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John Wall's athleticism, scientifically proven


John Wall will be the No. 1 pick on Thursday primarily because he is an exceptional athlete at a critical position, point guard. Wall emerged as the best athlete at the NBA draft combine in Chicago. But now there is video evidence of his abilities, thanks to the folks at ESPN's "Sport Science" who put Wall to the test nearly two weeks ago, in one of his last training sessions before leaving Los Angeles.

"Sport Science" host John Brenkus explains Wall's speed, leaping ability and court vision and the results are pretty staggering (as Dan Steinberg broke down on The Bog). Wall is faster than Chris Paul and Deron Williams in a straight sprint with no ball. He's faster dribbling the ball than Kevin Durant without a ball. He also has a 39-inch vertical, which as Brenkus mentions is better than Kobe Bryant (who no longer has a reputation as a dunker, but oh, well).

If you notice, Wall is wearing a pair of LeBron James's signature shoes, but the Nike logo was covered, possibly, with black tape or something. Wall taped the segment the morning before he signed his five-year, $25-million deal with Reebok, so he must've been getting geared up for a chance at the time.

Wall will officially be introduced as the new face of Reebok on Wednesday in New York, where his new ZigTech Slash shoe will also be unveiled.


By Michael Lee  |  June 22, 2010; 12:01 PM ET
Categories:  John Wall  
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Next: Wizards attempting to move up in draft

Comments

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Posted by: rickgonz | June 22, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

With all this money falling out of the sky for him, I hope Wall keeps his head on straight. He should read Ted Leonsis' book.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | June 22, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

With all this money falling out of the sky for him, I hope Wall keeps his head on straight. He should read Ted Leonsis' book.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | June 22, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Please excuse the double post. I blame it on Firefox.

Posted by: PostSubscriber | June 22, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

It's nice to know the Wizards finally have an owner who wants to win...

Drafting Wall gives them a true point guard

AB is a serviceable power forward

Al Thorton is a serviceable small forward

Now all they need is..

A big bodied center who likes to bang since AB is a finesse player

A shooting guard who shoots since wall likes to drive

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | June 22, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

I'm happy Wall is a great athlete, but honestly, I just want him to be a great basketball player, and those two things are related, but not the same thing. You can be an athlete and not be a baller, and you can be a baller and not be an athlete.

@bf78
A shooting guard who shoots since wall likes to drive

Looks like we have two of those already in Gil and NY. We'll see how it works out. Nick seemed to benefit from having an actual PG like Shaun Livingston set him up for better shots. The same could be true for playing with Wall. Lord knows Nick will not be bashful about shooting. Hopefully, he'll decide to bring up the rest of his game to match.

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Got some good mins down the stretch from NY hopefully he builds on it.A lot was made of his needing to play better D, so this season is really make or break for him. Matt Barnes was a fringe player for a coupla years, but he made a nae for himself in GS, being one of the few guys who strapped up and hitting timely js. Now MB is looked at as a piece to a championship puzzle, having been added to Phx and ORL to shore up the backcourt and provide much needed perimeter defense to teams with championship aspirations. I'd luv to see NY pattern his game after MB or at least take note that this league is full of guys who can put the ball in the basket, so there's a premium on guys who can stop people from doing it.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | June 22, 2010 1:13 PM | Report abuse

I'd luv to see NY pattern his game after MB or at least take note that this league is full of guys who can put the ball in the basket, so there's a premium on guys who can stop people from doing it.

Posted by: lilhollywood10

I'm fairly certain I have established my NY-bashing credentials, so I feel comfortable saying that NY has more talent (certainly offensively) than Matt Barnes.

It would be great to see him take that sort of mentality and toughness to heart, but I don't expect that to ever be the case. If he graduates to being a willing, and in-the-neighborhood-of average defender, coupled with improving his offensive efficiency -- mainly just fewer bad or forced shots -- I think he becomes a more useful player. He's a scorer, and that's where his bread will be buttered. He just needs to hone that skill and mitigate some of his other weaknesses. His on-the-ball defense is ok, it's really his focus, consistency and effort off-the-ball that needs work.

(And cue someone bringing up that one game where he defended Chauncey Billups as example of his D prowess)

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

He's a scorer, and that's where his bread will be buttered. He just needs to hone that skill and mitigate some of his other weaknesses. His on-the-ball defense is ok, it's really his focus, consistency and effort off-the-ball that needs work.

(And cue someone bringing up that one game where he defended Chauncey Billups as example of his D prowess)

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse
i feel u. Flip say tha boy don't play if he aint strappin up tho. Maybe it's the focus on D or his Focus in general, but i can recall a few times that flip referenced NY's defense or lack there of for him being pulled or not playing much. i most definitely agree that my man has wayyyyyy more game than Matt Barnes, i was just trying to reference a fringe player who earned his way into having a reputation as a key piece to a contender (ie a realperimeter defender). a lot of people would have NY in the dleauge or worse and honestly he doesn't do enough to calm his critics. i just think at this point in his career he needs to find something that he does really well and make it work for him. He scores well, but that won't work on this team, at least not how I envision it. As you said, Ny has guarded some good players and given them fits, he needs to turn up tha D.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | June 22, 2010 1:29 PM | Report abuse

"I'm fairly certain I have established my NY-bashing credentials, so I feel comfortable saying that NY has more talent (certainly offensively) than Matt Barnes."

Absolutely. But he doesn't have a fraction of Barnes' toughness, tenacity, or focus, which makes the likelihood of him emulating Barnes' game pretty much nil. If anything, Young's talent is his own worst enemy, because he's gotten so used to the game being easy for him that the idea of working hard to get better is foreign to him.

Posted by: kalo_rama | June 22, 2010 1:45 PM | Report abuse

"He scores well, but that won't work on this team, at least not how I envision it."

But that's just it. As things stand, we have no idea what kind of team this will be, so predetermined notions about what will and won't fit are premature. Besides, Young needs to worry less about fitting and more about working at this point. If he proves he's good enough at something, anything to help a team win he can find a place to fit, either here or somewhere else. But the first order of business is proving it. He hasn't done that yet.

Posted by: kalo_rama | June 22, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

As you said, Ny has guarded some good players and given them fits, he needs to turn up tha D.

Posted by: lilhollywood10

I, most definitely, am not saying that. Just that others inevitably will. :)

With the rest of it, yeah I think we're in the same ballpark. Nick will be in the NBA for a long time, just based on his ability to score. Whether he has what it takes to make the jump from being a situational player to a regular role player or even a starting caliber player remains to be seen.

He had good moments towards the end of last season, but he has also had a lot of moments (and history) of being a non-hustling defensive liability. So right now, the coaches a) have to see how he's playing any given night, and b) if he's not playing well defensively, decide if his offensively abilities outweigh that in a given matchup. If he can just move his D game to "not a liability" on a nightly basis, then his offensive skills become more valuable.

Right now, it's sort of like what the Celts did with Nate Robinson in the Finals. Which Nate do we get? Hi-tempo, instant offense Nate? Or think-too-much-of-yourself, jack-up-every-shot-and-take-us-out-of-the-offense Nate?

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

"Right now, it's sort of like what the Celts did with Nate Robinson in the Finals. Which Nate do we get? Hi-tempo, instant offense Nate? Or think-too-much-of-yourself, jack-up-every-shot-and-take-us-out-of-the-offense Nate?"

Boston pretty much only got the latter in the Finals. Didn't see to much of "Bad Nate" as i can recall. When he first got there, Jeff Van Gundy made the observation that playing on a team like the Celtics would make him a better player and it looks like he may have been right. It was every-man-for-himself in NYC so Nate went with the flow. Once he got a little structure around him, he seemed like a different player. (The more I look at what's going on with the Knicks the more I think that D'Antoni may end up being a bigger liability than an asset when all is said and done.)

Posted by: kalo_rama | June 22, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Kal has conniptions at the suggestion, but NY can already be JR Smith if that's what the team wants. And with Gil probably getting tons of burn because he is Gil AND the team will want to showcase him enough for a trade....we can probably expect NY to lead a 2nd unit as the instant offense guy. IMO, he's already a useful role player in that scenario. The question is can/will he make the leap to consistently productive starter.

I think he'd play better with Wall than Arenas is going to....but hopefully I'm wrong on that

Posted by: divi3 | June 22, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Boston pretty much only got the latter in the Finals. Didn't see to much of "Bad Nate" as i can recall. When he first got there, Jeff Van Gundy made the observation that playing on a team like the Celtics would make him a better player and it looks like he may have been right. It was every-man-for-himself in NYC so Nate went with the flow. Once he got a little structure around him, he seemed like a different player. (The more I look at what's going on with the Knicks the more I think that D'Antoni may end up being a bigger liability than an asset when all is said and done.)

Posted by: kalo_rama

They definitely didn't get really bad Nate. But they got the one great game from Nate and Big Baby, and the next game, both players I thought forced it trying to recreate that dynamic, instead of letting their game come to them a bit more. Understandable, given the stakes and circumstances.

All in all though having a guy like that, who had been riding the pine for that long, come in and essentially (along with Big Baby) win you a game in the Finals is pretty amazing.

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

"Kal has conniptions at the suggestion, but NY can already be JR Smith if that's what the team wants. "

Why would I have conniptions at you saying something about one of your per players that's flatly untrue and wishful thinking. It would be like getting angry at the sun for rising.

Posted by: kalo_rama | June 22, 2010 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Because I remember someone else suggesting it, then you going on a tirade about how superior JR Smith is to young Nicholas.

Posted by: divi3 | June 22, 2010 2:23 PM | Report abuse

Kal has conniptions at the suggestion, but NY can already be JR Smith if that's what the team wants. And with Gil probably getting tons of burn because he is Gil AND the team will want to showcase him enough for a trade....we can probably expect NY to lead a 2nd unit as the instant offense guy. IMO, he's already a useful role player in that scenario. The question is can/will he make the leap to consistently productive starter.

I think he'd play better with Wall than Arenas is going to....but hopefully I'm wrong on that

Posted by: divi3 | June 22, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

as much as i hate to say it, that's not good enough. when i talked about using NY as a Vinny Microwave Johnson type, i prolly didn't give Vinny enough respect. But either way, JR Smith shouldn't want to be JR Smith anymore. No D, limited handle,streaky J,mild headcase. Yes JR can bury the 3 and jump out the gym, but he's NY with minutes (not a starter tho).I'd like to see NY get consistent clock this season, but he's got to raise his game, not just offensively but across the board. I like the kid and i think he can be a good pro but he's gotta pick it up.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | June 22, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

"Because I remember someone else suggesting it, then you going on a tirade about how superior JR Smith is to young Nicholas."

You might wanna start taking Ginkgo Biloba, then, because there was certainly no tirade (certainly no where near the ones you go one whenever some infidel dare criticize his holiness The Blatche). I did point out the various ways in which Young is not as good/effective as Smith (and there are a few), but there was no tirade because tirade implies emotions, and since I don't particularly care much about Smith or Young, there was none.

Just the facts, ma'am. just the facts.

Posted by: kalo_rama | June 22, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

Kal has conniptions at the suggestion, but NY can already be JR Smith if that's what the team wants. And with Gil probably getting tons of burn because he is Gil AND the team will want to showcase him enough for a trade....we can probably expect NY to lead a 2nd unit as the instant offense guy. IMO, he's already a useful role player in that scenario. The question is can/will he make the leap to consistently productive starter.

I think he'd play better with Wall than Arenas is going to....but hopefully I'm wrong on that

Posted by: divi3

The question really is is JR Smith an model you want any Wizard to emulate? Especially since Gil is essentially the same kind of player?

He kind of works for Denver right now because they have other guys who are seriously committed to defense, and a big time, proven leader in Billups. The Wiz don't have any of those things.

I don't think Nick will lead the second unit, because I don't think there will be a specific second unit. I think Gil and Wall will play a lot together, and I think Flip will work it to have Gil at the point when Wall takes a breather.

I do think Nick fits in a bit better with Wall than Gil theoretically, because Nick is not a player who needs to have the ball in his hands a lot. In fact, he probably plays better when he doesn't. That being said, Gil is a better player, and has demonstrated more of a willingness to work on his craft, so who knows. The biggest downside to a Gil / Wall pairing will be the extent to which Gil still wants to prove that he is "The Man".

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

I say we take WALL, then trade up to #24 with the HAWKS, get the rights to JOSH CHILDRESS, who hates the Atlanta Spirit Group, take SOLOMON ALABI, and give ATLANTA #'s 30,35,JOSH HOWARD's contract and money. HAWKS get cash, a potential great player, and two more picks in a solid draft. They may trade the picks for more cash, or a player etc.,etc. GO WIZ.

We get our three players, a five, three, and one, the most dire needs on this team.

Posted by: glawrence007 | June 22, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

That being said, Gil is a better player, and has demonstrated more of a willingness to work on his craft, so who knows. The biggest downside to a Gil / Wall pairing will be the extent to which Gil still wants to prove that he is "The Man".

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 2:42 PM

Gil will be THE MAN ts when he can do this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S0HXc-5kxOI

I think the argument is settled for who should handle the ballhandling duties.

Posted by: elfreako | June 22, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

Elfreako, if that is your real name, if you read the whole thing, you'll see that I was saying the Gil is a better player and has a more proven work ethic than Nick Young.

As for the Gil/Wall backcourt I wasn't actually saying who should do what, but saying it remains to be seen what Gil is willing to do. I'm sure Flip, EG, and Ted will want to have Wall run the show (I know I would), but Gil can mess up the flow by deciding that he wants to try to be the ball handler.

As for the clip, I guess it settles that Wall is a better dunker. If that's the baseline for establishing who's a better ball-handler, I guess Nate Robinson must be the best PG in the NBA.

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

If that's the baseline for establishing who's a better ball-handler, I guess Nate Robinson must be the best PG in the NBA.

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

you know it!KryptoNATE

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | June 22, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

just a rumor i found enjoy

Could the close relationship between Wizards guard Gilbert Arenas and Magic GM Otis Smith bring Agent Zero to Orlando?
Here’s what’s percolating: The Magic send Vince Carter, who has one year left on his deal, for Arenas. The Magic get another closer who can score in bunches. The Wizards continue to rebuild by dumping Carter after one year.

The contracts are just about evenly matched, so nobody needs to do any creative math to get the deal done. Carter is set to make $17.3 million. Arenas is at $17.7 mil. The problem is that Arenas still has four years left on his deal, although he has an option in 2012-13

http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/en_fuego/2010/06/gilbert-arenas-not-be-a-good-fit-for-the-magic.html

Posted by: rnorris6 | June 22, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, they've been floating that rumor for a while. It was nice to read the Orlando fans flip out at the concept though, along with the few who thought it was a good idea.

I didn't read far enough to find the sign-and-trade LeBron for Vince trade proposals from Magic fans, but I'm sure they're in there =)

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

@ts35
lmao

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | June 22, 2010 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Atlanta could also be a trade target, so could Chicago and Miami. There's been rumors for weeks that both are intent on shedding more salaries.

Carter for Arenas seems to be a popular rumor, I'd say the Wiz should ask for a pick in that deal too. I still think Ted plays Gil a year, or even to the deadline and trys to make a better deal. At the deadline deal, we'd only have to watch Vince sulk for a half a year.

I wouldn't be surprised if Josh Howard's contract could be a part of some deal. A team could trade for him and then renounce the team option and and shed about 11m in salary if the Wiz were willing to take on that amount of contracts.

Hinrich in Chicago would be a guy that's being dangled as the Bulls try and shed cap space. NY would like to move Curry, but they've got no 1st rounder to offer. Riley's prepared to trade anybody but D Wade.

The Wiz also have a pile of trade exceptions that will expire if the don't use them. Both moves would require an owner who is willing to take on contract dollars to accumulate draft picks to jump start acquiring young talent.

OK City(then Seattle) and Portland have followed that route in the past with good effect. Ted won't be shy about spending some dollars to add young talent. Ernie will be playing a whole different role in trade talks then he has in the past when he was the guy dealing and selling picks year after year.
GM

Posted by: flohrtv | June 22, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/draft2010/news/story?id=5315275

The Memphis Grizzlies and Minnesota Timberwolves are close to swapping first-round draft picks, a source with direct knowledge of the situation tells ESPN.com's Andy Katz.

The Grizzlies would send their 25th and 28th overall picks to Minnesota for the Timberwolves' 16th pick.

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 5:39 PM | Report abuse

ts35 - Who uses their real name around here except for Larry in Clinton?

There's never been a better climate in DC than now for Gil to kill the antics and just play.

New owner
relatively new coach
2 yrs probation
the ire of the entire DC area if he
messes up again

So Gil should be told by Ted, Ernie & Flip:
this is how it's going down and you WILL comply.

Posted by: elfreako | June 22, 2010 5:45 PM | Report abuse

There's never been a better climate in DC than now for Gil to kill the antics and just play.

New owner
relatively new coach
2 yrs probation
the ire of the entire DC area if he messes up again

So Gil should be told by Ted, Ernie & Flip:
this is how it's going down and you WILL comply.

Posted by: elfreako

It sounds like Ted has already had that conversation with Gil.

Which is all great, until they hit they court. Gil may totally be fine, I hope he is. I hope this has been the necessary wake-up call. I don't expect him to get in any more legal trouble for sure.

But he's also a guy who has always tended to go his own way, even against his own interest. And the problem is, if Gil becomes a problem in a basketball sense - not playing the way they want him to, etc, complaining about his role, etc. - the Wiz don't have a lot of good options.

Just saying it's in Gil's best interests to do a thing, doesn't make it a done deal.

Posted by: ts35 | June 22, 2010 5:53 PM | Report abuse

From the reports that I recall, Gil was basically bending over backwards to try and fit in this year, especially to fit into Flip's system. I think that will still be his mindset coming into this year, because that's the only way he will be able to rebuild himself. I think he's smart enough to recognize that.

Posted by: crs-1 | June 22, 2010 6:02 PM | Report abuse

Not to be cynical, but that's a nice video put together by Wall's reps....as if Wall needed more hype to sell him as the #1 lottery pick to Les BouleS.

There's going to be a tremendous amount of pressure on this young dude to live up to the hype. Let's hope he has a support system and vets (no, not Gilby) on the team to help him through this.

Cassell didn't do much to reign in the monster that became Gilby.

I wonder if Les BouleS need to sign a vet guard out there who can give him some guidance.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | June 22, 2010 8:35 PM | Report abuse

Some believe Gilbert Arenas and the presumptive top pick make for an awkward tandem. [The Wizards] know they will never get the most out of No. 1 pick John Wall as long as Arenas and his monstrous personality are around. They'd love to move on. Certainly the biggest obstacle for anyone is those four big years left on his deal. ... [If Kobe did not want LeBron James or Chris Bosh], Arenas may make sense. He is from L.A., he's been a huge scorer in the league at point guard and really is more a tweener guard, which fits Phil Jackson's two guard front in the triangle

Posted by: suliman007_4 | June 22, 2010 10:12 PM | Report abuse

With all these reporters in town, why can't someone get a mike in Gilby's face and ask him what he thinks about being switched to two guard and being second fiddle to Wall?

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | June 22, 2010 10:24 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: suliman007_4 | June 22, 2010 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Thanks...but I don't know why they decided to compare Wall with Rose.

I've never watched any of Wall's games. Only time will tell if he pans out.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | June 22, 2010 11:25 PM | Report abuse

"Elfreako, if that is your real name... "

Dependent clause of the day.

Posted by: Samson151 | June 22, 2010 11:51 PM | Report abuse

If Minny ends up with 23, 25, and 28, they could be in the market to deal again. If they stay put, they're really going to control who gets picked right in front of the Wizards. Hope they pick a couple of real head scratchers, more talent to fall to 30...

Any rate it's going to shake up draft boards a little bit and could effect Grevis going at 28 since the Grizzlies were said to really like him there.

If their deal goes through, Minny & the Grizzlies may have broke loose the logjam and a batch of deals may go down between now and when the Wiz pick at 30.
Stay tuned...

Now we return to our regular programing. Gilby!!!

Posted by: flohrtv | June 23, 2010 7:34 AM | Report abuse

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