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UNLV’s Brandon McCoy shows his skills in NBA Draft workout

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Steve Marcus

UNLV Rebels forward Brandon McCoy (44) drives to the basket during a game against the Air Force Falcons at the Thomas & Mack Center Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018.

Brandon McCoy knew there would be more than 100 scouts, general managers and assorted league personnel in the gym when he worked out for NBA teams at Impact Sports in Las Vegas on Thursday. What he didn’t know was that the entire UNLV coaching staff would be there too.

McCoy, the 7-foot center who led UNLV in scoring last year en route to Mountain West Freshman of the Year honors, worked out for 45 minutes in hopes of improving his stock ahead of the NBA Draft on June 21. While McCoy went through shooting drills and full-court 3-on-3 action in front of NBA decision-makers, UNLV coach Marvin Menzies and his entire staff watched from the sideline.

“That’s love,” McCoy said after the workout. “It was such a relief to have my family out here. It kind of gave me a sense of relaxation to have my Vegas family here to support me.”

McCoy averaged 16.9 points and 10.3 rebounds per game last year at UNLV and declared for the draft shortly after the season ended. He is now living in Los Angeles as he prepares for draft night, and he appears to be generating buzz from pro teams. He was invited to the NBA combine in Chicago in May, and some mock drafts have him pegged as a first-round selection.

McCoy was one of 32 players working out on Thursday, with potential first-rounders Troy Brown of Oregon and Rawle Alkins of Arizona among the headliners. McCoy performed well, especially in shooting drills, as he showed good form while draining 18-of-30 from NBA 3-point range.

McCoy said he has had individual workouts with the Chicago Bulls, Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs, and that NBA teams seem intrigued by his ability to knock down outside shots.

“Honestly, they just want to see if you can make 3’s and communicate on defense,” McCoy said. “And they want to see if you’re going to compete. You do a lot of shooting, you do a lot of 3-on-3 and you have to show that you’re in condition.”

Menzies greeted McCoy with a hug before the workout and the two chatted for several minutes.

“Supporting one of my guys,” Menzies said. “Once you’re a Rebel, you’re always a Rebel. I just came to give him a little moral support and see how he does and chop it up with him a little later.”

Menzies said scouts have been contacting him to inquire about McCoy’s background and character, and that the NBA seems genuinely interested in the young prospect.

“Everybody’s got different opinions, but I think the thing about this process is you only really need to have one or two guys that really like you,” Menzies said. “And I think he’s developed strong interest from a few teams that are looking heavily to pick him in their spots if he’s available. We’ll see how it all unfolds.”

McCoy said he’s not feeling any pressure ahead of the draft, and he’s thankful for the support he’s gotten from UNLV.

“This is the most stress-free I’ve ever been,” McCoy said. “I miss UNLV, I miss my teammates and I miss my coaches, but they understood I felt like this was the best decision I could make for me and my family.”

Mike Grimala can be reached at 702-948-7844 or [email protected]. Follow Mike on Twitter at twitter.com/mikegrimala.

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