After an illustrious four-year career at Villanova, Scottie Reynolds didn’t go down the typical path of a consensus First Team All-American. Finishing his tenure at ’Nova second all-time in scoring and leading the Wildcats to a Final Four appearance in ’09 – highlighted by an unforgettable mad-dash game-winner over one-seeded Pittsburgh – Scottie went undrafted in 2010. After a brief stint with Prima Veroli in Italy, he set his sights back on America in hopes of getting the opportunity to play at the next level. Taken 13th overall in the NBA D-League Draft by the Tulsa 66ers, he was then traded to the Springfield Armor. As one of the perennial figures of Villanova Basketball and a current standout in the D-League, we decided there was no one better to turn to for an inside scoop on life in the NBA’s minor league. In his first entry, Scottie talks about life on the road, Dee Brown as a coach and being heckled.
*** *** ***
I just got back from practice, fighting through the snow and it’s still supposed to snow some more. Playing for the Armor is good, even better than what I expected. We have a lot of young guys on the team, first-year guys and having a guy like Dee [Brown] who played in the League, who has a lot of experience in the League, helps us get out there and get better. It also helps that Craig [Brackins] is on the team. He’s definitely the guy I hang out with the most and get along with the most on the team. I’ve known L.D. Williams since he was 16 when we played on the same AAU team. He’s always laughing and joking no matter what the circumstances… I guess that’s why he’s the youngest on the team. He’s a good, intelligent basketball player, and I’ve seen him grow to be a well-rounded player.
I’ve been working hard here, trying to take my game to the next level. The two biggest things I’ve been working on have to be making sure my assist-to-turnover ratio is good and trying to always be on the attack. It’s important to keep my assist numbers high, that’s what I’ve been working on with Coach Dee. I’ve been too passive before, now I’m more aggressive. I had 18 (points) and 13 (assists) one night and I want to get close to that level on a regular basis.
The transition from college to D-League has been fun. It’s a challenge every day but I love it, man! I scored a lot in college and I’m sick of scoring. I’ve done all that. What I’m doing now I never got to do on a consistent basis at Villanova. I like getting 13 assists in a game or nine assists and one turnover. I can’t fall in love with assists though, I have to balance it with points, but I’ve been working on it with Dee. In Villanova, I had Doug West. When you have a guy who is accomplished, you’re going to do what he says. If you don’t, you’re not intelligent, you’re not going to get anywhere. Dee is pretty much always the same, energetic, not too high, not too low. Sometimes he even gets out there and plays 5-on-5 with us. It’s fun.
Understanding how to manage a full 48-minute game has been a big adjustment so far – those extra eight minutes can be very critical in a game. Coach always talks about managing the game. When you’re on a college team for four years, everyone knows what you’re supposed to do and where you’re supposed to be. Guys come in and out of the D-League, so it helps to be more verbal and communicate when you’re on the floor. When you have a guy like Craig who has a high basketball IQ, he plays off of you, so there’s no need to talk a lot. We have a good connection on and off the court – we read each other well. The 24-second shot clock has been a bit of adjustment too. It’s like once you cross halfcourt, you only have like 18 seconds left, so trying to find a good shot in that amount of time can be tough.