Two years ago, Scott Machado thought he had a chance at being taken in the first round of the NBA Draft. He had led the NCAA in assists, at 9.9 per game. He had worked out against Marquis Teague in front of Bulls executives, outplayed him, he thought, for the 29th pick in the draft ... despite being a bit undersized at just 6'2" and coming out of tiny Iona.
Instead, the Bulls passed on the Queens native (and Tyshawn Taylor, who was in the mix, too) and took Teague. Machado, who the Nets considered late in the second, instead went undrafted. Now he's in free agent camp trying once again to make the league. He still remembers the battle with Teague.
"I went through the workouts. I thought I was fine," Machado told Lenn Robbins, the Nets in-house beat writer. "I went to the Chicago workout and they loved me as well. I was actually going against Teague. They decided to take him. He was younger, went to Kentucky. I went to Iona. Maybe that had something to do with it."
Of his Nets workout, he said, "I came to Nets camp and spoke to Avery [Johnson]. Avery loved me."
Now, he's back at PNY Center and instead of playing against other Draft prospects like Teague, he's paired off with Edwin Jackson, who he played with in France a little more than two weeks ago.
Machado was Jackson's back-up at Avsel in the French league. They lost in the quarter finals on May 14. He was his first foreign playing experience other than for Team Brazil in FIBA competition. Before that, he had played professionally for the Rockets, the Warriors and the Jazz and three D-League teams.
The French sojourn was not a happy one. He needed the French League job because his father, Luiz, the family's breadwinner, had died of cardiac arrest after a confrontation with New York Taxi and Limousine Commission agents last March at JFK Airport. It was ruled a homicide.
The nightmare resonates, says Machado, but so do the words of hins father's last conversation with him. "He said, ‘Hey man, just play confident. You’ve been doing this all your life. Just play confident.'" And so he has