Week 1 of Washington Wizards preseason training camp is in the books.
After a few months off, the players returned to D.C. and we're joined by several new teammates. Some through trade, others through free agency and one from the first round of the 2018 NBA Draft.
After keeping a close eye on the team's first-round draft pick Troy Brown Jr. all week, here are five key observations to consider regarding the rookie:
- The 19-year-old doesn't seem to be phased by life in the NBA thus far.
Brown's confidence, although concealed, is through the roof.
Brown was a 2017 McDonald's All-American and went on to average 11.3 points, 6.2 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game in his lone season at Oregon.
He believes he can do it at any level and has enough humility to continue to learn along the way.
- His Vegas Summer League performance set the bar high and earned the respect of John Wall
It's no secret that the Wizards enter the 2018-19 season with the most roster depth, at least on paper, that the team has ever had during the John Wall era.
If newcomers Dwight Howard, Austin Rivers, and Jeff Green are able to stay healthy, they will bring toughness and a boatload of experience to a relatively youthful team.
Brown's performance during summer league play was solid. He averaged 18.4 points and 6.8 rebounds in five games played. His point guard took notice.
"I think he's just a mature player for his age," Wall said Monday. "It's kind of hard to find guys 18, 19 years old who are very poised and mature coming into this league...He's going to be a great piece for us."
Wall doesn't typically sugarcoat things. Brown should take his glowing comments and run with them.
- Brown's underdog mentality could very well be THE motivating factor in his pursuit of playing time.
He has a mild-mannered, gentle demeanor about him.
He's not flashy, but does have a certain swagger. Growing up playing prep basketball in Las Vegas, Brown often felt overlooked as a player. That feeling continued as he ventured up to Oregon for a year.
"In Vegas, there wasn't a lot of publicity and stuff like that, a lot of people didn't know me," Brown said at the podium during Monday's media day. "Even going to Oregon, it wasn't a big basketball school. That's just how it's been all my career. But I felt I've always done the things necessary to get to where I am today."
Perhaps the quiet chip on his shoulder is exactly what he needs to work through his rookie year.
- It may take time for his body to acclimate to the pace and grind of NBA-level hoops.
The 6-foot-7 teenager is still growing into his own body. After each practice this week, Brown received NormaTec therapy treatment to help with recovery.
He will have to take care of his body more than ever before if he wants to be in line for the league's grueling 82-game regular season.
- Coach Scott Brooks' specialty is player development which bodes well with who Brown is as a player and person.
Brown was consistent all week emphasizing his team-first mindset to the media.
With Otto Porter and Kelly Oubre having already established small forward roles, game minutes could be hard to come by for Brown this season. They probably will come in small doses, much like they did for Oubre right out of the gate.
With Brown's work ethic and team attitude that has his coach taking notice, expect the rookie to be prepared for when his number is called this season.
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