Earlier today, I went to Penn State Behrend’s Junker Center to check out the Erie BayHawks practice.
Here are a few notables:
1.Erie waived three players – guard Adrian Bowie out of Maryland, forward Kayode Ayeni out of St. Francis and power forward Joseph Kennerly II out of Central Oklahoma – today. The odds were against Kennerly III because he was one of four true big men in camp.
Erie traded a second-round pick to Idaho for Jeff Graves, drafted 7-footer Chris Daniels in the first round and Kyle Goldcamp has been with the BayHawks for the last two two seasons.
2. Goldcamp said the biggest difference between Erie coach Jay Larranaga’s system of a season ago and how the New York Knicks play is how the big men run the floor. The former Gannon star said before, bigs ran down the middle of the floor. Now the big men are being asked to run the wings to keep the middle open.
The Knicks and BayHawks are in a hybrid partnership.
3. Goldcamp and Graves, out of Kansas, went at each other again today. At age 30, Graves is more seasoned and has more talent, but what Goldcamp does is make you work. One one play, Goldcamp took Graves baseline, missed the shot, but got the rebound and put it back up. Later in practice, Graves made a beautiful drop-step baseline move, took two power dribbles and scored on a reverse.
4. Graves isn’t in the best of shape after having a knee injury at the start of last season at Idaho. He said he’s pacing himself a bit. You can see him make a move and everything is there except the finish. Then there are times he does something that makes you realize why the BayHawks traded for him.
5. Mychel Thompson continues to impress. Has hit the open jump shot and at times show the athletic ability that could make him a tough cover.
6. Daniels seems outspoken in terms of yapping. Reacts to things. Seems to be having a lot of fun, even when the team had to push a towel with their hands on the ground and their rear ends high in the air. Never seen this drill. Graves said after practice it’s mostly done to test you mentally, get some cardio in and have some fun.
7. Point guard Jamael Lynch was impressive today. Really gets great rise on his jump shot. Is sound on pick-and-roll plays and can find the open man. On one play, he zipped a pass through traffic to Kennerly III, who couldn’t handle the fastball delivery. An eighth-round pick, Lynch stands a good chance of making the team.
8. Forward Marvin Roberts out of FIU didn’t go full boar in practice as he has a groin injury. Forward D.J. Kennedy (knee) out of St. John’s and guard Al Nolen (foot) out of Minnesota are still out. They can put up shots, but aren’t in the fray when the players go at each other in 5-on-5 situations.
9. Returning forward Kyle Spain returned after missing three practices with a sore elbow. Was asking for a tighter wrap around the elbow during practice.
The BayHawks will have an scrimmage against expansion Canton tomorrow in Geneva, Ohio. It’ll be interesting to see how the players look going up against different guys.