The Capital City League began June 15 in West Des Moines, and each Wednesday and Sunday until July 15, the majority of current ISU men’s basketball players, including incoming freshmen, will take to the court for summer action.
Wednesday evening, two other familiar players were in uniform and on the court. Former Cyclones Royce White and Craig Brackins, who has spent two seasons in the NBA, faced off against each other with standing room only.
Afterward, the two talked about their futures.
Brackins looks ahead at NBA career
With the 21st overall pick in the 2010 NBA Draft, the Oklahoma City Thunder selected Brackins. After a few trades, he would settle in with the Philadelphia 76ers, where he has spent part of the past two years.
Brackins has spent time between Philadephia and the NBA Development League, and last season averaged 1.6 points and 1.1 rebounds per game in 14 NBA games. He averaged just over six minutes per game in those games with the 76ers.
In May, the 76ers declined Brackins’ option for next season, leaving the 6-foot-10-inch forward looking for a new home. For the past three weeks, that has been Ames.
“I just came here to isolate myself,” Brackins said. “This is where I started working; this is what got me to where I’m at.”
While Brackins said his jumpshot has always been his biggest weapon, he is spending the summer working to improve getting to the basket and staying in shape.
“Just working on everything,” Brackins said. “I don’t ever want to isolate myself.”
Brackins said he hopes to latch on with a team and return to the NBA for the 2012-13 season this fall. Come July he will play in the NBA Summer League in Orlando, Fla., and said he will play in the one in Las Vegas too if needed.
White prepares for the NBA Draft
Next Thursday, July 28, the wait will be over. Royce White will find out where he will land in the NBA after months of training.
Before then, however, White has more work to do. Following his appearance at the Capital City League, White has a busy schedule, heading to Atlanta, Boston, Dallas and Denver within the next four days for last minute workouts with just one week until draft day.
The workouts, White said, have been exciting.
“It’s been fun and exciting, a bit of a rollercoaster,” White said. “You get banged up a lot on the road. I got banged up some; I had to take a couple of days off just to get my body back right and healthy.”
As for the NBA draft next week, White doesn’t have expectations.
“I don’t really have any, honestly,” White said. “[I'm] just hoping for the best.”
Georges Niang impresses Brackins
Incoming ISU freshman Georges Niang led the game with 35 points and impressed former Cyclones Brackins along the way.
“I’ve never seen hands like that," Brackins said. "You can throw anything at him, and he’ll catch it. He knows the game — he’s like a veteran player — but he’s a youngster. ... Just playing with these guys and seeing where the university is going, it’s just going up.”
Niang, ranked No. 69 nationally by Rivals.com for the class of 2012, will be on scholarship beginning with the 2012-13 season. For the next three weeks, he and the rest of the current Cyclones will continue on in the Capital City League.