Anthony Mason Jr. was off to a pretty good rookie season in the D-League last year, averaging 15.1 points and 8.2 rebounds while shooting better than 50 percent from the field in 15 games for the Sioux Falls Skyforce. Unfortunately, however, Mason Jr.'s season was ended in early January due to a torn labrum in his shoulder.
Mason Jr., the son of former NBA wide-body Anthony Mason, has been rehabbing at IMG Academies with hopes of returning to form for the upcoming NBA Development League season. First, though, he'll head to Tulsa next weekend to attend a training camp for Team USA's entry in the upcoming Pan-Am Games.
According to a recent post on IMG's blog, it sounds like Mason Jr. is going to be more than ready for the year ahead.
"As soon as the doctor cleared me, I jumped in the car and drove (to IMG Academies) from Memphis," Mason Jr. said. "I'm going on five weeks here now. (IMG Academies) cares about the athlete. They care for your body. They're watching everything. They won't let you hurt yourself. They only make you improve."
As he works on his speed and "explosive power" with Performance Specialist Steffen Visk and endures two-a-days on the court to sharpen his ball-handling, shooting and developing a more efficient game with Dan Barto (Head Trainer of the IMG Basketball Academy), Mason keeps the faith that all of the hours will result in an NBA roster spot.
Mason Jr. and Greg Stiemsma should make for a pretty good nucleus in Sioux Falls this season -- especially considering his workout routine down at IMG seems to be serious.