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From Local Tryouts to the D-League Part 2

Jarvis Gunter went from making noise in the NCAA tournament to playing for the D-League (via <a href=""></a>)
Jarvis Gunter went from making noise in the NCAA tournament to playing for the D-League (via

In Tuesday's part 1, we took a look at some players who participated in local D-League tryouts and who made their way onto rosters and into some playing time.  We'll finish up today:

Lamar Butler (6'2" G, Colorado/Reno)

Butler played for George Mason University during their Final Four run and was named the regional final MVP.  After playing in the Czech Republic in 2007 he made his way to the D-League, and he began the season with the Colorado 14ers.  Butler's playing time was a bit up-and-down, but it steadied a bit once January rolled around.  It soon went back down and the 14ers ended up cutting him in March, though the Reno Bighorns picked him up not long after.  He didn't see much consistency there, either, but his steals and assists went up a little bit.  Butler's mostly a three-point shooter, and a pretty good one, shooting 49.1 percent total.  His per-36 minutes numbers for rebounds and assists are decent for a shooting guard, three and four respectively, but the bottom line is that he's primarily a shooter.

Jarvis Gunter (6'10" F/C, Erie)

Gunter was a backup big man for the BayHawks, who didn't get a ton of playing time because Erik Daniels had the center position locked down (and there's a discussion to be had as to whether Daniels should've had that position on lock, but that's not this).  Gunter didn't provide a whole lot of scoring, but he's athletic and has some decent rebounding ability, averaging about 10 per 36 minutes. He doesn't have the best hands around and his free throw shooting needs work, but he has skills, and as a lot of other frontcourt types are heading overseas he could be a guy to watch this season.

Oliver Lafayette (6'2" G/F, Erie)

Lafayette played a lot of forward for the BayHawks, though he doesn't really have the size for it, and he's not really an efficient scorer.  He can put it together occasionally, but there were a lot of 12-points-on-15-shots and five-points-on-nine-shots outings.  His best games were those where he got to the line, as you'd expect, but his shooting percentages weren't great overall.  He got a decent amount of rebounds early in the season, but those tailed off a bit as the year went on.  Lafayette's one of those players that I don't have strong feelings about either way, but kudos to him (and all the other guys I'm talking about, of course) for making it from local tryouts.

Cliff Clinkscales (6'1" G, Erie/Rio Grande Valley)

Cliff Clinkscales is a pretty good player who I should probably talk about more around here but don't for some reason.  He's not a great outside shooter, but he at least realizes it and doesn't attempt a lot of threes.  He spent most of the season with Erie but finished it out with the Vipers, and he averaged about seven assists per 36 minutes.  He's not always the most efficient scorer, but he runs the offense pretty well.

Ryan Diggs (6'2" G, Utah)

Diggs had a decent run of playing time in January but otherwise didn't get much off the bench as Kevin Kruger and JR Giddens handled most of the guard minutes.  He's quick, and he averaged about five assists and three rebounds per 36 minutes, but he's not a great shooter.  He's been a leading scorer in the IBL, though, so I wonder if he'll head back there or at least alternate if he can't break into big minutes in the D-League.

Bennet Davis (6'8" F, Utah)

Davis is an athletic shot-blocking power forward whose playing time fluctuated a bit as the Flash cycled NBA frontcourt players through their system.  His scoring is a bit inconsistent, and he's not a great option at center (which Utah tried a few times), but the shot-blocking ability is legit.  If he can be allowed to do that and slowly work on the rest of his game, there could be something there for him.

Carlos Wheeler (6'7" F, Utah)

Wheeler's averages of about 14 points and nine rebounds per 36 minutes are pretty good, and he's pretty athletic for a 32 year old forward, but given his age there's probably not much else in sight for his career.  He's a solid D-League frontcourt guy, though, and he made over half of his field goals which is nice.  He used to own a car dealership, so there's something to fall back on, but he could last with the Flash for a few more years.

Fred Gibson (6'2" G, Albuquerque/Austin)

Gibson was drafted by the NFL back in 2005 and hung around football for a few years before being drafted by the Thunderbirds in 2008.  He played about 30 games for Albuquerque and didn't do a whole lot, scoring in double figures on occasion but usually keeping it around five or six points a game.  He then got cut and resurfaced in Austin a month or so later, where he played a few games towards the end of the season and didn't score any points.  He's athletic, and his shooting percentages weren't awful in Albuquerque, but he doesn't produce a whole lot.