Adventures in Summer Leaguing, Volume II

Posted by Rob Mahoney on July 16, 2012 under Commentary, Recaps | 6 Comments to Read

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The Las Vegas Summer League is a meal best consumed in buffet style — there is little order to the layering of flavors for the event, but one can nonetheless find plenty of tasty morsels, however disparate they may be. With that in mind, here is a closer look at a few of the notable prospects from Dallas’ first game in Vegas, assembled for you in the most edible form:

  • The offense in Monday’s game still revolved around Dominique Jones, albeit in a very different way; having proved his point in the Mavs’ Summer League premiere by dropping 32 points on just 25 shots, Jones slid into a pattern of more altruistic shot creation in the follow-up. The assist totals don’t show it, but Jones consistently made plays for his teammates through his dribble penetration, and did well as a spot-up option when other Mavs drew additional defenders or got themselves into trouble. He didn’t necessarily strike a perfect balance between scoring and playmaking, but Jones inched closer to that equilibrium — a state that will be essential if he’s going to fill minutes in the season to come.
  • Related: Jones is so quick and so strong that a euro step almost seems unfair.
  • David Harrison certainly has the potential to be a nice player, but is distractingly emotive to both himself and observers. He reacts demonstratively to virtually every call that goes against him or the team, occasionally to the point where his teammates are forced to counsel him on-court. That’s not necessarily a problem beyond remedy, but it’s a turnoff in a competitive business with so many comparable talents.

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Adventures in Summer Leaguing, Volume I

Posted by Rob Mahoney on July 15, 2012 under Commentary, Recaps | Read the First Comment

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The Las Vegas Summer League is a meal best consumed in buffet style — there is little order to the layering of flavors for the event, but one can nonetheless find plenty of tasty morsels, however disparate they may be. With that in mind, here is a closer look at a few of the notable prospects from Dallas’ first game in Vegas, assembled for you in the most edible form:

  • The Mavs’ stint in Vegas is very clearly an audition process of sorts for Dominique Jones, whose role in the upcoming season is an open question due to Dallas’ open roster. With Rodrigue Beaubois almost perpetually shaky off the dribble and Delonte West as of yet unsigned, there’s a distinct possibility that the Mavs will be forced to rely on Jones as a reserve ball-handler and playmaker.
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    It’s in that regard that Jones’ Summer League success becomes a bit tricky to translate. On this team, he’s the end-all creator, the primary scorer, and the bailout option. He has a lot to prove and a considerable weight to carry, giving these showings a notably different dynamic than what he has and will encounter as a member of the Mavs’ A-team. He did a tremendous job of pouring in points, but I’m not sure there’s much to take away from his shiny scoring total aside from the physicality and skill behind it.
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    There’s no question that Jones is a reasonably safe ball-handler with good driving instincts and imposing strength, but none of that is exactly new. What is new — or at least renewed — is his capacity to finish around the basket after drawing contact. That was the crux of Jones’ college success, but he hadn’t yet managed to convert that element of his utility to NBA defenses and NBA bigs. We may have seen the start of that transition with this kind of performance, even if the level of play makes for an imperfect comparison to standard NBA basketball.

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