Posts Tagged ‘Florida’

Wizards’ Beal Caps Off Summer League, Eager To Pair Up With Wall

By Drew Packham,


LAS VEGAS — Bradley Beal was still smiling after his five games in Las Vegas, but hardly satisfied.

“It was fun and at the same time it was a learning process,” said Beal, who the Wizards took with the No. 3 pick in the 2012 Draft. “The working doesn’t stop. I always have to get better. I was happy, but I wasn’t happy with my performance.”

Beal had a solid but not spectacular Summer League, averaging 17.6 points and 4.6 rebounds while struggling at times with his shot, finishing at 41.7 percent from the floor. Beal averaged 30 minutes of action, giving the Wizards staff a long look at their shooting guard of the future.

“He’s got great composure,” coach Randy Wittman said. “You can’t tell if the kid scored 30 points or one point. He makes right decisions. He makes the extra pass if he doesn’t have it — almost sometimes too unselfish. But when you’ve got a guy with that character, a coach likes to have that.”

Wittman spoke highly of the Florida guard for his ability in the pick-and-roll and looks forward to seeing how he and point guard John Wall work together in the backcourt.

He’s not the only one.

“I think it will be great, honestly,” Beal said of playing with the Wall, who sat courtside for Tuesday’s game. “We just want to win. That’s our mentality. We want to try to make each other better every day. That’s what he wants, that’s what I want. I think our chemistry is already building. I really can’t wait to play alongside him.”

Beal showed off his ability to score in a variety of ways and seemed to improve in the pick-and-roll throughout the Wizards’ five games. Beal found success using the high screen, repeatedly knocking down the elbow jumper or continuing down the lane for the easy layup or dunk.

“I was pleasantly surprised to see him use pick and rolls,” Wittman said. “At Florida, he didn’t really play the pick-and-roll game much because he was playing small forward so we wanted to see that. I like what I saw.”

Beal says he’s looking forward to settling in to the D.C. area, and hopes to move in at least a month before training camp opens in the end of September.

“This was just a taste for him,” Wittman said. “You hope to see a guy get comfortable as the week goes on and I think he did. Now we’re going to be able to show him some things that we can work on so at camp he’ll have an idea of what to expect”



Draft Deal Based On Pursuit Of Beal?

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — We go through this in the days leading up to the NBA Draft every year. One college star always seems to generate buzz and you start hearing the rumors about teams falling over each other to trade up and get him.

Former Florida shooting guard Bradley Beal is that player this time around. The Cleveland Cavaliers are fans of the player some Draft pundits compare favorably to Ray Allen when he was just a teenager and rumored to be interested in doing whatever it takes to trade up by Thursday night to acquire that No. 2 pick so they can select Beal before someone else does.

The Bobcats currently own the No. 2 pick but, per Steve Kyler of HoopsWorld, they are considering all of their options:

Since landing the 2nd overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft Lottery the Charlotte Bobcats have made no secret of their desire to move down from the #2 spot and try to secure multiple assets in this draft in efforts to rebuild the team around a youth movement.

The Bobcats met with Kansas big man Thomas Robinson over the weekend and are debating their options with the #2.


Better late than never for Udonis, Miller

MIAMI — They are reunited again, playing for a championship, wondering how they can possibly beat Dirk Nowitzki when 11 years ago they couldn’t even beat Mateen Cleaves.

Mike Miller and Udonis Haslem were much younger, and definitely healthier, when they played for the University of Florida and lost to Cleaves and Michigan State in the 2000 NCAA title game. Right after that devastating defeat, they went their separate ways: Miller to the NBA as the No. 5 overall pick in the 2000 Draft by Orlando and Haslem on a basketball journey that began in Europe.

Last summer they were free agents, and it took some financial sacrifice by both to arrive here together.

“We talked about being teammates again at some point, joked about it, but never thought it would come about,” Haslem said. “Now, not only do I get to play for a championship, I get to play with one of my best friends.”

Just like at Florida, they find themselves playing important roles — in a sense, anyway. The Heat obviously are all about the Big Three. But it may take more than that to beat Dirk and Dallas. It may take something from Haslem and/or Miller, a pair of X-factors who spent much of the year in rehab.

“Strange, isn’t it?” said Haslem.