A number of former Marquette players are currently participating in the NBA Summer League, an annual event in Vegas where first and second-round draft picks are tossed into an arena of scrubs and told to put a ball in a hoop (and are also allowed to familiarize themselves with the Vegas lifestyle after these amateurish matches conclude). Unfortunately, most of these former Golden Eagles fall into the embarrassing category of “scrub,” however, a few of them are actually posting respectable, if not impressive, stats in their allotted playing time. Let’s take a moment to check up on the good, bad, and ugly pertaining to Marquette alumni partaking in the NBA Summer League.
Dwight Buycks — Toronto Raptors
vs. LA Lakers — 28 mins, 14 pts, 4-12 FGM-A 0-3 3PM-A, 6-7 FTM-A, 5 ast, 1 stl
vs. Denver — 27 mins, 21 pts, 5-13 FGM-A, 2-3 3PM-A, 9-10 FTM-A, 4 reb, 4 ast
Besides his horrendous field goal percentage at 36%, Buycks has been among the best in the entire summer league, let alone the undisputed best of the Marquette alumni participating. Considering the fact that Buycks’ scoring average at Marquette topped out at only 8.8 PPG, it’s incredible how the tiny point guard had worked his way through the ranks of overseas and NBA-affiliate teams to earn himself a contract with the Toronto Raptors. Although he rarely plays during the regular season, Buycks is one of few Marquette alumni to be a full-time employee of the NBA.
Trent Lockett — D-League Select
vs. New Orleans — 35 mins, 13 pts, 5-7 FGM-A, 1-1 3PM-A, 2-4 FTM-A, 9 reb, 3 ast, 3 stl
Lockett stuffed the stat sheet in his first match with the D-League Select, posting numerals of three or more in every non-percentage category (which unfortunately also includes turnovers and personal fouls). These statistics alone are nearly double of what Lockett averaged in last years’ NBA Summer League, where he averaged 7 points and 1.6 rebounds per contest. Carrying an enhanced skill set and the valued reputation as a tremendous floor manager, expect Lockett to continue receiving large amounts of minutes throughout the rest of the tournament.
Update: At the time of writing, Lockett has 5 points, one rebound, and one assist in the first quarter against the Atlanta Hawks. Keep up the stellar play, Trent!
Jamil Wilson — Washington Wizards (no picture available)
vs. Atlanta — 14 mins, 5 pts, 2-5 FGM-A, 1-2 3PM-A, 5 reb, 1 ast, 3 fouls
This is the type of Jamil Wilson game that would absolutely enrage the Marquette fan base if posted during last season. I can only imagine phrases such as “only five field goals attempted?!” or “three fouls in fourteen minutes!?!?!??!” being plastered over social media sites after the last buzzer sounded. This particular stat line, however, isn’t too bad for Jamil’s first NBA Summer League game, considering its efficiency and the fact that he managed to notch five points and five rebounds in such a short amount of playing time. Obviously, there’s progress to be made, but again, this isn’t a bad start for the forward with a reputation for underperforming.
Davante Gardner — Chicago Bulls (no picture available)
vs. LA Clippers — 2 mins, 4 pts, 2-2 FGM-A, 1 reb
Two minutes, four points. THE BIG FELLA SIMPLY GETS BUCKETS!
…and not enough playing time, unfortunately.
Vander Blue — San Antonio Spurs (picture from 2013-14 NBASL)
vs. Sacramento — 13 mins, 2 pts, 1-5 FGM-A, 0-1 3PM-A, 2 reb, 1 stl
vs. Cleveland — 2 mins, 0 pts, 0-1 FGM-A, 1 turnover
Blue’s play thus far has been unexpectedly poor compared to his impressive performances in last year’s summer league, in which he posted numerous 20-plus point games and flashed his athleticism on acrobatic drives and soaring dunks. Clearly, he’s not receiving enough minutes to establish himself statistically, so unless that changes, it’s hard to imagine Blue making his imprint on the court anytime soon.
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