Walked into Ford Center to watch practice to find the 40 member rowing team on rowing machines taking up prime practice viewing space. I noticed the back door facing the tennis courts open so I figured Id watch from there. I found myself watching the majority of practice closer to the action than I have ever been before. The following are my observations:
When I arrived the white team of Justin Davis, Rob Little, Matt Lottich, Kyle Logan, Chris Hernandez and Tyler Berkseker were taking it to the Red team. Rob thought he was a Point Center and was making some awesome passes to Justin. You got a sense that these guys liked playing together. Later on during practice Casey, Curtis and the red team showed them they werent going to be dominated two games in a row.
As ME-97 said before, these guys are a team and seem to like each other. There was constant peer coaching from the sideline. Everyone was helping each other. At one point Nick went over to Josh to explain some type of early offense during a free throw situation. At another point Curtis stopped an in-bounding drill and showed Robert the proper move. Everyone is giving constant encouragement. With a tough pre-season schedule, the learning curve is short.
The next time anyone goes to practice, watch Casey during shooting drills. His footwork and balance is the same during every shot ( Granted a jump shot is different than a slash across the lane). He can take 300 shots and they are all the same. You could tape/film his feet during a 3-hour practice and have an excellent teaching video. Great work ethic.
I talked to some of the players after practice. The consensus was it had been a tough first week of practice and the guys were feeling it. Some were having trouble doing the basic little things. The veterans recognized that there leadership roles have changed and are up for the challenge.
You get the feeling this team feels a lot like the team need after the graduation of Art Lee and Company. They were great players but now it is our time to show what we can do. If healthy, dont bet against this team in March and April.