UA HOOPS

Arizona basketball: Las Vegas weekend key for '14 recruiting

2013-07-25T00:00:00Z Arizona basketball: Las Vegas weekend key for '14 recruitingBruce Pascoe Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
July 25, 2013 12:00 am  • 

This weekend will be the easiest logistically of the summer recruiting evaluation season for the Arizona Wildcats.

But it also could be the most intense.

While nearly all of UA's top targets are playing in Las Vegas during the final weekend of the July recruiting period, the Wildcats will need to leave good impressions on a number of top 2014 recruiting targets, many of whom will begin to narrow their choices and/or pick schools in the upcoming weeks.

"If you look at the first two July evaluation periods, (coach) Sean Miller and his staff were really split up covering the entire country," said Josh Gershon, an analyst for Scout.com.

"This is the only weekend that's not entirely necessary. They can focus on Las Vegas, where probably 90-95 percent of their (targets) are playing. So this is by far the most important weekend of the year for them."

Of UA's highest 2014 priorities, only wing Justise Winslow of Houston is playing in Orlando, Fla., while others such as wing Stanley Johnson, forward Kameron Chatman and power forward Craig Victor will be in Las Vegas.

While the weekend isn't about "seeing" the 2014 prospects as much as being seen by them, the Wildcats also will be further evaluating younger players this weekend. Top 2015 targets such as forward Ivan Rabb, center Stephen Zimmerman, center Chance Comanche and guard Tyler Dorsey also will be in Las Vegas.

Lyons says au revoir

After a brief three-game stint with Toronto in the Las Vegas Summer League, former Wildcats guard Mark Lyons will leave in two weeks to carry out his professional contract in France.

Lyons had an out in his contract with Chorale Roanne if he had been signed by an NBA team but was unable to make inroads with Toronto. Lyons played in only the first summer league game for the Raptors, and his agent, Chris Emens, said he pulled Lyons after three games. The Raptors signed former Marquette guard Dwight Buycks as backup guard earlier this month, which appeared to seal Lyons' fate.

Lyons had one rebound, a steal and three fouls while going scoreless in his eight-minute appearance for Toronto.

Former Wildcat Solomon Hill, meanwhile, averaged 12.0 points, 5.2 rebounds and 2.6 assists during summer-league play in Florida for the Pacers, who picked Hill in the first round of last month's NBA draft.

Parrom breaks hand

Kevin Parrom's hard-luck streak continued into his professional life, when he broke his left (non-shooting) hand about 20 minutes into a Las Vegas showcase for international basketball scouts last week.

Parrom's agent, Todd Ramasar, said Parrom will be out four to six weeks with the injury, and that he's hoping Parrom can become an early season replacement for an overseas team in the fall. Parrom is rehabilitating the injury in Tucson.

"Like I told him, he's just got to stay positive," Ramasar said.

Full house

All of the Wildcats' 11 scholarship players have been on campus since freshman forward Aaron Gordon arrived from the U19 World Championships in Prague, Czech Republic, earlier this month.

According to UA operations director Ryan Reynolds, the Wildcats have been holding small-group skill development sessions since early June. The new summer rules, which went into place last year, allow teams to hold workouts for a maximum of two hours a week, with up to four players together at once.

New numbers

Hill's departure conveniently left jersey No. 44 open for walk-on Trey Mason, whose father, Harvey Mason Jr., wore 44 from 1986 to 1990 for the Wildcats. Other jersey numbers chosen by the new Wildcats: Gordon, 11; Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, 23; Zach Peters, 33; Elliott Pitts, 24; Eric Conklin, 54. Numbers for the returning Wildcats are scheduled to remain the same.

On StarNet: Keep up with the Cats during the offseason with Bruce Pascoe's blog at azstarnet.com/pascoe

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