2011 Bobcats Draft Workouts - Day 11
Updated Gallery - June 22 | Video: Rod Higgins | Video: Paul Silas | Video: Biyombo Interview | Video: Biyombo Highlights | Video: Biyombo Dunk Drill | Video: Morris Interview | Video: Hamilton Interview | Video: Singleton Interview | Video: Singleton Highlight | Video: Johnson Interview | Video: Johnson Dunk Drill | Day 10 | Day 9 | Day 8 | Day 7 | Day 6 | Day 5 | Day 4 - PM | Day 4 - AM | Day 3 | Day 2 | Day 1
The Bobcats continued their 2011 NBA Draft preparation Wednesday at Time Warner Cable Arena® with prospects Bismack Biyombo (Congo), Jordan Hamilton (Texas), JaJuan Johnson (Purdue), Marcus Morris (Kansas), Chris Singleton (Florida State) and Thomas Coleman (North Carolina A&T) in for workouts in front of Bobcats Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Michael Jordan, President of Basketball Operations Rod Higgins, General Manager Rich Cho, the coaching staff and team scouts.
Bismack Biyombo split his last season between Illescas (Spain LEB-Silver) and Fuenlabrada (Spain-ACB) in 2009-10. While at Illescas, he averaged 9 ppg, 6.4 rpg and 1.5 bpg, while at Fuenlabrada, he scored 6.4 ppg, grabbing 5.1 rpg and blocking 2.3 shots per game. He also recorded the first triple-double in Nike Hoop Summit history, scoring 12 points, snatching 11 rebounds and rejecting 10 shots.
Jordan Hamilton is entering the draft out of the University of Texas as an early entry draft candidae after improving upon his freshman season. In his sophomore season as a Longhorn, Hamilton scored 18.6 ppg and snagged 7.7 rpg. He earned multiple selections onto All-American teams, including two second-team picks from the NABC and from the United States Basketball Writers Association and a third-team choice from the Associated Press. In addition, Hamilton earned first-team All-Big 12 recognition and he led Texas in scoring.
JaJuan Johnson played four years at Purdue, averaging 20.5 ppg, 8.6 rpg and 2.3 bpg for the Boilermakers. He led the team in scoring, minutes played, field goals made & attempted, free throws made & attempted, rebounding and blocks. Johnson was honored with an abundance of awards in his senior season, including selections to the Consensus All-American First Team, the AP All-American First Team, the Big Ten Player of the Year as voted by coaches and the media, and many more.
Marcus Morris is the brother of Markieff Morris and played with him on the Kansas squad for three years as well. After averaging 17.2 ppg, which led the team in scoring, and pulling down 7.6 rpg, Marcus stocked up on awards, including second-team All-America, first-team All-Big 12, Big 12 Player of the year and Most Outstanding Player of the Big 12 Tournament.
Chris Singleton is a forward from Florida State University, entering the draft early after playing three seasons for the Seminoles. In his junior year, he averaged 13.1 ppg, 6.8 rpg and 1.5 bpg. Despite fracturing his foot in February and missing six games, Singleton returned to lead Florida State in scoring, rebounding, steals and free throws made and attempted. His play earned him third-team All-ACC honors and a spot on the ACC’s All-Defensive team.
Thomas Coleman played at nearby university, North Carolina A&T for four seasons, averaging above 20 minutes per game every year. In his senior year, he averaged 17 ppg, 10.5 rpg, 2.7 bpg and 1.2 spg, leading the Aggies in points, rebounds, blocks, steals, field goals made & attempted, free throws made & attempted, and minutes played. For his work, he was rewarded with a selection to the All-MEAC First Team.
(On how he thinks all the workouts went)
I thought the workouts went fantastic. We had over 50 kids that we’ve brought in here over the last three weeks. I think that the kids have been fantastic. It’s evident with this group today, playing hard and just trying to realize a dream of theirs. You have to give them credit. Some of the kids are heading to New York today and heading to the green room. So, it’s an exciting time for them all.
(On if we’ve seen the Bobcats’ picks work out over the past few weeks)
I’m sure that we’ve seen some of the picks that we’re going to pick tomorrow. The one thing you don’t know is what’s going to happen through out the league in terms of people shaking up their rosters, jockeying for position in the draft. So, there might be some kids that we might not have seen that we might have the opportunity to draft. That’s the beauty of tomorrow. We’re preparing as we’re speaking, right now, getting our scenarios together, looking forward to the process.
(On the strength of this draft and what he’s seen)
I don’t think that you can characterize it as a weak draft. I think you can say that there’s going to be a lot of quality players in the draft. Maybe the star quality of some other drafts, at the top of the draft, isn’t there so to speak, but you have to let these kids run their course, you’re not going to know what this draft is in terms of how well it’s talented until two or three years down the road when these kids have had an opportunity to play. Some of the positions that we’ve seen – some of the little kids, some of the power forwards, the overall depth of this draft. Some of the point guards are also pretty darn good. There’s going to be some quality players and I think we’re going to have three quality picks in the top forty.
(On if drafting a game-changer is a possibility)
A game-changer is a hard assessment to have at the ninth pick. You don’t know if he’s going to have an opportunity to play right away. You would hope, from our standpoint, that he is a game-changer. But if you look at history, how many game-changers do you have early on at the ninth pick? You know, we had the opportunity to draft D.J. Augustin a few years ago at the ninth pick. D.J. has just started to come into his role, come into his own as a third-year pro. That’s part of the working evaluation.
(On Bismack Biyombo)
I thought he was very energetic. I thought he showed his strengths – ability to shot-block, ability to change ends of the floor, ability to pick up stuff with our coaches after they instruct him. You know, he has some things he can work on and he will admit it. If he’s there at nine, that would be an interesting opportunity for us. That’s part of the reason he’s here. No, he’s not an outside shooter, but that’s OK because in having an opportunity to meet the kid, and a fantastic young man, he knows that he has a lot of work to do and he’s not afraid to look in the mirror and say, “I’ve got to get in the gym and work on this.” I think he is also a kid and realizes he can’t do some things, for instance, go out and shoot the ball from the three-point line.
(On if he would pick someone who might not come over to the NBA immediately)
That would be a tough thing for us in getting someone who could possibly help us next year and playing some minutes for us. But you also have to factor in the scenario whomever that kid or who that player is, their value. His value going forward, if you’re willing to wait on a talent that becomes a game-changer, so to speak. That’s part of the process and that’s we do upstairs in evaluating this talent.
(On if bringing in so many players for their second workouts speaks to what the Bobcats think of them)
Of course it speaks to what we think of them. I think all of those kids are quality players. We brought them in and looking at their talent once more, we know what we have in the draft. To bring them in is to indicate how we feel about them.
(On if this draft is poised to have more movement than some drafts in the past)
I would say that’s always there. This draft is no different. It’s no different with us or any other team. We’re constantly on the phones. Rich and I are talking to every team around the league, trying to gauge interest in our team, as well as seeing what’s there in terms of the draft and in terms of different players on different rosters. We’ll be prepared to take our picks tomorrow, or who knows.
(On if the team’s had interest with three picks in the top 39)
Oh yeah, we’ve had tons of interest in our picks. All three of our picks, to be honest. Now it’s up to us to figure out what’s real and what’s not real. The beautiful thing about a deadline is some of the stuff that we talk about two weeks ago, it’s probably not going to be prevalent come tomorrow morning.
(On how the process of integrating Rich into the Bobcats has gone)
Actually, it’s been a very good transition. In particular, the time of year that we’re embarking upon with the draft – the most busy time of our side of the business. Rich and I have had an opportunity to have great synergy on the short term and I expect that to continue that we’ll work together to improve our basketball team. We’ve been logging long hours. I think the transition has been seamless.
(On coming up with different scenarios on draft day)
Oh, there’s no question. When we’re locked in on number nine, as of right now, we come up with four, five, six players in different scenarios that can be available. And then we debate, vet it out between all the guys upstairs, and ultimately, we’ll roll it up to Michael and see his thoughts.
(On trading a pick for a veteran)
When you get a veteran, and use your high pick like a number 9, you would think that you’d get a young vet: a guy on the cusp of being a star talented player, obviously a starter, between the 22 and 25-year-old range, where he has an upside and can be with your team for quite a long time
(On if they’ve made any decision on Dante Cunningham)
No, we have not made a decision on Dante as of today. We have until the end of this month to make a qualifying offer. I would imagine that would be part of our process in the next few days.
(On today’s workout)
I thought Morris did very well, Singleton did well, for the second time. Morris was better this time than he was the first time and Biyombo.
(On Morris’ improvement over his last workout for the Bobcats)
I thought he did more than just shoot jumpers. His knowledge seemed to be up this time. We had him go up and down, handle the ball; he just did a real good job.
(On Morris as a three)
He showed he could handle that better. He was guarding Chris [Singleton]. I thought he showed a lot better today. He must have been working on his game because I looked as him more of a four, but he showed he could play the three.
I liked him. He’s got a lot of upside. The biggest thing that surprised me was his offense. They said he just had no offense at all and I saw a lot of offense today. Shooting his free throws, I told him to just follow through. He followed through and made two free throws right away. Very coachable, and just really a nice kid.
(On Biyombo’s maturity)
It’s kind of difficult to say, but playing the game, I thought that he understood how to play and on pick and rolls, he rolled to the hoop very well, gave him some dunks and that kind of thing, blocked some shots. He fell down out here and I was hoping he wasn’t hurt.
(On he could contribute right away)
Well, I think because of his rebounding and defense and shot-blocking ability, he could get some minutes right away. You can work on his offense, which I think is very workable. He’ll be a better offensive player once he gets here, than he has been. I like him. I like him a lot.
(On which players that worked out that are closest to playing in an NBA rotation)
The kid that surprised me was Johnson, from Purdue; he played exceptionally well. I didn’t know; I hadn’t seen him. He was player of the year in the Big Ten, defensive player of the year – that says a lot. But to answer your question, Biyombo could most certainly play, Morris, Singleton – those three, for sure could give you some minutes and do well.
(On why they brought back Morris, Singleton and Hamilton over others)
Well, we wanted to see how they did against each other and the maturity they had, going other places and coming back here. We changed our workout a little bit. More inside play and we wanted to see how those guys reacted to that. And they reacted very well.
(On how the workout went)
Very good. I enjoyed the practice, I enjoyed the workout. Nice.
(On how important it is to get in the workouts before the draft)
They’ve come to watch my practice in Spain a couple times and they’ve met me in person over there. […] For the respect they fly to come to Spain, I should come here, also visit.
(On the importance of showing what he could do against five other players)
I think I’ve already shown everything I can do on the floor. To be here today, I was just enjoying the practice, enjoying the workout to be with those guys working out. That’s what’s most important.
(On what he brings to the NBA game)
My intensity, the way I play my game. I play hard, I play intense. I want to win every game. I can tell you I can do a lot of stuff on the floor, but just I think it’s enough and with time, we can see how the workouts go with the team, with a different coach, how I’m going to be, if I’m going to do more things on the floor.
(On if he’s working on his midrange game)
Yeah. I mean, I’m working on everything: my post moves, my shot. I’m trying to do everything on the floor – just trying to be the best I can be on the floor.
(How many times he’s been to the US)
Two times. This is my second time. We’ve been around cities, meeting different people, very good.
(On working out in front of Michael Jordan)
It’s an honor to me, to meet Michael Jordan in person, and for him to watch my practice. It’s just a big honor to me.
(On if he’s nervous for the next 24 hours)
No, I’m not really nervous. I know that anywhere I’m going to get drafted – to be top-five, top-ten, top-fifteen, top-twenty, whatever – it’s just the beginning of something; beginning of my NBA career. That’s what it’s all about.
(On the anticipation for the next 24 hours)
It’s just normal, you know. I’m just going to try to enjoy [it]; not much pressure on me. I know I’m going to get drafted anyway. I’m going to get drafted.
(On what he does best)
I can block shots, I can rebound. I play intense, I play hard. That’s what [it’s] all about. Nothing more.
I was surprised to come to Charlotte. My agent told me a couple days ago. I was like, “When are we going to Charlotte?” “We’re going on Wednesday.” “Oh!” So, I was just trying to figure out some things about the team, about the coach, how the team’s scoring, players around the team. Something like that about the players, what they did best. I don’t know much about the city, but I know much about the players: how they’re working. I’ve been talking to the general manager. They’ve been telling me how they’ve been working. They want to get better.
(On how he feels he fits in here)
They tell me that they need some post guy who plays hard, rebounds, blocks shots; just little details to win the game, to make a future team and I think I can be a part of that. Also, with the help of Coach Paul, he can teach you good stuff. He can teach you little details.
(On his best talent off the court)
I read a lot of books. That’s what I do. Trying to learn a different language.
(The last book he read)
“Buena Suerte.” It’s a Spanish book.
(On his age)
I’m 18 and I’m going to be 19 in August.
(On if working out in Charlotte indicates strong interest from the Bobcats)
I mean, I just want to work out. The reason, I think, is they wanted to watch me practice. […] I think it was good, and I like it.
(On his workout yesterday against Markieff Morris and Tristan Thompson)
I did good. I did a great job. I can say that; I loved the way I did the practice yesterday. Also, on Monday, I’m doing good practices.
(On what he’s hearing from teams on what to work on)
I mean, my offensive game is not the best. I can do something on offense. I can shoot the ball, but it’s not that impressive. I make some post moves; it’s not impressive. So, I’m going to have to work. I have a long summer. That’s what I’m going to do in the summer.
(On how the second workout went)
It went well, similar to the first. I shot the ball OK, but it went well.
(On what went different from the first workout)
A little different. My first workout was with a couple point guards and in this workout, I’m one of the primary ballhandlers. So, I had to bring it up most of the time.
(On what a second workout means as far as interest a team may have)
I think a lot. The day before the draft, I think they’re going to choose between the guys that are here. Hopefully, they choose me.
(On if this was one of the most competitive workouts)
Definitely. All competitive. This was probably the first workout where I was with pretty much a lot of big men. So, it was a good workout.
(On if he showed what he can do as a PF today)
There weren’t too many times that I was down low because nobody really can handle the ball as much on my team, so I had to step out and handle the ball. I was just showing I know the game. I play basketball and I’m one of the smarter guys.
(On the next 24 hours)
It’s exciting. A lot of pressure cam off my shoulders after today. It’s time to relax and see where I go.
(On if he’s gotten a lot of positive feedback from the Bobcats)
Definitely. I enjoyed it. Like I said earlier, I want to be a Bobcat. It’s one of my favorite places. I was honored to come back and get the chance to play again because, like I said, I want to be here at the end of the day.
(On what attracts him to the Bobcats)
The coaching – I feel like the coaches are hands-on. They’re very involved with the players and I like the town and North Carolina. It’s a great place.
(On the workout)
I got here right before the workout, but it was a good workout. There was a lot of different things we did to show our versatility. Overall, I think it was one of the best workouts I had so far.
(On being here and the interest the Bobcats have shown in him)
We both were trying just to make sure I got here. My first flight was canceled. I was supposed to originally get here about midnight last night, but the weather was bad in Chicago and Milwaukee, so they canceled and delayed a lot of flights. So they just had me stay over and I caught a flight at 6:30 this morning.
(On the difficulty of having to work out basically right off the plane)
I kind of did it before. At Florida State, my great-aunt had passed and I had to come back for a game. It was cool; it’s life, you know?
(On what this second workout shows as far as the Bobcats’ interest in him)
I was trying to move it up earlier, because today’s Wednesday, but I’m glad it happened, and I’m glad to be here. They brought back a lot of kids and one of us is going to get drafted – hopefully, to them.
(On the next 24 hours and if he has any nerves)
The last 48 hours has been crazy. I don’t know if I’ll get any sleep. It’s going to be a one of a kind experience. I’m just ready for it.
(On possibly playing in ACC country)
Hopefully, I can win over the Tobacco Road fans. I was down in Florida, so hopefully I can get a couple of those to support me. I know people here, and it’d be great to come here, but it would just be great to play anywhere. It’s a dream of mine and I’m just going to try to live it out to the fullest.
(On his sense of the Bobcats’ interest in him)
I mean, I came back for a second workout. That’s the only thing I can say. Like most GMs and coaches, they keep it short and simple. They say they like you, and hopefully they pick you. That’s the only thing I can go off of.
(On how he may fit on the team)
They’re a building program. I’d be happy to come here and just fit in. I feel like they lost a key player in Gerald Wallace this past year and they’re just trying to see somebody come fill that role and hopefully the young guys develop. I’m young too, and I feel like I can fit in.
(On if he agrees that defense is his specialty)
Yeah; it’s been my trademark for the past two years. I’m going to continue to work on it, also my offensive game. It’s come along. I’m better than what people think I say, but I’m going to continue to work on trying to lock people up.
(On if this was the first time going head-to-head against Marcus)
No. [This is the] sixth time we worked out together. […] I’m used to it. We both go at each other because we’re both trying to make it. I like his competition: he pushes me, I push him.
Freaky athlete. He’s long – if you saw him, he was scratching his knees just standing straight up! Kind of crazy to me. Wherever he goes, I feel like he’s going to be a good fit and be an impact on the defensive end and his offensive game is going get better as he continues to work with NBA players.
(On Biyombo’s shot-blocking ability)
I think he has a 7’6” wingspan and then he has unbelievable jumping ability to go along with it. He has good timing. He blocked a couple shots today that I didn’t think he was going to get and he attacks the rim hard. That’s also going to help him
(On his thoughts when he was invited for a second workout with the Bobcats)
They told me there were some guys that were going to be here, very competitive guys who worked their butts off today, having fun. You know, the day before the draft, the day before my dream comes true, working hard.
(On if he feels any stress)
Not at all. I’m competitive and I always find a way to win. I’m always on a winning team, so I had a good time today. I showed I can come off pick and rolls and things that. For my size, I think that’s pretty good.
(On what he thinks he’s shown that motivated the Bobcats to ask him to return)
They knew I was a shooter. I shot the lights out in the workout and competitive stuff, and I did really well.
(On what he tried to show in the second workout)
Show that I can run a team, even from the wing position. Show that I can get in the pick and roll situation. I’m a great passer, also.
(On if he was able to showcase his post game against bigger players)
Absolutely. You got a couple post guys here today. I watched a lot of Joe Johnson, Danny Granger and Paul Pierce – that’s what those guys do. That what I compare myself as, to those type of players. And I had fun today.
(On what his next 24 hours look like)
Most people say that they’re nervous, but I’m not really nervous. I’m excited. I don’t know where I’m going to go yet, but I’ll get some more feedback from my agent today and see what he says
(On if he feels it’s a good sign that he was brought in for a second workout on the day before the draft)
Absolutely. All these guys can play and all these guys are potential first round picks, so we had a good time today.
(On what he hears from his agent)
Anything from the Bobcats at 9 to about the Wizards at 18 is probably my stopping point. Anywhere between that, I know a lot of teams towards the end of the lottery like me a lot. That’s what my agent’s been telling me.
(On how the workout went)
It went really well. Going against some good competitors. I love the challenge, so it was just a good time to go out there and compete.
(On if he can use this workout to showcase his skills)
Yeah, you definitely want to have a good workout, especially against the caliber of guys I was going against today. Overall, I definitely think I held by own and did a real good job
(On what he could bring to the Bobcats)
I bring length, athleticism, defense, I can hit that 15-18 foot shot. I think it’s kind of big.
(On if he sees this workout as a good sign, as far as interest)
Definitely. When a team calls you back that close to a workout, it definitely says something that they’re really interested or they wouldn’t waste your time. It’s an honor just to be here.
(On how the workout went against Biyombo)
It went really well. He’s strong, really athletic – probably one of the most athletic guys I’ve been through so far in this process. He’s a talented player. He’s going to be a good player, whatever team picks him.
(On wearing down in the dunk drill)
Yeah, you definitely get a little tired, but I guess that’s what it’s for – to test your endurance, see how many dunk you can get. It’s a good drill.
(On the draft process and how excited he is for the draft)
It’s been tough, mentally and physically. I’ve had 17 workouts, so it’s definitely tested my mental toughness. I’m just glad it’s over right now.