Bruno's latest Caught in the Web has some intersting quotes from Jim O'Brien on how the Pacers conduct their individual workouts and what they're looking for. This has to be interesting for some of these talented college players who have grown up playing on big AAU teams and gone through the full recruiting process for college. These workouts become the anti-recruiting exercise as the players have to convince the NBA decision makers that the talent they've been lauded for over the years is legit and ready for the L.
"When you're close by a guy, you get a real sense of athleticism, explosiveness that you might think you can see on tapes," said Jim O'Brien, "but if you're around 20 point guards and you're doing things where they're going right by your body and you're there seeing that, you get a better understanding of being up close to them. And the other thing is who they are, the eye contact, what they say during the workout, how they react.
"We try to fatigue all of these guys pretty aggressively when they're playing one-on-one, so we see how they react to having somebody try to whup 'em at the end of the session. When somebody's fatigued and guys are playing one-on-one and you're keeping score, you can pretty much rank the guys on who had a bigger desire to win."
The Pacers brought in a few more big boys yesterday in Cs, Kosta Koufos (Ohio State) and David Padgett (Louisville) along with Ausie Nathan Jawai and South Florida's Kentrell Gransberry. Check out the Draft War Room for more on their business trip to the Fieldhouse.
Also, yesterday was the last chance for players to take their names out of the draft. DraftExpress has it all covered with a few surprising names that will impact the depth of the draft. Guards Ty Lawson and Lester Hudson were two intriguing names the Pacers were looking at who will both return to school, although Lawson's little scrape with the law made his decision to return smart. He showed what he can do, now he can rehab the image at UNC and come back a bigger player in next year's draft.
Of local interest, IUPUI's George Hill decided to remain in the draft even though he's looking at being a second round pick. He did redshirt, so Hill has put in four years with the Jags. Plus, according to his coach, Ron Hunter, Hill needs the money to help with his family.
Also, Robert Vaden decided to return to UAB for one more year after going through the draft process a bit. Vaden earned solid reviews from his workouts so he has something to build on heading into the draft next year.