How the NBL could be losing thanks to NBA Summer League
|Jul 11, 2017|
You've read the article title and gone, what the? How could the NBL ever lose from having guys playing in the NBA Summer League?
Relax, it's not what it means.
What it does mean however, is that our NBL guys are finally being recognised on a global stage and may have to ACTUALLY use their NBA out clauses in their contracts.
That's right, five currently contracted NBL players are plying their trade in Las Vegas, putting their best foot forward to realise a childhood dream of one day playing in the NBA.
That's great news for all parties! Well, except that we 'lose' them from our competition. With me now?
Torrey Craig has been our finest export in Vegas this year and the contracted Brisbane Bullet balled out in his latest Denver Nuggets match-up.
Craig played 20 minutes in the Nuggets' 81-82 defeat to the Toronto Raptors and recorded 15 points, three rebounds, two assists and a steal on 6 of 10 shooting.
Nuggets Summer League coach Micah Nori only had great words to say about the Bullets forward yesterday.
"I think that he is one of those guys that his stuff may not show up on the stat sheet as far as scoring. One we had him guarding one through five tonight...that's what he can do. He is a very good wing rebounder and he has some explosiveness. Defence is where his impact will be."
Corey Webster has been playing like a man on a mission as of late, so good that he was ultimately rewarded with a Summer League roster spot by the Dallas Mavericks.
As Liam Santamaria wrote brilliantly for nbl.com.au, the now Perth Wildcat has put aside his past and focusing on what's ahead of him.
Webster told media prior to the event starting that he would be better prepared for the situation this time than when he earned the opportunity two years ago.
"I think this time I'll communicate more with the coaching staff and the trainers," Webster told nbl.com.au.
"Find out what they're looking for and if I were to have the opportunity to make it, what kind of role they think I'd be playing. Just communicate with them...that would be the biggest thing for me."
Despite the stat line not looking like he set the world on fire, Webster's strong contributions in the Mavs' last two games continues to show scouts that he's potentially worth taking a flyer on.
Seven points on 3 of 4 shooting in a win over Chicago, followed up with five points and two steals in their win over Phoenix; Webster has been capable of holding his own on both ends of the floor.
Travis Trice is the second of Brisbane's two currently contracted imports playing in the Summer League, and he too is making some noise suiting up for the Milwaukee Bucks.
Image via the Milwaukee Bucks
Having been given ball handling responsibilities on the team, Trice has notched up five assists over his last two games and has also done some damage at the rim.
Despite starting for the Bucks today recording 12 points against the Clippers in their 93-100 loss, it has been his effectiveness that has let him down.
He's shot 5 of 21 over the last two games, one which certainly stands out across the course of the event.
Finally, Adelaide duo Nathan Sobey and Mitch Creek have suited up for the Utah Jazz across the Utah and Las Vegas Summer League events. While Sobey was forced to sit through Utah with soreness, both are starting to warm to the occasion picking up eyeballs along the way.
Their latest outing was an 86-67 defeat to the Los Angeles Clippers, one which saw Sobey register his first points to finish with six on 3 of 5 shooting. The only trouble is, Sobey's athletic ability hasn't quite transferred to Summer League and he's coming up against very similar opponents to himself.
Creek on the other hand has been showing his worth on the other end of the floor. Nine minutes for three rebounds and a steal in the game saw what Creek could do on that end. The good news: It hasn't just been today where he's shown that intensity.