GERY WOELFEL firstname.lastname@example.org JournalTimes.com | Posted: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 12:05 am
The Milwaukee Bucks' interest in possibly drafting Marshon Brooks has heated up.
Brooks, a prolific shooting guard from Providence College, will work out for Bucks officials Tuesday at the team's training facility in St. Francis.
It'll mark the second time Brooks will audition for the Bucks but the first time he'll display his talents before all of the Bucks' talent evaluators.
Brooks worked out before assistant general manager Jeff Weltman and player personnel director Dave Babcock just over a week ago in Chicago.
Bucks general manager John Hammond and scouting director Billy McKinney couldn't attend the workout because they were scouting other players in Europe.
Brooks, who averaged 24.6 points a game last season, the second highest average in the nation, is one the fastest rising player in the draft.
Once considered a late first-round pick, the 6-foot-5 Brooks who has a 7-foot-1 wing span is a legitimate top 15 selection.
Seth Cohen, Brooks' agent, confirmed his client would work out for the Bucks again and added that Brooks will also work out for another lottery team, one drafting in front of the Bucks, Wednesday. Cohen wouldn't reveal the team.
"I think Marshon Brooks is going to be one of the biggest stories of the draft,'' Cohen said.
Leuer will showcase talent, too
Former University of Wisconsin standout Jon Leuer will also be among the six draft prospects working out for the Bucks Tuesday.
Mark Bartelstein, Leuer's agent, is confident his client won't have to wait around long to hear his name called by NBA commissioner David Stern.
"I think he'll go somewhere in the first round, somewhere in the 20s'' Bartelstein said. "He's a legitimate 7-footer who can shoot the heck out of the ball. And his workouts have gone really well.''
The Bucks currently have two picks, one in the first round, the 10th overall selection, and one in the second round, the 40th overall selection.
A veteran player personnel director said he believes Leuer will be chosen between 20 and 35.
After working out for the Bucks, Leuer will travel to Dallas to work out for the NBA champion Mavericks, who have the 26th pick.
Another player of note who'll be at the Cousins Center with Leuer and Brooks is forward Chris Singleton of Florida State.
The ruggedly-built Singleton, who calls himself a "modern-day Scottie Pippen, is projected to be drafted between nine and 15.
While Singleton's offensive skills need improvement, he is considered by some as the best defensive forward in the draft.
Rumor is just a rumor
So, John Hammond, any truth to the widespread rumor the Bucks are going to trade center Andrew Bogut and their top pick - No. 10 overall - to the Minnesota Timberwolves for the second overall pick in Thursday night's NBA draft?
"Absolutely not,'' Hammond responded. "None.''
Bucks won't see Motiejunas up close
Donatas Motiejunas, the skilled 7-0 power forward from Lithuania who reminds some scouts of former Buck forward Toni Kukoc, won't be working out for the Bucks.
Because of basketball commitments in Europe, Motiejunas' agent, Herb Rudoy, said his client wasn't able to work out for NBA teams until the last few days.
Motiejunas, projected as a late lottery selection, worked out for Houston (No. 14) and Philadelphia (No. 16) and will work out for the Knicks (No. 17) Tuesday.
Around the league
Look for Minnesota to relieve Kurt Rambis of his head coaching duties, possibly within the next couple of weeks. Still, there are some league insiders who claim Rambis could still retain his job by firing at least two of his assistant coaches. ... Hammond claims the Bucks will take "the best player available.'' at No. 10 - regardless of position. ...While the Bucks figure to work out several dozen draft prospects, the Orlando Magic won't work out any. The Magic have a lowly second-round pick - No. 53 overall - and feel it's a waste of everyone's time and money to work out a player that isn't likely to make their team anyway. ... The Bucks haven't tendered a qualifying offer to restricted free agent to be Luc Mbah a Moute, but that's only inevitable. The Bucks are quite fond of Mbah a Moute and undoubtedly will match any offer made to him during free agency. ... I've been told the Bucks may have some interest in Indiana shooting guard Brandon Rush, whose name has surfaced on the trading rumor mill. ... Dallas Mavs small forward Caron Butler of Racine has been assisting his ailing grandmother, Margaret Butler, who is recovering from a kidney transplant. But Butler hopes to take his family soon to Disney World. Said Butler: "That's what all the champion do.''
No secret that BRush is out there to be had. He'd be a perfect fit for the Bulls if you are looking in the same division.