Summer League Game 1 Observations

Published: July 5, 2019

Some very brief thoughts on the Summer League game (writing as game is being stopped for earthquake, hope everyone is okay). No conclusions about players below, just some observations.

• Frank Jackson had a very slow start and then heated up en route to 30 points on 17 shots. It was great to see the explosiveness and his ability to score, but I didn’t really see anything that I haven’t seen before from him. He still appears awkward running the point, and from his NBA career so far, he’s much more of a SG in a PG body to me. I still project his ceiling as a role player.

• The guy that impressed me that I knew nothing about – Aubrey Dawkins, who showed solid team defense. Moves well, communicates on defense, and his head is on a swivel. Makes small positional adjustments throughout the possession. Offense: awkward creating his own shot, had a nice extra pass early in the game to an open shooter. Didn’t see much there.

• Kenrich Williams basically is who he was last year in actual NBA minutes. Solid feel for the game, not particularly great breaking guys down off the dribble. Made some good passes/reads but the Knicks defense in this game just wasn’t that impressive. I like him fine, but he didn’t do anything to show me that he’s any different from the player he was last year besides maybe a little more wiggle in some of his drives against worse defenders.
• Zion Williamson had a rocky start as he was sort of forcing the issue, but found his spots and of course, was absolutely dynamite at the rim on rolls.

He struggled a bit on his drives, forcing up shots against some long Knick defenders. As they said on the broadcast, he has been spending so much time taking care of his shoe deal, doing events, etc. that he does not look to be in shape. I do not see it as a concern yet. The pull-up shot looked ugly and took some time to get off, but I am not concerned yet, and that is not his game.

• Zylan Cheatham’s effort is contagious. He was everywhere and has a really nice athletic profile to match with his motor. Where he will contribute on offense is still not clear to me, as he had some awkward finishes at the rim and is not big enough to be a full-time roll man, but this is somewhat to watch moving forward.

• Bigby-Williams put up good stats in limited minutes and flashed some athleticism, but there are so many athletic, rim-running bigs in the NBA and I didn’t see anything noteworthy. Again, loved the effort, but nothing stood out to me.


Michael Pellissier

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