TREVISO, Italy -- NBA general managers and scouts finally got what they were looking for at the Reebok Eurocamp this weekend -- competitive five-on-five basketball with legit NBA prospects.
Eurocamp director Pete Philo and longtime project leader Jelena Soce pulled off what the Portsmouth Invitational and the NBA draft combine in Chicago couldn't -- they got players to play.
Seeing actual prospects playing each other got Rockets GM Daryl Morey so excited, he Twittered, "The Reebok Eurocamp: Where 5-on-5 happens. Congrats to the Reebok organizers for their radical idea of having the prospects play basketball."
Morey wasn't alone in his praise. A number of top NBA decision-makers at the camp, including the Knicks' Donnie Walsh and Mike D'Antoni, the Jazz's Kevin O'Connor, the Suns' Steve Kerr, the Mavs' Donnie Nelson, the Pacers' David Morway and a host of other NBA assistant GMs and scouts, expressed similar sentiments.
Mix in a fantastic, intimate setting in which to watch basketball. Add a dash of great Italian food and gelato. Then throw in a number of potential NBA prospects fighting on the court for a shot at the NBA, and you have the gold standard for what an NBA draft camp should look like. Players played up to two competitive games a day, went through drills, met with teams and media, and still had time to get in an extra workout or two.
Heck, there was even a knockout fireworks show Sunday night.
While teams were disappointed that Brandon Jennings chose not to show and were even more frustrated when another of the camp's top prospects -- Sweden's Jonas Jerebko -- showed up at the camp a day late on Sunday and then refused to play because he was "tired" from a playoff series that had ended four days earlier, they saw players who were more than eager to go at each other.
After watching nearly 20 hours of basketball and talking to numerous GMs and scouts in attendance, here's a look at who helped and hurt their stock for both this draft and future drafts.
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