With over 100 NBA D-League alumni in Las Vegas for Summer League this year, there were plenty of former NBADL talents for personnel and scouts to observe. It is an opportunity unlike any other, and many of the players involved hoped to make an impact and showcase their readiness for the Association, or a lucrative contract overseas.
Which former D-League standouts performed the best? Who capitalized on their opportunity in Vegas, and potentially earned a spot on their respective Summer League team's upcoming training camp roster? There were plenty of highlights, breakout individual performances, and strange jerseys in the stands worn by fans. But who did enough to earn a spot on the 2013 All-NBA D-League Alumni Summer League Team?
The former Santa Cruz assignment player had an incredibly strong showing in Las Vegas. Bazemore helped lead the Warriors Summer League squad to the first-ever NBA Summer League title, behind solid and well-rounded play. Bazemore finished with 18 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists and 2 steals in Golden State's final game against Phoenix.
Prior to the championship game, Bazemore averaged 18.5 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2.8 assists, and 1.7 steals in six games. The 6-5 versatile guard likely impressed Golden State management as well as head coach Mark Jackson, and with his improved overall game, Bazemore, may be more than just a source of encouragement for his teammates this upcoming season.
Goudelock demonstrated his scoring prowess once again, especially in his second game, where he dropped 31 points on 10-for-13 shooting from the field, and 5-for-6 shooting from beyond the arc. The reigning NBA Development League MVP, showcased his best skill, scoring, but was it enough to secure him in the minds of NBA personnel?
Sure, there are plenty of scorers in the NBA, but on the heels of his rather impressive first round playoff series against San Antonio, Goudelock scored in double-digits in all but one of his contests at Summer League, and might be the backup scoring option a handful of NBA teams are looking for.
Malcolm Thomas - Chicago Bulls - Forward
Thomas finished with the highest rebounding average in Summer League (15.0), and in his three games with Chicago displayed his tremendous ability to establish optimal rebounding position underneath the hoop. Offensively, the D-League journeyman of sorts (Thomas technically was a member of three teams in 2011-2012, and two teams in 2012-2013) didn't exactly light it up, but more importantly reassured onlookers of the skills that he can provide for a team.
After his outstanding Summer League performance, and with Chicago apparently unable to retain the 24-year-old Thomas, a number of NBA teams will likely take interest in the 6-9 forward. Thomas' record-setting 22 rebound performance against Denver, certainly won't hurt his stock going forward as well.
Hamilton spent a part of his rookie season in the NBA D-League with the Idaho Stampede. In six games, the 6-7 forward from Texas, averaged 9.6 points and 5.3 rebounds. At Summer League, Hamilton averaged 15.8 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 1.5 steals in 26.8 minutes for the Nuggets.
With the movement in which Denver experienced this offseason, Hamilton has his best shot as a professional to earn a significant role with the Nuggets. A noteworthy Summer League performance was crucial in his progression, and as Hamilton enters his third season with the Nuggets, it appears the former Longhorn is ready to make an impression in the Mile High City.
The former Austin Toros assignment player from a year ago, had a huge showing in the desert. Baynes averaged a double-double (12.0 points and 10.5 rebounds), and displayed enforcer capabilities during his four games for San Antonio.
As a member of the Toros, Baynes averaged 13.9 points and 8.7 rebounds in 11 games. The big man who spent this past season as a rookie for the Spurs, still has some improving to do regarding his low post repertoire, but San Antonio should be impressed with what they saw out of the former Washington State Cougar.
Stefhon Hannah - NBA D-League Select - Guard
Marcus Landry - Los Angeles Lakers - Forward
Chris Johnson - Minnesota Timberwolves - Forward/Center