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Open Practice Notes & Pics!

We went to the open practice today and got to see a few things worth
mentioning. First, the reports of Dunleavy bulking up are true. He's not
Karl Malone, but he does have muscular definition. When he got here he looked
like he was 13. Now he looks like he is a college athlete.

Nick Horvath did not play due to a mild ankle injury.

Jason Williams played
with an almost clear plastic brace on his hand. He fell on it once and
walked off the court for a few minutes but came back. We'll get to everyone else
shortly.

Our main impression was about conditioning. Everyone seemed to be in
really good shape. There was a fair amount of running, of course, and a lot of
drills, and no one seemed visibly fatigued. The drills emphasized (mostly)
fast breaks, defense, in-bounds plays, ballhandling, and half-court offense.

There
were a lot of small things to mention - a spectacular pass from Duhon to
Dunleavy for a remarkable reverse layup, a jumphook by Casey Sanders, solid work
by Boozer, the expected athleticism from Dahntay Jones, Christensen seemed to do
well despite his woeful knees, and Daniel Ewing is a very promising guard.

He
has an interesting defensive technique, and manages to cover a lot of space.
unlike Williams, who moves his feet really fast, Ewing takes a wider stance and
presents a significant obstacle, yet manages to move quickly. He's
somewhat reminiscent of Tommy Amaker in that sense, though that's not a fair
comparison.

To talk about some other people - Horvath didn't play, but is
significantly bigger, and Sanders is as well, though still slender.

Having
Williams, Duhon, Jones and Ewing as a perimeter defense is really
significant. That's a lot of depth and a lot of quickness, and
ballhandlers are going to have a tough time.

Inside, on a couple of occasions,
Sanders intimidated Boozer down low and forced him to change his shot.

Also
not playing because he's not allowed to was future Dukie Shavlik Randolph, who
came in just before the practice started and was greeted by applause. Typically,
he did wave, but looked down as he did it. Coach K came over and sat with Shav
and his dad for a bit.

All things considered, there is an enormous potential
for this team. If Sanders, Horvath and Christensen can help inside, and
everyone stays healthy, they could be really, really good by the end of the
year.

Most of the pictures are self-explanatory, but the ones of the people
who obviously aren't players are family members and Shavlik Randolph and his
dad.