Heading into this season, we ranked the top 50 players in the G League for 2018-19. At the top of that list was Clippers two-way player Johnathan Motley, who had an amazing rookie year with the Texas Legends where he averaged 22.2 points, 9.8 rebounds, 2 assists and 1.1 block per game on 58% from the field and 28% from beyond the arc. With that kind of acknowledgement in mind, it would make sense that he was the Clippers two-way prospect that had the most attention on him when the 2018-19 G League season started.
That additional attention has definitely been warranted as Motley’s production has improved from that solid rookie year. In 18 games with the AC Clippers, he’s averaging 25.4 points, 10.7 rebounds, 2.7 assists and 1 block on 56% from the field.
Although Motley has shined as arguably the best front-court player in the G League, he’s not the only two-way player on the Clippers that has excelled during the 18-19 season. That other prospect is 6’10 Seton Hall alum Angel Delgado, who entered this season as an intriguing back-to-the-basket big that needed to improve defensively and expand his offensive arsenal.
Heading into the Clippers’ Friday night game against the OKC Blue, Delgado was averaging 15.5 points, 13.6 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game on 58% from the field. When it comes to players under some kind of G League contract, Delgado stood as the top do in rebounds per game as he stood .6 rebounds per game ahead of current Greensboro Swarm big Chinanu Onuaku.
Delgado’s status as the rebounding king of the G League was emphatically stamped into stone on Friday night as Delgado put up 22 points and a jaw-dropping 31 rebounds (8 offensive) on 9-16 from the field and 4-7 from the free throw line. Delgado’s 31 rebounds set a single-game G League record as he surpassed Jack Cooley, who had 29 rebounds for the Reno Bighorns in a 2015 game against the LA D-Fenders.
The Clippers two-way prospect was able to have that record-breaking performance by playing with the same effort and physicality which allowed him to be the league’s best rebounder heading into that Friday night game. From the jump, Delgado has known how to quickly get himself in position and then using his stocky 230 pound frame to outmuscle his foes and snatch a rebound on both ends of the court.
While he still needs to expand his offensive arsenal, Delgado’s tremendous rebounding could allow him to become a member of the Clippers organization after the end of the 2018-19 season. That possibility is further solidified by how Montrezl Harrell is the only front-court player (PF/C) on the Clippers that won’t become a free agent this summer.
WIth the Clippers front-court future in question, it would make sense for the organization to fill those spots with Delgado and/or Motley as they’ve shown themselves to be talented bigs that have already familiarized themselves with the team’s offensive/defensive philosophy.
Although it’ll be a while before we see whether Delgado can stay with the team after his two-way contract ends this season, Clippers fans should still have a chance to watch him develop in the G League throughout the rest of the season. The next opportunity for Clippers fans to watch Delgado play in the G League is on Tuesday, October 8th when Agua Caliente faces off against Yante Maten and the Sioux Falls Skyforce.