LAS VEGAS -- A look at top performers from Day 5 in Las Vegas:
Bryn Forbes, San Antonio Spurs
With Dejounte Murray and No. 1 pick Derrick White sitting out against the Trail Blazers, Forbes had the floor and the flow to himself and made the most of it. Showing a forceful game and strong three-point shooting (six for 11), he scored 35 points with five rebounds and four assists in one of the better performances for the Spurs this summer. Forbes isn’t a lock for a roster spot with the Spurs since his money isn’t guaranteed, and the Spurs are still looking to sign Jonathan Simmons and perhaps Manu Ginobili as well. But the franchise has a way of polishing off diamonds in the rough and Forbes, with back-to-back 35-point games this summer, may qualify.
Donovan Mitchell, Utah Jazz
He’s having a bonanza of a summer, which is refreshing news for a Jazz team that lost Gordon Hayward. Obviously, Mitchell isn’t yet ready to assume that role, but clearly, he’s ready for a spot in the Jazz rotation. Another strong performance brought 37 points and eight (yes) steals against the Grizzlies. Mitchell is quick and shows aggressiveness from the opening tap, the qualities that teams want to see from their No. 1 picks in summer. Utah will have to figure which guard spot he plays; Mitchell appears to be a classic ‘tweener without a true role, but he could demand solid backup minutes this season.
Dillon Brooks, Memphis Grizzlies
Memphis is looking for fresh blood after waving good-bye to Zach Randolph, Vince Carter (and maybe Tony Allen, too) and Brooks is stepping forward as a candidate for the roster and maybe the rotation. He’s having a fine summer and his latest was a 24-point, six-assist effort against Utah. Brooks was a solid scorer at Oregon and at 6-7 has the height and versatility to play both swing positions. Lots will depend on how he continues to progress between now and training camp, and also the quality of competition when the Grizzlies decide who fits where in this, the first year without the traditional Grit ’N Grind.
Yogi Ferrell and Dennis Smith Jr., Dallas Mavericks
The point guards combined for 39 points against the Miami Heat and summer league is setting the stage for what will be an interesting training camp for the Mavericks. Ferrell was the mid-season surprise for Dallas in 2017, coming from nowhere to make Deron Williams expendable (Dallas bought him out) and carve out important minutes the last few months. However, the Mavericks used their lottery pick on Smith and he’s had a very encouraging summer. The starting point guard spot remains influx and if you add Seth Curry (who may be better suited at two-guard), it looks to be quite the competition for minutes this upcoming season.
Patrick McCaw, Golden State Warriors
Just a month ago McCaw was getting minutes in the NBA Finals and even had moments in the title-clinching game for the Warriors. So clearly, his stock was rather thick for the summer league, and it has showed in Vegas. McCaw had 20 points against the Timberwolves and this of course must thrill the Warriors, knowing that their young swingman should continue to get decent minutes in the rotation. The Warriors must make a financial decision on McCaw next summer when he becomes a restricted free agent, a potentially tough situation for a team that could pay a record amount in salaries and luxury taxes. But this summer, McCaw is building a case for himself.
The views on this page do not necessarily reflect the views of the NBA, its clubs or Turner Broadcasting.