The 2K23 NBA Summer League has come to an end, which means the end of NBA betting until the regular season. Talent was displayed league-wide, but a few names, in particular, stuck out.
Here’s a look at the top five performers in the Eastern Conference.
1. Cam Thomas (Nets)
Cam Thomas starts the list off following his unreal Summer League showing. The explosive guard averaged 27.4 points, 1.6 rebounds, and 4.2 assists through five games in Las Vegas.
Shooting an efficient 44.4% from the field, the former LSU standout made a case for himself to earn rotation minutes off of the Nets’ bench. Although the SEC product struggled behind the arc, shooting 27.3% from 3-point range, Thomas has all the tools in his jumper to turn that around.
The Nets’ second-year man looks to make a leap next season, and his outing in Summer League is a step in the right direction.
2. Quentin Grimes (Knicks)
Quentin Grimes is another player who had a great Summer League. Following his lackluster rookie season, the former Houston Cougar showed out.
In five games, the 22-year-old averaged 22.6 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 4.0 assists while shooting 41.4% from the field and 30.9% from behind the 3-point line.
Barring any potential trade, Grimes is in the perfect position to earn key minutes off of the bench for the Knicks. After the trade of Alec Burks, the Knicks need a scoring option off the bench. If Summer League counts for anything, Grimes proved he can play that role well.
3. Sandro Mamukelashvili (Bucks)
Coming in at No. 3 is a name not many knew heading into Summer League, Sandro Mamukelashvili.
The big man spent most of his rookie year on the Bucks’ G-League affiliate, but following his outing in the Summer League, that may not be the case for Year 2.
The 2021 second-round pick averaged 17.0 points, 8.8 rebounds, and 2.4 assists through five games in Las Vegas. The ex-Seton Hall Pirate also showed off his range, shooting 47.6% from 3-point range and 45% overall. The center was rewarded with his play on the court by being named to the 2022 All-Summer League First Team.
Mamukelashvili has the chance to land a guaranteed roster spot for the Bucks.
4. Paolo Banchero (Magic)
It took only two games for the No. 1 overall pick to be shut down to prevent risking injury. Paolo Banchero turned heads with his time in Vegas.
The former Duke Blue Devil averaged 20 points, 5 rebounds, and 6 assists in his two games with the Magic. While shooting 40.7% from the floor and 50% from 3, the 19-year-old showed that he could score at any spot on the court. The 2021 five-star recruit showed his versatility as a big man and why he was the No. 1 overall selection.
5. Bennedict Mathurin (Pacers)
Bennedict Mathurin finally finds himself in the top five after being selected sixth overall by the Indiana Pacers. The Arizona Wildcat product displayed his potential in Las Vegas.
Mathurin’s Summer League experience was cut short due to left big toe soreness, but not before the lottery pick left his mark. In three games with Indiana, he averaged 19.3 points, 4 rebounds, and 1.3 assists on 48.8% shooting and 38.5% from 3-point land.
At only 20 years old, Mathurin has the confidence of a 20-year NBA veteran. Confidence will take young players a long way, and so will talent. Luckily the young guard has plenty of both.
Honorable Mentions: David Duke Jr., Lindell Wigginton, Juhann Begarin, Marko Simonovic, JD Davison
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