The Third Wave

Posted by Rob Mahoney on June 26, 2010 under Commentary, News | 3 Comments to Read

The 2010 free agent class is unprecedented in many ways. Never before has a group of athletic mercenaries been so thoroughly dissected, endlessly analyzed, and hotly anticipated. Once the shenanigans begin on July 1st, all sorts of fun will be had, as so many franchises across the league will y be either destroyed or reborn in a cleansing fire.

Now, pay close attention, because while everyone is paying attention to the glitter at the head of the class, plenty of interesting things will be going on at the tail. Players like LeBron James and Dwyane Wade are proven and invaluable, but the summer will also yield completely untested prospects: undrafted free agents. In a typical NBA off-season, that doesn’t mean much; occasionally a team may unearth a role player from the undrafted ranks, but even that only happens on the rarest of occasions. Yet the survivors of this year’s draft seem a bit different. There obviously aren’t any earth-shaking talents in the bunch, but there are a number of interesting players that are viable candidates not only for a Summer League roster, but perhaps a spot on the Legends or even more.

Obviously not all of those prospects are going to pick Dallas over all of their other suitors, but the early returns are promising. Despite a mini-report from Jeff Goodman of Fox Sports, a Twitter exchange between St. Mary’s center Omar Samhan and Mark Cuban indicates that Samhan will indeed be a part of the Mavs’ Summer League team. Harvard point guard Jeremy Lin is also tabbed as a part of the fun. That’s a hell of a start, especially since Rodrigue Beaubois and Dominique Jones will headline. It should be interesting to see how the rest of the Vegas roster turns out.

Unfortunately, the Mavs have to do without a number of players they had expressed a clear interest in.

There are plenty of prospects still out there (Mikhail Torrance, Charles Garcia, Mac Koshwal, Aubrey Coleman, etc.), but the demand for these players is clear. By now, I’m sure the appropriate calls have already been placed. That makes the process less of a selection and more of a waiting game. The Summer League roster should be assembled in about a week’s time, which doesn’t leave much time for anticipation. Still, it’s worth keeping tabs on the unclaimed third round draftees over the next few days.

  • Cynthia

    I’m looking forward to the summer league games. Setting my DVR as I speak! Can’t wait to watch Roddy play and Jones sounds quite exciting also. And who knows? There may be another jem hidden in there also. Although he had played in the NBA before (most of us had never seen him though) summer league is where I fell in love with Brandon Bass. Who knows? Maybe we find us another one? Guess we’ll have to wait and see…

  • Mavericks_4Ever

    The Mavericks may have found the biggest sleeper in the draft.

    I’m a big Jeremy Lin fan, and not just because he’s a future pastor/minister. At the 2010 Portsmouth Invitation (similar to the NFL’s pre-draft Senior Bowl) against future NBA draft picks, Jeremy Lin averaged 10 points, 6 assists, 3 steals, and 60% FG percentage. In 2008 in 7 games (some multiple) against Colorado, George Washington, UConn, and BC, he averaged 20 points, 5 rebs, 5 assists, and 3 steals, even though the other team was double or triple teaming him all game as the only good player for Harvard. In 2009 against UConn and BC twice he averaged 27 points, 5 rebs, 5 assists, and 3 steals, again while double or triple teamed.

    His entire life Jeremy Lin has constantly faced obstacles and discrimination (not to mention racial slurs) in the basketball world, because of his race. He was California’s basketball State Player of the Year after taking an unknown HS team to take the championship over powerhouse Mater Dei, yet was offered no Division-I basketball scholarship from any school. Harvard was the only school to give him a spot, and with no scholarship. I don’t think it ever happened before that a Player of the Year in a huge state like California, didn’t get any college scholarship offers to play. Then, at Harvard, all he did was break all sorts of conference records, put Harvard on the map without any other legit player on the team, and this year finished as a finalist for both the John Wooden and Bob Cousy Award, for best D-I college player and best D-I guard in the country. If his last name were different, he might have gotten a chance to start at a different college and become a 1st round pick. He is taller than Avery Bradley, and just as athletic if you look at his dunks, blocks, and steals playing against players who were picked in the draft.

    For those not familiar with him, here are some ESPN, Time Magazine, and Washington Post articles:
    time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1951044,00.html
    espn.go.com/ncb/columns/story?columnist=oneil_dana&id=4730385
    washingtontimes.com/news/2009/dec/23/hoyas-preparing-for-crimsons-do-everything-lin/

    To the poster ‘Rex’: Jeremy Lin plays an extremely unselfish game and makes his team’s better, but you can’t blame him for those losses. His Harvard team had literally no other decent players, and basketball is a team game. Everyone saw how far Cornell went this year in the March Madness tournament (Sweet 16), with 3 legit NBA prospects. Against Cornell, Jeremy’s Harvard team was no match, but Jeremy had 24 points on 7 for 12 shooting. He was hardly ‘shut down’ by Cornell, he simply had no help.

  • Cynthia

    To MAVERICKS_4Ever….Thanks for the heads up on Jeremy Lin…..Wow, is he ever going to be an exciting player to watch in the summer league! I hope he gets alot of playing time. I read the ESPN article on him. For those interested in Lin it’s a good portrait of an exceptional player that SHOULD HAVE been drafted. Hopefully this kid will end up signing somewhere…if not with the MAVS. Who cares about his race? THAT KID CAN BALL!