|Wednesday, July 9
Players feeling it at ABCD Camp
By David Benezra and Mark Mayemura
Special to ESPN.com
HACKENSACK, N.J. -- Heading to Farleigh Dickinson, the site that adidas always uses for ABCD, is always exciting. You feel the rush just walking in on Tuesday. The passion for the game is bouncing off the walls here. ABCD is a festival. Who's playing next? The Bonedaddies or Sebastian Telfair? You can feel IT here. IT is basketball.
There is noise in the stands here. Unlike the Nike Camp which sounds like a funeral procession is taking place. If there is a funeral happening at ABCD, it's a New Orleans style one.
For the most part, New York kids opened up very tight. Every time a talented NY prospect is playing, camp alumni and other players, along with fans, all of them New Yorkers are around. That wasn't the case for Top 100 6-1 senior Josh Wright from Utica. The New York crowd went nuts for close to five minutes after he threw down a sweet slam. People were falling out of the stands after he vaulted above an astounded opponent.
Absolutely wild. Summertime wild. Those moments bring back feeling and make you realize why summer basketball is where the fun is.
Livingston, who was outstanding in Virginia at the NBA Player's Camp, was lackluster here. We call Livingston "Maestro" for the way he runs a team -- and that he did, as always. However, his squad needed him to stand up and take over a little more and that he did not do.
Washington has received criticism in the past for not even resembling a point guard, but he showed that he has been working on more than his physical skills. Washington, who played under control and ran the team well, exhibited an improved jumper.
He and Livingston actually played it too close to the vest as their wasn't much pizazz to this encounter. In the open court Washington did use a hesitation and go to freeze Livingston and go past him. Livingston is not a great athlete and all of the smaller, quicker guards tend to give him trouble. Washington is arguably the fastest guard out there and he did a good job of staying in front of him, although Washington seemed to play under a self-contained wrap.
Edge to Washington.
Sebastian Telfair vs. Jason Horton
Horton, who was disappointing in Virginia, continued to struggle with decisions on penetration moves and in the open court, but was not afraid of Telfair and did his best to stay in front of him. Telfair was looking to work more on his skills of running a team, but did show that he was capable of taking Horton whenever he wanted.
Telfair was noticeably more muscular, particularly in the chest and arms. His jumper looked better than ever and his repertoire of different speeds would qualify him to be a lead driver for Team Ferrari.
Decision to Telfair.
Arron Afflalo vs. Albert Weber
Weber can not only handle, but he has shakes. That means that he is a true combo as he is very strong with the ball and can create his own shot anytime. Afflalo gave it his best shot but Weber ran wild on offense, displaying his touch off the glass, his shooting range and his ability to finish in traffic. Afflalo looked good offensively also, but he doesn't possess Weber's dribbling skills. Afflalo is a very physical guard who gets a step and punishes defenders as he will create contact.
This was the best contest so far. Both players showed their talent.
Edge to Weber.
David McClure vs. Joe McCray
McClure showed why he will be a good fit at Duke. He's a good athlete, heady, plays hard at both ends of the floor and can shoot the ball. He also makes few mistakes and doesn't force the action. However, he was dominated by McCray.
McCray is an excellent three-point shooter from deep and he creates jump shots for himself. He has a strong handle and a very good frame. McCray can just flat out score. He's a strong Top 100 player and is another in what is a very deep group of excellent wing players.
Decision to McCray.
David Benezra and Mark Mayemura of Recruiting USA cover the national college basketball recruiting scene. E-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 818-363-1978.