Marial Shayok - Delaware Blue Coats
On November 9th, the Delaware Blue Coats started their 2019-20 campaign with a matchup against the Maine Red Claws. Heading in the game, there was intrigue surrounding the battle of giants between the 7’6 Tacko Fall and 7’4 Christ Koumadje alongside some interest regarding the G League debut of former LSU point guard Tremont Waters. However, the star of that game ended up being Sixers two-way rookie guard Marial Shayok.
From the jump, it immediately felt like Marial made the ball fall in love with the bottom of the net as he was making shots no matter he was shooting from beyond the arc, mid-range looks, floaters, or driving to the rim. That versatility allowed him to drop 34 points on 14-24 from the field, 3-7 from 3 and 2-3 from the free throw line.
Although he was only able to eclipse that point total once during his rookie year, the former Iowa State standout was still able to stand as one of the best scorers in the G League. In 35 games with the team, he was able to average 23 points, 6 rebounds, and 3.8 assists on 46% from the field and 36% from beyond the arc on 7.4 attempts per game.
Milton Doyle - Windy City Bulls
After spending the 2018-19 season playing with UCAM Murcia of the Spanish ACB League, Milton Doyle returned to the G League as an affiliate player for the Windy City Bulls. On a team that didn’t have a top scoring option when two-way player PJ Dozier was up with the Denver Nuggets, the 26-year-old guard did a great job of standing as a reliable offensive weapon. The numbers bear that out as he averaged 17.5 points, 5.8 assists, 4.1 rebounds, and 2 steals on 40% from the field and 36% from beyond the arc on 9.3 attempts per game.
Although those numbers are a step back in terms of points per game and perimeter efficiency from his rookie year with Long Island, they also showed that the guard also took a step in the right direction as a passer. That was seen by him averaging a career-high 5.8 assists per game with a solid 1.7 Ast/TO ratio in his forty games with the team.
Doyle’s status as a solid scorer and reliable facilitator pushed Windy City to be a better offensive team. That fact is shown by how the Bulls were more than three points per 100 possessions when he was on the court (101.7 points per 100 ) compared to when he was sitting on the sidelines (97.9 points per 100).
Brandon Fields - Texas Legends
If you were looking for a G league that had intriguing prospects with NBA potential or familiar faces, the Texas Legends were the team for you. Over the course of the 2019-20 season, the likes of Dakota Mathias, Aric Holman, Antonius Cleveland, Jaylen Hoard, Cameron Payne, Moses Brown, Xavier Rathan-Mayes, and Josh Reaves all put on one of the team’s many colorful uniforms.
While each of those players were intriguing in their own right, my attention was usually glued to veteran guard Brandon Fields when I watched the Legends play. Although he’s been a solid pro that has played across the globe since turning pro in 2010, most people might decide to ignore a 31-year-old player that hasn’t even been on an NBA training camp roster.
However, that would be a bad decision as the guard’s experience was seen when he watched the team play as he always stepped on the court with this sense of poise that allowed him to be a great court general on a team filled with younger and more inexperienced players. That fact was most evident when you watched him play with Blazers two-way guard Moses Brown as the facilitator always set the 19-year-old in the best position to use his athleticism in transition or in pick-and-rolls.
Honestly, he’s definitely the perfect type of player that the G League should put on the new G League select team in Los Angeles that will feature five-star standouts Jalen Green and Isaiah Todd. Get it done Shareef Abdur-Rahim!