Sunday, July 13, 2014

Justin Hamilton stars on day two in Vegas.

Justin Hamilton's improvement is remarkable.
Justin Hamilton was the most efficient player on a winning team during day two action at the NBA Las Vegas Summer League. The Miami Heat center scored 21 points (9-12 FG, 1-1 3-pt. FG, 2-4 FT), grabbed seven rebounds, and blocked five shots in a 92-81 victory over the Houston Rockets. Hamilton has been excellent in summer play, starring as well in the Orlando league which was recently completed. 

Most efficient shooting guard on a winning team: Justin Holiday, Golden State. ...Justin Holiday was brilliant in Golden State's 74-72 win over Phoenix. Holiday, known as a lock-down defender, showed that he CAN also provide enough offense to be a rotation player in the NBA. Holiday scored 29 points (9-15 FG, 2-5 3-pt FG, 9-9 FT), tallied 13 rebounds, and blocked two shots in 32 minutes. With NBA teams seeking two-way players, Justin Holiday, now 25 years-old, should be a guy every NBA team should be looking at. In particular, he would be a GREAT fit on the Sacramento Kings.

Most efficient small forward on a winning team: Otto Porter, Washington. ...The third pick in the 2013 NBA Draft had a rookie year to forget but Saturday he looked like the guy Washington Wizards fans hope he can be. Porter scored 25 points (11-16 FG, 1-3 3 pt. FG, 2-3 FT), and had seven rebounds in the Wizards 90-74 victory over the Atlanta Hawks.

Most efficient point guard on a winning team: Erik Green, Denver. ...Green went for 17 points (7-11 FG, 2-4 3-pt. FG, 1-2 FT), six rebounds, and four assists (with zero turnovers) in 27 minutes.

Most efficient power forward on a winning team: Will Thomas, Denver. ...Thomas was "big man on campus" for George Mason back in 2007. The 28 year-old, 6'7" forward scored seven points (3-4 FG, 1-1 FT), and snared eight rebounds in 26 minutes. Thomas' "plus-minus" for the contest was plus 35. Denver smacked the Toronto summer team 110-82.

Seven more stars

James has been in charge in Vegas.
Bernard James - Dallas. ...Two games, two days, and James has been as good as any BIG in the Las Vegas Summer League. Saturday "The Sarge" scored 21 points (6-9 FG, 9-11 FT), grabbed seven rebounds, and added three steals. His Dallas squad beat Minnesota 93-85. 

Quincy Miller - Denver. ...Miller scored 23 points (5-9 FG, 4-5 3-pt. FG, 9-11 FT), and blocked four shots in 30 minutes. 

Gary Harris - Denver. ...Harris, the 19th pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, out of Michigan St., was excellent Saturday in the Nuggets victory. The rookie scored 33 points (10-17 FG, 5-10 3-pt. FG, 8-9 FT), and added six rebounds. The game was a blowout but Harris showed the ability to move without the ball, make shots, and do the expected things of a shooting guard in the NBA. He was impressive. 

Warren scores in his sleep.
T.J. Warren - Phoenix. ...Warren is a natural born scorer at 6'8" 215 lbs. He may not be knocking down the deep ball yet, but his knack for getting buckets is sure to help the Suns. He was the 14th pick in the 2014 NBA Draft. Warren scored 22 points (10-14 FG, 2-2 FT) Saturday. 

Chris Wright (Georgetown) - Denver. ...The point guard scored six points, dished eight assists, and had three steals in 21 efficient minutes off the bench. 

Eric Griffin - Dallas. ...Griffin scored 17 points (6-8 FG, 1-3 3-pt. FG, 4-5 FT) off the bench in Dallas' win. He also blocked two shots. We continue to strongly believe that Eric Griffin is good enough to be a rotation player on an NBA team.

Gorgui Dieng - Minnesota. ...Dieng scored 12 points (4-6 FG, 4-6 FT), and had ten rebounds and two blocked shots in 29 minutes.

Notes: Several players were very efficient who did not make our "top 12" above. Among them: Glen Rice Jr. scored 22 points, getting to the free throw line 16 times! ...Tyler Honeycutt came off the Miami bench to score 16 points in Miami's win. ...Sean Kilpatrick's 20 points were key to Philadelphia's 74-70 win over Utah. ...Tony Snell was aggressive in scoring 27 points in 32 minutes. His Bulls team beat the Clippers summer team 86-70. ...Quite possibly the worst summer league National Anthem was "performed" before the start of the 5 PM game in the Cox Pavilion. The very Vegas looking duo of singer and violin player butchered the Star Spangled Banner badly enough to earn a chorus of boos from the fans. ...Players who were as bad as the anthem performers included: Delonte West, Brandon Davies, and Alan Crabbe. All three posted efficiency ratings in negative territory, suggesting their teams would have been better without them.

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