Granger's back in the gym
Posted by Mike Wells
THE `BURBS - To no surprise, Danny Granger spent quite a bit of time in the gym this week.
The Pacers All-Star wasn't in the gym working on isolation moves or defensive drills, two areas of his game he wants to improve on, though.
He was going through instructional drills with about 50 kids at Park Tudor High School.
This is the first year Granger has held a basketball camp in Indianapolis. He normally holds his camps in New Mexico, which he will continue to do.
"I signed a long-term extension with the Pacers so I figured it was time to have one here," Granger said during a recent lunch break at Park Tudor. "I've always had roots in New Mexico, and I still will, but now that I will be here, I want to start it here."
Granger recruited some of his former college teammates to help out at the camp. A couple of Granger's current teammates - Brandon Rush and Roy Hibbert - were expected to make an appearance at the camp.
"What we do with the kids is teach them different aspects of the game, but we also want them to remember it's about team work, working hard and having fun.
"Basketball is a game that is played to have fun. I think a lot of times it's so serious because of AAU and college. Some kids don't even have fun playing anymore."
Granger never got caught up in all the AAU hype while growing up in the New Orleans area. He didn't play AAU basketball until the summer before his senior season, which is likely why he wasn't heavily recruited coming out of Grace King High School.
Speaking of his basketball camp in New Mexico, Granger said they had to move the date back to early August so that he can take part in the USA Basketball training camp, which could lead to him playing in next year's World Championships and the 2012 Olympics, in late July in Las Vegas.
"I think in four years a lot of the players won't be playing anymore or on their way out (the NBA)," Granger said. "It would be a great honor to play in the Olympics if I make it."
I've been hearing rumors about how Josh McRoberts has been living in the weight room this offseason.
I saw it with my own eyes when I ran into him at Conseco Fieldhouse earlier this week.
McRoberts said he's put on 20 pounds of muscle since the end of the season.
The Pacers plan to do their best to re-sign McRoberts, who appeared in 33 games last season.
A Pacers official told me they envision McRoberts being like Denver's Birdman. They like McRoberts' athleticism, energy and rebounding ability off the bench.
North Carolina's Tyler Hansbrough and Duke's Gerald Henderson highlight the final day of workouts for draft prospects at the fieldhouse on Friday.
Here are the other players taking part:
--Cedric Jackson (Cleveland St.)
--Kevin Rogers (Baylor)
--Anthony Smith (Liberty)
--Scott VanderMeer (Illinois-Chicago)
I asked Granger what area the Pacers need to address most in the offseason.
"Everyone knows we need an inside presence, that's an area of concern," he said. "I don't think point guard is a real problem. We have three already. It depends on how free agency goes."