Summer League: Tuesday Recap

Fantasy owners aren't generally interested in which team wins and which team loses a game. If summer league action means anything, it may be that the focus can be put on individual players. Some are trying to impress general managers and others are trying to show off or practice new skills. Rather than look at Tuesday's action from a game to game process, I thought I'd just look at the best performances of the seven games play in Vegas (in no particular order).

Jan Vesely, forward, Washington Wizards, 18 points, 9-of-11 from the field
In his first two years in the league, the 6-11 Wizards has not done much. In fact, he may have taken a step back in his second year in which he only averaged 2.5 points. Vesely may need summer league to bolster his confidence and he had a nice game against the Nuggets by owning the paint for a high field goal percentage. Washington could really use a young big behind Nene and Emeka Okafor. Maybe Vesely will show that in Year Three.

Ben McLemore, guard, Sacramento Kings, 26 points, three 3-pointers
McLemore had a rough debut in summer league play, but has bounced back with some nice scoring efforts. The 6-5 rookie went 8-of-14 from the field on his way to a game-high 26 points in the loss to the Raptors. He made all seven of his free throw attempts and added a steal and a block for good measure. If McLemore can win the starting spot for new coach Mike Malone, he could be a leading candidate for Rookie of the Year. He certainly has the skills to lead all rookies in scoring, and should have the opportunity.

Jonas Valanciunuas, guard, Toronto Raptors, 18 points, nine rebounds
For a young center, Valanciunas did not fare badly in his rookie season. He started 57 games and played 23.9 minutes to provide 8.9 points on 55.7 percent from the field and 6.0 rebounds. Now, the Raptors want to see their young Lithuanian take a step forward. He had a nice game from the field with 6-of-12 to go along with a six successful trips to the line. It wasn't all good news for Valanciunas because he had nine fouls and seven turnovers. He's a work in progress.

Archie Goodwin, guard, Phoenix Suns, 22 points, three 3-pointers
Goodwin only found his shot from time to time in his one year at Kansas. He had things flowing on Tuesday against the Grizzlies by knocking down all three of his 3-point attempts and going 6-of-11 from the field on his way to lead the Suns their third straight win in Vegas. The Suns are really a team in transition and will give their young shooting guard playing time to develop. Once he gets his feet wet, he should be able to provide defense and some scoring.

Marquis Teague, guard, Chicago Bulls, 25 points, three 3-pointers
Sticking with former-Kentucky Wildcats, Teague spent his rookie season playing sparingly off the Bulls bench. Kentucky really could have used his point guard skills, but who can fault him for getting drafted in the first round. Jeff's younger brother had a nice game with 25 points (7-14 FG, 3-3 3Pt, 8-12 FT). He added three assists, but had four turnovers and six fouls. Teague may see back up minutes behind Derrick Rose, but will likely not be fantasy relevant.

C.J. McCollum, guard, Portland Trailblazers, 27 points, six rebounds
McCollum is looking like another nice small-school pick for the Blazers. The 6-4 guard put down 27 points, including a 3-pointer in the waning seconds to sent the game to overtime. Overall, he was not particularly efficient at just 8-of-25 from the field. and he had five fouls and three turnovers. Still, it looks like the Blazers will have another nice scorer out of the backcourt and some depth to reduce the minutes of Damian Lillard and Wes Matthews.

Thomas Robinson, forward, Portland Trailblazers, 12 points, 18 rebounds
Robinson had another nice showing for his new team by dominating the glass with 18 boards. While this type of performance is encouraging, Robinson can overwhelm summer league competition with his strength and athleticism. He will need to bring his board work to every game as he likely comes off the bench for Portland behind Myers Leonard and LaMarcus Aldridge. It's too early to give up on the former-Jayhawk, but we may need to temper our expectations.

John Henson, forward, Milwaukee Bucks, 15 rebounds
Speaking of rebounders, Henson is looking like he should be a nice glassman for the Bucks. Henson snagged another 15 rebounds in the loss to the Nuggets. The problem for Milwaukee and new head coach Larry Drew will be figuring out how to play Henson and Larry Sanders together because their skills overlap. If Henson can keep opposing defenses honest with a mid-range jumper, the young Bucks' frontcourt could be in business. Henson was just 3-of-10 from the field on his way to nine points, so there may be some more development needed.


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