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Carl Berman

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First Thoughts from the Las Vegas 2012 NBA Summer League

Posted: 07/20/2012 11:57 am

After three days of the Las Vegas NBA Summer League we've had a chance to see most of the teams in action. We've seen many of the top rookies as well as some players who look ready to contribute after a year or two of professional experience.

Here are our thoughts after three days of action:

Most of the top picks that are playing here have looked good. Charlotte's Michael Kidd-Gilchrist looked solid in his first game, generating offense off the dribble and in transition attacking the basket. He even made a three-pointer as he scored 18 points and grabbed eight rebounds and had five assists in 21 minutes. Kidd-Gilchrist will be something once he develops a consistent shot.

Portland's Damian Lillard looks like the real deal. He'll likely be the Trail Blazers starting point guard from day one. Lillard scored 25 points in his first game here on 9-for-21 shooting. He looks like a player who will get things done with the ball in his hand. Portland's other first rounder Meyers Leonard looked decent but clearly needs some time to develop. Leonard had 14 points and 11 rebounds bu also committed five turnovers and seven personal fouls.

Bradley Beal has been showcasing his talent for Washington in three games. He's scored over 19 points a game and has been able to get to the foul line with 27 attempts in the three games. He's rebounded fairly well but his long-range shooting still doesn't look that good (3-for-12) so far.

Austin Rivers' first game for New Orleans was disappointing. He shot only 1-for-8 on three's, was called for six fouls and was charged with four turnovers. Rivers needs to shoot well from deep to make an impact. We'll follow him the rest of the time here.

Some players who have looked good include: Atlanta's Keith Benson (19.5 ppg, 6.0 rpg in two games) has the size (6'11") and shooting ability to stay in the league. Charlotte's Jeffery Taylor is active and has turned himself into a good three-point shooter. He'll likely be in Charlotte's rotation. Josh Selby (Memphis) hit 5-of-7 three's in route to 20 points. Terrence Ross (Toronto) has exhibited his athleticism, can score (17.5 ppg) but can improve his shooting. Cory Joseph (San Antonio) looked good at point in the Spurs first game (18 points, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 7-of-11 shooting).

The Golden State Warriors figure to be much improved if they can get a healthy Stephen Curry back. With Curry, Klay Thompson and Harrison Barnes, Golden State will have excellent perimeter scoring. Thompson and Barnes both have been impressive shooting a combined 16-for-20 on three-pointers in two games.

Jeremy Lamb, Terrence Jones and Donatas Motiejunas all look like they will get serious playing time for the Houston Rockets. Lamb is very long and has shown the ability to score anywhere on the court (21.0 ppg). Jones has been solid (16.5/7.0) and both are getting fouled and getting to the line (21 combined FT's). Motiejunas had a great first game (25 points, 9 rebounds) scoring inside and out before coming up empty in game two.

Carl Berman is a Managing Partner of NetScouts Basketball.. NetScouts Basketball can be followed on twitter here.

 

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