2009 Nike Hoop Summit: World Team Practice Recap
The World Select team was able to upset the USA Team at the Nike Hoop Summit 97-89 for the first time since 1998 behind the effort of a gutsy squad of International players. Here is a look at the victorious World Select team based on their practice performances.
PF Donatas Motiejunas 7'0 230 lbs Lithuania
Donatas is tall and very skilled, he has a solid frame, and moves
extremely well for a 7 footer. During practice it seemed like he was content
to a degree where he is at with his talent. Turning the switch on and off when
he wanted to compete, he turned it on later in the week with more scouts in
the practices. The lefty has great touch around the basket and a good IQ for
the game. He has a smooth and consistent jumpshot. He is really competitive
and takes the game of basketball really seriously. He has a fun and energetic
PG Matias Nocedal 6'3 180 lbs Argentina
Matias was undersized but relied on his (limited) quickness and
smarts to excel in his international style of play. Throughout the week of practice,
he turned the ball over a lot trying too hard to be fancy and stand out. This
being said he is very intelligent at the point guard position and ran the offense
quite well, and got his players in their correct position. He has a thin build
and is not very quick which makes it really hard for him to get into the paint
and finish. When he does manage to drive, he is good at finding the open player.
PG/SG Edwin Jackson 6'2 195 lbs France
Edwin is the one player throughout the week who really caught
my eye with his athleticism, quickness and on ball defense. He has a strong
NBA athletic guard body who can handle the ball well. Although against extreme
defensive pressure he tends to struggle. He is a great finisher around the basket
and has quick and explosive jumping ability. He can lose his head if he is not
playing well, which is typical for a young athlete. He is also extremely streaky
with his jumpshot. He can shoot from NBA range and has a great high release
mid range jump shot. His quickness is his trademark which he utilizes very well.
He has flashes of being cocky but can also be a team leader. He is a fun guy
to be around and easy to get along with.
SF Mamadou Samb 6'9 195 lbs Senegal
Mamadou is a tall but very skinny, with a lot of work in the
weight room this guy could be a solid basketball player. He has a good mid-range
jumpshot along with some efficient post moves. He has a long wing span of 7'02
and crashes the boards really hard. With his thin build it is hard for him to
box out bigger players. Mamadou is a bright guy. He is a funny and laid back
guy, as I ended up talking with him the most. In the beginning of practice I
missed a couple of open shots so he asked me, "Did you not eat your Wheaties?"
PG/SG Nikos Pappas 6'4 210 lbs Greece
First impressions of Nikos makes you think he's not a basketball player, but his game is solid, it just lacks quickness. He has a consistent and solid three point shot. He can handle the basketball very well but is slow for a point guard. Although he's slow, he somehow manages to get where he wants and can finish with both hands. He found himself stranded a lot picking up his dribble, resulting in turning the ball over. His game is very international with his passing style and running floaters.
SF Tomislav Zubcic 6'11 218 lbs Croatia
This guy was phenomenal in practice all week, and has a bright
future in my eyes. He is tall, athletic small forward. He is thin so with some
work in the weight room, he would be an amazing player. His shot is as consistent
as I have ever seen with range to three. I could literally count the number
of misses he had during the week from outside. And it wasn't many. He also has
the ability to get to the basket and finish while taking the foul. For being
6'11, he doesn't have slow feet and moves around with fluidity. NBA comparison
to Andrei Kirilenko, but with a better shot.
PF Milan Macvan 6'8 258 lbs Serbia
Milan didn't really stand out much in practice but when it came
to game time he was everywhere. Only being 6'8 he has great post moves and a
solid outside shot. He is one of the smartest players I have played with, always
knowing exactly where to be and when to pass and shoot. He was very energetic
throwing up his hands when hitting a three, or bump his chest. A hard worker
that gets the job done.
PF Zhang Dayu 7'0 240 lbs China
Zhang has a tall, athletic body type that has some potential.
He has a consistent jump shot, and is a competitor and will push back if he
is being bullied. He struggles to finish around the basket but never gives up
on a play. But he doesn't attack the rim aggressively enough. He's tall enough
to rip the rim down but he likes to lay it up, which could be a cultural thing,
not sure. If he got a more aggressive mentality he will be solid player. He
also has an awesome personality, again with the language barrier we still got
along great, very friendly guy.
SG/SF Mateo Gaynor 6'6 180 lbs Argentina
Mateo has a very skinny build and didn't stand out a lot in practice.
He has a smooth shot and can get to the basket when necessary, in which he is
also very crafty when around the hoop. He is limited because he is so skinny,
and not extremely quick. He could have a bright future but needs a lot more
work in the weight room. He plays as a role player and will knock down the open
PF Kevin Seraphin 6'9 258 lbs France
Kevin stands 6'9 but plays like he is much bigger. He has very
large hands which allows him to dunk and grab rebounds with ease. He has a 7'3
wing span which he puts to good use. He never takes a play off and will go after
every single rebound and then dunk with authority. Kevin is very quick off his
feet and very explosive. His jumpshot is a little rough releasing his guide
hand a little early. With some help from a shooting coach he should be able
to fix it. This being said, he still is a consistent shooter and will knock
the down the midrange jumpshot. Not speaking the same language as Kevin, we
still got along great, and is a cool guy.
*Check back tomorrow for a full recap of the Hoop Summit game including write ups on every player on both squads.