Posts Tagged ‘Demetri McCamey’

Paul M. Banks a.k.a. The Sports Bank, NBC Chicago Street Team

Remember the Bulls glory years, when Michael Jordan was the finest late game finisher? When somebody had to be the team’s go-to guy and knock down the big shot, MJ was the Bulls’demetri assassin. The 21st ranked Illini lack this quality- a true ‘balla” to close games out, a star carrying this team on their back when necessary. I asked Head Coach Bruce Weber if the team’s current leading scorer and most athletic player, Demetri McCamey can be the guy- “Our team doctor mentioned to me before the Michigan State game, the one thing we don’t have is someone who can just take it over and make a play when we need it, Alex {Legion, Weber’s highest rated recruit} jumped up and made some shots against Michigan St. but if one guy would made a couple plays in gut check time, we could have found a way to win that thing. I think he {McCamey} has the potential. He’s got to learn the game: how to use screens, how to play without the ball, and if he could do that he could be the guy. He passes well, shoots the three, he’s got a big body and can pull-up,” Weber responded.

Another reporter followed up my question by asking “if not McCamey, then who?” Weber reiterated that it could be Legion, the transfer from Kentucky or forward Mike Davis. “I’m not sure right now, I think Alex has the potential to make big shots because he can just jump up and shoot it over people and maybe Mike Davis can continue to develop a triple-threat game so he can beat somebody by doing his little half-hooks and turnarounds, but Demetri has the most potential no doubt,” Weber answered.

Currently, Illinois (18-5, 6-4) is nationally ranked: 17th in RPI, 16th in Sagarin, 23rd in the AP and 21 in the Coaches poll. They appear to be a #5 or #6 seed come tournament time. Illinois has great balance -four different players: McCamey, Davis, Mike Tisdale, and Trent Meacham are or within a point-per game of being the team’s leading scorer- and resembles the 1998 team, who used balanced offense to go 13-3 and win the Big Ten, but imagine what they could be with a true closer? Their struggles on offense the past three games accentuate the urgency.

See more of Paul M. Banks’ work at the NBC Street Team, the Washington Times and The Sports Bank

Read Full Post »

Paul M. Banks a.k.a. The Sports Bank, NBC5 Street Team & David Kmiecik, NBC 15 Madison

When the University of Illinois visited the University of Wisconsin, I sat press row next to NBC 15 Madison’s David Kmiecik, who covers the Badgers regularly. And also happens to be the man who helped co-found my website, The Sports Bank.net. Since our days growing up together in Palos Township, we’ve had numerous college hoops conversations like the one we typed out below, but now we share our observations with NBC’s online audience.

(PMB) Is it me or does Illinois coach Bruce Weber sound like the squeaky voice teen from The Simpsons?

(DK) If I break-out into laughter during Weber’s post-game, it will be because of the Paul M. Banks impression of Weber, complete with the dead-on squeaky voice.

(PMB) Thanks man, I only lampoon those I love. The Badgers’ style of play is the reason people around the country think Big Ten basketball is slow-paced with final scores in the 50s for every game. To their credit, they do use “stallball” to reach the conference tourney finals pretty much every year.

(DK) Well, Jason Bohannon just hit his fifth three of the first half, partially because Demetri McCamey is excelling at his typical half-hearted defensive effort (or lack thereof). If Cames tried as hard on defense as he does at chucking up threes, he could actually be a good player. I hope you get to hear Bo refer to someone as playing “like a man” tonight.

(PMB) Who are Bo’s “men,” the big slow white outside shooters (Mike Wilkinson, Andy Kowske, Brian Butch, Joe Krabbenhoft et al) that he LOVES to recruit?weber1

(DK) Don’t forget about Greg Stiemsma. Looks like the Badgers are going to get one in the “left hand column.” (That’s another Bo-ism.)

(PMB) If Illinois’ defense continues to be this awful, then the media covering Illinois might have to start talking about Michael Jordan’s kid playing at UI again- even though he never plays more than 10 minutes a game. Anybody here with NBA Draft potential? Could any underclassmen show up in a mock draft down the line?

(DK) I think Leuer has the most pro potential. He’s 6-10, can shoot from the outside, put the ball on the floor, and has a nice set of moves on the block. He will need to get stronger- which he definitely already has over his year and a half at Wisconsin.

and Davis are potential second round picks if they continue to develop.
But if McCamey isn’t on fire, the Illini are very beatable. Mike Tisdale just fouled out and was a complete non-factor tonight. That doesn’t help Illinois either.

(PMB) Like you might have heard once or twice or three-thousand times, Tisdale is on a 6,000 calorie a day diet. Sometimes when I look around in a room full of sports writers, I think they share his dining habits. Speaking of unsightly, that’s how I feel about the Illini deficit. Given that the team you cover is dominating tonight, I’ll let you have the last word.

(DK) First of all, the Badgers aren’t “my” team. Since I graduated from Marquette, they will always have my heart. I have grown to appreciate and respect the Badgers, but will NEVER refer to them as “my” team. Badgers win 63-50. That’s three straight lackluster performances from YOUR boys. Time to get a little worried…

See more of Paul M. Banks’ work at the Washington Times and The Sports Bank.net

For David Kmiecik’s NBC 15 Blog, click here

Read Full Post »

Paul M. Banks a.k.a. The Sports Bank, NBC5 Street Team Before budding Chicago Bulls superstar Derrick Rose came to the NBA, he owned Chicago prep courts during his career at Simeon. Along the way, he befriended St. Joseph product and current Illinois sophomore Demetri McCamey,  who leads the #19 Illini in scoring. McCamey a.k.a. “Cames” is also fifth in the Big Ten in assists at 5.0 apg. In Big Ten games only, McCamey leads the Big Ten in assists (6.0 apg) and assist/turnover ratio (4.0). Earlier this season, Illini Head Coach Bruce Weber gave McCamey a Sports Illustrated article about the work habits and development of Rose, the 2008 #1 overall NBA Draft pick. demetri

“It talked about how he matured and some of the things he does before games and I took it to heart. It helped,” McCamey said. Cames mentioned how happy he was to see his friend Rose and how hard he wants to work being a “student of the game” to try and reach the league just like the Bulls’ point guard.

“That’s what all the great ones do, that’s how you get better- what Derrick said in the interview. The coaches gave him cards of what defense they play. They’re doing it in the pros and you gotta do it in college {in order} to get to the pros, so you just gotta keep working,” McCamey said.

Cames still has a LONG way to go to reach the NBA “Rose” garden: his shot selection is sometimes suspect, his work ethic needs improvement and his defense can often be non-existent. However, he’s also the Illini player with the most athleticism and star potential. bulls_rose_300

“If you study him over the course of time, he has very good games and a tendency not to be real consistent, this goes back way to high school and AAU and that’s where he’s got to mature. He has the big one and then average, average. He needs to be more consistent if we’re going to be a very good team because he can do things that other people can’t do,” Coach Weber said.

If Demetri matures into a consistent player, the Illini could make a deep tournament run in March and Derrick Rose could possibly see another Windy City friend in the NBA.

See more of Paul M. Banks’ work at the NBC Street Team, the Washington Times and The Sports Bank

Read Full Post »

Paul M. Banks a.k.a. The Sports Bank Chicago’s United Center hosted three basketball games on Saturday: University of Illinois men’s defeating Georgia 76-42, UI women losing 71-53 to Bradley and the Bulls beating the Washington Wizards 117-110. Before budding Bulls bulwark Derrick Rose starred in the venue’s main event, sophomore Illini point guard Demetri McCamey, a friend of Rose, led Illinois to a blow out victory over a terrible Georgia Bulldogs team. It was the second time this season UGA got routed by a local team: they also lost to Loyola by 21. McCamey scored 9 of Illinois’s first 11 points including a dribble-drive to the hoop set up by a sick move.mccamey

“That was just something Deron (Williams, former Illini and current Utah Jazz point guard) taught me this summer, to get them on your help and when you feel them try to reach, spin right off. Tisdale did a good job of selling and I came right in for a lay-up,” McCamey said in explaining the move to me. He led all scorers with 19, and the Illini got 29 points off 27 Georgia turnovers. Illinois went on a 22-0 run in the final seven minutes to turn a comfortable lead into utter demolishing. “Our kids always enjoy coming up here because it’s a special atmosphere and a chance to make a mark in Chicago and get a little bit of extra publicity, maybe more than usual,” Illini coach Bruce Weber said post-game. The Illini took advantage of Georgia’s weak defense to obtain and drain plenty of open looks; especially in the second half when Illinois shot 69% from the filed, 60% from behind the arc.

Illini players were honored to be in the house that Michael Jordan built. -His Airness attended and saw his son Jeff play 7 minutes- However, it’s a current Bull, Derrick Rose that McCamey talked about modeling his game on. “He’s a wonderful player. I played against him all the way since 7th grade, he knows me, I know him and I know I’ll be in the same boat and playing with passion if I just listen to everybody, because they’re only trying to help,” McCamey said.

For more Chicago Sports Analysis and discussion.

For my Washington Times.com blog “Chicago Blue State.”

Read Full Post »