Landen Lucas conquers altitude at Jazz workout; Frank Mason in Milwaukee Monday

By Gary Bedore gbedore@kcstar.com

Former Kansas power forward Landen Lucas worked out for the Utah Jazz with five other NBA Draft hopefuls on Tuesday in Salt Lake City.

“I thought it went well. The altitude is different, a change. I had to get used to that. It was a good workout,” the 6-foot-10, 240-pound Lucas told nba.com.

He was joined by David Collette and Kyle Kuzma of the University of Utah, plus Victor Sanders (Idaho), Fred Sims (Chicago State) and Nik Slavica of Croatia.

“Seeing the different cities, meeting the front office (personnel) of all these different teams, getting a chance to play against guys I’ve seen on TV, maybe not in the Big 12,” Lucas stated of highlights of the pre-draft process that has had him work out for the Jazz, Milwaukee Bucks and Sacramento Kings thus far. “I’ve also run into some guys I’ve played with or against. That’s probably the most fun part of it all.”

In Sacramento, Lucas competed with a group that included Kansas State’s Wesley Iwundu, BYU’s Eric Mika, Iowa State’s Naz Mitrou-Long and Nebraska’s Tai Webster.

Lucas said he believes he could help an NBA team.

“No matter what level I played at, my ability to rebound has always translated well,” Lucas told nba.com. “I would look for myself to continue to do what I did at Kansas at the next level.”

Lucas said he needs to work on “the confidence in my shot in games. I feel I’ve developed being comfortable with my shot in 1-on-1 situations. At Kansas I didn’t really have the opportunity to take a lot of shots. I need to get some repetitions in games with shooting.”

Asked the player he’d most like to play with or against, he said: “I really like the energy and what Tristan Thompson does for Cleveland so probably him. That would be cool.”

Lucas is projected as a possible late-second round pick. It’s believed he will land a spot on an NBA summer league team even if he doesn’t get selected in the June 22 draft.

Mason works out in Milwaukee

Former KU guard Frank Mason worked out for the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday in Milwaukee. He was joined by North Carolina’s Kennedy Meeks, Northeastern’s T.J. Williams, Kentucky’s Isaac Humphries, UConn’s Amida Brimah and Marquette’s Luke Fischer.

Mason, who also recently worked out for Orlando, said after Monday’s session that he had “10 or 11” workouts remaining before the draft.

“It (draft process) is something I’ll always remember. It’s something I’m just trying to enjoy,” Mason told nba.com.

Asked what he brings to the table, Mason said: “Just getting in the lane, playmaking, shooting the ball, being consistent, doing what I do best — getting other guys involved scoring the ball (and) focusing in on the defensive end.”

Bucks director of scouting Billy McKinney likes what Mason offers the NBA.

“He was a true leader for that (KU) ballclub, tough as heck, gritty,” McKinney told nba.com. “He started to make better decisions with the basketball, which is going to serve him well at the next level.”

Mason measured 6 foot in shoes at the NBA Combine.

“He’s a guy that can defend the quicker point guards and much like Isaiah Thomas (5-9, Boston Celtics), because he’s so strong, he’ll be able to defend bigger players,” McKinney told the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel.

Of his size, Mason said: “Shorter guys getting in the NBA are still filling the stat sheet up, doing what the taller guys do. It’s not all about the size, it’s more about the heart and what do you do when you get out there.”

Svi announcement on Wednesday

KU guard Svi Mykhailiuk will announce his decision to remain in the NBA Draft or return to school for his senior season on Wednesday, KU coach Bill Self reiterated on Tuesday.

Self had no estimated time for any announcement.

Mykhailiuk, a 6-8 shooting guard from Cherkasy, Ukraine, declared for the draft on April 12 but did not sign with an agent. He attended the NBA Combine on May 9-14 in Chicago where he impressed in shooting drills but injured his ankle, which forced him to miss the second and final combine game.

The deadline the NCAA gives to student-athletes to withdraw from the draft and be eligible to play college basketball is Wednesday.

West Virginia’s Jevon Carter and Texas’ Andrew Jones this week have withdrawn from what is considered a deep draft.

Upcoming events

Bill Self’s annual Lawrence Parks and Rec Golf Classic will be held Friday, June 16 at Lawrence’s Eagle Bend Golf Course. Team registration deadline is June 9. For information go to https://lawrenceks.org/lprd/golfclassic/

The ninth-annual Rock Chalk Roundball Classic will be held at 7 p.m., June 8 at Free State High School. Game organizer/KU radio play by play announcer Brian Hanni reports that former KU players Ben McLemore, Mario Chalmers, Cole Aldrich, Sherron Collins, Darnell Jackson, Tyshawn Taylor, Kenny Gregory, Alonzo Jamison and many others will attend the cancer benefit game. For information go to https://www.facebook.com/rockchalkroundballclassic/

Walker to announce Wednesday

One-time KU target M.J. Walker, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard from Jonesboro (Ga.) High School, who is ranked No. 24 in the recruiting Class of 2017 by Rivals.com, will announce for either UCLA, Ohio State, Virginia Tech, Florida State and Georgia Tech on Wednesday, Rivals.com reports. He once had KU on his list of schools.

Gary Bedore: 816-234-4068, @garybedore


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