McD: Sunday Practice Report

SAN DIEGO --- North Carolina signees Brandan Wright, Wayne Ellington and Tywon Lawson teamed up for the first time at Sunday afternoon's East squad practice for the 2006 McDonald's All-American game.


Wayne Ellington - A terrific day of practice for the smooth wing guard from Philly, Ellington impressed with his shooting. He looks to be every bit as tall as his 6-5 high school teammate Gerald Henderson and continues to add bulk to his frame. He's particularly tough curling tightly off of screens and his mid-range game looks to be on point. As usual he launched some bombs from beyond the three-point line but looked to be much more judicious with his deep range shot selection than he was during his senior season. He was the best of the Carolina trio during the first practice session.

Tywon Lawson - While Ellington shined brightly, the 5-11 Lawson wasn't exactly a slouch on Sunday. He took care of the ball, got into the lane when necessary and scored on a variety of floaters and flip shots in the paint. Often matched up against Georgia Tech-bound Javaris Crittendon, Lawson did have some struggles with the bigger guard but he found ways to adjust. After a slow start he eased into things and was in full control by the time practice finished up.

Brandan Wright - Usually a reliable finisher around the hoop, Wright uncharacteristically botched some easy finishes around the basket. Rather than finishing strong he seemed content to extend for finger rolls and the result was some balls fell off of the rim instead of through the hoop. Like he always does, he came over from the help side and blocked some shots and he also hit a few of his high arching lefty jumpers.


D.J. Augustin - Primarily matched up with Kansas bound Sherron Collins, who also played extremely well, the future Texas Longhorn did a terrific job of setting up his teammates. He knocked home some jumpers and looked to have good chemistry with future teammate Kevin Durant. One worry is an ankle that never seems to heal and he does have his struggles getting his shoulders past quicker defenders off the bounce.

Earl Clark - In reality, Clark didn't really accomplish a ton during the practice session but the brief vision of what he is capable of is worthy of some mention. Standing every bit of 6-9, he has advanced skills with the ball in his hand and handles and passes like a player a foot shorter. He probably threw the pass of the day with one particularly pretty 50 foot bounce pass through traffic.

Gerald Henderson - Like his high school teammate Ellington, Henderson was a model of efficiency. His game exudes confidence and he's got the patience, strength and athleticism to go along with his quiet bravado. You have to admire his ability to finish tough drives with his left hand from as far as 10 feet away from the hoop and he's an absolutely explosive finisher around the basket.

Daequan Cook - Considering he was busy winning a state championship on Saturday night, the energy Cook played with was impressive. His mid range jumper is and always will be a weapon and he's quick off the floor for slams and offensive rebounds. On a few occasions he drew Demond Carter in the post and quickly took care of his smaller teammate.

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