Jermareo Davidson, the 36th overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft, has signed in Russia with new Eurocup team Krasnye Krylia according to the league's official website.
The 6-foot-10 power forward averaged 15.9 points and a league-leading 10.87 rebounds last season in Turkey after spending his first two professional seasons bouncing between the NBA with the Golden State Warriors and Charlotte Bobcats as well as stints in the D-League. Davidson also played this past summer in both the Orlando and Vegas Summer League with reasonable success, though it came in limited playing time.
With the Jazz in Orlando, Davidson was a part of a crowded frontcourt that included fellow NBA-able players James Augustine, Rod Benson and Kosta Koufos. Davidson's playing time was therefore limited (10.6 minutes per game), but he made the most of it by shooting 60% from the field on his way to scoring 7.6 points and grabbing 2.8 rebounds in his five games played for Utah.
After completing his tour of duty in Orlando, Davidson headed to Vegas where he'd suit up for another NBA-big-man heavy frontcourt rotation for the Atlanta Hawks. Fighting for minutes on a team that again included Augustine along with Richard Hendrix, Randolph Morris and Alade Aminu, Davidson would play just over 11 minutes per game. In his short amount of time on the court, though, Davidson averaged 5.2 points and 4.8 rebounds while shooting 52% from the field. Not great numbers, obviously, but relatively good for the little amount of playing time he received.
So what did I see from Davidson after watching him in Vegas (and then again last night on my computer)? His offensive skillset is actually surprisingly refined. While he's not a player that a team can count on to consistently bang it in down low, the big man showed a very effective mid-range face-up game, easily popping the jumper when his defender didn't give his shot enough respect.
When not showing off his shooting touch, Davidson showed good footwork, ran the floor well and rebounded more effectively than I had previously remembered him being able to do. His defense is still sketchy, but as I had mentioned on the Twitterer last night, there are plenty of NBA players that aren't very good at defense. Furthermore, as the saying goes, you can't teach size and at 6-foot-10 he's got a bit of it.
I really think that had his agency placed him on a team that would've given him more playing time, Davidson would be on an NBA roster next season. There were plenty of big-deprived teams in both Orlando and Vegas that could have used him, but he instead played on two of the deeper big man rosters in both leagues. As it is, if he can dominate this season in Russia, he'll have another shot at the NBA next season.