What do you need to do to take your game to the next level?

Updated: February 17, 2010

Answers to that all-important question from a sampling of D-Leaguers we caught up with at All-Star in Dallas below…

Morris Almond, Maine (then with Springfield): “Just take it day by day. We’re starting to play a lot of the same teams, so you see more double teams, more junk defenses and over-playing. Just take it day by day, and try to get better in each situation.”

Romel Beck, Dakota: “Just keep working hard, keep listening to coach Rory White, continuing to believe in myself. I know what I have to do to get it done, and it’s a work in progress.”

Brian Butch, Bakersfield: “I think it’s just consistency at every level. I feel I can do some things really well some nights, but you’ve got to be able to do it every night. That’s what separates guys who are in the D-League from guys who are at the pro level.”

Desmon Farmer, Reno: “Right now, just trying to make my team win more than where we are right now. Then hopefully, I get that call-up. I feel like I deserve it. I feel like I’m doing what I’m supposed to do. I’m the second-leading scorer in the history of the D-League, and I think I’ve been doing what I’m supposed to do. I just need that opportunity.”

Dwayne Jones, Austin: “Just show what I can do offensively, and just continue to hustle and show what I can do. They’re not going to bring me in to score 20 points; they’re going to bring me in to hustle, rebound and defend, so I just got to keep showing that.”

Rob Kurz, Fort Wayne: “I think it’s a combination of a lot of things. Everybody knows I can shoot the ball, and I’m trying to show that I can play in the post, score inside and be an effective all-around scorer in the NBA. I’m working on my post game a lot, just trying to score in a variety of ways so people don’t think all I do is catch and shoot.”

Carlos Powell, Albuquerque: “Personally, I think I’m ready, but there’s a couple of things they tell me: catch-and-shoot, stuff like that, when it’s my shot, take the shot. They say I’m a little too unselfish, but that’s just how I play basketball.”

Dar Tucker, Los Angeles: “Just playing ball, just playing ball, period. Having my team together, doing what I do best, playing my role on my team. That’s all I really want to do. I’m sure one of these days I will get a call-up. I hope so. I’m not stressing on it.”

Reggie Williams, Sioux Falls: “You get feedback from different teams and different people, and the things they tell you, you just try to incorporate every game. They tell you to grab more rebounds, I try to go out and grab more rebounds, more assists, things like that. Whatever they tell me, I just try to do it, and right now I’m just trying to fight to get wins and get called up, hopefully. Defensively, I want to be more of a lock-down defender, and offensively, I want to be more of a distributor, get my teammates involved, things like that.”

More in-depth accounts of several of these conversations, analysis of the points brought forth in the comments above and tales from a whirlwind weekend in Dallas (plus some unrelated chatter about the surprise trade that sent Almond to Maine this week) en route in posts to come.


  1. StoneRN

    February 17, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    Does Dwayne Jones have an agent? If so, he needs to get on the horn with the FO for Denver, pronto. They need a solid big in order to compete in a series w/ the Lakers, and D Jones fits that to a ‘T’. Denver is having no luck acquiring Tyrus Thomas from Chicago, and there really don’t seem to be any options for them. Not to mention that D Jones appears superior to anyone they’ve considered.

    I’m tellin’ ya, Dwayne Jones makes the Nugs instant contenders.

    • brad

      February 17, 2010 at 6:32 pm

      your wrong you know nothing

  2. brad

    February 17, 2010 at 6:31 pm

    i think yall are good, and deamon faarmer needs to get on a warriors or timberwovls

  3. StoneRN

    February 18, 2010 at 9:39 am

    That’s some pretty cerebral argument Brad.

    I see my Nugs with Malik Allen and Johan Petro, neither of which would produce like that Jones guy does if they were in the d-league. Jones is a veritable monster in the d-league. The Nugs primary weakness against their biggest obstacle (Lakers in a series) is lack of depth in the frontcourt. Jones would address that need, cost little, and not require a trade of a rotation player (which the Nugs FO won’t do).

    I would love them to sign him to a 10-day just to see what could happen. With AD manning the show, a player like Jones could actually get some play time. Jones would be better than Tyrus Thomas, both in value/cost and absolute impact/contribution, and better than the French Tickler or Tacos Allen.

  4. eMomma78

    February 18, 2010 at 12:16 pm

    Call me biased, but Horace Wormely needs to be in the NBA. He’s a solid PG, but has been overlooked because of his height (5’6″). He knows how to handle the ball, makes precision passes, grab rebounds when least expected, and motivate his team. I’m a HUGE D-Fenders fan, but he needs to continue honing his skills at the NBA level.

  5. bt

    February 18, 2010 at 10:27 pm

    Rod Benson needs to be called up!

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