Pre-Draft Camp a Mixed Bag For Heels

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – The North Carolina triumvirate headed to Disney World on Monday hoping to secure spots in the first round of June's NBA Draft. But injuries and inconsistent play overshadowed one strong performance as the Tar Heels return home with more questions than answers.

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Wayne Ellington:

Wednesday may as well have been a soap opera for the North Carolina players on the Pre-Draft Camp's first full day of drills and games. Danny Green tallied nine points and four rebounds in an effort hampered by a sprained left ankle suffered in a Tar Heel pick-up game three weeks ago.

Wayne Ellington was up next, and delivered arguably the worst performance of the day with eight points on 3-of-10 shooting with no rebounds and six turnovers. And then – as if on cue – Ty Lawson showcased a healthy ankle in a dominating display with 10 points (4-of-6) and five assists.

But while Ellington redeemed himself with a 17-point outing on Thursday, Lawson was sidelined before his second game even started with a hip pointer, and Green fell hard after a botched alley-oop from Gonzaga's Jeremy Pargo, injuring his left hip and elbow. Neither Green nor Lawson participated in Friday's games or drills.

Ellington avoided the injury bug and had a decent showing on Friday with 10 points and three assists.

"I think I was solid," Ellington said after his team lost its third game of the week, 87-78. "I didn't score too much in the second half, but I got out to a pretty start. It was a tough game, but I think I was pretty solid."

Despite the slow start to the week, the Philadelphia native thought he had an overall solid showing in this difficult setting for the NBA executives in attendance.

"It's tough, man – it's a tough atmosphere," Ellington said. "Especially playing in games. Everybody's out there trying to show what they can do. So it's definitely not like a team basketball thing, and that's something Carolina guys are used to, so it's something that you have to adjust your game for."

With NBA team workouts scheduled in the double digits (his first is in Toronto next week), Ellington is in no rush to make a decision about whether to keep his name in the draft or not, because the individual showcases will help make that decision for him.

"Workouts and getting feedback," said Ellington, when asked what will be the determining factor in his decision. "Just getting feedback from my coach and after my workouts, I'll be able to make an educated decision… I think workouts are a pretty important part of it."

Green was not quite as optimistic about his week's performance on Friday morning.

"I think I played okay," Green said. "The first game I didn't do too well. I feel like I played the second game a lot better [and] was able to show a little bit off, but I was only able to show off a little of what I wanted to show. I didn't get a chance to. I haven't been healthy all week."

The North Babylon, N.Y. product will have MRI's taken on his ankle and elbow on Saturday, and indicated that if the injuries prevented him from conducting his individual workouts then he will "most likely" return to North Carolina next fall.

But injuries permitting, Green plans to go through the entire process before making his final decision.

"The whole purpose in me coming down here was to get more individual workouts with teams, so hopefully some of the GM's saw some things," Green said.

Lawson begins his individual workouts next week as well, with trips planned to Portland and Sacramento. He maintains his plan to return to North Carolina if he's not viewed as a top-20 pick in the NBA's June 26th draft. The players have until June 16th to withdraw their name from consideration and remain eligible for college.

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