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Osipoff: E’Twaun Moore giving back to the region

BostCeltics' E'Twaun Moore shoots against ClevelCavaliers first half an NBA basketball game ClevelTuesday  Jan. 31 2012.  (AP Photo/Amy

Boston Celtics' E'Twaun Moore shoots against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first half of an NBA basketball game in Cleveland on Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2012. (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta)

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E’Twaun Moore Basketball Camp

Who: Boys and girls entering fourth through ninth grades

When: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., June 29 and 30 (check-in from 8:30 a.m. to 10 on June 29)

Where: East Chicago Central High School

Cost: $70, $40 for East Chicago residents (proof required)

Additional details: The first 150 campers to register will receive a T-shirt, E’Twaun Moore autographed photo and certificate. Lunch will be provided each day. Campers will learn fundamentals, participate in games and contests, and listen to lectures from Moore and other camp staff.

For more information: Go toetwaunmoorebasketball.com, call 219-381-5075 or email etwaunbbcamp@yahoo.com

Having reached the NBA, the pinnacle of his profession, E’Twaun Moore felt compelled to contribute in another way to the region that has supported him over the years.

It was in his mind, heart and soul.

So he has established the E’Twaun Moore Basketball Camp, which he hopes will become an annual event.

The camp is scheduled for June 29 and 30 at his old high school, East Chicago Central, for students going into fourth through ninth grades.

“I just wanted to do something at home, reach the kids,” Moore said. “I thought the camp would be a good way to do it.”

Basketball fundamentals such as shooting, passing, dribbling, defending, and footwork will be emphasized. Even more importantly, broader themes such as teamwork, sportsmanship, getting an education, making smart decisions, and goal-setting will be stressed.

“They’ll learn some basketball, and hopefully I can just motivate them to keep doing well,” Moore said. “I just want to give the kids hope, let them see something positive. I want them to know they can achieve their dreams.”

Like Moore has.

The former East Chicago and Purdue star — and academically decorated graduate of both — completed his rookie season with the Celtics earlier this month, with the team advancing all the way to the Eastern Conference finals against the Heat.

On a veteran team, one that typically has not given a lot of run to young players, stocked with All-Stars and future Hall of Famers, Moore played sparingly (he played in 38 of 66 regular-season games, averaging 2.9 points in 8.7 minutes; and in nine of 20 postseason games, averaging 2.3 minutes). The lockout — which eliminated NBA-sponsored summer leagues, and shortened training camp and the season, compacting the schedule such that practice was almost non-existent — didn’t help the second-round pick, No. 55 overall.

But Moore valued the experience.

“It was a good year,” he said. “It went fast. I was around great guys, and learned a lot.

“The biggest thing, just the guys’ work ethic — how hard they work and the intensity they bring every day.”

Moore showed flashes of his familiar ability when he received extended playing time. He scored 16 points against the Magic in Orlando on Jan. 26. He played a career-high 25 minutes against the Bucks on April 26, recording career-highs of five assists and three steals. Two days earlier, he had seven rebounds against the Heat.

Moore is slated to play on both of the Celtics’ summer league teams next month, in Orlando then Las Vegas. How he performs could have an impact on his prospects for next season; only the first year of the two-year contract he signed was guaranteed.

“It will be good to just go out there and play — everybody wants to play,” Moore said. “Everyone will be able to see me play, and hopefully I can show them what I can do. I’m confident in my game.”

Moore is cognizant of the circumstances, fully aware of what’s at stake. But he brushes aside any supposed pressure like a mosquito. He’s not about to stop now, having already made it this far, in position to host a camp bearing his name, for youngsters.

“I’m definitely excited,” Moore said. “It will be a great time. I’m hoping my first camp will be big.”



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