC Rookie of the Year his freshman season and a second team All-ACC selection this season, I have to assume the recently turned 20-year-old will be moving up the draft boards if he's able to somehow turn his skipping classes as a sophomore at Virginia into less of a red flag because the talent is there.
David Kool is not a made-up player - honest-to-goodness. In fact, he actually rang up almost every award imaginable as a senior at Western Michigan as he was named Mid-American Conference Player of the Year as well as garnering First Team All-MAC, Academic All-MAC, and AP All-America Honorable Mention awards. As the Bronco's de facto point guard, he led the conference in scoring at 20.9 points per game while also contributing four rebounds and 2.7 assists each game. He also earned an invite to the Portsmouth Invite, though that didn't go very hot as he reportedly couldn't touch the rim and missed seven straight three-pointers in one of his games. He'd finish the week averaging just six points, three boards and two steals hitting on just six of his 27 shot attempts (3-of-16 from beyond the arc). Go Local Guys!
After the jump I have a few more notes on workouts I've been able to find out about.
Oklahoma City Thunder - Trevor Booker
Trevor Booker is the only player that I could find who is working out for the Thunder today, though I assume there are others that will be in attendance as well. Booker is an undersized (listed at 6-foot-7), but aggressive and athletic power forward currently projected as an early-to-mid second round pick. While he was consistently a double-double threat throughout his four-year career at Clemson, his numbers across the board dropped this past season - scoring, rebounding, blocks and even shooting percentages - even though his minutes remained identical. While I don't know what to attribute this to (Clemson isn't a team I religiously follow), it isn't good that he regressed as he matured. Still, undersized power forwards always seem to do well if they show enough to get drafted and I assume this will be the case for Booker as well - especially since everyone will be buzzing about his motor on draft night.
San Antonio Spurs - Jeremy Wise, Dominique Jones (possibly)
Yesterday, the Spurs had two first-round wings workout in Xavier Henry and Paul George. Today, it looks like they'll be pitting a pair of second-roung combo-turned-point guards against each other with Jeremy Wise and Dominique Jones. While I'm not 100% certain that Jones' workout with the Spurs is today (all I could find was that it was sometime later this week), it would make sense that it would be today with Wise, an undersized-shooting-turned-point guard being the only confirmed player in attendance. I plan to interview Wise after this morning's workout so if there are any questions you're interested in, feel free to leave them in the comments.
Since I did brief bio's on each player for their workouts yesterday (Wise in Detroit, Jones in Washington), I'll copy and paste them just in case you're curious.
Jeremy Wise is the player I'm most familiar with as he played this past season with the Bakersfield Jam. A former undersized shooting guard out of Southern Miss, Wise transformed his game into that of a legitimate starting point guard in the NBA Development League. I'm not sure the comparison is fair, but I kept finding myself trying to compare him to Mike Taylor throughout the season - the only player to be drafted out of the D-League thus far. He's a great scorer, though a somewhat streaky shooter. As far as I'm concerned, I'd consider him an "improving" defender, though that wasn't his strong suit this season. After a season playing with and against NBA caliber athletes, I expect he'll be able to help himself in NBA workouts (and have heard he already has with a couple of teams).
Dominique Jones will be drafted either in the late-first or early-second round of next month's NBA Draft, a spot where the Wizards own two picks (Cleveland's first, the last pick of the first round, and their own second). As it stands, everyone from ESPN's David Thorpe and Chad Ford to Draft Express' Jonathan Givony has been raving about his stock rising or how big of a steal he'll be whenever a team drafts him. I haven't watched him play enough to give an accurate scouting report, but Jonathan Givony had a pretty good one-sentence breakdown that seems to echo everyone's feelings when he said "Jones is a physically imposing 6-4 combo guard with an NBA-ready frame, an excellent wingspan and the aggressive mentality to take advantage of it."