Through three games in the Las Vegas Summer League, the 19-year-old Smith is averaging 18 points on 47 percent shooting while adding five assists per game. In his first matchup, he wowed the Thomas & Mack Center crowd with his pregame dunks. The following day, he dropped 25 points on the Suns. In Game 3, he stuck a dagger three-pointer into the hearts of the Miami Heat.
After Smith was selected on draft night, Carlisle said he expected him to be the team’s opening day starting point guard. Whatever you’ve heard about Carlisle’s reputation for favoring veterans over rookies, set it aside.
“He’s a kid who’s gotta be out there,” Carlisle says. “I’ve projected him as a starter, and so far, I’m not coming off of that.”
There are no illusions that NBA players or coaches will participate in the November or February qualifiers. USA Basketball hired Jeff Van Gundy to coach those teams and revealed that G League players, American college players, and Americans playing abroad will be tapped.
The G League, formerly the NBA D-League, typically tips off in late November. It remains to be seen whether that will be moved up to earlier in November with a schedule break for qualifiers, or moved back to December. There is also understandable skepticism that high-end college players will skip NCAA preseason in November and the end of the conference season in February to participate.
Will NBA stars play in qualifiers on the final days of June and first days of July? The stars who just wrapped up their playoff runs won’t. The stars who face free agency certainly won’t. Odds Cheap Jerseys are the players (and coaches) who run the team during this summer’s low-profile AmeriCup Cheap Ireland Football Jerseys and the in-season qualifiers will continue to do so next summer.