CHICAGO – Feeling comfortable with the way he lined up for June NBA draft, former UConn guard Jordan Hawkins he did not participate in the NBA Draft Combine brawls on Wednesday or Thursday.
Instead, he practiced, had meetings and “great talks” with teams individually. And while the consensus of fake drafts put him near the end of the lottery, most often designed finishing 12th after the Oklahoma City Thunder, Hawkins remains focused on his goals that extend well beyond June.
“It’s been a crazy month for me. It’s like my dreams have come true, but I still have some work to do,” Hawkins said. “(I) just fine-tune everything, on and off the court. Becoming an adult, working, being self-employed, because now you’re not a student anymore. No one will hold your hand.”
Hawkins chose to forgo the bouts, as did many other predicted first round players, because he believes he has shown and done enough.
His confidence was there even before he got involved with UConn, and head coach Dan Hurley ran off the FaceTime screen in excitement. When teams ask for a summary of what he can bring to the table, what they will get out of it, Hawkins won’t back down.
“Obviously, a champion caliber player, knockdown scorer – top scorer in the draft,” he recalled the reply. “I have a flash release and I’m a three-and-D guy.
“Every team needs shooting, scoring, so I think I can bring that in right away. I just need to properly position my body to (improve) the defense, now I’m going against grown men. “
Jackson works to make the shot strong
There is no doubt that the biggest criticism Andrew Jackson Jr.the game is his jump shot.
“It’s definitely a big weakness that everyone thinks I have,” he said. “But I believe I can make it a strength. I know it takes a long time, you know what I mean? Basketball is something you really have to respect, you have to respect the game, you have to put in the work to get results.
“I know that and I’m just going to keep working on it and keep trying to perfect all my mechanics and keep working with all my trainers and coaches to get to the level I want me to be, so I can be the player I want to be.”
Working on his capture is a slow process that began many years ago.
“I’ve been working on this for a long time, years and years,” he said. “I’m still trying to improve, different mechanics and different things, and just take different lessons from shooting coaches and stuff to try and perfect it as best as I can.”
— Marin Catholic (@marincatholic) May 17, 2023
Joey “California” is back in high school
Joey Calcaterra, a San Diego transfer who became a fan favorite during his one year at UConn, graduated and returned home. On Wednesday, he visited his Marin Catholic High School in Kentfield, California, where he found an entire trophy case dedicated to him and the UConn championship run.
“He’s back!! Joey Calcaterra is back on campus to hang out with the MC students after his NCAA Championships. Thank you Joey!” the school tweeted the hashtag: “leader”.