McD 2002: Tuesday Practice Report

NEW YORK -- David Thompson, <i>IC</i>'s on-scene correspondent, reports on the play of the three Tar Heels recruits at the McDonald's All-American Tuesday afternon practice.

* The three UNC recruits have already established a clear chemistry between them. May and Felton were placed together in drills often, while McCants and Felton continually high-fived and encouraged each other It was a sight to see -- these three playing on the same squad and going through practice together.

* The East squad's drills and practice were far more active and aggressive than the West squad's. Someone noted that perhaps the East is much more familiar with each other, having gone head-to-head more in the past and perhaps having the more notorious basketball reputations. Another explanation offered was West Coast finesse versus East Coast physical style of play.

Raymond Felton

* His intensity is apparent at every moment on the court.

* He appeared to be the de facto "captain" of the East squad, leading warmups and stretching, and the leadership role of course in running the offense, but in taking the squad through drills as well.

* Viewing from the sidelines, he seemed to have a hitch in his jump shot during the first part of practice, but by the end he was red hot and hitting everything.

*What stood out was his passing. His command of the floor and mastery of passing lanes was uncanny and every move he made was precise.

* If you do not put a body on Raymond Felton, he will hurt you somehow with the basketball.

Rashad McCants

* McCants was the only player on the floor more intense than Felton, although a much different type of intensity. Rashad's seems to be an emotional intensity while Raymond's seems to be intensity in effort and relentless aggressiveness toward getting the ball to the basket.

* He was vocal, as usual, jawing at Carmelo Anthony at one point over a block/jump ball situation in practice 3-on-3 drills. This guy is the definition of a competitive attitude.

*Rashad took the ball straight at every player he went against in practice -- he doesn't back down.

Sean May

* At one point blocked three straight shot attempts by Amare Stoudemire.

* Had an awe-inspiring reverse layup past two defenders from the baseline, showcasing agility beyond that of the other big men.

* Did not attempt anything outside of the paint during practice, although he was hitting almost everything during warmups.

* Someone in the crowd of scouts and analysts mentioned that Sean perhaps was the most impressive of all those on the court because he surpassed expectations.

* Sean was always, I repeat, ALWAYS in the right place at the right time

Misc. Notes

* The three UNC All-Americans will be interviewed by CNNSI at 12:30 p.m. on Wednesday -- to air at a later date.

* Daniel Horton, the All-American from Texas who inked with Michigan, has a younger brother, Jason, who is a star sophomore point guard. Daniel told IC that his Jason was quite fond of the early attention he was receiving from North Carolina.


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