Thursday, July 8, 2010

Beverly Not Down and Out

Recently caught up with Donnell Beverly, who had surgery on torn labrums in both of his hips over the past few months. Beverly had surgery on his right hip 12 weeks ago, then his left hip about six weeks ago. He just started running on a treadmill yesterday, and hopes to be rehabbing soon. Beverly hopes to be doing basketball-related activities by the end of this month, and feels he’ll definitely be good to go once practice starts in mid-October.

Beverly’s a good, bright kid (maybe a future coach, who knows?) with a good head on his shoulders. Figured I’d ask him for some updates on how some of his new (and old) UConn teammates have looked so far. As we all know, UConn coaches can be awful, shall we say, exaggeratory about their players over the summer. I suppose players can, too, but here’s Beverly’s honest assessment:

Shabazz Napier, whom he dubbed the best-looking newcomer thus far: “He can shoot it real well. He’s looking pretty good.”

Tyler Olander: “I really like Tyler. He can play the three or the four, he’s versatile, he can finish.”

Jeremy Lamb: “He looks pretty good. He’s long, he gets to the rim, he’s athletic.”

Michael Bradley: “He’s athletic, but he needs a lot of work offensively. Defense is the one thing about him that’s really complete. He goes after every rebound. He’s a real good kid, off the court and on the court. He’s doing at least two or three tip drills every day. He’s only going to get better battling with Alex (Oriakhi) every day.”

Beverly noted that numerous times in recent weeks, he, Jamal Coombs-McDaniel and Alex Oriakhi would get together to watch video of certain UConn games from the past season. Not games in which any of the players played well; games in which they struggled, in order to learn from their mistakes.

“It helped a lot,” Beverly said. “It helped Alex, seeing he got caught under the basket a lot. Last year, he could have dunked (at times) and got an ‘and-one,’ but instead he’d try to lay it in.”

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