NBA Camp: Final Day Rundown

RICHMOND, Va. -- At the NBA Camp, the players saved their best for last. A spirited day of playoff competition culminated with Scott Reynolds tallying 26 points in the championship game to lift his team to victory.

Kevin Durant has his team humming along and a championship at the NBA Players Camp seemed inevitable that is until he ran into Scott Reynolds and his charged up bunch.

Durant's Nuggets fell to Reynolds and the Kings 88-78 in the championship game. Reynolds' 26 points keyed a huge second half run that eventually proved to be the difference in the ballgame. Truly a team effort on the Kings end, they received timely shots and hustle plays from Jamie Skeen, Eric Gordon, Daniel Deane and Nic Wise en route to capturing the camp title.

2006 CHECKLIST

Kevin Durant, SF: His game was tight all week long and on Sunday he was playing at a high level when his squad knocked off O.J. Mayo's crew in the semifinals. Basically, over the course of five days, he showed the total package and it was amazing. Don't be fooled into thinking he's just a perimeter player; he's got all kinds of game.

Scott Reynolds, CG: Excellent camp and he polished it off by delivering the signature performance of the championship game. Forget the fact that he's big time from behind the arc and has improved his decision making and point guard skills, this guy's best attributes just might be his intangibles. He finds the winners circle and has the fortitude to take the shots and make the plays to get you there.

Dexter Pittman, C: Can you say nimble at 6-foot-11 and 335 (?) pounds? Injured most of the camp, Pittman didn't play until late in the weekend and those wondering how good he could be need to have only seen him hammer it down over Cole Aldrich. There is a lot of work to be done with this young man, namely getting himself down a weight where he can change ends easier and improve his conditioning. Having said that, his hands are enormous, he flashes some post moves and he knows that with some hard work he can be a player. BTW, when is the last time you saw a man of his size take it coast to coast on a break?

Alex Stepheson, PF: The knock on him has generally been that he's ultra-talented but hasn't put it together consistently. Well, at NBA Camp Stepheson turned in five strong days of consistently solid effort. He was more of a factor on the glass and in the production column than we've ever seen him be. He acknowledged that this was his best summer outing and seemed excited to build on the progress. Two months ago, he might have been the best looking physical specimen on the West Coast. Could he be on the verge of putting it all together?

2007 CHECKLIST

O.J. Mayo, PG: We've seen him a lot and this week might have been his best in terms of sticking his jumper. A hearty debate arose amongst observers about the week's top performer. Mayo's last game wasn't his best but for five days he and Durant put on a show each time they stepped on the court.

Edwin Rios, PG: There's no getting around it, Rios is a volume deep shooter. Having said that, he's a big time maker from behind the arc. Still feeling his way out as a point guard, he relies on a precise lefty jumper to help him put up numbers. He was good on Sunday and if he can continue to develop his overall feel as a point by tightening his handle and continuing to improve as a decision maker, he can be a serious asset for the ‘Canes.

NEWS & NOTES

Dexter Pittman counts offers from Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Arizona State, Texas A&M and Florida State. Kansas and North Carolina have expressed an interest. He's got a case of turf toe and that prevented him from playing at camp until later in the weekend. …

Earlier in the week Alex Stepheson provided us with a list of schools. Wake Forest was omitted but Stepheson reiterated that the Deacs are very much in the picture. … Terp recruit Eric Hayes left camp with a minor hip flexor on the final day. … Ramar Smith left camp over the weekend. …

NYC native Antonio Pena said that he's hearing from Georgia, Pittsburgh, Villanova, Louisville, Cincinnati, Seton Hall, St. John's and Syracuse. He feels like all have offered. …

SCOUT'S SEAT

Jamie Skeen stepped up and made some key winning plays on Sunday. He got to the winner's circle in high school, won a spring Charlie Weber title and now finished on this camp's top team. … Willie Walker wasn't at his best this week, but he did put a cherry on top of his performance. In the camp's 3rd place game, Walker drilled the game winning 3-pointer. …

Tywon Lawson's strength, size and athleticism in attacking the basket were noticeable even on the final day. Solid camp for Lawson, especially considering his July travel schedule that had him in France, Portland and Richmond. …

Ishmael Smith was awarded his player's card this week as the 5-foot-11 guard drew high marks from other campers who were impressed with his speed and willingness to pass the ball. …

AWARDS (voted on by NBAPA)

Most Outstanding Player: Kevin Durant

Most Promising Prospect: O.J. Mayo, Kevin Love

Top Defensive Player: Daniel Deane

Mr. Hustle: Will Walker

Best Attitude: Lance Thomas


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