Josh Newman, SNYNets.com
Through three high schools to the Elite Eight with the University of Arizona to two standout years at Iona College that produced consecutive NCAA Tournament berths, Lamont 'MoMo' Jones has been playing basketball his whole life.
As he goes through the NBA Draft process this spring, that mentality of just going out and playing doesn't seem to have left him.
"Nervous? The nervous part, doesn’t come until June 27," Jones said in referencing the NBA Draft via phone after he confirmed to SNY.tv that he would be working out for the Nets on June 20. "This is something we’ve done our whole lives. We’ve been in the big arenas, watching and playing championship games and things like that. You just go out and play to the best of your ability and try to show what type of person and player you are."
The 6-foot, 195-pound combo-guard out of Harlem is coming off a superb senior season when he averaged a team-best 22.6 points for the 20-14 Gaels, who went to the NCAA Tournament for the second consecutive year following their first MAAC Tournament title since 2006. In the MAAC Tournament semifinals, the one-time Rice High School star scored 17 points and dished out five assists in 40 minutes of a 79-73 upset of No. 1 seed Niagara.
Jones has always had a scorer's mentality, as evidence by the 1,851 career points he scored over a four-year college career that began with two years at Arizona. During his sophomore year in Tuscon, he helped quarterback the Wildcats to the Elite Eight, so there is no shortage of big-game experience there.
Jones believes those positive attributes will translate to the NBA level and given his time at Arizona, he doesn't think he'll need to overcome a mid-major stigma due to his time at Iona as other mid-major players have to do once they get to this point.
"I think my game translates very well at the next level," Jones said. I've never lost that scoring mentality, it's something that gets me over the hump. My point guard skills and getting everybody involved also helps me tremendously. Anyone who will take me will want want me to score the ball. That's what has gotten me to this point."
Jones doesn't currently appear on anyone's mock draft, but teams do appear willing to take a look. He worked out for the Detroit Pistons on Memorial Day and according to his agent, Dino Pergola, he will work out for the Washington Wizards on June 7. Pergola also confirmed to SNY.tv that Jones has been added to ASM Pro Day on Friday afternoon in Las Vegas. That event is expected to draw executives and scouts from all 30 NBA teams.
Jones is the second confirmed workout the Nets will be holding in anticipation of the NBA Draft on June 27. San Diego State junior shooting guard Jamaal Franklin will work out for the team at a date that is not yet known. The Nets are expected to begin individual workouts once front office personnel returns from the Adidas EuroCamp. That event runs June 8-10 in Treviso, Italy.
Josh Newman is SNYNets.com’s Field Reporter. Follow him on Twitter for up to the minute news and banter on all things related to the Brooklyn Nets and the NBA