Day 4 of the NBA Las Vegas Summer League is upon us, folks. That means more turnovers, more more botched alley-oops, and hopefully more awkward post games. Get excited!
Again, i won't be able to to make it to every single game, but when choosing which ones to attend, I wanted to make sure i see every team that i can. So, without further ado, here's a look at what's to come in Day 4.
3:00 PM: New York Knicks vs. Charoltte Bobcats
I don't have a choice in going to this game. It's the only one slotted in the one o' clock hour, so I have to cover it. But, in the words of Tupac: I ain't mad at cha. This game gives me a chance to watch the New York Knicks, whom I haven't seen yet in Vegas; and it also provides me another opportunity to see the Milwaukee Bucks, who have become my favorite non-Spurs squad to watch here in Vegas. For the Knicks, I'm interested in catchiing Tim Hardaway Jr. who will hopefully play after spraining his wrist against Washington yesterday. He's their first round pick, and I'm curious to see how he'll do against Charlotte's guards.
Player to Watch: Toure Murry, New York Knicks
Posting and Toasting went into more depth on him, but Murry has been favored by Mike Woodson to be a possible training camp invitee. We'll see what he's capable of.
The Minnesota Timberwolves are full of rookies that I think can find a way to contribute to an NBA team one day. Guys like Shabazz Muhammed, Gorgui Dieng, Brandon Paul, and Lorenzo Brown are all very talented; I can't wait to see what they can do together. The Suns really might have one of the best rosters out here. With the Morris twins and P.J. Tucker, they have players that are NBA vets, and should be able to destroy summer league opponents.
Player to Watch: Dionte Christmas, Phoenix Suns
Back when he played at Temple, Christmas was one of my favorite guys in the NCAA to watch. He could fill it up in a variety of ways, and always had a little flare to his game. Fast forward about five years, and Christmas has been the fringiest of fringe NBA players, and spent a lot of time overseas. In this summer league, he's already had one good game against the Portlland Trail Blazers. Another solid performance could put him back on the NBA map.
Sacramento has highly-touted draft pick Ben McLemore, who has struggled a bit so far, and will be looking to get back on track. I'm curious to see what kind of off-ball action he'll be involved in, and also how much of the ball-handling duties he'll be responsible for. Golden State has a lot of fine, young guards on it's team, most notable is Ken Bazemore. The Bazed God has already had a good start to this year's summer league, and should continue to keep it going. He's already on Golden State's roster, but with Jarrett Jack gone he's making a push for more minutes at backup point guard.
Player to Watch: Ray McCallum, Sacramento Kings
McCallum was originally a blue-chip recruit coming out of high school, but he went to the University of Detroit to play under his father, the coach, over a larger university. That decision caused him to fall under the radar a bit in college due to the competition level. However, McCallum has an NBA type of game. He's a pass-first point guard, who has the ability to get to the rim well due to his great size and athleticism. He can bully smaller guards down low, and is a solid shooter. This guy definitely deserves an eye on him at all times.
The Spurs have been solid so far in the summer league, and have a 1-1 record to show for it. Cory Joseph has been fantastic at point guard, and has shown great leadership. DeShaun Thomas has been a bright spot, revealing his NBA-ready shooting touch. Atlanta has a couple bright spots of their own in rookies Dennis Schröder and Lucas Nogueira. Schröder has shown a vast amount of potential so far, controlling the games well from the point. Nogueira has been great in the post, and shown a nice ability to facilitate his teammates as well.
Player to Watch: Dennis Schröder, Atlanta Hawks
Seriously, this guy is awesome. His handle is tight, he plays great in the pick-and-roll, and has great court vision. I know it's just summer league, but this guy has a lot of talent and potential. It'll be fun watching him battle with Cory Joseph all game long.
There we have it, we're now ready for Day 4 of summer league to get going. It'll be another long day, but also another fun one. I can't wait for this slate of games to begin.