Didn’t get your name called at the NBA Draft? There is still a chance to prove redemption. A lot of talented players failed to get drafted, partly due to the higher level of international talent pushing some college stars out of the second round.
Here is a list of 10 players that can prove their worth in summer leagues and make a team.
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10. ADONIS THOMAS – Memphis
Thomas is a physical specimen, measuring at 6-7 with a 7-0 wingspan. His size as a small forward should make him attractive to NBA teams. Even with that size, he has struggled mightily with consistency. Showing signs of a decent three-point shot as a freshman, his three-point shooting percentage plummeted to 29.2 percent as a junior. He doesn’t have very good ballhandling and relies heavily on his midrange jump shot. Even with these issues, he is a physical specimen who is incredibly athletic. He will reportedly join the Atlanta Hawks summer league team.
9. PHIL PRESSEY – Missouri
He might have left school a year early after looking completely inconsistent throughout the season. The talent is there but he makes mistakes that make him seem really young, such as the high number of turnovers and the shot selection. Chad Ford mentioned his special ability to see the floor and his high ceiling as reasons for Pressey to get drafted. If he avoids the tendency to play “hero ball,” he may become a viable player. He will have a chance to prove himself in Boston as the Celtics have signed him. Terms of the contract were not disclosed, according to Adrian Wojnarowski.
8. SETH CURRY – Duke
Curry was a talented player at Duke who posted 17.5 points per game while shooting 44 percent behind the mark. The issue with Curry is his athleticism, which leaves a lot to be desired, but that shouldn’t be the end all be all for him. He moves well without the ball and knows how to find some space on the court to launch open three-pointers. You would think a team would take a chance on him.
7. JAMES SOUTHERLAND – Syracuse
The Post Standard reported that the San Antonio Spurs, a standup organization that nearly captured the NBA title, wanted to pick Southerland with the 58th pick in the NBA Draft. The Spurs talked to Southerland and his agent about the possibility of playing overseas for a year before coming back to the States to try to make the team in 2014-15. Southerland declined to do so. Southerland seems perfectly suitable to fit the role of stretch forward in the NBA, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see him land a spot on a roster. He will play for both Golden State and Philly’s summer league teams.
6. B.J. YOUNG – Arkansas
Young is a talented combo guard who can get his own shot and get to the rim. He is lightning fast and is great at pushing the ball in transition. Being able to score in isolation situations by beating your man is a very enticing ability for a player to have and it is something that Young does routinely. He struggles shooting from three-point range but has plenty of upside to offer.
5. RICHARD HOWELL – North Carolina State
Howell was the only First Team All-ACC player who wasn’t drafted. Most of the concern about Howell is his athleticism and how that will translate to the next level. He is most comparable to a Zach Randolph with his propensity to bang bodies down low and play below the rim. He is a superb rebounder but lacks defensive ability to protect the rim as a center. Howell joined the Denver Nuggets as an undrafted free agent and could make an impact after they traded Kostas Koufos to the Grizzlies.
4. KHALIF WYATT – Temple
Wyatt led the A-10 in scoring with 20.5 points per game. He was easily the best player on Temple and was able to score 31 points in consecutive games against North Carolina State and Indiana in the NCAA Tournament. The one-man game nearly got Temple into the Sweet 16 but his effort wasn’t enough to get past Indiana. His athleticism has always been questioned — MoMo Jones admitted he isn’t athletic and plays at his own pace — but he is still a potent scorer. Wyatt will play this summer with the Philadelphia 76ers, a team that is starting from scratch with a young core.
3. JACKIE CARMICHAEL – Illinois State
Carmichael is an explosive athlete who was able to bully the opposition in the paint when he posted up. He is a physical power forward that can be a rebounding force and high motor player who will give a team instant energy off of the bench. What he lacks in finesse he gains in toughness. Being a bruiser on a defensive-oriented team seems to be his destiny. He has yet to sign with a team.
2. TREVOR MBAKWE – Minnesota
Mbakwe is 6-8 and has a 7-4 wingspan. The power forward is a very good rebounder who pulled down 3.3 offensive rebounds a game for the Gophers. He is really limited as a shooter and seems more comfortable as a high-energy finisher. He doesn’t seem to have the greatest technique when defending on the block but is great at using his length to bother the opposition on the perimeter.
1. MYCK KABONGO – Texas
Tons of analysts were shocked that the Canadian went undrafted, but it may be because of his limited action in games due to a suspension he received after gaining improper benefits. He only played in 11 games last year but showcased blazing speed and playmaking ability as a point guard. The only issue is a jump shot that needs some help. Having a year in the D-League would do wonders for him, giving him consistent minutes to work on that jumper. The Miami Heat will have Kabongo on its summer league roster, which makes sense considering their position to wait and see how he develops.
Which undrafted players will make an impact next year?
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