Here are some of the notable performers from Day Two:
O.J. Mayo, 65, PG/SG, Signed with USC
O.J. had a heated battle with Jonny Flynn, with neither backing down from each other. He had showed off his beautiful crossover dribble move and played outstanding defense on the super hot Syracuse recruit, forcing the diminutive guard into many contested shots. He displayed the ability to post smaller guards, catching the ball on the blocks and making a remarkable fade away jumper from about 17 feet away. The motivation and drive that was displayed by Mayo on the floor is reminiscent of Kobe Bryant or Michael Jordan, a rarity for a player at such a young age. On the downside however, he did force a few passes and his shot selection was a bit questionable at times. All in all though, this was another outstanding performance by Mayo in the second practice session.
Jonny Flynn, 511, PG, Signed with Syracuse
Kevin Love, 69, PF/C, Signed with UCLA
DeAndre Jordan,70, C, Signed with Texas A&M
Anthony Randolph, 610, SF/PF, Signed with LSU
After a very promising practice Sunday, Randolph fell off a bit in the second day of preparation for the Roundball game. He was unable to get into the rhythm of the game, not finishing inside and getting pushed around quite a bit in the paint. On the bright side, Anthony boasted his nice perimeter skills through his ability to handle the ball, whether it be in the open floor or in the half court set. He owns a first step that only a handful of 610 players out there can brag about, allowing him to get to the rim on virtually any power forward in the country. The potential is absolutely limitless for this 610 forward, and with even average refinement, he should see himself in the NBA before it is all said and done.
Gani Lawal, 69, PF, Signed with Georgia Tech
J.J. Hickson, 69, PF, Signed with North Carolina State
Justin Burrell, 68, PF, Signed with St. Johns
Jonny Flynn Interview
DraftExpress: Jonny, many people viewed you as a shoot first point guard, yet you came out in the McDonalds game and looked like as pure a point guard as anyone in the game. Tell me a little about why some have that misconception of you.
Flynn: Well the teams they see me on, like my AAU and high school team, thats the position Im put in. Around here, McDonalds game and Roundball Classic, we are all good players so I can fall back and dont have to carry the load of shooting, as I would on my AAU or high school team. It just felt good to be playing the position that Im going to be playing at Syracuse.
DraftExpress: Tell me what your role is going to be next year at Syracuse.
Flynn: I think the same thing Im doing here, thats what Im doing here. Like you said, everybody thinks Im going to run the two. Im like Im 55! How am I going to run the two at Syracuse, in the Big East? Im just trying to come out and show everyone that I can get my teammates involved and lock up defensively.
DraftExpress: Now its no secret that you and Paul Harris are extremely close. Has he told you about why he struggled a bit early on this past season at Syracuse?
Flynn: He just told me that college is way different from high school. Its a big jump from high school to college. You have to be way prepared mentally for all the things outside of basketball. Balancing basketball, schoolwork, social life, things like that. It just took him a little longer to get adapted to college life, and towards the end of the season, he just started clicking on all cylinders.
DraftExpress: Now have they told you if you will be able to go in and start as a freshman, or if you will have the opportunity to start as a freshman?
Flynn: The thing about Syracuse is that they give you the chance to go out and start. Its not like this guy is starting, or anything like that. They give everyone a chance to lose their job. If somebody is outworking you, you might not be playing as much. Thats what I like about Coach Boeheim and his coaching staff. They give you a chance to work and go out there and earn your spot.
DraftExpress: What are your thoughts on the NBAs age limit?
Flynn: Im not really fond of that rule. It hurts people from making a living. Some people arent meant to go to college, and cant go to college and do the bookwork. Some people arent gifted like that mentally to do that. You look at tennis and golf, where you can be 13 years old and play pro. Why cant you do it in basketball? I dont get it. I dont like the rule. Not saying that I could have done it, but I just dont like the rule.
DraftExpress: Now with the GC Ballers, you guys played on the Nike, Reebok, Adidas circuits
Flynn: We played in everything! We didnt really have a sponsor. We were everywhere!
DraftExpress: (laughs) Exactly. With you not having a set sponsor and playing in events hosted by all three shoe companies, what was the pressure like from the three shoe companies to play in their respective all-star games and camps?
Flynn: There was a lot of pressure, especially coming down to camps. Reebok has always shown me love. Thats where I blew up at two years ago, at ABCD camp, so I had to go back to them last year. Reebok was where all the love was shown.
DraftExpress: So what made you decide to play in the Roundball game?
Flynn: Because of Sonny Vacarro and the relationship that I have with Reebok. I dont have a relationship with Adidas. I know the people at Adidas or Nike, but I dont have a relationship with them like I do with Sonny. Its like a family here at Reebok, and thats why I like it.
DraftExpress: What are your thoughts on how the summer camp scene has changed? At first it was only going to be the Nike camp, but now Reebok has announced that they will be having a camp as well. Do you prefer two camps, or all three camps like years past?
Flynn: I like what its doing now. Theyre getting all of the best players at one camp. Youre getting EVERYBODY at one camp, so there are not a lot of players who shouldnt be there. The only thing is that its limiting people to get looked at, like the people who come out of the woodwork and blow up. Its limiting those people, but this is good. Theyre teaching us the right things at an early age.
DraftExpress: Tell me how it feels to have proven all of your critics wrong in the past year and a half that you actually deserve a scholarship at Syracuse? As Im sure you heard, when you first committed, everyone said that Syracuse only took you to get Paul Harris
Flynn: That was the fire behind my workouts. Every time I walked in the gym, I thought people really think Im a package deal and I cant play ball and stuff like that. That helped me out a lot. I thank you for all of the people who said that. It helped me become a better person, just to prove them wrong.
J.J. Hickson Interview
DraftExpress: You had a pretty solid performance in the McDonalds game. Give me a self evaluation of how you felt you played?
Hickson: I think I played real well. I think I showcased my talents and what I can do, as well as what I need help on. Im trying to get to college and show the world what I can do.
DraftExpress: Why did you pick NC State, given that they have a first year coach in Sidney Lowe?
Hickson: Thats one of the main reasons that I picked NC State, because he was a first year coach.. He played there, he won a national championship, so he knows what it takes to get there the skills that it takes to get there. He knows what a team has to put together to get there. He pushes his players to work hard, and Im trying to go there and be great.
DraftExpress: Now you have really expanded your perimeter game that wasnt really existent in the summer. How have you been able to extend your shooting range so much in such a short period of time?
Hickson: Just a lot of hard work in the gym. I shoot endless shots in the gym working on my 18 footer. Just catching the ball, taking my time, and working on proper mechanics. Just working hard at it.
DraftExpress: Has Coach Lowe spoken with you specifically about what your role is going to be next year, with you having Brandon Costner and Ben McCauley playing similar positions?
Hickson: He didnt tell me my specific role, but he told me that he expects me to come in and be a leader on and off the court, and to push my teammates.
DraftExpress: What are your thoughts on the way the summer camp circuit has changed? Nike appeared to be the only camp, but now Reebok has announced that they will be holding a summer camp as well. Do you prefer it with two camps, or with all three as in years past?
Hickson: I dont really care. I like it better with three camps because you have more kids who can go and make a name for themselves, so I like three camps better.
DraftExpress: What are your thoughts on the NBAs age limit?
Hickson: I mean, Im 50/50 on it. As a ball player, I would like to see high school players be able to go right to the league. You have to look at the other side of it. People good in high school may not be good in the NBA, or fit that mold as an NBA player. So Im 50/50.
DraftExpress: With you choosing NC State, were you looking for a school that you would have the opportunity to be one and done at?
Hickson: That could be a possibility. Im not going there thinking Im just going to be one year and done. Im going in there with the right mindset of just working hard. Then if the right opportunity presents itself, Ill talk about it with my family and my coaches and just go from there.
DraftExpress: Ohio State or Florida?
DraftExpress: Tell me about the pressure that you receive as an elite player to play in their respective all-star games and camps?
Hickson: Thats just the business side of basketball. What camps youre going to and who sponsors you in the summer. Whoever sponsors you in the summer is what camp or all-star game youre supposed to go to.
DraftExpress: Why did you choose to play in the Roundball as opposed to the Jordan or Adidas games?
Hickson: Because the best players are going to be here. Theres a lot of talent here and everyone here is competitive. Thats why I chose to play in the Roundball game.