THE FLATS – The NBA Finals are in progress at Disney’s Wide World of Sports, and all of the former Yellow Jackets in pro basketball are in off-season mode … Derrick Favors is a free agent, Thaddeus Young and Josh Okogie have completed off-season workouts with the Bulls and Timberwolves, respectively.
This week’s #ProJackets Report compiles more of the latest news, stories and social media posts on former Jackets and their activities of the past week.
TIMBERWOLVES WRAP OFF-SEASON PROGRAM
Last week, the Timberwolves took the Target Center court for their third and final scrimmage of the 2020 In-Market Program. A rewarding experience to date, Minnesota’s In-Market roster has seen growth both individually and as a team – a key aspect behind the creation of the Program. In the final scrimmage, Josh Okogie and Jake Layman picked the teams. READ MORE
Meanwhile, the Timberwolves are looking to augment their returning roster through the draft and free agency. “Josh Okogie, the only non-Towns, Thibodeau-era holdover, can’t shoot threes but is the team’s best perimeter defender, a great transition player, and a solid cutter,” writes Ben Beeckan on Dunking with Wolves. READ MORE
OPTIMISM GROWS IN CHICAGO WITH DONOVAN
From the Chicago Bulls: But the Bulls core of Zach LaVine, Coby White, Lauri Markkanen and Wendell Carter Jr. have all shown flashes of talent. Donovan seems better equipped to unlock their strengths than Jim Boylen, who attempted to mold players to fit his system rather than take advantage of their best traits. That approach explains why Markkanen sounded so encouraged after just one phone conversation with Donovan. Pair that young talent with a couple of solid veterans in Otto Porter Jr. and Thaddeus Young and some better injury luck, and it’s easy to see why the Bulls have expressed growing optimism lately.
BOSH WATCHING HEAT CLOSELY IN NBA FINALS
Jackie McMullen of ESPN.com wrote after watching game 1 of the NBA Finals with Chris Bosh: “As he watches the current Heat team, Bosh says there are many characteristics that resonate with him: the disciplined way the team runs its offense, the obvious conditioning that enables players to remain in motion. Bosh has always admired Spoelstra’s basketball acumen, though that has expanded. One thing that hasn’t changed, Bosh says, is the essence of what separates the Heat from other franchises.
“You’d be surprised how playing harder, getting up into a team, wearing them down and continuing to push the envelope translates into wins,” Bosh said. “It becomes a habit. Anyone involved in the organization learns very quickly that there are certain standards and expected ways to perform.”