DJ Kennedy and Justin Brownlee Score Tryouts with D-League Teams

Kennedy tore his ACL the final game of his St. John's career but has bounced back to play professional ball. (Photo: Icon/SMI)
While other former members of the Red Storm have moved abroad to pursue professional careers, DJ Kennedy and Justin Brownlee have found opportunities here in the States, with D-League affiliates in Pennsylvania and Maine.

Kennedy, who is working his way back from a serious knee injury that he suffered in last year’s Big East tournament, got a free agent invite to training camp with the Erie Bayhawks, the NBA D-League affiliate of the New York Knicks.

Brownlee played a short time with the New Laredo Bulls of the Mexican National Basketball League and will now try out with the Maine Red Claws, the D-League affiliate of the Philadelphia 76ers, Boston Celtics, and Charlotte Bobcats.

Both players were integral in the St. John’s run to the NCAA tournament last season, combining for almost 23 points and 11 rebounds per game last season.

Other members of the St. John’s Class of 2011 that are now playing abroad include Dwight Hardy in Italy, Paris Horne and Sean Evans in Germany, and Justin Burrell in Japan. Former walk-on Kevin Clark is playing out his last year of college eligibility at Pace.

St. John’s Legend Enters Hall of Fame

QUEENS, N.Y. (Sept. 24, 2010) – Hardwood legend George Johnson became the 30th member of the St. John’s family to be inducted into the New York Basketball Hall of Fame at the New York Athletic Club’s annual event on Thursday night. New St. John’s head coach Steve Lavin, Director of Athletics Chris Monasch and Purdue Hall of Fame mentor Gene Keady joined the eight honorees and a host of New York City basketball royalty as part of the celebration.

St. John's legend George Johnson with his New York Basketball Hall of Fame Inductee trophy. (Redstormsports)
Johnson still ranks sixth on St. John’s all-time scoring list with 1,763 career points, but his claim to fame is as the greatest rebounder in school history with 1,240 career boards. Johnson played from 1974 through 1978, and along with Lloyd “Sonny” Dove, is one of two players in St. John’s history to pull down more than 1,000 rebounds, to which each added more than 1,000 career points as well.

In his freshman season, the 6-7 star averaged 10.1 points a game and led the Redmen with 285 caroms. As a sophomore, he was an honorable mention All-American, averaging 13.8 points and 10.6 rebounds. As a junior, Johnson exceeded the 1,000-point mark for his career. He averaged 17.4 points and led the team with 335 rebounds. He led the team as a senior with 19.4 points and 324 rebounds, and was the 1978 recipient of the Haggerty Award given to the NYC Metropolitan MVP.

Johnson, a first round NBA draft choice, was selected 12th overall by the Milwaukee Bucks in 1978. He played for the Denver Nuggets, Indiana Pacers, Philadelphia 76ers and Washington Bullets, averaging 9.1 points per game and 5.6 rebounds per game over a nine-year NBA career.

Johnson was among eight honorees in Thursday night’s Class of 2010. New York Knicks’ star Anthony Mason Sr., the late Providence College and Lakers coach Joe Mullaney, the late 5-4 Barney Sedran, who led Utica to the 1914 Pro World championship and was the smallest player ever inducted in the Naismith Hall of Fame, celebrated Garden photographer George Kalinsky, Rutgers All-American Phil Sellers, Pro Am City League legend Rab Walthour and Eastern League and Rucker League immortal Teddy Jones were all inducted as well.

Fans can be a part of the 2010-11 St. John’s hardwood campaign – the first under the direction of new head coach Lavin – by visiting St. John’s Ticket Office to order men’s basketball season tickets.

Follow: @STJ_Legends to catch up with your favorite St. John’s Alumni

Mullin, ’92 Dream Team Inducted Into Naismith Basketball Hall Of Fame

QUEENS, N.Y. (August 14, 2010) – St. John’s legend Chris Mullin, the most-decorated player in program history, was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame on Friday night, with his 1992 USA Basketball “Dream Team” Olympic gold medalist teammates as part of its 2010 class. The most recent group enshrined in the Springfield, Mass., venue also includes the 1960 USA Olympic gold medal team, Scottie Pippen of the Chicago Bulls, Karl Malone of the Utah Jazz, Los Angeles Lakers owner Jerry Buss, high school coaching great Bob Hurley Sr., and WNBA star Cynthia Cooper. NBA veterans Dennis Johnson and Gus Johnson and international star Maciel “Ubiratan” Pereira were honored posthumously.

Mullin became the ninth individual affiliated with St. John’s venerable basketball program to be inducted into the national hall. Coaches Joe Lapchick (1966), Frank McGuire (1977), Lou Carnesecca (1992) and standout player Dick McGuire (1993) have all been enshrined in Springfield, along with alumnus John O’Brien, 1909-10 head coach Harry Fisher, 1980-81 volunteer assistant coach and Knicks legend Willis Reed and 1948-51 letterwinner and former Marquette mentor Al McGuire.

“It was only with Coach Carnesecca’s guidance that I ever accomplished anything,” Mullin told RedStormSports.com.

One of New York City’s greatest players, Mullin is still one of the most recognizable figures in the history of Big Apple basketball. The Brooklyn native starred at Xaverian High School before attending St. John’s, and went on to give New York a four-year period to rival any other. He was the first St. John’s player to reach 2,000 points and his sweet jumper and savvy court sense led the 1985 Redmen to their first No. 1 ranking since 1951, and their first Final Four appearance since 1952. A consensus first team All-American as a senior, he was presented with the Wooden Award as the nation’s top player.

Mullin and former Georgetown center Patrick Ewing teamed to vault the fledgling BIG EAST on its way to the top of the national rankings. The two were members of the 1984 U.S. Olympic team that won the gold medal in Los Angeles. Mullin not only finished as St. John’s leading scorer, but set career records for steals, field goals, free throws and free throw percentage, and was also in the top five in assists. An outstanding NBA career followed along with Mullin’s selection to the 1992 U.S. Olympic “Dream Team,” where he led the squad during its gold medal run with 5.3 rebounds per contest.

One of the storied programs in the history of men’s collegiate basketball, St. John’s concluded the 2009-10 season as the seventh all-time winningest program in the NCAA Division I record book with 1,703 wins and 884 losses. The school’s .658 winning percentage ranks ninth all-time in NCAA history, while St. John’s 26 all-time NCAA Tournament appearances are tied for 20th. The program’s 26 NIT appearances and five titles are also unprecedented. Helms Foundation national champions following the 1910-11 season, St. John’s appeared in NCAA Final Fours in 1952 and 1985. The program boasts 11 consensus All-Americans, 59 NBA Draft choices and 45 players that have scored 1,000 career points or more.

Fans can be a part of the 2010-11 St. John’s hardwood campaign – the first under the direction of new head coach Steve Lavin – by visiting www.redstormsports.com and clicking on the “Tickets” link to order men’s basketball season tickets.

Billy Singleton to the Gauchos

Updated 5/19/10 1:00 AM The New York Gauchos have confirmed the hire of Billy Singleton on their Twitter.

Since Maurice Hicks is taking the Director of Basketball operations job at St. John’s that leaves an opening for the New York Gauchos. The buzz around New York is that Billy Singleton is currently the favorite to take the position.

Singleton became the Director of Basketball operations under Norm Roberts in September of 2007. Singleton was a standout player for the Redstorm and graduated from the University in 1991. Singleton was a three-year letter winner at St. John’s and co-captain as a senior in 1991, playing for Hall of Fame Coach Lou Carnesecca and alongside greats such as Malik Sealy, Jayson Williams, Jason Buchanan and Robert Werdann. He played in 96 career contests, averaging 8.7 points per game and 5.7 rebounds with a .478 field goal percentage. He was a member of the 1989 St. John’s NIT Championship team, and is notably remembered for joining Sealy in carrying Carnesecca off the court following the coach’s 500th career win on Feb. 2, 1991.

Following commencement from St. John’s, Singleton enjoyed a 16-year playing career abroad, with stints in Australia, France, Uruguay, Ireland, Chile, Israel, Cyprus and most notably, England, where he remains among the British Basketball League’s (BBL) all-time scoring leaders. Singleton spent a combined 13 seasons playing in the BBL, capturing the league’s championship with the Leicester Raiders, Cheshire Jets and Scottish Rocks.

After spending one season as an assistant coach with the BBL’s Cheshire Jets, Singleton spent the 2005-07 seasons as head coach. With Cheshire, he was responsible for all on-court operations of the club, including: team selection, player development, practice and game preparation while also managing the team’s budget.

A native of the Bronx, Singleton attended Adlai E. Stevenson High School. He is the nephew of current Philadelphia 76ers television analyst Ed Pinckney, who was named the Most Outstanding Player of the 1985 Final Four with Villanova before a 12-year NBA career.

Singleton has had long ties with the Gauchos organization so the move would make a lot of sense and would beneficial for St. John’s in the NYC recruiting wars.

Keep reading JohnnyJungle.com for all latest news regarding St. John’s Basketball.

*Singleton’s bio copied from RedStormSports.com

Happy Birthday Lamont Hamilton

Too often we forget those who played in a Red Storm uniform after they graduate. JohnnyJungle.com wants to change that. Yesterday was St. John’s basketball alumnus Lamont Hamilton’s 26th birthday.

Hamilton was the leader for the Red Storm from seasons 2003-2007. The big Monty was an immediate contributor to St. John’s logging 18.3 minutes per game his freshman season backing up senior Kyle Cuffe.

The program saw many tough times in Monty’s career however he was always the one who everyone could count on to give the Red Storm a chance to win. Lamont started every single game from his sophomore to senior season (84 games) who was quickly forced into becoming the team leader.

Monty definitely had some memorable games during his career. The best game of his career came in his senior season at the Holiday Festival against Columbia (Dec 23) where he netted 36 points on 11-13 shooting and 14-16 from the charity stripe. It was the highest scoring output since Marcus Hatten had 36 points back on March 6, 2003.

One of my personal favorite Lamont Hamilton moments was at Madison Square Garden when he drew a double team and kicked out a pass to the corner to a wide open Larry Wright for a game winning 3 point basket at the buzzer.

Hamilton is one of 15 players in St. John’s history with more than 1,200 points and 650 rebounds (Hamilton finished his career 22nd all-time, with 682), and one of only six St. John’s players with 1,200 career points, 650 rebounds and 100 blocked shots (Hamilton amassed 118 career rejections).

Currently Hamilton is playing basketball overseas in Paris, France with Paris-Levallois. He’s averaging 15 points per game on 57% shooting and grabbing 6.3 rebounds per game. He is playing with fellow american and former Virginia Tech star AD Vassalo.

Hamilton is also engaged to his college girlfriend and former sports medicine student worker, Lucy. They have one son together. Be sure to check out more of our Alumni Updates only on JohnnyJungle.com