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Wizards summer school: Chris Singleton


Wizards summer school: Chris Singleton

If Chris Singleton wants to return next season as the starting small forward for the Wizards, he will need to put in a lot of work this summer.

Coach Randy Wittman and his staff have to get Singleton to be more assertive and confident in his offensive game moving forward.

Singleton clearly needs to improve on attacking the basket. Last season, Singleton far too often settled for jump shots and three-pointers when he ismorethan capable of getting to the basket with his 6'-9" 230-pound frame. Singleton showed he can knock down the three-pointer but he was way too predictable offensively, taking deep shots rather than mix in other moves. Singleton only averaged four points and three rebounds in his rookie season.

Singletonshowed flashes during this past season, scoring 12 points, grabbing seven rebounds, plucking three steals and tallying two blocks in a loss against New York in early January. His best game was a 16-point, nine-rebound and two-block effort against Milwaukee in late February.

Singletonalso must get stronger in his upper body, as it seemed that when he did try to attack the basket he was an easy stop for defenders because he couldn't muscle his way inside. IfSingletoncan add an inside game, he will be a much bigger threat than just a jump-shooter.

Singleton could also really work on his ball fake with a drive to the basket. Since he likes to shoot it, Singleton can bait defenders into thinking he is going to shoot and drive right by them.

Even then he has to work on his shot.Singletonshot a respectable 35 percent from beyond the arc but only 37 percent overall from the field.

Summing up, Singleton just needs to hone his offensive game to steer away from being just a one-dimensionaljump shooter. He needs tocontinueto work on moves like a good shot fake and then drive to the basket. Singleton can explode to the basket if he gets a step on his defender. He will need to do that more next season if he wants to stick in the starting lineup.

Singleton will participate in the Las Vegas Summer League and it will be important for him to get some confidence back in his game, because at times he looked a shade sheepish on the court last season.

The team simply needs more production from the small forward spot next year andSingleton has the potential to do so. Singleton has a good attitude, so expect him to put in the work to get better this off-season.

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Former Terp Kevin Huerter makes NBA All-Rookie Second Team

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Former Terp Kevin Huerter makes NBA All-Rookie Second Team

With Dallas' Luka Doncic and Atlanta's Trae Young leading the way, the top five NBA draft picks from 2018 have been selected as the top five NBA rookies this season.

Doncic and Young were unanimous first-team selections for the NBA All-Rookie team, which was announced Tuesday. Phoenix's Deandre Ayton, Memphis' Jaren Jackson and Sacramento's Marvin Bagley III are also on the first team, which was chosen by 100 voters who cover the league.

Ayton, Bagley, Doncic, Jackson and Young were the first five picks in the last year's draft.

This marks the first time since the 1984 draft that the first five picks ended up as first-team all-rookie -- the selections that year being Hakeem Olajuwon, Sam Bowie, Michael Jordan, Sam Perkins, Charles Barkley. That was the entirety of the rookie team that season; the NBA didn't start doing first- and second-team selections until 1988-89.

The Hawks had two all-rookie selections this season, with Kevin Huerter on the second team to join Young. Also on the second team were a pair of Los Angeles Clippers, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Landry Shamet, along with Cleveland's Collin Sexton and New York's Mitchell Robinson.

Rookie of the year will be announced at the NBA Awards show in Los Angeles on June 24. Doncic, Young and Ayton are the finalists.

Doncic and Young join other unanimous first-team all-rookie picks over the last decade: Ben Simmons and Donovan Mitchell (2018), Malcolm Brogdon and Dario Saric (2017), Karl-Anthony Towns and Kristaps Porzingis (2016), Andrew Wiggins (2015), Michael Carter-Williams (2014), Damian Lillard (2013), Kyrie Irving (2012), Blake Griffin (2011) and Tyreke Evans, Brandon Jennings and Stephen Curry (2010).

Others receiving votes: Phoenix's Mikal Bridges, New York's Kevin Knox and Allonzo Trier, Minnesota's Josh Okogie, Dallas' Jalen Brunson, Brooklyn's Rodions Kurucs, Chicago's Wendell Carter Jr., Charlotte's Mile Bridges, Detroit's Bruce Brown, Sacramento's Harry Giles III, Orlando's Mo Bamba and Indiana's Aaron Holiday.


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Tim Connelly explains his interview with Wizards, decision to stay with Nuggets

Tim Connelly explains his interview with Wizards, decision to stay with Nuggets

Tim Connelly sat down with Wizards owner Ted Leonsis about the head front-office opening on Friday.

On Monday, NBC Sports Washington confirmed that he decided to stick with his role as president of basketball operations for the Denver Nuggets

A day later, he spoke to the media at a press conference and answered questions about his meeting with Washington.

Clear in Connelly's comments were his respect for Leonsis, but commitment to continuity in Denver. 

"I had a really nice conversation with Mr. Leonsis and his staff. He's a fantastic owner, I think a real visionary. I was really impressed by who he was and his thoughts for the team. That team's going to be special quickly under his leadership. We just had a conversation and not much more than that."

As for the reason for the discussion with Leonsis, Connelly said it came down to his love for the franchise. 

"I spent 14 years there. Certainly it's where I'm from, it's where my wife's from, so I just wanted to have the conversation because I care about the organization," he said.

"I'd never had an audience with [Leonsis], so to have that conversation and exchange of ideas, you know, it's flattering." 

Ultimately, however, the Baltimore native emphasized that Washington couldn't entice him away from the franchise he'd spent the last six years building. 

"Loyalty and patience is such a rarity in professional sports and that's here in spades. Those things matter to me," he said. "I had a hard time envisioning myself elsewhere."

With Connelly out of the picture, the list of candidates for the Wizards front-office opening is narrowing. Currently, Tommy Sheppard, Danny Ferry and Troy Weaver remain in the conversation.