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Duke Basketball Shines at NBA Summer League

Duke alumni had a great showing the last 2 weeks at the NBA Summer League.

First up in Orlando, Luke Kennard averaged 17 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and nearly 1.5 steals per game. He played in 5 games averaging 30 minutes per game. With the news that the Detroit Pistons will not re-sign Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Kennard could see significant playing time next season.

Even though he was waived by the New York Knicks after the Orlando Summer League ended, Marshall Plumlee averaged 24 minutes, 8 points, 6 rebounds, an assist, and a block per game. Plumlee should have suitors looking for a backup center who can give them quality minutes and production.

In the Utah Summer League, Jayson Tatum showed why the Boston Celtics were willing to make him the #1 overall pick before the Philadelphia 76ers made them even offer they couldn’t refuse to move down two spots in the draft. In just three games in Utah, Tatum averaged 33 minutes, 19 pts, 10 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals per game. The Celtics also participated in the Las Vegas Summer League bringing his overall Summer League averages to…

He went on to average 18 points, 8 rebounds, and an assist in the Las Vegas Summer League.

In his only Summer League game this year, Los Angeles Laker Brandon Ingram showed everyone he is ready to take the next step this upcoming season. Ingram wowed the Las Vegas crowed with 26 points, 3 assists, 3 steals, 2 blocks, and a rebound against the Los Angeles Clippers. He was shut down for the remaining Summer League after cramping up at the end of regulation.

Quinn Cook had a great five games for the New Orleans Pelicans. He averaged 21 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists, and a steal in 31 minutes per game. His contract is unguaranteed for next season. They also drafted Frank Jackson and signed Rajan Rondo. It’ll be interesting to see if the team keeps him on the roster.

In other Duke NBA Summer League news…

Amile Jefferson did not see a ton of time this summer. He averaged 11 minutes, 2 points, and 4 rebounds in 5 games for the Minnesota Timberwolves. He more than likely will end up in the NBA G League, but it depends on what defensive head coach Tom Thibodeau decides to do. He could like Amile’s leadership and defensive skillset and keep him around.

Matt Jones played in only 2 games for the Houston Rockets. He averaged 15 minutes, 5 points and 3 rebounds. Like Amile, Matt will more than likely end up in the G League this coming season.

Harry Giles and Frank Jackson did not participate in Summer League. Giles practiced with the team but the Sacramento Kings were being cautious with their first round pick. Jackson is still recovering from surgery.

In one of the more interesting Summer League stories, Ryan Kelly, who was a member of the Atlanta Hawks and traded to the Houston Rockets, was cut by the Rockets. He ended up going back and playing for the Hawks Summer League team. He averaged 20 minutes, 10 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist, and 1 steal per game. He should be able to find a spot in the league as quality vet.