Commentary

Cooley's tough defense frustrates Hamilton as action heats up

Originally Published: June 20, 2008
By Antonio Williams | Scouts Inc.

Brennan CougilAndrew Shurtleff for ESPN.comBig center Brennan Cougil swats a shot away during Thursday evening's session at the NBPA Top 100 Camp.
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Close games and passionate play dominated the action during the evening session of the second day of the NBPA Top 100 Camp. During this session, teams played defense with better intensity, and players have shown competitive fire, focusing on both winning and proving themselves as individuals.

Scouting notes
Wallace Judge, 6-9 Combo Forward
Judge made a concerted effort to use his size and athleticism to play on the interior, as opposed to drifting out on the perimeter. When he played inside, Judge displayed great post moves and a never-ending motor, crashing the boards on both ends of the court. On balls he received in the post, he finished with authority in traffic around the rim.

Nolan Dennis
Andrew Shurtleff for ESPN.comNolan Dennis' willingness to get his teammates involved has stood out.
Nolan Dennis, 6-5 Combo Guard
Dennis has a quick enough first step that allows him to penetrate to the basket. He also has the ability to hit the perimeter shot, especially if he has time to set his feet. Dennis really excels in the open court due to his unselfishness and passing ability.

David Wear, 6-10 PF
Wear demonstrated his diverse set of offensive skills throughout the game while matching up against his twin brother, Travis. David Wear can score the ball in the paint by relying on solid post moves and his impressive ability to shoot jump hooks with either hand. Wear also can utilize his jump shot when he goes to his turn-and-face moves from the mid-post area.

Michael Dixon, 6-1 PG
Dixon, matched up against highly touted PG Maalik Wayns, excelled on the defensive end and managed to keep the aggressive Wayns out of the paint. Dixon has quick feet and maintains a low base, allowing him to stay in front of guards attempting to penetrate. He also anticipated and played passing lanes for steals very well.

Jack Cooley, 6-9 C
Cooley does not have explosive athleticism, but he gets the most out of his ability. He has a big body, and despite giving up foot speed, he used his physical style of play to frustrate a prolific scorer, SF Jordan Hamilton. Cooley also crashed the offensive boards and scrapped for loose balls, leading to extra scoring opportunities for himself and his team.

Jordan Hamilton, 6-7 SF
Hamilton clearly became frustrated with the physical Cooley and started to force shots on offense -- a bad tactic for him since he does not possess the explosive quickness and athleticism to bail him out when he gets into trouble. Hamilton started to converse with referees and pout a little when Cooley bodied him up. Hamilton responded to Cooley's defensive aggressiveness by simply putting his head down and trying to bull his way to the rim -- an approach that won't produce a great deal of foul calls and free throw attempts for him.

Peyton Siva
Jason Watson for ESPN.comPeyton Siva's confidence and open-court skills make him one of the top point guards in the '09 class.
Peyton Siva, 6-0 PG
Siva wreaks havoc in the open court with his speed and passing skills. He also went on a 3-point barrage, hitting long jumpers both in transition and in half-court sets. Once he got rolling, Siva believed he would connect on every shot from the perimeter, and his team fed off his confidence.

Roger Franklin, 6-5 SF
Franklin has a scorer's mentality, believing he can score on almost anyone at any time. He prefers to get into the mid-range area and use his leaping ability to jump over defenders for the pull-up jumper. As he heats up, he starts taking bad shots, and he needs to improve his passing and decision-making. If he strengthens those two areas, he will get easier shots in the mid-range.

Hollis Thompson, 6-6 SF
Thompson uses his length and athleticism to finish shots above the rim fairly often. Once in the air, he also has the body control and hang time to adjust if a defender makes an attempt to block his shot.

Noel Johnson
Jason Watson for ESPN.comWith better shot selection, Noel Johnson will be tougher to guard.
Noel Johnson, 6-7 SG/SF
Johnson's penchant for taking tough, contested shots makes him a streaky shooter. Better shot selection will alleviate some of his streakiness and make him tougher to guard. Once he gets under control, he does pass the ball well, especially off penetration.

Lorenzo Brown, 6-4 SG
Brown impressed with his passing skills and vision throughout the game. He adeptly found open teammates for high-percentage scoring chances. Brown also used his quickness to drive the ball to the basket.

Ian Hummer, 6-7 Combo Forward
The left-handed Hummer has deceptive athleticism and quickness. He can step out on the perimeter and hit the jumper with relative ease, as well as finish in traffic on the interior. Hummer runs the floor decently and rebounds the ball on both ends of the court. He also plays solid post defense and typically does not concede post position.

Jeronne Maymon, 6-7 Combo Forward
Maymon has good athleticism, long arms and a good frame, allowing him to take slower defenders to the rim and finish while absorbing contact in the paint. He needs to improve his ballhandling and jump shot if he intends to spend more time away from the basket.

C.J. Leslie, 6-7 Combo Forward
Leslie has lively legs and uses his leaping ability to make plays on both ends of the court. He finishes above the rim in transition on offense and contests shots on the defensive end. Leslie will have to continue to show progress with his jumper and ballhandling to play small forward on a full-time basis on the next level.

Kendall Marshall, 6-4 PG
Marshall again displayed his sound vision and passing skills. He exhibits patience and does not speed up his game and rush into turnovers, despite the fact he does not have explosive quickness. Although Marshall has shot the ball fairly well, he needs to continue to improve his jumper and get a little lower to the ground when he handles the ball because smaller, quicker guards could get under him and bother him with their pressure.

Antonio Williams is a recruiting coordinator for Scouts Inc. He previously worked as an NBA scout for Marty Blake Associates.

Antonio Williams

Basketball Recruiting
Antonio Williams is a recruiting coordinator for Scouts Inc. He previously worked as an NBA scout for Marty Blake Associates.

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