Jan Vesely lets the jumpers fly at Wizards summer mini-camp day one (with a cameo from Bradley Beal).
“I’m not thinking about to show anything, I’m just happy to play and I will try to do my best on the court and try to get the wins.”
Those were Jan Vesely’s words on Monday afternoon when asked what he wanted to show the team about his game this summer. The quote was so him. Vesely plays just to play, not for display.
The Vesely we saw flashes of last year is that instinctual, always-around-the-basketball guy. He doesn’t have to show the game, he knows it. Still, people expect to see something new, even if Jan claims he isn’t thinking about showing anything.
Two words: Jump. Shot.
The Wizards sent developmental coach Joe Connelly to the Czech Republic earlier this summer to work with Jan. On Monday Connelly rebounded while Vesely and fellow countryman Tomas Satoransky shot around during the media access portion on day one of Wizards summer mini-camp. Some shots looked good going in, some didn’t.
“I saw confidence, which I saw at the end of the year,” said head coach Randy Wittman about Vesely’s first day back. Well, not really his first day. He has been back in Washington since late June.
“He’s got to take that step now in summer league — not being hesitant to take an 18, 20-foot open jump shot, creating off the dribble, and doing the things he does anyway, running the floor and defending,” the coach continued.
Displayng a confident outside shot has been drilled into Vesely’s head.
“I can say I worked a lot last month on that, and I work every day on outside shot. So I feel pretty good, and I’ll work a lot until the beginning of the season.”
The video above, albeit simply practice shots, shows progress. Vesely succeeds when he stays square, limits lateral movement and holds his follow-through. He gets nice arc on his shot and has a decent release point.
An improved jumper could make the Wizards comfortable with the idea of playing Vesely at the 3 (small forward) alongside a bruising frontcourt duo of Nene and Seraphin taking up paint position on offense.
“Maybe. It’s not up to me,” said Vesely on Monday about his preference for the 3 spot.
“I like the 3 position, but I don’t feel bad at the 4,” Jan once wrote in a Q&A with Czech fans after getting drafted in 2011.
“In Europe, I was being put in the lineup at the swingman position, here the coach uses me rather as a smaller pivot man,” he wrote in his online Czech journal last March.
“If the coaches want to put me at small forward, that’s up to them,” countered Vesely on Monday. “But, I’m happy at power forward, and I think it’s a good position, and I will do my best at that position.”
Looks like kid just wants to be a good egg and play basketball. But if he wants to have fun, he better keep shooting.