University of South Carolina guard AJ Lawson announced …

University of South Carolina guard AJ Lawson announced on Wednesday that he will withdraw from the NBA Draft and return to Carolina, where he enters his junior season in the Garnet and Black. Lawson averaged a team-high 13.4 points and 3.7 rebounds per game last season.

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Frank Martin stands with A.J. Lawson in staying in the NBA Draft at this point in time. “There’s no need to rush. He’s had probably six or seven interviews with NBA teams, which is what they’re all doing right now,” Martin said. “As long as NBA teams are offering interviews, I don’t see any reason why he should try to make a decision sooner than he has to. If no NBA team was asking to meet with him, I would think he’d make a decision by now.”
South Carolina’s A.J. Lawson is still in the NBA Draft, despite reports to the contrary. “He’s still in the draft,” Lawson’s father, Anthony, told ZAGSBLOG on Tuesday.
South Carolina men’s basketball coach Frank Martin said he expected top scorer A.J. Lawson back on campus at the end of June. And a report from CBS Sports college basketball insider Jon Rothstein made it appear the talented rising junior was fully headed back to USC and out of the NBA Draft. But on Tuesday morning, Lawson’s father told The State the report was “not accurate” and the family never spoke to anyone about his decision.
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January 25, 2021 | 8:49 am EST Update

Jared Sullinger wants back in the NBA

Sullinger is not ready to call it a career and is looking to make an NBA comeback. “I’m definitely trying to get back to the NBA,” he said. “I feel like I’ve still got a lot of basketball left, I can help a team, I feel like me being not the biggest guy but still strong enough to guard a five and be able to stretch the floor, I’m in better shape.”
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The 6’9″ Sullinger still has the same agent he had years ago, David Falk, and is committed to going any route he has to take in his pathway back to the NBA, such as playing in the G-League, and as of today, he says he feels “amazing,” and this is the best he has ever felt health-wise. “I’m just looking for somebody to give me an opportunity,” Sullinger said. “If I get the opportunity, I promise I will seize the moment at that moment.”

Bradley Beal frustrated

He, somehow, found his way to 31 points in 32 minutes. “It’s nice to have a gym in your house, that helps,” Brooks joked. But Beal didn’t seem to see the humor. Not that he was upset with Brooks or even heard the joke (Brooks said that before the game), but Beal’s postgame press conference was full of sighs and long stares and clear demarcations of frustration. “It’s not like we’re giving in or giving up, it’s just frustration, individual frustration or team frustration,” he said. “We’ve got to look ourselves in the mirror and we’ve got to be better.”
For Hunter, those opportunities can come when opposing defenses are keyed in on Young. Hunter’s offensive rise benefits himself and Young as there’s now another threat on the floor that the opposition has to prepare for nightly, which is something coach Lloyd Pierce has taken notice of. “It’s added confidence for him but added confidence in all of us to see that we can play through him,” Pierce said. “He’s deserving of having sets called for him and putting the ball in his hands, whether it’s in the post or in the pick-and-roll. I think guys are going to start looking for him more. He’s shooting the ball with confidence. He’s shooting it with rhythm. He’s proven that he can be a scoring option for us. It’s just good to see guys step up throughout the year, especially when some of our other guys are out.”
“A lot of guys want to be All-Stars. A lot of guys want to do this. That’s a fact,” Simplis said. “De’Andre is actually getting the opportunity. A lot of guys have to go through adversity. Some guys are in situations that aren’t maximizing their skillset. He went from 12 (points) a game last year to (19.6) this year. I think in Atlanta’s system with their young nucleus, they’re going to be in the playoff hunt for years to come. Atlanta is going to have a lot of visibility on them. I think he can be one of their Big 3. In today’s NBA, if you’re one of the Big 3 (on a team) and your team is winning, there’s a chance you’ll get an All-Star nod. He’s in a good place. On top of that, you have the size, the length, the athleticism, the business approach and the work ethic. All of these guys have the work ethic. But I think he’s in the right situation to be an All-Star. His job is to get better and evolve.”
The Knicks, who had been the league’s best defensive team, allowed the Blazers 70 points in the first half as they fell behind by 20 points. The Knicks looked mentally and physically worn down during that 70-50 half. Quickley admitted Portland’s week off may have helped. “You can tell the way they were pushing the ball,’’ Quickley said. “It’s the way the NBA is now.’’
People around the league say players didn’t like to be coached by Van Gundy in Detroit because of his persistent (and sometimes annoying) approach. Ingram said recently that “we’re trusting in Coach,” and a coach who stays on them and demands they play this way could help them develop winning habits. He certainly doesn’t stop talking about it as the losses pile up.
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