NEW YORK -- A week before making their Summer League debuts for the National Basketball Association's New Jersey Nets, recent Draft picks Derrick Favors and Damion James made a pit stop at Yankee Stadium.
Favors, the third overall pick in the Draft, and James, the No. 24 selection whom the Nets acquired from the Hawks, watched the Yankees take batting practice on Tuesday night prior to their game against the Mariners.
James certainly soaked in the experience. The former University of Texas forward said he is an avid baseball fan, listing Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez and CC Sabathia as his favorite Yankees.
"Not many dudes where I'm from can say they've done this, so it's a great experience," James said. "It's a new stadium -- a couple of years old -- and it's great."
Favors, though, is already familiar with new stadiums in the Big Apple. The Georgia Tech star introduced himself to New York fans on Friday night, visiting Citi Field to watch the Mets square off against the Twins.
But that didn't stop Favors from appreciating the atmosphere at Yankee Stadium. While Jeter was taking batting practice, Favors intently watched while the shortstop launched long drives around the ballpark.
"It's a good experience," Favors said. "I've heard a lot of Yankee Stadium and its legacy. It feels good to be out here and get the experience."
But the two know their welcoming tour will be short-lived. By this time next week, both Favors and James will be showcasing their skills on the Orlando Summer League courts as they take the first steps toward resurrecting the New Jersey franchise.
"I'm looking forward to it," Favors said of helping the Nets rebuild. "I'm going to go in, work hard, have fun and win games."
-- Didier Morais