DeJuan Summers was the best player in the gym on day one of the NBA Summer League. Jonas Jerebko was my first interview. Related? Absolutely not. However, they are playing more or less the same position for the Pistons so I put them under the microscope for their third game on Monday against the Warriors.
The Warriors destroyed the Pistons, but I learned a lot about the Pistons pair of second round forwards.
Fear not the knowledge. Enter and ponder "Should I have taken the blue pill?"
I really started out with the idea of watching DeJuan Summers. But, as I realized that they were spending much of the time with similar assignments, I added Jonas to the mix.
Jerebko is listed at 6' 10" and 230 pounds. Summers at 6' 8" and 240 pounds. Summers is the physical specimen. Jerebko is the European. However, I was told that Jonas grew up playing a lot of ball in the US and his game is much more American than your standard European player..
DeJuan Summer - 35th Pick
DeJuan got Anthony Randolph at the opening bell. AR is the toughest matchup in the Summer League. He's a spectacular offensive player and he is benefiting from the tight way the refs are calling the games. His play on Randolph was decent at first. He did a good job of giving him some room, without losing contact, and moving his feet when Randolph went baseline. That was about the last time he did something good.
Summers has fallen in love with his jumper and it wasn't going today. He ended 3-11 and was unable to get anything going toward the hoop. He had a very hard time on the offensive end with Randolph's length. Summers wasn't comfortable shooting over Randolph and he couldn't take him to the hole either. He did force himself into the paint a few times with mixed success when guarded by lesser talent. He drew two fouls, but converted only 1-4 free throws, and committed a charge.
Defensively, DeJuan is raw when his man doesn't have the ball. He let his man cut through the paint without putting a body on him. He also relies on his athleticism to get rebounds. In addition, he seemed a step slow helping on drivers.
Lastly, I didn't think he did a good job of setting picks. For such a big man, he didn't seem to want to set a hard pick.
This was easily DeJuan's worst game of the Summer League. His 11 points -- 3-11 from the field and 3-7 from the line, 2 rebounds, and 10 fouls were not impressive. He came back and performed well yesterday against the Knicks.
Jonas Jerebko - 39th Pick
Jerebko, on the other hand, really strutted his stuff in this game.
Offensively, Jonas is not dynamic. He's just fundamentally sound. He has a decent jumper with some range. In this game, he showed the ability to be effective in the paint. He was able to with either hand around the basket, is very good at keeping balls alive with tips, and he showed a nice handle going through the paint. His most impressive play was a left-handed, half the length of the court bounce pass, with his left while on the run, dead on the money. In addition, he does a great job of moving without the ball.
Defensively is where Jonas REALLY separated himself from DeJuan. He knows how to close out on shooter. He knows how to run a cutter off his route. He instinctively know how to box out and make himself a presence in the paint.
Both these guys were great picks in the second round. Jonas' fundamentals are very good. You can tell he has been very well-coached. In fact, I would say the big difference between Jonas' game and Summers' game is coaching. Jonas knows how to play the game at both ends of the floor and he knows how to be effective without scoring.