There's been a lot of guys that have come through the USAC practice court. By my count, that's a total of 31, in fact. Here's the full list.
Today's group included a french point guard, relatively unknown power forward with huge wing span and massive hands and one Jon Scheyer, formerly of Duke Unversity. Oh, and another freakish athlete in Marquez Haynes.
Suns Director of Player Personnel Todd Quinter talked about what the Suns hope to find in this draft.
"We really believe that at 46, with the way this draft is set up, that we can get a player that could make our team, possibly and actually maybe contribute a little bit. Obviously, with free agency the way it is, it depends on the position and if we can get all our guys back, there wouldn't be quite as big a need for another player."
Best player vs. positional need?
"I don't know that you can ever say one or the other. I think when the time comes, we're going to have to look how good of a player the guy is to maybe the position we're looking for to see which way we want to go. At 46, that's what we're going to have to do."
Why work out so many players?
"I think when you have this pick, so many things can happen that you have to bring in a lot of players to look at and that's pretty much what we've done, trying to cover all of our bases. And we also went to the camp in Minnesota, which had 48 players, so we were able to see a lot of the guys there."
Thomas Huertel, 6' 2", PG, France
Described as a pure point guard with flashy skills and a good assist-to-turnover ratio. If he should fall to the Suns, he's a good candidate to stash overseas. Partly for that reason, Huertel's stock is rising and he's listed on mock drafts ahead of the Suns at 60.
Suns saw him at Eurocamp in Treviso three weeks ago and thought he was going to pull his name from the draft, but he stayed in.
A quite solid ball handler with good passing skills, he was the one in charge of organizing things on offense and controlling the game’s rhythm. He has decent size for his position to go along with decent athleticism, quickness and overall speed. He also shows to be also a more than reasonable shooter, as he sports good range, nice lift and a pretty quick release, enabling him to create his own shot off the dribble too. Sometimes he tends to get carried away with his shot selection, in the many run and gun plays of his team. He can also slash to the basket, making use of a great cross-over to change his rhythm and surpass his defender. And last but not least he’s also very active defensively, intense and aware on the weak side to help.
Dwayne Collins, 6, 8", PF, Miami
According to Chad Ford, Collins has the largest differential between wingspan (7' 4") and height. He also has the largest hands I've ever personally seen. Bigger than Amare's and probably as big as Shaq's. He said they measure roughly 10 inches from thumb to pinky and about about 9.5 from palm to tip of middle finger. His standing reach is 9' 1.5". For comparison, DeJuan Blair's standing reach is 8' 10.5" and Lou Amundson is 8' 7.5".
Todd Quinter calls him a physical paint player, a good rebounder and post defender with underdeveloped offensive skills. He loves to attack the rim and dunk the ball. He sees himself as a Ben Wallace-type player who takes pride in defense and rebounding, though there are some questions about his motor.
Collins had his knee scoped on June 18th to repair a slightly torn meniscus. He thinks he will be ready to play in the latter part of Vegas Summer League (mid-July). He was in Phoenix for interviews and meet-and-greets. Before having his knee scoped, he worked out for New Jersey, New York, Miami, and Oklahoma and expects to be drafted in the middle of the second round.
At 6’8 with a chiseled 232-pound frame, Collins has adequate height for an NBA power forward, but is severely undersized for his natural position of center. He is able to compensate somewhat with a tremendous wingspan (rumored to be 7’3), terrific frame and solid athleticism. Though he does not possess elite explosiveness or quickness, he is clearly above average and has the length and aggressiveness to compete at the next level.
On the offensive end, Collins has progressed slowly throughout his time at Miami, even if he still has a raw post game. He shows average footwork but looks more comfortable receiving the ball with his back to the basket these days, able to resort to a drop-step, a variety of hook shots, and even, at times, a turnaround jump shot. He is shooting a spectacular 60.4% from the field, which ranks him tenth among prospects in our database. This is indicative of the excellent position he’s often able to establish around the basket, as well as his very good finishing ability. Similarly, he continues to get to the line at a nice rate, averaging 8.9 free throw attempts per 40 minutes pace adjusted and ranking in the top 20 of our database in free throw attempts per possession, even if he shoots just 56.9% from the line.
Jon Scheyer, 6' 6", PG/SG, Duke
With a wing span of only 6' 3" and considered not strong or athletic enough to defend NBA shooting guards, Scheyer will be banking on his Duke championship pedigree, shot-making and high basketball IQ to get drafted. He's compared to a combo guard like Jeff Hornacek, who was also a second round (46th) pick. Scheyer has skills and knows how to play, but has to adjust to the speed of the NBA and improve his shooting.
Scheyer said he won't watch the draft, but is having some friends and family over to celebrate his year and thinks he will go in the late 1st to middle 2nd round.
Strengths: Real tough competitor, Jon is your typical productive, ultra-efficient Duke guard ... High basketball IQ, can play the 1 or the 2 in college, but will need to work at playing the 1 to prepare for the next level ... Has a great outside stroke with the ability to spot up from 3, as well as pull up from 3 ... Strong mid-range game, very comfortable shooting off the dribble... uses picks well on and off the ball ...
Weaknesses: He's simply not strong enough ... at 6'5, 180lbs, he would get pushed around guarding NBA 2guards, and he's not quick enough to guard NBA point guards ... Lacks athleticism, explosiveness and does not have that quick first step that NBA point guards need ... His lack of upper body strength and poor leaping ability will really hurt when trying to finish in traffic in the pros ... His below average first step will prevent him from getting the open looks he sees in college, as well as potentially hurt his ability to get over screens defensively when you combine it with his lack of strength ... You wouldn't call him a pure 3 point specialist, he's not a pure point guard, and he's just not built enough to be a pure 2-guard, so it's obvious that he lacks a true position at the next level ...
Marquez Haynes, 6' 2", PG, Texas Arlington
Super athlete with 41" vertical, he played with Jared Dudley at Boston College and then transfered to Texas Arlington to get more floor time and showcase his offense. Haynes is compared to an Aaron Brooks-type of scoring point guard, but was known for his defense in Boston.
A quality role player for the Eagles in his two seasons in the ACC, the 6-3 guard wasn’t valued for his offensive contributions as much as he was his propensity for shutting down opposing players. But while defense was his ticket to playing time in Chestnut Hill, Haynes had aspirations of playing in the NBA, and knew he wasn’t going to turn any heads as a specialist coming off the bench. In the spring of 2007, the Texas native decided it was time for a change.
Putting the ball in the basket may be an understatement of his ability with a basketball. Now a senior at the University of Texas at Arlington, Haynes ranks second in the nation in scoring as of Wednesday, averaging a box score busting and highly efficient 24.7 points, while often times serving as the Mavericks first and second scoring option.