Feb. 20, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Washington Wizards forward Jan Vesely during game against the Phoenix Suns at the US Airways Center. The Suns defeated the Wizards 104-88. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE
Editor's Note: More from BNIE below.
LAS VEGAS -- The Washington Wizards, for all intents and purposes, are bringing a five-man team to Las Vegas for the 2012 NBA Summer League. The team is already deep in guaranteed contracts, so unlike in previous years, nobody under-the-radar is really auditioning for a job. That means that, with no disrespect to Garrett Siler and Shavlik Randolph, the only players that really matter to the Wizards are the five ones already under team control.
Those five, of course, are Bradley Beal, Jan Vesely, Chris Singleton, Shelvin Mack and Tomas Satoransky. Below the jump, I've listed a couple things I'd like to see from each player over the next six days.Bradley Beal
- Make shots: Simple, really, but he was billed as a shooter, so it'd be nice if he showed it.
- Run pick and roll with a purpose: It's one thing to handle the ball and be a decoy of sorts on pick and rolls, searching out other options. We know Beal is capable of doing that. But I'd like to see him properly use pick and roll to attack, whether it's creating a jump shot for himself or driving to the basket. If he can do that, it truly shows off his versatility.
- How's that jumper coming? This is the storyline to watch with Vesely all summer. He's put in a lot of work, but as Randy Wittman said last Tuesday, it's one thing to drain perimeter shots with confidence in practice, but it's another to do it in a game. Summer League is not kind to big men, so Vesely must display more of a perimeter game.
- Rebounding: The Wizards may use Vesely as the biggest guy on the floor at times, and to do that, he must control the defensive glass. He improved in this area over the course of last season, but he has a ways to go.
- Shot fake and drive: We'll know that Singleton is poised for a breakout if he is consistently taking the ball from the perimeter to the hole. He'll have plenty of spot-up opportunities where he'll need to drive instead of settle for the long ball. He cannot get bumped off his path so easily.
- Defensive positioning: Singleton was caught off-balanced too much against elite scorers last year. If that's happening against younger players in Summer League, we have a problem.
- How's that spot-up jumper? Mack shot very poorly from the floor last year, and to retain some offensive value, he must make himself more of a perimeter threat. That should open up the kind of drives he needs to make to be creating plays for others offensively.
- How fast will he play? Last year, Mack often managed the game too much, walking the ball up the floor when advancing it faster would have been preferable. Summer League is more wide-open, so will Mack push the action when the time is right?
- Can he play? Let's be honest: almost none of us know how good he is.
- And ... that pretty much covers it.
What are you looking to see from the five key players over the next six days?