This past weekend, San Antonio Spurs' Cory Joseph played his first competitive regulation basketball since his college days at the University of Texas.
In two games against Belgium, Joseph showed his speed on offense, ability to run the team, and excellent defense. However, Joseph's shooting and turnovers were an issue. But can you really blame the kid since he has been away from the court and quickly thrown into the international game and its rules?
Joseph's Canadian coach Leo Rautins says the team has been preparing for Joseph to join the squad before this past weekends games.
"We got back from Europe and Jevohn Shepherd, Denham Brown, Jermaine Andersen and Jeff Ferguson got in the gym with Cory and when we got into practice last night he knew three quarters of our plays already which is a huge thing...It just tells you the nature of this group they just care about winning," said Rautins.
Joseph knows his turnovers were an issue and he knows only he can make make the right adjustments.
"It can get better. I'm a guy's [sic] that's hard on myself and I feel like we can be more fluid, be better in [defensive] rotations and better offensive execution," said Joseph.
For Spurs fans, the thing to take away is to know Joseph is striving to improve which is a testament to this young man from Canada. Also,, know he will more than likely go through growing pains once the lockout is over and he joins the Spurs.
Everyone knows how difficult the Spurs' system is and how it takes about a full season to fully adjust. Add the fact coach Popovich is notoriously hard on young point guards (see Tony Parker) and Joseph will have his ups and downs.
But if his determination to improve for Canada is any indication of how he will approach adjusting to the NBA and the Spurs, then the sky is the limit for him and his basketball development.