Every summer league comes with surprises and under Dennis Lindsey they tend to be great ones. This Utah Jazz Summer League is turning out no different.
Summer league started with the excitement of Grayson Allen’s first game as a Jazzman. Allen didn’t disappoint with a near triple double in 16 minutes with 11 points, 8 rebounds and 7 assists.
Some have said that because Allen “struggled to score” at the rim it was bad news for the Jazz. But even with his 4/16 shooting, Allen still found a way to contribute dishing out 7 assists and grabbing 8 rebounds. (Some of those rebounds were pulled down in delightfully chippy fashion which warms my soul.)
In one game Allen showed he’s an all around player that helps his team win.
Yesterday we found out that Allen would be sitting for an adductor strain.
Grayson Allen will rest tonight. He strained an adductor in pre draft workouts. Jazz staff just monitoring his minutes.— kristen kenney (@kristenkenney) July 3, 2018
This means that Allen scored a near triple double, hit 33% from three, almost got in like three fights and did it all while injured.
It also passes the eye test. Allen only played 16 minutes in his first game and when he was on the court he looked gassed at times. Now we know he was playing through injury. How will he do when he’s 100%?! My guess is better!
Georges Niang is balling for the Jazz!
In game 1 of Utah Jazz Summer League he scored 17 points on 7/12 shooting in 21 minutes and looked like the best shooter on the floor. Game 2 was more of the same with 18 points on 8/13 shooting with 10 rebounds and 4 assists.
He’s looking more and more like an NBA rotation player instead of a prospect. Honestly, because we haven’t had many chances to see him play with the Jazz, and I don’t make it to many Stars games, I haven’t been able to see him play very much. But this Summer League he’s really showing out. His game reminds me a lot of prime Jared Dudley in that he looks like a combo forward that shoots a high percentage from three.
If Niang can be viable on defense against opposing 4’s, he could find himself on the floor more often because that shooting has become very apparent.
And if that happens, when do we start putting out RFPs for statue builders because Dennis Lindsey is gonna need one some day. Let’s start the plans now.
Tony Bradley is also playing well!
Bradley’s game isn’t going to make a lot of highlight reels but he’s showing he can be a real contributor in the future.
He’s already racked up two double doubles in both summer league games with a gaudy 18 and 14 against the Grizzlies. In a game they lost by three, Bradley was a team high +16.
Bradley is showing to be a nice pick and roll finisher and a force on the offensive boards. And even though he’s not an explosive leaper, he uses his length and size very well on the defensive end disrupting shots and forcing misses. Bradley also looks leaner which shows a nice work ethic developing.
It may not be long before Bradley starts seeing some backup minutes at center, especially if Derrick Favors or Rudy Gobert misses any time next season.
Ricky Rubio is competing for most likable Jazz player.
This man knows how to work his way into the hearts of Jazz fans!
Also, that jersey is looking incredible and making me rethink whether we should be having that as the retro jersey in the future.
Okay guys, happy fourth of July. I’d just like to take this moment to look back at how far we’ve come since that fateful day one year ago.
I remember this tweet popping up as I was driving away from the park to a family barbecue and my heart dropped.
Free-agent Gordon Hayward plans to sign with the Boston Celtics, league sources tell ESPN.— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) July 4, 2017
It was a long day with angry tweeting and videos and spicy articles. There are highs and lows in sports and this was definitely one of those lows. But as low as we felt that day, it made the highs that would come that much sweeter.
In some ways, the 4th of July is an Independence day for Jazz fans. We were finally free of the stranglehold Gordon Hayward had. For so long it felt like he was our best shot at any sort of long playoff run.
Now, anything is possible.