To most, chance is just a six letter word. To most, tryout is just another six letter word. But in the G League, a chance is all all players need. Devon Baulkman fought his way through a team tryout to gain a chance to showcase his skills against top-notch players in the G League. For the third-year guard, it has been a great journey in Westchester, along with developing great bonds with his teammates and the coaching staff.
“It’s been a great journey,” Baulkman told Ridiculous Upside. “It’s been a great learning experience. Just being out here. The fans, the teammates, the coaches. Showing love and being supportive through the whole process. Just learning especially coming out of college and not having nobody to mentor me. The coaching staff; they’ve really been helping us out.”
A hip injury nearly cost him his second season, but he battled back and built momentum in the final three quarters of the 2017-18 season. After going through that, the Tennessee product felt like it was important to stay positive.
“Just try to stay positive mentally,” Baulkman said. “Physically just try to take care of my body. Ice it and get treatment and rehab a lot, so basically just taking care of my body each and every day.”
The third-year guard has seen several great moments and challenges during his tenure in Westchester. Baulkman noted through the challenging moments, he maintained being strong mentally and kept his faith.
“I’d just be down on myself, but I just kept faith and kept pushing,” Baulkman continued. “I know once you push and do the right thing, it’s all going to work out. There are times where I might played and I might not have played in this game. Just being mentally strong and keeping my head right. Just trying to stay positive through the process and coming to practice each and every day just trying to get better.”
Balkman returned to Westchester for a second stint and made a great impact on the team. Baulkman has shown he can drain shots when the defense breaks down. He showed that he was an underrated part on the team and provided great defensive energy to the team. Baulkman has shown he has great hands and can force turnovers.
He showed his energy on this possession where he pressures Delaware defenders and keeps that energy flowing after rejecting a Wisconsin screen then blocking Vander Blue’s shot. Defense is a strong part of his game and is something he takes great pride in.
“I just try to be that guy that bothers other guys and make them feel uncomfortable while I’m out there,” Baulkman said. “Being vocal and telling the guys just to bring some energy and some fire on the court. I feel like I’m that guy that needs to do that. You been in situations that you have to make sacrifices and you make sacrifices to win. Everybody wants to win. Whatever the coaches need me to do, that’s what I’ll do for the time being.”
Baulkman made a great impact during his tenure with the Westchester Knicks. He played in 72 career games, which is sixth most in franchise history, and was a valuable player on the defensive end. He was an underrated player who consistently performed when he was on the court in the Dub Knicks’ blue and orange.