JayVaughn Pinkston played high school ball at Bishop Loughlin High School on Vanderbilt Avenue, a few blocks from Barclays Center. On Wednesday, the 6'7", 247-pound forward out of Villanova was working out for the Brooklyn Nets, hoping to become the first native of the fair borough to play for the home team.
"Everybody's just trying to work hard and trying to get an opportunity to play," he told the Nets camera crew. "Especially being a Brooklyn guy, Brownsville, So its a great experience, a great opportunity. Thankful for the Nets bringing me out here."
It won't be easy. He's 23 years old now and isn't listed on any of the draft boards. Draft Express has him in the 70's in their rankings, so not far out of the second round. But he has some legacies in his favor.
Pinkston dominated the city high school scene in 2010 at Bishop Loughlin, the high school nearest Barclays Center.
Pinkston was named New York's Player of the Year as a senior, averaging 25 points, 13 rebounds, five assists and two blocked shots. He played in the McDonald's All-American game and was selected as a second team All-American by Parade Magazine. Also, he was coached at Loughlin by Khalid Green, now the Nets east coast collegiate scout.
His career at Villanova was solid if not spectacular and he had a run-in with the law his freshman year. But again, his coach loved him.
"He’s the senior, [his teammates] know he’s a New York guy who’s used to being the star, and yet he’s done everything for everybody else his senior year," Jay Wright of the WIldcats told.the Post this spring "He’s played great defense, set great screens, made the extra pass. He’s the best teammate you can ever have."
He's undersized at the NBA 4. He has some range, capable of hitting the three-pointer. Wearing the "Brooklyn Basketball" workout shirt yesterday left him all smiles and grateful.
Also working out Wednesday was J.P. Tokoto, the 6'6" junior out of North Carolina. The Nets interviewed him at the Draft Combine and then brought him in for an early workout. More than one mock draft has had the Nets taking him in the second round.
- Brooklyn Nets - 2015 Draft Workouts - Day 3 (Video) - Brooklyn Nets