ABCD: Tuesday News & Notes

HACKENSACK, N.J. -- The first day of games at the adidas ABCD Camp tipped off Tuesday afternoon. It was also the first day of the NCAA's summer open period, so coaches filled the bleachers [Pictured: Roy Williams].

* Roy Williams and assistant coach Steve Robinson were prominent figures at the gym Tuesday. The two spent most of the afternoon and evening standing in the back row of the bleachers between courts 2 and 3. Some of the big names that played in front of them included J.R. Smith and Dwight Howard.

* Marvin Williams was sidelined Tuesday with the ankle injury he suffered in Colorado Springs at the USA Festival a week ago. He said he'll try to play on it in the coming days here, but it didn't look promising. The goal is to be healthy in time for the Las Vegas Big Time and a local event he's scheduled to attend later this month.

* The word "dominate" is often overused, but no one has dominated here like Dwight Howard. He abused a Top 50 defender (Lorenzo Mata) for 20 points and 14 boards (6 off) in the afternoon matchup and coasted for 11 points and 10 rebounds in the evening. Those are impressive stats at a camp like this where games are short and each player is on the court for only half the time. Howard's dominance on the glass was the most notable aspect. As good as everyone knows he is, the 6-11 Georgia native doesn't get enough credit for the extent of his physical play. Those that try to battle under the boards with Howard get seriously punished with forearms, hip checks, etc. He is unstoppable here when he wants to be. It's going to take some unimaginable performances for someone to unseat him as the No. 1 player in the class of 2004.

Dwight Howard

"I'm just trying to play hard," Howard said. "Whoever's out there I'm trying to dominate them."

And he did just that.

As for his recruitment, there really is nothing new to report. The list is still long, no new visits have been made and he has no immediate plans to make a decision. Howard's contact with UNC thus far has been one unofficial visit during the Tournament of Champions in May and a visit to his school by Roy Williams. (He discounted some rumors circulating of an additional UNC visit). We didn't even bother bringing up the obvious – the NBA.

* J.R. Smith showed up late for his first game, and according to the statisticians he didn't score (though we watched him get a few apparently unrecorded points). Either way, it was a quiet afternoon. He bounced back in the evening for 13 points, including 2-5 from beyond the arc.

And his timetable for a college decision?

"It's going to be over by the end of the summer definitely," he said. "I'm tired of waiting. Carolina's still my favorite, but they still haven't offered me yet."

If the Heels don't offer, UConn is next on the list.

* Players that no longer list North Carolina – Josh Wright and Glen Davis.

* Mario Chalmers might not be the top floor general in his class, but he's certainly very good. Most college coaches are getting their first look at the 2005 point guard from Alaska this week and will assuredly be giving him a call. From a decision-making standpoing, he's terrific – passing, spacing and a solid mid-range shot led to a strong first day.

Biggest matchup with the most surprising result? Darius Washington destroys Shaun Livingston. Washington had 16 points and 9 assists (he can be a Top 5 point guard when he limits his shots, as was the case here with 7-10 from the field) and Livingston finished with 2 points (0-4 fg) and 2 assists. Washington led his team, pushing the ball up the court and finding teammates, while also wowing the fans with spectacular drives to the hoop. He seems to thrive in these one-on-one matchups, as was the case when he went toe-to-toe with Sebastian Telfair last year.

Players, among others, that we plan to watch, talk to and report back on Thursday – Julius Powell, James Mays and Joseph Jones.

(Jeff Goodman and Jeff Markman contributed to this report.)

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