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Orlando Super Showcase Notes


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Ok, before we get started, I’m just going to put a disclaimer on this. The summary and writeup that you are about to read is not quite up to the lofty standards that you most likely have due to the tireless and stellar work of Sir Rumbaugh. I did, indeed, attend the Super Showcase today, but I didn’t talk to any players about UK’s interest or even try to.  I just took it in as a fan (which meant I was distracted by this giant banner over the court).  Basically, that’s code for “don’t tell me that my recap sucks”.

So here is your fan’s perspective:

 - The court at The Milkhouse was set up with four courts making a square, each of them divided by a curtain.  Coaches, of course, lined up on the baselines and sidelines to watch.  However, one coaching genius (and his assistant) actually set up post where the courts met and the curtains were divided, in order to watch all four games going at once.  By the end of the session, that’s where the majority of the big names were.  I’ll let you guess which coach that was. 

 - I think the most impressive performance of the day belonged to UK recruit Kyrie Irving, who had 37 points in an overtime victory.  Irving’s New Jersey Celtic team was down much of the game and only managed a tie with a half-court shot at the buzzer.  But, Irving played well throughout the contest and did so without Michael Gilchrist, who was actually playing on the other team.  Gilchrist finished with a double-double (12 and 10), but Irving stole the show in front of what turned out to be nearly the entire Wide World of Sports crowd at the end.  All the big name coaches were watching (Roy Williams, Bill Self, Jeff Capel, Trent Johnson, Jay Wright), but the Celtics didn’t really start making their comeback until Coach Cal turned to watch.  I don’t think that is a coincidence.

 - There was a lot of buzz surrounding the All Ohio Red team heading into the event and they were being touted not only as the best AAU team in the country, but even as possibly the best ever.  Unfortunately for them, the Beisner jinx came strolling in around 4:45 and the highly touted Ohio squad lost to the Illinois Rising Stars.  UK recruit Adraeiou(y)ne Payne played fairly well, but did nothing supremely exciting.  You can tell why coaches love him, though.  He’s the definition of “long”, with what looked like Shagari arms in terms of length.  He moves up and down the floor very well and, despite being extremely thin, didn’t appear to shy away from contact today.    However, his teammate Jared Sullinger, an Ohio State commit and Rivals #3 player in 2010, did not impress me at all.  Didn’t really seem to be into the game much. 

 - Most of the buzz around the complex, being that it is Florida and all, surrounded Doc Rivers’ son, Austin, who, despite being only entering his junior year, is set to be Billy Donovan’s highest-rated recruit ever.  After watching him play, I can see why.  Rivers is not only a perfect fit for what Donovan runs, he is just a flat-out star.  While his defensive effort leaves a lot to be desired (see Tweets below), his jump shot is simply a thing of beauty and essentially flawless – and has NBA range to it.  He sometimes seemed to just stand in the wing waiting for a pass, rather than attack, but I’m chalking that up to still not being used to playing without Brandon Knight, whose penetration probably left him wide open.  When he attacks the basket, he’s tough to stop off the dribble too.  There were rumors last week that he could back out of his commitment (which he denied), but right now Billy D. has to be pretty darn happy.

 - On a personal note, I made a new friend, who said he was “like an uncle to Charlie Villanueva”.  After I made him cough up $20 for betting that Rick Pitino never won a title at UK and he didn’t punch me in the face after finding out that I was really a fake journalist for a Kentucky site, we discussed a number of things related to the program.  He was from New York and said that everyone seems to be talking about the Cats up that way, which I think further confirms what we’ve all been discussing around here about Calipari making the program relevant again.  He told me about one specific shirt he’s been seeing around (the “Envy our past, Fear our future” one) and said that UK is a hot topic around his son’s U14 AAU team.  Not sure why I shared that with you.

 - On another “I’m sure you don’t care about this” note, can someone please explain this to me?  I attended Bob Huggins Basketball Camp when I was 13 and remember him being physically intimidating.  Today, as a 26 year-old, I saw him and was even more physically intimidated.  Is that normal?

 - One more short thing:  I stopped in the gym when I first arrived and tried to get my bearings a bit and stopped to watch a game so I didn’t look out of place.  I had no idea what I was watching, but all of a sudden I noticed the guy next to me was basically screaming and yelling at someone in the form of angry conversation.  Let’s just say Jim Calhoun has a clean bill of health. 

But, in all seriousness (kind of), I had the time of my life today.  If you’re anywhere near the Orlando area, definitely check out tomorrow’s events, which start pretty early.  It’s not only a great chance to watch basketball all day long, but it gives you a close-encounter situation with a lot of the big-name guys you see on TV.

And, just because I know this will really irritate a couple of my friends who screamed at me about my Twitter updates today, here are a few other things that went down, told in the form of Tweets….

thomasbeisner  jeff capel held the door for me…..what a gentleman.

thomasbeisner  early observations: pastner and andy kennedy both like to cross their legs like a lady.

thomasbeisner  Cal spotted! like any genius, he and Coach O are standing where the four courts meet and watching all four games.

thomasbeisner  Coach fom Houston BAptist just turned around and saw Cal standing behind him. Reached for his cell, looks quite flustered.

thomasbeisner  a five-foot-nothing kid from Ill. Rising Stars just took it up on Sullinger and got an And 1. Hope his grandkids are ready for that story.

thomasbeisner  NJ Celtics have 2 of the best players in the country and it looks like they stole green pennies from the Johnson Cntr

thomasbeisner  NJ celtics tie game on half-court buzzer beater. Don’t question the green pennies

thomasbeisner  Donovan wearing his “you’ll never out-shine me, Bruce” bright orange shirt

thomasbeisner  Pastner watching Barton’s team, still crossing legs like woman. Nearly everyone else in the complex watching Kyrie Irving close out win.

thomasbeisner  Strangest thing so far: all coaches at east wearing a polo….jay wright dressed like he has a coed rec soccer game. i swear i saw umbros.

thomasbeisner  Cal and Donovan standing together now watching B-more Elite. Cal has a look of peace. Billy a look of “Damn, when does Austin Rivers play?”

thomasbeisner  If you answered “in the stands with everyone else” to “where is jeff lebo?”, you win.

thomasbeisner  just by chance, ended up seated next to bill self, he’s ranting about the event. said “ridiculous”….nothing like calhoun earlier though.

thomasbeisner  The more the day goes on, the more I envy Josh Pastner. Although, he could take sitting lessons from Kevin Stallings.

thomasbeisner  The whole gym has come over to watch Austin Rivers. Donovan has just out-Pastnered Pastner. Going to need jaws of life to untangle his legs

thomasbeisner  Austin Rivers’ defensive stance reminds me of Michael Cera on the Juno movie poster….but his jumper is breath taking.

thomasbeisner  Cal kicking it with Donovan, Wright and Lebo. I’ll take them as the early favorites in the “who I had dinner with” tweet.

thomasbeisner  getting hungry, followed stale french fries smell. thought i’d find a checkers. found charlie coles.

thomasbeisner  phone’s dying, heading home…..@UKCoachCalipari , I’ll be at The Sizzler if you want to grab some grub!

Dustin will be by in the morning with a complete Vegas wrap-up.  See you in a few…

Article written by Thomas Beisner

20 responses to “Orlando Super Showcase Notes”

  1. soup

    Billy Donovan is in Lexington and is going to take the Kentucky job!

    mm

  2. ukslamdunk
  3. HeGetsIt

    Thoroughly enjoyed that Beisner! Enjoy the ball and the leg crossing

  4. wyldcatzrool

    sounds like Cal is intimidating a lot of the other coaches there with his calm, cool “I’ve got matters in hand and I’m just chillin’” demeanor…

    incident at the door to today’s event in Orlando:

    Rent-a-cop security dude (speaking to Coach Cal and Coach Antigua): Gentlemen, may I see your credentials?

    Coach Cal: Son, do you know who you’re talking to? Step aside now or I’ll see to it that you never work in this town again!

    Coach Antigua (to Coach Cal): I got this one boss.

    Coach Antigua (to rent-a-cop): Badges? We don’t need no steen-king badges! Now beat it wannabe!

    Rent-a-cop steps aside and allows Coach Cal and Coach Antigua to enter. Humiliated and alone, rent-a-cop heads to the concession stand for a chili dog and ice cold coke before tucking his tail and heading home (his parents’ basement) and crying himself to sleep to ’80′s REO Speedwagon ballads.

  5. JoeBandDenny

    Beisnerd
    Excellent. I envy your day at the games and enjoyed the post. It’s like the other depth of recruit reporting. The 4th dimension. You know what I mean.

  6. rfkyfan

    Matt, sorry to do this but did you see my post on the other blog you put up? Here it is below and it’s in reference to your fiance chasing down Roy Williams.

    rfkyfan Says:
    July 25th, 2009 at 11:20 pm
    OK, Matt this is probably something that isn’t a big deal but I thought it was funny. I read this story about your fiance and then I went to catspause and read an article about the Vegas tourney. Well, at the very bottom of the article is says that some girl ran after Roy and gave him a neck pillow. They also say something like even out that far away there are UNC fans. Obviously me reading your site about 100 times a day I remembered your story. I don’t post often, but you really should read the article to see that they name your fiance and state she is a Roy fan. Too funny!! Please let me know if this is old news or what. Thanks! GO CATS!!

    Here is the quote by the way.
    “One last note…It was extremely odd to see a fan chasing Roy Williams down after he left the gym, to bestow a gift of a Tar Heel blue Las Vegas souvenir neck pillow. It was even odder to find out that the young lady in question was Jenny White from Danville. It looks like Ol’ Roy has fans everywhere, even in Big Blue country.”

  7. mashburnfan1

    The Orlando event is awesome. I go every year and this year will be there on Monday and Tuesday for the Showcase title game and start of the AAU National Championship tourney. This event is several tourneys including 2 tourneys for the 17/under as well as 16/under. It is a ton of games for little money, food excluded. Here is a link for schedules and up to date scores.
    http://www.aauboysbasketball.org/blue/index.asp

  8. 46and2

    Hilarious -thomasbeisner The whole gym has come over to watch Austin Rivers. Donovan has just out-Pastnered Pastner. Going to need jaws of life to untangle his legs

    This is why we love BTI so much

  9. Dustin Rumbaugh

    RFKYFAN, I saw your post in the other comment section and I answered it there. By the way, Matt is single and doesn’t have a fiancee. That’s me that wrote that post.If you go back to that comment section, I answered it there.

    Also, JoeBandDenny, I’m jealous of Beisnerd’s coverage of this event. He is completely better than me and getting the humorous side of these events. Maybe me and Beisner, if he wasn’t getting ready to be completely shackled down by the wife and kids, could travel around and double team these events. Me being the boring and near silent version of Teller to Beisner’s humorous and show stealing Penn. Start getting on Matt about getting us plane tickets and hotel rooms for these events and it might be something that you see in the future. I’dlove seeing what something like that turned out to look like.

  10. wesbelow

    Beisner, I was there sporting my “Envy our past, fear our future shirt.” Also, got to talk to pelphrey for a good few minutes as well. Awesome weekend!

  11. soup

    Is matt’s email matt.jones@kentuckysportsradio.com? I really need to send him something.

  12. soup

    12- how can i send it to you? you need to see this as well.

  13. soup

    no, it does not. but maybe later.

  14. TheBigBooyah
  15. soup

    17- maybe

  16. wesbelow

    Yeah I’m sure that was me. I did see one other guy wearing the shirt too, but I was standing at Ct 1 for a while. But Pelphrey was awesome, I was in the other gym and he was walking through. He was as nice as could be, stopped and had a conversation with us like he had known us for years!

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