Word on the Street: Orlando Pre-Draft Camp Invites, Simmons Gone

Word on the Street: Orlando Pre-Draft Camp Invites, Simmons Gone
May 29, 2006, 04:37 am
The latest truth and rumors from around the world of the NBA draft.

Cedric Simmons hires Andy Miller and Justin Zanik as his agents, an early look at nearly half the Orlando pre-draft camp invite list, Brandon Roy works out for the LA Lakers, Europeans begin to pull out of the draft, and much more.

Cedric Simmons Not Looking Back

Joey Jinwright, who has been helping his cousin Cedric Simmons navigate through the NBA draft process, informed DraftExpress on Saturday that Simmons has hired the services of an agent and will be forfeiting his remaining two years of college eligibility at NC State. Simmons has been working out over the past few weeks in the New York area and will begin private workouts with NBA teams starting this week. His first workout is tomorrow, June 30th, with the New York Knicks, alongside Josh Boone, Mardy Collins and Shannon Brown. Simmons will be in Philadelphia the day after (with Shannon Brown, Shawne Williams and Marshall Strickland) and then in Boston on June 2nd. He’ll then be flying to Orlando, where he has been invited to the “physical-only” portion of the NBA pre-draft camp, and will also be conducting an open workout for interested NBA teams. Simmons has decided to retain the services of New York City based agents Andy Miller and Justin Zanik.

Orlando Pre-Draft Invites

Orlando Pre-Draft Camp Preview: Part One
Orlando Pre-Draft Camp Preview: Part Two

After one more intense week of private workouts, prospects will converge on Orlando from the 6th-13th of June for anthropometric testing (measurements), drills, the combine, medical history checkups, Blood, urine and PPD (tuberculosis) testing, actual games, the Rookie Transition Program and a meeting with the NBA Player’s Association. Private sanctioned workouts for certain prospects will also be held during the week in Orlando, and DraftExpress has already been invited to quite a few.

Although the official list won’t be out for at least another week, we’ve been informed of a number of players who have accepted their invites for the camp, including:

James Augustine
Bobby Jones
Sean Dockery
Solomon Jones
Justin Williams
Dwayne Mitchell
Michael Southall
Kenny Adeleke
Tarence Kinsey
Ian Vouyoukas
Tedric Hill
Will Blalock
Terence Dials
Taj Gray
Joah Tucker
Denham Brown
Rashad Anderson
Keydren Clark
Yemi Nicholson
Renaldo Balkman
Allan Ray
Bobby Brown
Dan Grunfeld
Coby Karl
Shannon Brown (?)
Chris Quinn
Daniel Horton
Steve Novak
Frans Steyn
Brad Newley
Curtis Stinson
Viktor Keirou
Josh Boone
David Noel
Nik Caner-Medley
Taquan Dean
Nick George
Curtis Withers
Morris Almond
Blake Schilb
Danilo Pinnock
Mustafa Shakur
Marcus Slaughter
Darius Washington
Steven Smith
Jordan Farmar (?)
Daniel Gibson

Will not be participating:

Kevin Pittsnogle
Mike Gansey
Alexander Johnson
Guillermo Diaz
Yotam Halperin
James White
Terrell Everett (not invited due to pleading no contest to Marijuana possession citation)
Quincy Douby
Thabo Sefolosha
Sergio Rodríguez
Andrea Bargnani (Italian league playoffs, may not arrive in time for physical-only)
Tiago Splitter (ACB playoffs)
Rudy Fernández (ACB playoffs)
Kyle Lowry
Dee Brown
Rajon Rondo
Paul Davis
Hassan Adams
Jose Juan Barea
Thomas Gardner
Christian Maraker
Aaron Gray
Richard Roby
Marquinhos (Treviso)
Morro (Treviso)
Arron Afflalo

Physical-Only Invites: (will be more than what is listed here, possibly 16)

LaMarcus Aldridge
Adam Morrison
Rudy Gay
Tyrus Thomas
Randy Foye
Shelden Williams
Marcus Williams
J.J. Redick
Ronnie Brewer
Rodney Carney
Patrick O’Bryant
Cedric Simmons
Maurice Ager
Saer Sene
Mardy Collins

Let us know about more players through clicking the email on the bottom of this article.

Barea Doesn’t Make the Cut

The biggest surprise from the players we’ve heard were invited or not invited was Northeastern Senior Point Guard Jose Juan Barea. Barea averaged 21 points and 8.4 assists per game this season and was far and away the best player at the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament, winning the Allen Iverson award for being the “most inspirational” player in attendance. Barea broke all-time tournament records at Portsmouth by dishing out 41 assists in three games (13.67 per game), and 18 in a single contest. Despite all this, Barea has been named an “alternate” for Orlando, and will need to sweat out the next week hoping a “better” player decides to pull out.

Not bringing a player who has done everything humanly possible to garner an invite through his phenomenal four years in college, a terrific international career with the Puerto Rican national team and by absolutely destroying the competition in the first pre-draft camp raises serious questions about the selection process for an event of this nature, and makes you wonder exactly what the criteria is for deciding who gets in and who doesn’t. When talking with various players over the past month about their preparation for the NBA Pre-Draft camp in Orlando, every single one that was at Portsmouth and is not a point guard himself mentioned that they are very much hoping that Barea would be on their team due to the way he shares the ball and makes the game easy for everyone around him. Barea will almost certainly end up getting into the camp as there will be many pull-outs, but it doesn’t make sense to make him wait when you consider the fact that he is just as good if not much better than every other point guard that will be there.

Other players we’ve heard who are still awaiting invites include Thomas Gardner and Christian Maraker.

Roby not playing in Orlando?

Rodger Bohn

Colorado shooting guard Richard Roby recently informed DraftExpress Director of Prep Scouting Rodger Bohn that it is highly unlikely that he will be playing in this year’s NBA Pre-Draft camp in Orlando, and will be hoping to partake in the “physical-only” portion of the camp.

Roby told DraftExpress “I don’t think I’m gonna play, but I’m gonna do the other stuff (the physicals).” Roby later went on to say that he hasn’t actually been invited to the physical-only portion of the camp, but is hoping that he will once he informs the NBA that he will not be playing.

Many will wonder whether this is a questionable move by Roby, who certainly could have used Orlando to establish himself as a first round pick in this year’s draft. He must be awfully confident as to where his draft stock is at the moment to make such a bold move, considering that he has only participated in one workout at the moment.

When asked about how his workouts where going, Roby told DraftExpress “Things are going pretty good. I worked out for Minnesota this past week against Maurice Ager, Hassan Adams, and Rashad Anderson and did pretty well. I had more workouts scheduled, but unfortunately I got really sick and had to pull out of them.”

When further probed about his Minnesota workout, Richard went on to tell DraftExpress “Well, it went alright for my first workout. It definitely could have went better, but again, it was my first workout. Nobody really separated themselves from each other though. I’d give myself a C+ on the workout.”

The Colorado guard went on to tell DraftExpress that he has upcoming workouts with Utah, Chicago, Sacramento, Houston, Washington, and possibly Indiana.

2006 Pre-Draft Camp General Schedule For Players


3:00 – 3:45 PM Meeting of teams in coaches rooms
4:30 – 5:45 PM Medical (orthopedic) histories taken at Milkhouse Gym
6:00 PM Drills begin at Milkhouse Gym
7:45 PM Anthropometric testing of players at gym


9:00 AM - 11:00 AM Drills at gym
11:00 AM Game #1 (Team 5 vs. Team 6)
5:00 PM Game #2 (Team 1 vs. Team 2)
Strength testing for Team 5
6:00 PM Strength testing for Team 6
6:15 PM Game #3 (Team 3 vs. Team 4)


9:00 AM - 11:00 AM Drills at gym
11:00 AM Game #4 (Team 1 vs. Team 4)
5:00 PM Game #5 (Team 2 vs. Team 5)
Strength testing for Team 1
6:00 PM Strength testing for Team 4
6:15 PM Game #6 (Team 3 vs. Team 6)


10:15 AM 5-spot shooting drill for Teams 2, 3
10:30 AM Game #7 (Team 2 vs. Team 3)
12:00 PM 5-spot shooting drill for Teams 1, 6
12:15 PM Game #8 (Team 1 vs. Team 6)
1:45 PM 5-spot shooting drill for Teams 4, 5
2:00 PM Game #9 (Team 4 vs. Team 5)
following 1st Game Strength testing for Teams 2, 3


Saturday, June 10

7:00 AM – 8:00 AM Blood, urine & PPD testing for all players at hospital
(medical histories taken at this time)
8:00 AM – 6:30 PM Testing of selected players begins at hospital

Sunday, June 11

8:00 AM – 4:00 PM Testing of remaining players at hospital
6:30 PM - 9:30 PM NBPA meeting with players

Monday, June 12

9:30 AM Player evaluations by team physicians / athletic trainers at hospital
2:30 PM – 10:00 PM Mini Rookie Transition Program

Tuesday, June 13

Player Departures

Europeans Begin to Pull Out

1985 International prospects Hrvoje Peric and Renaldas Seibutis have already decided to pull their name out of the draft, over three weeks in advance of the pull-out deadline.

Seibutis justified the move in saying: “everybody in Lithuania says that its too early for me. I understand that, but this year is the one before last when I can register. It’s simply an advertisement for me. I want NBA scouts to come watch me. I will withdraw from the draft. If you aren’t guaranteed to be among the first 30 picks, there’s nothing to do there. My goal for now definitely isn’t the NBA.”

Peric told the Croatian media that he does not feel like he is in a position to get drafted and thinks his situation will be better next season.

Both players will become automatically eligible next year and will need to have solid seasons in their draft year to have a good chance of being drafted. For Peric it is especially important to latch onto a team that will get him more international exposure than he currently is seeing playing in the weak Croatian league. Seibutis plays for a terrific Euroleague team in Greece, Olimpiakos, and just needs to continue to solidify himself as an important cog on the team and add polish to his all-around game, particularly his 3-point range.

Lakers Looking to Move Up?

Rodger Bohn

Contrary to published reports, Brandon Roy will not be working out only for teams selecting in the top five of this year’s Draft, as members of his camp had stated earlier. DraftExpress learned this week that Roy has already worked out for the Los Angeles Lakers, and will be in New Orleans sometime in the near future.

With no lottery picks in this year’s Draft, many might wonder why a top-10 prospect in Brandon Roy was willing to work out for the Lakers this past week. DraftExpress has been told by numerous sources on the West coast over the past few weeks that the Lakers are exploring the option of moving up, and are interested in both Marcus Williams of UConn and Brandon Roy of Washington.

Roy joined Brazilian Marcus Vinicius Vieira De Souza (Marquinhos), UCLA’s Aaron Afflalo and Rice’s Morris Almond in a four man workout in Los Angeles earlier this week.

A source who was at the workout broke it down into great detail for DraftExpress, stating that it was the team concept and elements of the Triangle offense that the Lakers were mostly looking at. “The L.A. workout was all about trying to see how players understood the basketball concepts of spacing, use of pick and roll, of pin downs, back screens….seeing which players knew when to curl, when to flare. Which players knew how to set up a down screen. All that kind of stuff.”

The players then went into a one on one series, where it was basically a draw across the board. Our source told us that it was a bit of a “wrestling match” and that “nobody really stood out in the one on one drills.”

From there, the four joined Craig Hodges to run some of the concepts of the triangle offense and the pinch post. The source describes the drills: “When they started playing two on two and pinch post, none of these kids ran pinch post because of their lack of height. In the college game, there weren’t too many schools running pinch post for 6’5, 6’6 kids. Basically when you get the ball in the high post, and out of that, you run back screens and play a three man game with the other two on the weak side. Craig Hodges was the third man in the game. They would pass the ball back to Hodges and run ball screens and back cuts, creating a triangle.”

In this drill, Marquinhos reportedly looked very good. There were some notable factors however, as the source stated that Marquinhos had an immediate advantage due to the fact that this was most likely the first time the three college players would had never have run anything like this in college. Marquinhos was reportedly familiar with the Triangle due to the fact that his team ran it in Brazil.

Here are the individual player breakdowns based on what our NBA source told us:

Brandon Roy:

Roy reportedly had just a decent workout for a player who most consider a lock to be picked in the top 10. He did extremely well on the vertical leap test, hitting 41 inches off of one step. The source went on to rave about the Washington star’s jumpshot, stating “His jumpshot is really pretty. Its great looking, he’s got a high and quick release, and it’s really effective. His pull-up is exactly the same. He doesn’t fade and he has great control. The whole thing is pretty.” Roy also measured out at 6’6 in shoes, and is apparently a bit longer than he looks, coming in with a 6’9 wingspan. Shooting and leaping aside, everything else seemed to be pretty average for Brandon. He didn’t stand out in the one on one drills, and seemed to struggle grasping the triangle offense.

Marcus Vinicius Vieira De Souza (Marquinhos):

Marquinhos measured out very well at 6’10 with shoes, with a 6’11 ½ wingspan and a 34 inch vertical jump. He shot the ball well from the outside and looked good in the two on two portion of the drill. The source was pretty clear that Marquinhos really showed in the two on two drills that he was the best fit for the triangle offense due to his size and skill package.

Morris Almond:

Almond mentioned numerous times that he had one more year left, leading one to believe that he was surely going back to Rice. He reportedly had a very different looking jump shot, and it was clear that he hadn’t had the coaching that the other three had received, and also is still adapting to the higher level of competition he is seeing in these workouts. Morris was praised for being a great kid with an excellent head on his shoulders, and should be fine after another year of polish in the NCAA.

Arron Afflalo:

Our source was least impressed with Afflalo of the four by far, stating he was “a bit of a joke”. He mentioned that although the UCLA sophomore looked fairly quick in the drills and was quite knowledgeable, he was still a pretty average player in terms of NBA potential. He was also unimpressed by his shot, stating “I didn’t like his shot, and I didn’t like his release. He didn’t really have much of a pull-up jumper and could really only shoot from a stand still.”

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