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Wizards Mini-Camp: Day 1

July 8, 2013

Jeremy Hyman |

7:45 pm:  Just wrapped up Day 1 of camp.  Like with any first day, there were a lot teaching points that needed to be taught, but for the most part the practice went pretty well. 

A lot of fast-break-type drills to get everyone running and teach that philosophy to get out and run immediately.  We got our first look at the two rookie draft picks, Otto Porter and Glen Rice, Jr. which was exciting and neither disappointed.  Porter's length could not go unnoticed as he constantly tipped balls and came away with steals.  One of his highlights tonight was when he soared for a rebound, took the ball coast-to-coast, and then pulled up and sank a 15-foot jump-shot.  That one play showed many of the areas Porter can help this Wizards team, and while we can't get carried away with a mini-camp scrimmage, it's nice to see what he's capable of doing on the court.  As for Rice Jr., he also showed why he's called a "pure scorer" as he showed an ability to score both inside and out.  He finished at the basket with some acrobatic lay-ins and also showed his ability to shoot the ball.  I saw a little bit of a Monta Ellis-type game from Rice Jr. tonight in the scrimmage, though again, we can't get carried away and now project Rice to average 20 points per game next year.  However, I think he could be a guy that sees minutes at the two guard when the team is looking for an offensive spark off the bench.    

Another note worth mentioning from tonight was seeing the length this Wizards summer league roster has.   Between Singleton, Vesely, Porter and Rice Jr., they can play pretty long and stretch the floor as all of these guys can really get out on the break and guard multiple positions.  It will be interesting to see which lineups they use and how the matchups shake out in Vegas, but the length of the Wizards wings should be a real factor. 

I have to also note the spectacular behind-the-back move we saw from the former Dayton guard Kevin Dillard.  It may have been the highlight of the night as Dillard went right to the cup, put the ball behind his back and then finished with a nice lay-up.  Dillard is an undrafted rookie out of Dayton who worked out for the Wizards during pre-draft workouts and was actually in the same workout as Otto Porter. 

After the practice, we heard from Porter, Rice Jr., Beal, Singleton, and Vesely.  The full interviews will be up later on Monumental Network along with some highlights from Day 1. 

Tuesday and Wednesday will be two-a-days as the Wiz have a practice scheduled for the morning and the night.  Tuesday night is also Summerfest, which will feature an open scrimmage between the Wizards summer league team.  See more details here 

5:00 pm: After some stretching, the summer league team went into some three-man weave and fast-break drills.  One positive sign was seeing Bradley Beal take part in this non-contact portion of the practice.  He was running the fast-break, taking shots, and looked to be moving well.  No sign of any lingering effects of his leg injury, but the team will proceed with caution as we are still over three months away from any real game action. 

4:15 pm: Hello friends, checking in courtside from Day 1 of Wizards mini-camp. It's great to see a live practice again after a few months off.  A lot of unfamiliar faces on the court as we learn the Summer League roster, but there are some we recognize.  Jan Vesely and Chris Singleton are the two returning Wizards out here, while this is our first look at the 2013 draft class featuring Otto Porter and Glen Rice, Jr.   Some other notable names who have seen some time in the league are Josh Boone, Sundiata Gaines, and Dennis Horner.  Also cool to see little Cook Book out here, though he's not so little.  Devin Booker, the younger brother of Trevor, is on the Summer League roster and like Trevor is built like a rock.   

Being that this is the first day, we expect much of the practice to be spent on terminology and walk-through type drills. As we get closer to Vegas, there will be more scrimmaging and 5-on-5 drills.