Monday, July 19, 2010

Buzzer beater ends summer league

A fantastic 2010 NBA Las Vegas Summer League ended Sunday with a buzzer beating game winner by Mark Tyndale to give the D-League Select Team their first LVSL victory. That it came against the Clippers matters not. The D-Leaguers played with pride and showed that a bunch of guys with less natural talent can and will beat younger players that are either raw, undisciplined, or both.

The Player of the Day for the final afternoon of action was Luke Babbitt (pictured). The first round pick acquired by the Blazers from the T-Wolves for Martell Webster scored 22 points (6-8 FG, 8-8 FT), with four steals, four rebounds, and three assists in 31 minutes. The summer Blazers beat the summer Bulls 83-69.

I caught three quarters of the Kings matchup with the summer Mavs at Cox Pavillion. I left with time remaining in the late third quarter because the game was over. Dallas was whipping Sac by 35 and outside of Sylven Landesberg, and Conner Atchley - the Kings looked super-tired. 

And they should have looked that way... It was their sixth game in seven days.

I will post more detailed thoughts on each Kings summer player once I review their final total stats for the week but I can offer a few quick thoughts. ...Being able to see these games LIVE and in person was a treat and also very helpful for me in evaluating players. A slim frame on a player can be overlooked if a talent/efficiency level is through the roof. But if the talent is jut good or even very good - the slight frame dooms a player as a NBA prospect. With that said - I've always been a fan and supporter of Lee Cummard but unfortunately for Lee - seeing him live against NBA bodies dims the enthusiasm level I've had. Cummard is simply too slight. 

I thought Landesberg was outstanding at getting to the hoop - just as he showed at Virginia. He has a feel for the game that belies his 20 years on earth. He was also efficient in college for his position. He has NBA level athletic ability. I hope the Kings sign him and develop him. He is too talented, young and efficient to let get away.
Conner Atchley is a smart player. He really understands help defense and I think he gets the most out of his God-given ability. However - I still don't see Atchley making a differnce in an NBA game. 

Donald Sloan is not a Point Guard and he did not show enough to me to warrant any further look. ...I thought Tyrese Rice was the best among the trio of little guards the Kings had that included Sloan, and Devan Downey

Dionte Christmas (pictured) plays hard. I'm not sure he will ever crack the NBA as a rotation player though. 

Wayne Chism is a guy that I would surely invite to training camp (if not outright signing for a year at the minimum). He is a tough, team player that also has just enough skill to make him worthwhile. He can score a little down low and I love that he brought his body-sacrificing game with him. He will take charges with the best on any level. Throw in his ability to hit a three-point shot as a Power Forward and you have a young guy that would be a potentially nice addition.

Ryan Thompson goes to the hole strong and I would invite him to training camp to see more. However - his jumper is not good enough right now and his pacing relative to the NBA game is not where it needs to be. He seems to be in fifth gear the entire game. Basketball requires changing speeds  and gears. Sometimes the best play is the play you do not make. And I think Jason Thompson's little brother needs to learn that. 

By the way - Jason Thompson looks great. Here in Vegas to support his brother and former Rider teammate, JT looks noticeably bigger in his upper body.

Our All Las Vegas Summer League Final Day Team (with game efficiency rating): PG: Jeremy Lin - DAL .894, SG: Dominique Jones - DAL .916, SF: Babbitt - POR .935, PF: Alade Aminu - ATL .789, C: Sean Williams - MIL .900. Bench: Guards: Gary Neal - SA .851, Wayne Ellington - MIN .600. Forwards: David Monds - CLE .709, Al Faroqu Aminu - LAC .678, Tyler Wilkerson - SA .666, Ekene Ibekwe - POR .666. Center: Randolph Morris - ATL .684.

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