Collison and Love were the "biggest stories" at an exclusive several day event put on by Addidas called the National Basketball experience a few days ago. Some of the best players and prospects ('08, '09) from around the world were invited. DraftExpress was there and has some amazing things to say about DC and Love. Have a read of the entire article to see what they had to say about other players as well (Derek Rose for example).-Amongst the college players, the biggest story here so far has to be the excellent tandem that UCLA will have at their disposal next year in Kevin Love and Darren Collison. There is a definite case to be made that those two have been the most impressive prospects based off the way they've played so far.
-Love has shown a skill level that is absolutely unheard of amongst big men in the college ranks--knocking down NBA 3-pointers with ease, putting the ball on the floor with either hand, using pump-fakes, spin-moves, jump-stops and creating his own shot with fantastic footwork. He's rebounding the ball well, throwing beautiful outlet passes, contesting shots around the basket, and even coming up with a few blocks on occasion.
Love's body looks better and better every time we see him, as he's shed a good amount of weight and is now probably only 10 pounds or so away from being in optimal shape. He can't necessarily be called an athletic player, but playing next to or going up against physically gifted big men like Brook Lopez, Steven Hill and Robert Dozier, he has looked absolutely fine and has not had a problem doing whatever he wants out on the floor.
In the voluntary workout in between sessions he decided to show up for, Love looked just as impressive. This setting is tailor made to show off his terrific skill-level and fundamentals--and he did a great job draining shot after shot, kissing 15 footers off the glass after a sweet pivot move, conducting step-back moves, turnarounds, and much more. He's really making an excellent case for himself to be considered a one and done lottery prospect with what he's showing so far. He'll be ready to deliver at the collegiate level from day one.
-Love's future teammate Darren Collison also had a really nice showing as well, as he's in excellent shape and apparently ready to make a case for himself to be considered the top point guard in college basketball next year. He was extremely patient running his team's set offense, doing a great job reading the defense playing the pick and roll, showing outstanding ball-handling skills, changing gears on the fly wonderfully, getting to the basket, and often finishing with a pretty floater. From evaluating many different tournaments and camps in this setting (summer league, the pre-draft camp, all-star games) where the players are assembled on the fly and have very little time to build up any chemistry--you can automatically tell the pure point guards from the make-shift ones. Collison falls in that first camp.
Collison has terrific quickness, and combined with his deadly crossover and wide arsenal of hesitation moves, he's an extremely difficult player to stay in front of. He also plays very strong defense as you would expect from a Ben Howland player. The one negative to come out of here revolved around his outside shot. Even though he shot an excellent percentage from behind the arc last year, he clearly needs a good amount of time to set his feet, aim, and get off his very awkward looking shot. This allows players defending him to go underneath screens on the pick and roll, and Collison isn't able to punish them consistently enough for doing so at this point. We watched a long workout of his consisting predominantly of shooting drills, and Collison is clearly working hard on improving his shot. He'll got hot at times and knock down a couple of 3-pointers in a row, but he doesn't have much margin for error due to the way he flings the ball violently at the basket from above his head. He has a fairly consistent release point, but when he misses, he often misses badly. This limits his NBA potential to a certain extent, but there is still plenty of other things to like about him and from what we could tell here he's clearly willing to put the work in to improve on that part of his game too.