The Washington Times - May 28, 2008, 03:14PM

Wizards officials are down in Orlando for the NBA’s predraft camp, which runs from today to Friday. After taking a pulse from teams on which players had the best chances of getting drafted, the NBA invited candidates to the camp for workouts, drills and scrimmages.

Wizards president Ernie Grunfeld and his team will be watching closely to see what type of diamonds in the rough they can discover since Washington has no real chance of landing a future franchise player by the time the 18th pick comes around.


The Wizards have done a pretty good job finding talent late in the draft, however. Three years ago the Wizards didn’t have a first-round pick at all. But in the second round they landed Andray Blatche, whom Vice President of Player Personnel Milt Newton discovered out of South Kent Prep in Connecticut. Blatche was seen as a project with great potential and he has steadily improved. This season, he posted career numbers, averaging 7.5 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.39 blocks in 20.5 minutes while serving primarily as the team’s backup center. Blatche started 15 games this season, averaging 11.7 points, 10.4 rebounds and 3.4 blocks a game.

The Wizards took Oleksiy Pecherov out of Ukraine two summers ago, but he didn’t join the team until last year. The jury’s still out on him as he was slowed early by a fracture in his foot and is still learning the NBA game. But Wizards management believes he has a bright future.

Nick Young (16th overall 2007) and Dominic McGuire (47th overall 2007) both showed promise as rookies. The Wizards think Young can be a 20-point a night player and McGuire was called on for his defensive prowess and hustle during the regular season and the playoffs.

Who will be this year’s find?

With the backcourt pretty well stocked, the Wizards could be on the market for another big man. Some mock drafts have them taking Georgetown’s Roy Hibbert while others have them taking Nevada forward JaVale McGee or Stanford center Robin Lopez.

While in Orlando, management will decide which players it wants to invite to additional workouts, which will take place at Verizon Center on Thursday, June 5.

You can catch some of the action in Orlando on TV. Below is the schedule:

NBA Pre-Draft Camp, ESPNU May 28 5:00 PM
NBA Pre-Draft Camp, NBATV May 29 12:00 PM
NBA Pre-Draft Camp, ESPNU May 29 2:00 PM
NBA Pre-Draft Camp, ESPNU May 29 5:00 PM
NBA Pre-Draft Camp, NBATV May 30 12:00 PM