The NBA Development League Showcase is becoming a must see event for NBA fans and scouts as they get a chance to check out the bevy of talent that is represented by each of the league's 16 teams over the four-day stretch in early January. Fittingly enough, Reno, Nevada will once again provide the backdrop for what can be considered as the NBA's biggest little event in the world.
16 total games will be played over the four days in Reno, and the action will kick off with a match-up between the Rio Grande Valley Vipers and the Los Angeles D-Fenders Monday, January 7. Games are played all throughout the day, and typically games can be seen live on NBA TV. Schedule your work lunches accordingly.
Each year the Showcase hosts NBA general managers, player personnel staff, and scouts from each of the 30 NBA teams. It is an opportunity for these influential figures to lay their eyes upon D-League prospects who are grinding their way towards a hopeful Call-Up. Historically, a solid performance at the Showcase increases the likelihood of a coveted Call-Up. According to the D-League's official website, over 30 players have received a GATORADE Call-Up during or immediately after the event.
Mike James impressed the Chicago Bulls enough after just one game at the Showcase with the Erie BayHawks, to land him a Call-Up during the event last season. Players such as Gerald Green, now a member of the Indiana Pacers, used the extra attention as motivation to light it up and stuff the stat sheet in a timely break out performance. Green helped the Los Angeles D-Fenders topple the Maine Red Claws pouring in 34 points while shooting 13-for-17 from the floor, and going 4-for-5 from beyond the arc. Green received a Call-Up later in the year, but his Showcase performance helped put Green on the top prospect map.
In it's ninth rendition, the NBA D-League Showcase will once again add to the impressive uniqueness that the D-League is establishing for itself. The D-League is truly the best place for players to gain notice and ultimately land a spot in the NBA, and the Showcase has become the premiere venue for the league to spotlight it's players on the verge of achieving their NBA dream.