As has been the theme all week long in Chicago, it was the workouts that created the buzz.
But this time, the buzz rang flat as Tiago Splitter sent the NBA a clear message that this may not be his time. During a workout that was as underwhelming as could be, Splitter underachieved in an unfortunate way. He missed free throw after free throw, looked tired and winded and did not allow himself to muster any dominance when pitted against local draft hopeful Brandon Bender.
Back at Moody Bible, the first game of the day produced a few pleasant performances, but no players standing out and impressing the NBA teams in attendance. Team 3 took the better of Team 2 79-75 behind Brandon Bass and his 14 points. Team 2 was led by the 12 points of Arthur Johnson and Andre Emmett.
In the first of the evening games, Jackie Butler became the first 2004 camp player to record two double-doubles, but his 10 points and 12 rebounds weren't enough as Team 6 prevailed over team 1 88-84 behind Tony Allen’s 15 point effort. Luis Flores chipped in with 12 points and 6 assists.
In the nightcap, Team 5 beat Team 4 76-68 to earn the distinction of being the only undefeated squad in the camp. Damien Wilkins scored 20 points and snared 8 rebounds while Ales Chen added some serious support – totaling 8 points, 7 rebounds and 2 blocks. Team 4 was led by Tom Timmermans' 12 points.
No all-camp team is ever named, but based on a variety of NBA opinions, some of the camps best performances came from Ales Chan, who came here with little notoriety and less chance to be drafted and leaves as a solid second-round candidate, Jackie Butler – who played perhaps the most consistent of anyone – and Jackson Vroman, who simply is always around the ball, scoring, defending and running the floor with reckless abandon.
With the camp now over, look for a recap and capsule summary of the players who were here.
George Rodecker is in his twelfth season of providing expert analysis on the NBA Draft. He has been diligent in pursuing analysis by acquiring the consensus opinions of experts. Rodecker also writes for Basketball Times, Eastern Basketball and College Hoops Insider, as well as consulting privately with several pro teams and leagues around the globe
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