Katz: Draft viewers guide
Katz: Casing the draft
Thursday, June 26
Updated: June 26, 4:06 PM ET
Going through the draft's stress tests
By Andy Katz
NEW YORK -- Jarvis Hayes was pretty cool and calm for someone who had reason to be anxious, fatigued and downright cranky Wednesday afternoon.
The Georgia junior wing answered Orlando's request for a last-minute workout Tuesday night, so he flew from Atlanta to Orlando, arriving at 11:30 p.m. He went straight to the practice facility and worked out for Doc Rivers and company at 1 a.m., finishing around 1:30 a.m. He said he had to get up at 6 a.m. for a flight to New York and greet the media by noon.
Hayes worked out for nine teams, a total of 11 workouts (two teams twice) in the last 10 days.
"I snuck in from Orlando," Hayes said. "Orlando had a top-15 pick so it's definitely worth doing that."
Maciej Lampe, an 18-year old forward from Poland, and Texas sophomore T.J. Ford worked out for the Knicks Wednesday, a little more than 24 hours before the draft. Ford thought he was done working out for teams. So did Lampe. Yet, Lampe spent his final few days before the draft flying across the country. He worked out for Seattle on Sunday, took a red-eye flight through Los Angeles for Miami and worked out for the Heat before coming to New York. During the process, he took an elbow from a practice player at the Heat workout and had a nifty black-and-blue bruise by his left eye.
"Been tiring flying from city to city," Lampe said. "It's tough, but this (Wednesday) was the last workout. I'll be relieved when it's over, but I got a chance to see America.
"Workouts are important, but it's hard to judge a player on one workout. His legs could be tired from traveling. But you have to remember that it's an 82-game season in the NBA and so that's going to happen. They have to see what good condition you are in and you've got to keep up."
Lampe said he's not nervous about Thursday night. He just wants to start his new life in the United States, regardless of his draft position.
Serbian wing Aleksandar Pavlovic worked out for 22 teams in the past month. No one would blame Pavlovic if he had angst about where he'll play next season.
Pit these experiences to the easy run the top three picks have had of late. LeBron James only had to work out for Cleveland. Darko Milicic had a token workout for Detroit. Carmelo Anthony did the same thing for Denver.
On Wednesday, the "Big Three" held its own news conference, while the other potential lottery picks had to share a communal news conference in a banquet room, answering questions from a host of reporters for nearly an hour.
Anthony is actually a bit bored by the process. He would like some sort of suspense instead of knowing for weeks he'll be No. 3 in line and headed to Denver.
"I'm anxious, but it's hard to be anxious when you know where you're going," Anthony said. "You don't have to worry about anything until your name is called. Right after the national championship, everyone was saying I was going two or three. Once Detroit said I wasn't going to work out, I knew I was going to Denver."
James said the only time he might get anxious would be when he's shaking the hand of NBA commissioner David Stern. But that's it. He knows he's going No. 1 and to the Cavaliers.
|The whirlwind tour of Georgia's Jarvis Hayes, left, took him to New York to meet the media on Wednesday.|
James, Milicic and Anthony have what every NBA draft prospect wants -- peace of mind. On the eve of the draft, even a senior like Kansas' Kirk Hinrich can't stand the wait.
"I've been real anxious every day and as it gets closer it gets worse," Hinrich said. "The other day in the apartment (in Lawrence) it was all I could think about. It's such a big deal and it will make a big impact in your life. There's lot of anxiety."
Hinrich said former teammate Drew Gooden gave him a tip for knowing when to stand up from the table in the "green room."
"Look for the first syllables out of (Stern's) mouth to see who it is," Hinrich said. "That's what I'll be doing."
For Marquette's Dwyane Wade, his anxiety is different than most draft picks. He has a wife and child. So he can't just worry about himself. He's worried about where his family will live for the next four years.
"If I were on my own and was a bachelor, then I wouldn't care," Wade said. "But not knowing what city you'll live in is hard."
Louisville's Reece Gaines wasn't originally invited to be in New York. But someone within the league must have let the Gaines camp know that he could go high in the first round or else they might not have invited him to the Garden. Regardless, the invitation added to Gaines' butterflies.
"My mind is going crazy right now and I don't know what's going on," Gaines said.
"If you know where you're going then you don't have anything to worry about," Anthony said. "Growing up watching the draft, the more that I didn't know where they were going, made it worth watching."
||I've been real anxious every day and as it gets closer it gets worse. The other day in the apartment (in Lawrence) it was all I could think about. It's such a big deal and it will make a big impact in your life. There's lot of anxiety. ”
||— Kirk Hinrich
Andy Katz is a senior writer at ESPN.com.