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NBA Draft 2010 - June 24, Madison Square Garden, New York, NY SI.comCNN.comNBA Draft from SI.comNBA Draft from SI.comNBA Draft from SI.comNBA Draft from SI.comNBA Draft from SI.com
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A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
PLAYERS
Damion James
Atlanta Hawks, traded to Nets
Round 1, Pick 24
Position: SF
Class: Senior
School: Texas
Conference: Big 12
HT: 6'7"
WT: 225
Biography: James' stock rose with a standout senior season after the Texas star had an unimpressive combine workout last year that caused him to withdraw from the draft. His much-improved perimeter play makes him more appealing as a small forward in the pros and dispels some of the doubt over what position he would play in the NBA. He averaged 18.0 points - 4.5 above his career average - along with 10.3 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in 2009-10. The strong and agile player always brought consistent intensity and aggressiveness as part of his game, and a more polished outside game enhances his value. He shot a career-high 50.1 percent from the field and 38.3 percent from 3-point range as a senior. A tough, physical forward, James boasts an NBA body and brings explosive leaping ability and athleticism. That, along with his high-energy style of play, make him an outstanding offensive rebounder, as he grabbed more than 100 offensive boards each of his last three seasons. He needs to improve his free-throw shooting after averaging 64.0 percent from the line in college, and his ballhandling also needs work. James has likely made himself a middle or late first-round pick by lifting his all-around game, but he'll have to continue to do so as some teams will still view him as an undersized power forward that will be a tweener in the pros. Still, his work ethic and versatility, along with him proving that he has a higher ceiling than once thought, should leave a positive impression on potential employers. His relentless style may allow him to contribute immediately, and he brings too many skills to go unselected for long. With some strong workouts, James might even make himself a lottery pick on draft night.

Greg Nelson/SI
2009 Statistics
PPG FG% RPG APG FT%
18.0 50.1 10.3 1.0 67.4
 
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