McGee, Others Assess Former Pack Star's Rookie Season

By: Daniel Chanin Email
By: Daniel Chanin Email

Former Wolf Pack star JaVale McGee's first season in the NBA has been a learning experience.

"He's shown some flashes of what kind of ability he has. Obviously there are lot of things he needs to work on," Wizards General Manager Ernie Grunfeld told the Washington Post. "He still has a long way to go, as with a lot of young players. But the potential is there for him to be a very solid NBA player."

Injuries to Brendan Haywood, Etan Thomas and Aundray Blatche gave McGee a few opportunites to demonstrate why the Wizards used an 18th pick on the seven-footer.

"I didn't think I was going to get any minutes or anything, but it happened," McGee told the Washington Post. "I just tried to take advantage of the situation. I could've been better, but I don't have any regrets. I'm just happy to be here."

In 13 starts at center, McGee posted four double-doubles and scored in double digits sixteen times.

"JaVale has some wonderful tools," Wizards interim coach Ed Tapscott told the Washington Post. "I see a guy whose athletic gifts are terrific. It's just a matter of him learning the pro game, learning how to read and react, getting used to the fact that his athletic ability is a tool, but it isn't the end-all and be-all."

"It's been ups and downs," McGee told the Post, when asked to describe this season. "Just being thrown out there and then pulled out. I started to realize it's a business and you just got to keep working hard and deal with it. I'm just trying to make the best of it and keep working hard and look forward to next season and work harder in the summer."

The Wizards want McGee to add more muscle, but not so much that it will comprimise his speed and agility.

"He doesn't have to be a beast. We don't need to make him 320 pounds," Tapscott told the Post. "His game will always be speed and quickness, but he will need more strength."


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