Starting with an Wednesday morning matchup featuring Windy City facing off against Delaware, day 1 of the NBA D-League Showcase presented five separate games that featured some of the best talents that the D-League has to offer. Over the course of the day, fans in Mississauga, Ontario could witness some pretty awesome performances. From NBA alums lighting it up from the floor to a guard doing his best Russell Westbrook impersonation, D-League fans had enough action to stay entertained throughout the day.
Ridiculous Upside will breakdown five of the best performances from that action-packed Wednesday.
Will Bynum, Windy City Bulls - 43 pts, 3 stls, 13-20 from field, 4-7 from 3
From the opening tip off of that Wednesday morning matchup, D-League fans had the opportunity to watch 10-year NBA vet Will Bynum just light it up against the Delaware 87ers. While the 87ers ended up winning the game 124-109, Bynum was still able to walk away as the most memorable part of that initial game. Bynum was able to dominate against Delaware by continuing to showcase an ability to get to the rim.
While the 34-year-old Bynum is a decade older than most of his competitors, he was able to use his strong 185 pound frame to work his way towards the paint. Coinciding with that, Bynum showed off a strong perimeter game, something that wasn’t part of his arsenal during his prior NBA stint.
Devondrick Walker, Delaware 87ers - 23 pts, 5 rebs, 8-10 from field, 7-7 from 3
While Bynum caught the attention of D-League fans with his fantastic 43 point performance, Devondrick Walker quietly used his strong perimeter jumper to push the team to victory. With a career-high 23 points, Walker stood as arguably the biggest factor behind Delaware’s victory.
This great performance from Walker is the continuation of how he’s been since joining the Delaware 87ers. Since the Westchester Knicks traded Walker to Delaware on December 17th, Walker has been a major contributor to the 87ers as he’s averaging 14.4 points on 50% from the field and 43% from beyond the arc.
Edy Tavares, Raptors 905 - 16 pts, 11 rebs, 2 blks on 6-7 from field
Transitioning from backcourt players to the tallest man in the D-League, Raptors 905 big Edy Tavares shined in the team’s 135-122 victory over the Grand Rapids Drive. The 7’2 Tavares utilized his size to the Raptors 905 advantage throughout the game, whether it was through post-ups on either the left or right block or dominating on the offensive glass. Those separate skills are evident in the clip below as the Grand Rapids Drive were unable to even contain Tavares.
Xavier Munford, Greensboro Swarm - 20 pts, 11 rebs, 10 asts on 8-18 from field
Munford continues his excellent season with the Greensboro Swarm by putting up his first ever triple-double in the team’s win over the Erie Bayhawks. While he wasn’t super efficient in that Wednesday performance, he did enough to help push the team to victory. Despite that inefficiency, Munford was still in control throughout the game, especially when it came as a facilitator. Working in pick-and-rolls alongside Hornets prospect Christian Wood or Mike Tobey, Munford did a good job of dishing it off to the cutting bigs and just being in control of the Swarm’s offense.
Johnny O’Bryant, Northern Arizona Suns - 27 pts, 9 reb on 11-20 from field, 3-4 from 3
If you were a diehard Bucks fan that turned on the D-League Showcase on Wedneday evening, you were probably very surprised by what Johnny O’Bryant is doing with the Northern Arizona Suns. During that game against the Oklahoma City Blue, O’Bryant showed flashes of being an extremely versatile offensive weapon as he was nailing the kind of perimeter jumpers that no Bucks fan would ever dream of.
While his new-found perimeter success was not enough to take down the OKC Blue, it should continue to prove O’Bryant’s stock as one of the best bigs in the NBA D-League. Because if he can combine a stable perimeter jumper with his skills as offensive rebounder, O’Bryant might find his way back in the NBA before the NBA D-League Showcase is over.