While on assignment by the Rockets, Robert Covington emerged as the 2014 NBA D-League Rookie of the Year and All-Star Game Most Valuable Player. And though he was released by Houston not long after, the forward's reputation in the minor league helped him become the first pick of the 2014 D-League Draft later that fall. Ironically enough, he was called-up by the 76ers before he even had a chance to step up on the NBADL hardwood again. Clearly, it wasn't necessary.
One could argue that Covington's continued success and the path he took to the NBA should be inspiration for plenty of other aspiring athletes. Having played alongside him for three years at the collegiate level with Tennessee State, one would also have to believe Patrick Miller feels that way, anyway.
Miller was Covington's college teammate, and now believes the path that Covington followed could also potentially work for him. The guard has been working hard in the last few weeks and months, anticipating a potential NBA D-League Draft selection, RidiculousUpside.com.
Miller steadily improved as he continued to mature, playing with Covington for three years, but it wasn't until his own respective senior campaign that he truly broke out. The youngster averaged 23.7 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.1 assists, and 1.6 steals as a fourth-year player after Covington turned pro.
And while some players taper off once they reach the professional level, Miller's progress has only continued. Playing in Turkey last season, he logged 13.8 points, 3.6 assists, 3 rebounds, and 1.2 steals per contest. Obviously, some players are tasked with serving as more dominant scorers in college; Miller seems to have been one of them. What's promising, however, is that plenty of other facets of his stat-line stayed rather consistent in Turkey.
This would further suggest that perhaps the D-League is in fact the next logical move for Miller as he continues his career.