Thursday, April 03, 2008

Iman Shumpert not happy with McDonalds AA Game

Well, one thing's for sure reading this article - you would be led to believe that Iman Shumpert values team principles and winning over showboating and individual accomplishment. Why? In a nutshell - he hated his McDonalds All-American game experience - at the least the part where they actually simulated the game of basketball.

Iman's stat-line: 0-1, 0pts, 5 boards, 1 assist. The two times I saw him with the ball he was looking to find open guys streaking up the court.......... and he did.

Check out these quotes:

"I don't have fun losing and I don't have fun watching people not play defense, so [the game] wasn't fun for me at all," Shumpert said. "If you don't touch the ball, you can't do anything really. Every time I touched it, I looked up ahead to pass the ball to people who were down the court."

"I figured the game would be like that, but I didn't know it would be that bad," he said. "I can't lie and say I had fun at this game. I just didn't like the way it was set up. It's tough to get going when you're not touching the ball, so I tried to just get rebounds and play defense so I could do something positive for our team."

Now, he did have high praise for the off-the-court experience:

"I had a lot of fun this week," Shumpert said. "This is a great group of guys and we had a lot of laughs and smiles. I'll definitely remember hanging out with all the guys at the Ronald McDonald House. All the kids [there] with the problems they have, and they still find a way to smile. That was the highlight of my weekend."

Are you beaming a bit? Seems like a great kid, with his values in the right place. High character kid. Now, let me give you the reality check. Iman wants what all these kids want - a shot at the NBA:

"My parents and my family have been behind me 100-percent," Shumpert said. "Ever since I was little, they have been telling me I could go to the NBA. A lot of people have doubted me, but when I rose up the rankings now everybody thinks it's true. Being a McDonald's All-American, I definitely have a smile on my face earning that honor."

Thaddeus Young was a high character kid too............ and Chris Bosh........ you get the point.

I'm not saying Iman is a one-and-done guy, and he certainly is not as big or as adept as Javaris Crittenton running the point. However, he is a big-bodied guard who can shoot, play defense, create plays and maybe run a team.

There's a reason that Paul Hewitt called Marquette to express interest in Tyshawn Taylor, another 6'3" Point Guard who is asking to be released from his letter-of-intent now that head coach Tom Crean is heading to Indiana. Hewitt knows the value of depth at the PG spot. It's probably going to be a battle of "Techs" - GT and VT, with maybe VT having an edge.

You know, to me, the college Point Guard position almost needs to become like the running back position in the NFL. Every team is basically looking for two "feature" backs now. NFL teams want two guys to split the load maybe 60/40 or 70/30, and that's been a luxury for college basketball teams. However, the Miller / Causey experiment proved the value of complementary players at PG position. You can go back to Best / Barry for a great Batman/Robin duo. It works.

Anyhow, back to my original point - I like this Iman Shumpert guy. He certainly will hold a place on the all-name team.