Posts Tagged ‘NBA Summer League’

Throwback Thursday: Summer League Superstars


VIDEO: Relive Stephen Curry’s Summer League debut in 2009

Welcome to Throwback Thursday here on the All Ball Blog. Each week, we’ll delve into the NBA’s photo archives and uncover a topic and some great images from way back when. Hit us up here if you have suggestions for a future TBT on All Ball.

Today’s Topic: Summer League Superstars

The Summer League season is one of the most fun times of the NBA year, with every player on the floor having something to prove. After events in Orlando and Salt Lake City, the attention turns to Las Vegas where 23 of the 30 teams participate in 10 days of basketball, culminating in a tournament that was won by the Sacramento Kings last season. Coverage of the 2015 NBA Summer League tournament continues on NBA TV through July 20.

This Throwback Thursday we look back at the best players to ever play in the Summer League.


Gallery: TBT: Summer League Superstars

Which of these players do you think has changed the most since Summer League? Leave your comments below!

2015 NBA Summer League Marathon

ALL BALL NERVE CENTER
7:02 a.m. ET — Here we go again. It’s that time of year when the stars are aligned, when the moon is in its proper season, and when, for one glorious day, we get a full day of live NBA action. That’s right, it’s the day when the Orlando Summer League and Las Vegas Summer League overlap, when we get almost 17 consecutive hours of live NBA action. Like we’ve done a few times in the past, I’ll be here live-blogging along all day. Well, almost all day.

First up! We get the final games of the Orlando Summer League, and the day’s action will build to something of a crescendo tonight at 8:30 p.m. ET with what should be a great primetime match-up of 2015 lottery picks, as D’Angelo Russell and the Los Angeles Lakers will take on Karl-Anthony Towns and the Minnesota Timberwolves. Just for the heck of it, after that game we get an NBA Finals rematch, as the Cavs’ and Warriors’ summer league teams will square off at 10:30 PM ET.

So settle in, get your popcorn ready (or your oatmeal or cereal or whatever appropriate breakfast foods you prefer) and let’s watch some basketball! I’ll be checking in throughout the day, up until tonight, when my shift ends at 5 p.m. and I’m replaced by some fresh fingers here on the live blog to carry you through the evening hours.

Leading off the morning, we have the Clippers against the Thunder at 8 a.m. ET on NBA TV, in is the battle for fifth place in Orlando. You have questions? Comments? Thoughts? Drop them in the comments below and let’s talk. Either way, we’ve got a marathon ahead of us. Let’s watch some NBA Summer League action. See ya again here in about an hour or so …

7:28 a.m. ET — So what should you be watching for when Summer League play gets rolling in Las Vegas tonight? We’re glad you asked …
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NBA Rooks: Diaries … Aaron Craft

Aaron Craft (Jack Arent/NBAE)

Aaron Craft (Jack Arent/NBAE)

By Aaron Craft, for NBA.com

I was really excited heading in to summer league, just to have a chance to play some 5-v-5 again.  You are always a little bit nervous going in to new situations, but practicing really helped me calm my nerves and gave all of us a chance to get to know each other.  After that, it was just getting back to playing basketball, trusting in the work and the practice and just enjoying the game.

I was lucky enough to be able to play with two different teams – the Philadelphia 76ers in Orlando and the Golden State Warriors in Las Vegas.  I didn’t have specific goals going in to summer league, just to get back to playing and let my competitive natures take over.  I wanted to win.

Playing in Orlando definitely helped prepare for Vegas, which is much more of an event, with spectators and announcers, even a hype man to get the crowd going.  Orlando was similar to an open gym type atmosphere where as Vegas was more like a college game.  There was a lot of energy in the arena which is always helpful in giving you a little extra oompf or adrenaline when you’re playing.  There was one game in particular, when we played the Lakers, where the fans were crazy — cheering during free throws and everything.

The most challenging part is the free time.  Basketball is so natural and practice was great, but at 3 pm you’re on your way back to the hotel with nowhere to be until 10:30 the following morning. Of course it’s Vegas, so there is plenty to do, but there is a big difference between what you can do and what you should do!  I mostly went to dinner with some friends – lots of good places to eat in Vegas.

My experience at summer league was a little different from some of the guys who were draft picks.  Playing with two different teams meant two different coaching styles and two different systems to learn.  The other guys know what team they’re playing for and have an added level of comfort in that sense.  I was fortunate enough to get on two great teams with a lot of young players who were unselfish, energetic and really committed to making the team the best, so that made it really enjoyable.

Overall I am very proud of how I played.  I am learning that there is a whole lot more than just basketball that goes in to how NBA teams assemble their rosters, but that is the only part I can control and I know I made the most of the opportunity.  I am hopeful that it transforms into something bigger, but right now even more excited to see my fiancée and my brother who is home on leave from the army.  Every once in a while it’s good to put the ball down, but never for too long!

Aaron Craft is a 6-foot-2 point guard from Ohio State. Look for more “NBA Rooks: Diaries …” all season long on the All Ball blog.


VIDEO: Prospect Profile: Ohio State’s Aaron Craft

Throwback Thursday: Summer League Superstars


VIDEO: Relive Blake Griffin’s NBA Summer League debut in 2009

Welcome to Throwback Thursday here on the All Ball Blog. Each week, we’ll delve into the NBA’s photo archives and uncover a topic and some great images from way back when. Hit us up here if you have suggestions for a future TBT on All Ball.

Today’s Topic: Summer League Superstars

The Summer League season is one of the most fun times of the NBA year, with every player on the floor having something to prove. The event has rapidly grown over the past few years and now includes a championship tournament during the action in Las Vegas (which begins tomorrow on NBA TV).

This Throwback Thursday we look back at some of the best players to ever play in the Summer League.

(NOTE: Click the “caption” icon below the photo for details about each moment.)


Gallery: TBT: Summer League Superstars

Which of these players do you think has changed the most since Summer League? Leave your comments below!