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Blog Entry

Off to a slow/boring start this July

Posted on: July 7, 2010 9:43 am
Edited on: July 7, 2010 9:53 am

AKRON, Ohio -- The LeBron James Skills Academy has traditionally been one of my favorite events.

This year, not so much.

The first problem is that for the second straight July the event is not "certified" with the NCAA, meaning college coaches aren't allowed to attend. So there are no college coaches here. The second problem is that most of the nation's top recruits -- among them Michael Gilchrist, Marquise Teague and Adonis Thomas -- are in Germany playing for USA Basketball in the FIBA U17 World Championship. Consequently, only three of's top 10 prospects from the Class of 2011 (No. 4 Wayne Blackshear, No. 7 P.J. Hairston and No. 8 Myck Kabongo) are in Akron. The third problem is that Nike only invited returning college players (i.e., no incoming freshmen) to work out at this event, meaning there are no guaranteed lottery picks in attendance. Contrast that to two summers ago when the list of college players included Stephen Curry, Jonny Flynn, James Harden, Hasheem Thabeet, Tyreke Evans, DeMar DeRozan and Terrence Williams, and it's easy to see this group is relatively weak. And the fourth problem is that the media is no longer allowed to watch the evening pickup games between the college players and professionals, presumably because of last year's public relations nightmare sparked by the confiscated tape of Jordan Crawford dunking on the man whose Twitter handle is now KingJames. In other words, the best stuff is off-limits to writers.

Add it up, and I'm kind of bored.

But I'll be at the King City Classic in Cleveland on Thursday, the River City Showdown in Memphis on Friday, the Nike Peach Jam in North Augusta, S.C. next week, and Las Vegas for the adidas Super 64 from July 22-26. So things will improve, I'm certain. Or, at least, I'm hopeful. In the meantime, I'll just settle for watching LeBron walk in and out of a gym. Headed to do that now.

Since: Jan 15, 2009
Posted on: July 12, 2010 4:55 pm

Off to a slow/boring start this July


How did Shelvin Mack look to you?  I read a report of him looking especially strong against Lebron and CP3.  It sounds like you weren't allowed to watch those games, but there was a write up about it on one of the

Since: Feb 8, 2007
Posted on: July 8, 2010 8:42 am

Off to a slow/boring start this July

I wanted to see the college kids.

But, mostly, I messed up.

Should've been in Indy.

I won't make the same mistake next July.

Since: Dec 21, 2006
Posted on: July 8, 2010 12:07 am

Off to a slow/boring start this July

Gary, why did you got to this camp when you could have went to the Adidas one in Indy that seemingly any NCAA coach worth his salt was at since the camp is bursting with future college talent:   

Were you misled on who would be at the LBJ one?

Since: Feb 8, 2007
Posted on: July 7, 2010 2:48 pm

Off to a slow/boring start this July

Not complaining about the job.

I know I'm lucky.

Just relatively speaking, this LeBron Academy was pretty lame.

That's all.

Since: Jun 29, 2010
Posted on: July 7, 2010 2:12 pm

Off to a slow/boring start this July

All that said you are still being paid to watch guys play ball, not a bad gig if you can get it.  I like my job alot, but I would probably rather be bored in a gym watching guys hoop it up than clean several acres of greenhouse in 90+ heat. 

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