Now that Summer League is wrapping up, we're seeing a lot more free agents get playing time and a lot more roster players come down with "injuries" (which really are teams just trying to prevent injury, which is totally understandable) keeping them out of games. As such, we have a monster-sized, uh, Monstars and Nonstars today, since there were so many guys turning in notable performances. Enjoy it while it lasts, because we have just one day to go.
Since most people visiting Ridiculous Upside are probably doing so as a way to see who's looking good and bad at Summer League in lieu of a recap of each game, Scott has
saddled me made the brilliant decision to bring back the lovely Monstars and Nonstars that we employed during the D-League playoffs. These are the three(-ish) best and non-best players of the day, again sticking with players you may not be familiar with. Hit the jump to see who they were.
- Leo Lyons, F/C, New York Knicks - To be honest, I expected to see fellow big man Charles Garcia play well in Vegas, but he didn't play at all. I don't know if he was hurt or if he pulled a Rashad McCants, but Lyons has slowly but surely improved over the course of the week. He exploded for 21 points on 8-14 shooting tonight, showing his array of offensive talent. JaVale McGee sat out for the Wizards, which helped since Lyons didn't have to box anyone out or fight for rebounds (which he doesn't do well, but then come to think of it neither does McGee), but it still was an encouraging performance.
- Cartier Martin, SF, Washington Wizards - Martin recovered from his terrible game yesterday, scoring 24 points on 9-16 shooting with four rebounds, four assists and two steals. He hit a pair of key three-pointers late in overtime , and while he also had six turnovers, he made the poor outing on Friday seem more like a fluke.
- Cheikh Samb, C, Toronto Raptors - Samb really hadn't done much this week, with just five points, six rebounds and two blocks over the first three games. He finally showed what he can do tonight, though, with 19 points on 11 shots six rebounds and, seven blocks in 21 minutes. Yes, seven. Shotblocking has never been a problem for Samb, and there are quite a few players in the league with similarly-limited offensive games but not nearly as much ability rejecting shots.
- Patrick O'Bryant, C, Minnesota Timberwolves - Hey, look at that, Patrick O'Bryant finally played well! After not making much of an impression over the first three games, O'Bryant had a solid double-double with 16 and 10 rebounds. I don't think O'Bryant will get an NBA contract this year, as he's still so close to being a disappointment, but hey, the Collins brothers still get work, right?
- Trey Gilder, F, Atlanta Hawks - Trey Gilder! Gilder was a perfect 5-5 from the field to finish with 10 points, and also grabbed eight rebounds in a little under 21 minutes. I've mentioned how much I like Gilder enough times this week/on this site that I probably don't need to explain why again, but I'll also add that, while the D-League Select team's Larry Owens has struggled a bit this week, I think Gilder's defense had a little bit to do with Owens' 1-5 shooting performance tonight.
- David Monds, F, Cleveland Cavaliers - Monds hadn't gotten a lot of playing time this week, and presented with 34 minutes' worth against the Heat he...was pretty bad. Four points on 2-7 shooting, to be exact, and while he doubled his week's rebounding output by grabbing four boards, he also had three turnovers, which is on the high side for a combo forward who doesn't handle the ball. Monds played well in last year's Summer League, but this year has really been a different story.
- Brian Cusworth, C, New Orleans Hornets - What happens when a center known only for his scoring ability doesn't score? You get Cusworth's performance from tonight, with three points, two rebounds and four fouls in 13 and a half minutes. Cusworth has been to Summer League with the Hornets for a few years now, but based on his performances, if he's back in 2011 I can only guess it's because they owe his agent a favor.
- Trey Johnson, G, Los Angeles Clippers - Johnson expressed a desire to become a point guard when he came back to the D-League this past season, thinking that might help him reach the NBA. The problem is that the Clippers haven't been playing him at point guard, and he hasn't made the transition back to scorer particularly gracefully. Johnson had just two points on 1-6 shooting, four fouls, three turnovers and only one assist in over 28 minutes against the Spurs, and took questionable shots throughout the game.
- Josh Lomers, San Antonio Spurs - Lomers has looked really terrible all week. He's slow, doesn't rebound and doesn't appear to have any athletic ability. He went to Baylor, though, and San Antonio has looked at Baylor players the last few years (Curtis Jerrells being the most notable), but this should be as far as Lomers gets with them. Harsh, but hard to argue with when he puts up zero points and seven fouls in 10 and a half minutes.