Minnesota Summer League: Final Recap

Minnesota Summer League: Final Recap
Jul 20, 2005, 12:32 am
Houston Rockets

Lonny Baxter (27.4 mpg, 21.0 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 59% shooting) – Baxter was the main story of the camp from a scouting perspective, tearing through pretty much anybody that attempted to defend him. He gets the most out of his abilities, and the people that I talked all view him as an NBA-caliber player. He is a free agent at the moment, but expect to see him on a team this winter.

Dion Glover (32 mpg, 18.8 ppg, 5.8 rpg, 4.2 apg, 40% shooting) – Glover might have been the most consistent perimeter scorer of the event, always able to get to the basket. When his outside shot was falling, he was really tough. Like I said in earlier reports, he is somewhat one-dimensional on offense, and isn’t the smartest player out there. But he does have NBA-caliber scoring ability.

Luther Head (21.4 mpg, 8.2 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 2.8 apg, 2.0 t/o, 33% shooting) – Head had a few bright moments, but it wasn’t a standout week for the combo guard. He struggled to hit his midrange jumpers, and wasn’t a factor on the offensive end in the final two games. He did show a willingness and ability to distribute the ball, however, which is promising for someone who is now considered a combo guard. I really like his defensive potential.

Malick Badiane (24.4 mpg, 4.4 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 1.4 bpg, 57% shooting) – Badiane had a couple of nice games (12 rebounds this afternoon), but was nonexistent for most of the camp. He isn’t the physical presence in the paint that he should be, and he doesn’t do well once the ball is in his hands. His body and athletic ability remain first rate, however.

Chuck Hayes (14.2 mpg, 6.4 ppg, 4.2 rpg, 80% shooting) – It was surprising to see Hayes barely get on the court early in the week, but he really finished up on a high note. After really impressing with his aggressiveness and defense on Channing Frye Monday night, he notched a 17 point, 8 rebound effort in his final game against Toronto.

David Bluthenthal (11.6 mpg, 4.4 ppg, 41% shooting) – Bluthenthal didn’t get the playing time to make an impact in this league, but didn’t do much with the opportunities he got either. Bluthenthal has the body and skillset to be effective, but other than one brief stretch, he was very quiet.

Indiana Pacers

Ron Artest (29.75 mpg in 4 games, 19.8 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 3.25 apg, 48% shooting) – Artest looked very much like the seasoned leader of this team, and not the near-maniac that his actions have caused him to be labeled as. He clearly was using this week as a chance to get back in the swing of things, and didn’t force anything.

David Harrison (22 mpg in 4 games, 14.8 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 1.5 bpg, 62% shooting) – If it wasn’t for all the on-court antics, Harrison might have walked out of Target Center today as the top story of the camp. Nobody could keep him from getting position in the post, and he has all sorts of moves to use once he gets there. Completely outplaying Andrew Bogut is a nice feather for his cap as well. Unfortunately, after all the whining, sulking, and technical fouls, one really has to wonder about his attitude. Chalk it up to this just being a summer league, but keep an eye on what people are saying about his locker room presence.

Maurice Carter (25.75 mpg in 4 games, 14.5 ppg, 5.5 rpg, 3.25 apg, 67% shooting) – Carter was one of the more pleasant surprises at the camp, showing a very efficient, very polished game. He can slash, shoot from the outside, handle a bit, and almost never forces things.

Chris Thomas (22.25 mpg in 4 games, 7.3 ppg, 11 ast/3 to’s, 47% shooting) – Thomas’ numbers aren’t terrible, but there just isn’t anything that sticks out about the guy. He’s undersized, not overly explosive, and just isn’t a natural creator. Maybe he ends up doing well over in Europe.

Jonathan Bender – Stunk it up (8 points, 2-8 shooting) in his first game and was visibly pouting about it. He wasn’t seen again.

Milwaukee Bucks

Andrew Bogut (30.4 mpg, 13.2 ppg, 10.0 rpg, 1.8 apg, 1.4 bpg, 48% shooting) – Bogut’s week was quite a roller coaster. His first game was a real struggle, even against Minnesota’s ragtag group of big guys. He picked it up over the next two games, and then got ejected in game 4. Bogut’s strengths right now aren’t those of your normal rookie. He shows great fundamentals passing the ball and getting position on the glass, doesn’t force shots, and understands how to get his shot off in the paint. Unlike your normal #1 pick, he doesn’t have the tools to dominate physically. One scout I talked to mentioned how Tim Duncan looked similarly ho-hum in his first summer league, so you don’t have to take too much stock in my reservations about his play. He still had a very productive weekend, leading the league in rebounding by a very wide margin.

Reece Gaines (29 mpg, 11.8 ppg, 38% shooting) – Gaines isn’t the player I remember seeing at Louisville. He’s bulked up a ton since his college days, and certainly lacks the combo guard skills that he was billed as having at one time. He was generally a black hole all weekend, and simply isn’t that good.

Chris Owens (16.4 mpg, 10.6 ppg, 59% shooting) – Owens has moved his game outside a bit, and has a deadly midrange jumper in his arsenal. He is obviously stuck in between NBA positions, but he was one of the more consistent producers all week when he got minutes.

Ersan Illyasova (14.4 mpg, 3.6 ppg, 3.0 rpg, 30% shooting) – Ilyasova struggled all weekend, but I still like the potential of the kid. He has a nice shooting stroke, is very long, and his athletic ability is outstanding. I don’t know if the Bucks will send him back overseas or put him in the development league, but I think Illyasova will turn out alright once he gets adjusted to playing higher level basketball.

Minnesota Timberwolves

Nikoloz Tskitishvili – Skita only played one full game, but it was a darn impressive one (25 points, 8-11 shooting, 4-5 3-pointers). He had the Dirk thing going, hitting from the outside, nailing the midrange runner, and staying active enough on the glass. It’s not clear what will happen to him from here, now that he broke his hand. Some team ought to offer him a guaranteed contract tomorrow, at least for the minimum – there’s just too much upside left in this 22 year old.

Ndudi Ebi (25.4 mpg, 10.4 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 43% shooting)– This was a big camp for Ebi, simply for the fact that he’s running out of time on his rookie contract. The rumors have been flying all summer about poor performances in other area summer leagues. Even though he has bulked up and is a marginally better shooter, Ebi certainly didn’t prove any doubters wrong. He forces nearly everything he does, and has no conception of how to play within an offense. Ebi was getting burned on defense all week, and was amongst the camp leaders in fouls. He always seemed to be doing something to make the hometown crowd groan.

Dwayne Jones (24.2 mpg, 7.8 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 1.0 bpg, 80% shooting) – This weekend was a constant struggle for Jones, whether it was getting called for fouls at a ridiculous rate, bobbling a lot of the passes he received in the post, or simply getting burned by more experienced players. The tools are there for a decent post player down the road. He is strong, mobile enough, and a natural shot blocker. For how hard he fought in the paint, I would have expected a few more rebounds, however.

Bracey Wright (17 mpg in 3 games, 7.7 ppg, 29% shooting) – Wright was hobbled by an ankle injury most of the week. He showed some very nice athletic ability off the dribble and hit a few sweet looking pull up jumpers, but the rest his play wasn’t very inspiring. He couldn’t hit from the outside, and simply isn’t a natural point guard. I guess I am more optimistic about Wright than I was headed into the summer league (not saying much), but the ankle injury took away three chances to evaluate him more in-depth.

John Lucas (15.8 mpg, 9.2 ppg, 15 ast/5 to) – Lucas took over for Wright as starting point guard for the Wolves, and performed admirably. He was able to get into the lane, and looked good as a floor general as well. His size really limits his NBA potential, however.

Ricky Shields (19.5 mpg, 9.2 ppg, 39% shooting, 8-20 3-pt) - Shields has a reputation as a scorer, and he probably kept that here in Minneapolis. He really struggled from the floor until a big game 5 (19 points, 7-12 from the field). Today he got to the basket nicely, and that opened up his outside game. He's an undersized, streaky scorer that doesn't do much other than shoot.

New York

Nate Robinson (29.6 mpg, 15.2 ppg, 3.2 rpg, 5.8 apg, 39% shooting) – Robinson had more highlight reel-worthy plays than everybody else in the league combined. My guess is that David Stern will usher him into the slam dunk competition as quickly as possible. He is great at creating offense for his teammates as well, which surprised me. My only beef is that he takes a lot of tough shots, but I’m sure being on a team where he’s not the number one option will help take care of that. He could also learn to take the defensive intensity up a notch. If Robinson learns to play within himself, he has a chance to be special.

David Lee (26.8 mpg, 11.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 2.8 apg, 58% shooting) – Lee isn’t your prototypical undersized PF. He doesn’t have the greatest back to the basket game, but is a true beast attacking the basket when facing up. He’s got quick feet, can be a terror on the offensive glass, and reacts well in scoring situations. He’s a little bit stuck between positions, but Lee was certainly fun to watch here.

Channing Frye (23.0 mpg, 13.8 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 1.6 bpg, 60% shooting) – Frye looked good most of the camp. He’s not ever going to be that guy you can give the ball to repeatedly, but he makes the most out of every situation. His jumper is sweet, he’s got nice shot blocking instincts, and will be a factor around the basket.

Ruben Douglas (25.4 mpg, 15.2 ppg, 52% shooting) – Douglas is a nice all-around guard, able to slash to the basket, handle the ball, and pull up in the mid-range. He came back down to earth a bit after a monster first game, but of all the “free agent types” playing in this league, Douglas might have helped himself the most.

Jackie Butler (11.8 mpg, 4.4 ppg, 3.0 rpg) – Butler has improved a lot in the past year, and is turning into an effective post scorer. He didn’t get enough playing time as he was behind the first rounders, Frye and Lee.


Tim Pickett (23 mpg, 12.8 ppg, 51% shooting, 3.8 reb, 3.0 ast) – If you only looked at Pickett’s first half stats, you would figure he was the top player here. For some reason he always got out to a hot start, using bullish explosiveness to slash to the basket, hitting open threes, and showing off some above the rim acrobatics. The Raptors would always go away from him in the second half, for some reason. I really like the way this guy played.

Marcus Haislip (18 mpg in 3 games, 13.7 ppg, 3.3 rpg, 56% shooting) – Haislip sat out the final two games, but showed off a nice package of scoring and athleticism in the first three games. He will get hot and knock down a couple of threes in a row, although you can’t count on much else from him. The rest of his game just hasn’t developed.

Uros Slokar (20.6 mpg, 10.4 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 50% shooting) – Slokar really only broke out in one game, but it’s obvious that he’s got some offensive tools. He knows how to get his shot up before the defense can react, is comfortable putting the ball on the floor, and has a smooth lefty stroke from the outside.

Omar Cook (21.8 mpg, 6.2 ppg, 6.4 apg, 1.6 topg, 37% shooting – Cook was responsible for numerous highlight passes in the open court, but still had a relatively quiet week. His shot has improved, but he still misses very badly when he misses. I would like to see Cook take it to the basket a bit more, as there is no real reason to defend the guy in the half court offense right now.

Pape Sow (23 mpg, 5.0 ppg, 4.8 rpg) – Raptors fans are excited about Sow’s potential, but he is a long ways away from being effective in the NBA. As an athlete, he’s got what it takes. He’s strong, explosive, a good shotblocker, and moves very well going to the basket. However, his offense just doesn’t exist. He can’t get anything done on the low blocks, and that means he’s a 12th man type until his skills develop or his athleticism starts to wane.

Statistical Leaders


Lonny Baxter, Houston – 21.0
Ron Artest, Indiana – 19.8
Dion Glover, Houston - 18.8
Nate Robinson, New York – 15.2
Ruben Douglas, New York – 15.2
David Harrison, Indiana – 14.8
Channing Frye, New York – 13.8
Tim Pickett, Toronto – 13.7
Maurice Carter, Indiana – 13.5
Andrew Bogut, Milwwaukee - 13.2


Andrew Bogut, Milwaukee – 10.0
Lonny Baxter, Houston – 6.2
Malick Badiane, Houston – 6.2
Charles Gaines, Indiana – 6.2
Dion Glover, Houston – 5.8


Omar Cook, Toronto – 6.4
Nate Robinson, New York – 5.8
Dion Glover, Houston – 4.2
Cheyne Gadson, New York – 4.0
Hollis Price, Houston – 3.8

Fouls (just for fun)

Andrew Bogut, Milwaukee – 5.6
Dwayne Jones, Minnesota – 5.2
Ndudi Ebi, Minnesota – 5.0
Paul McPherson, Minnesota – 4.6
(tie)Bruno Sundov, New York – 4.4
Channing Frye, New York - 4.4
Malick Badiane, Houston – 4.4

All-Tournament Team

Lonny Baxter, Houston

First Team
PG – Nate Robinson, New York
SG – Dion Glover, Houston
SF – Ron Artest, Indiana
F/C – Andrew Bogut, Milwaukee
C – David Harrison, Indiana

Second Team
SG – Tim Pickett, Toronto
SG – Maurice Carter, Indiana
SG – Ruben Douglas, New York
F – Chris Owens, Milwaukee
F/C – Channing Frye, New York

Recent articles

3.6 Points
1.4 Rebounds
0.5 Assists
8.8 PER
8.5 Points
8.8 Rebounds
2.6 Assists
19.0 PER
8.2 Points
7.0 Rebounds
2.5 Assists
16.3 PER
14.7 Points
5.5 Rebounds
0.3 Assists
18.6 PER
2.2 Points
0.8 Rebounds
0.4 Assists
5.9 PER
0.0 Points
0.0 Rebounds
0.0 Assists
0.0 PER
7.3 Points
0.7 Rebounds
1.0 Assists
15.1 PER
15.5 Points
10.3 Rebounds
1.6 Assists
19.0 PER
10.0 Points
3.0 Rebounds
0.0 Assists
21.9 PER
2.7 Points
2.0 Rebounds
6.3 Assists
15.8 PER
3.4 Points
1.4 Rebounds
1.1 Assists
5.6 PER
4.5 Points
7.5 Rebounds
0.4 Assists
14.3 PER
8.7 Points
3.8 Rebounds
0.9 Assists
16.2 PER
12.5 Points
5.0 Rebounds
3.0 Assists
13.6 PER
0.0 Points
0.0 Rebounds
0.0 Assists
0.0 PER
9.4 Points
5.3 Rebounds
1.0 Assists
16.4 PER

Twitter @DraftExpress

DraftExpress Shop