Breaking Down The Wolves' Summer League Roster



Breaking Down The Wolves' Summer League Roster




Mark Remme
Wolves Editor/Writer

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This year’s Summer League roster certainly has some names you already know and are ready to follow. In order to get acquainted with the rest of the squad, here’s a rundown of all 15 players scheduled to make the trip to Las Vegas for this year’s event.

Marqus Blakely (G/F San Mig Coffee-Philippines)

Hailing from the University of Vermont, Marqus Blakely was an efficient scorer from inside the arc during his four years with the Catamounts. He averaged 19.0 points per game as a sophomore, 16.1 as a junior and 17.3 as a senior while shooting 57.1 percent from the field during his collegiate career. He averaged 11.5 points per game in Germany last season before moving on to the Philippines, and between last year and his senior year in 2010 he made stops in the D-League as well as Training Camps with the Houston Rockets and Los Angeles Clippers. He’s an athletic high flier that has produced highlight-reel dunks during his career—he won the 2010 State Farm Division I College Basketball Slam Dunk Contest while still at Vermont.

Lorenzo Brown (G North Carolina State)

Wolves President of Basketball Operations Flip Saunders called Lorenzo Brown a first round talent on Draft night. In some ways it seemed as though the Wolves were surprised Brown was still available at the 52nd pick, and they liked him so much as a value pick that they took him despite currently having a logjam at point guard on the current roster. Brown is 6-foot-5 and made the transition from shooting guard to point guard at NC State between his freshman and sophomore years. He flourished in that role, averaging more than 12 points per game in each of his last two seasons in Raleigh while collecting 7.2 assists per game last season and shooting 42.9 percent for his college career. He has size, seems to be able to distribute to his teammates and run the fast break. If he has a strong showing in Vegas, he could be vying for a backup role on the Wolves’ squad this fall.

Kee Kee Clark (G Umana Venezia Reyer-Italy)

Kee Kee Clark made a name for himself at St. Peter’s from 2002-06 as a scorer. The 5-foot-9 point guard led the NCAA Division I ranks in scoring during the 2003-04 season, and since 1997-98 he still has the most points scored during his NCAA career with 3,058 (UNC’s Tyler Hansbrough is second at 2,872 and Duke’s J.J. Redick is third at 2,769). He averaged 25.9 points per game in his four years at St. Peter’s. Since then, Clark has played overseas in both Greece and Italy. Last year while playing for Umana, the point guard scored 14.2 points per game, hit 54.7 percent of his shots inside the arc and averaged 2.6 assists and 1.1 steals.


Gorgui Dieng (C Louisville)

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Gorgui Dieng left Louisville after his junior year as a national champion and one of the top defensive bigs in college basketball. He was the Big East Defensive Player of the Year ago, using his 7-foot-4 wingspan to collect 2.5 blocks per game. He also averaged 9.8 points and 9.4 boards in 31.1 minutes per game, shot 53.4 percent from the field and right around 66 percent at the rim. Off the court, Dieng has a fascinating story. He began playing basketball six years ago in his native Senegal and quickly showcased enough talent to merit a spot on an elite NCAA basketball program’s roster. He speaks five languages, and in his brief time around the Wolves organization you can tell he not only is a very thoughtful individual but also a guy who is grateful for the opportunity to play and be successful in the league. With Greg Stiemsma’s departure, the Wolves are banking on Dieng to become a serviceable backup center that can protect the rim this year. His trip to Summer League is his first test in that department at the professional level.

John Holland (G Cajasol-Spain)

John Holland is a 6-foot-5 swingman who played collegiately at Boston University before spending the past two seasons in European leagues. He averaged 17.1 points per game during his four years at BU and shot 43.4 percent from the field while averaging 5.6 rebounds per game. He twice led the America East Conference in field goals and points, and he also led his conference in player efficiency rating during the 2010-11 season. Last year in Spain, Holland averaged 10.4 points per game and brought down 2.8 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game. Holland was born in The Bronx but was also a member of the 2011 Puerto Rican national team that competed in the 2011 FIBA Americas Cup.

Robbie Hummel (F Blusens Monbus-Spain)

 

READ/WATCH: Robbie Hummel All Access — Summer League 2012
Hummel was the Wolves’ lone draft pick in 2012 as a late second-round pick. He’s incredibly well known in Minnesota thanks to his collegiate play at Purdue, a stint that included highs of being selected to three All-Big Ten First Team and lows of suffering two ACL tears—each time in his right knee. Last year, Hummel played in Spain and averaged 10.1 points per game and shot 41.2 percent from 3-point range despite suffering a torn meniscus in his right knee early in the season. Now, he’s back for his second stint on the Wolves’ Summer League roster hoping to earn a spot on the team this winter. Another interesting note about Hummel is he has Minnesota ties. His grandparents are from the Blue Earth area, his family has a cabin on Pelican Lake near Mille Lacs and his great aunt and uncle are longtime residents of Brooklyn Center.

Othyus Jeffers (G Iowa-NBADL)

Othyus Jeffers is a veteran with both NBA and D-League experience. He played in 14 games during the 2009-10 season for the Utah Jazz and spent a total of 17 games with the San Antonio Spurs and Washington Wizards during the 2010-11 season. Since then, the 6-foot-5 shooting guard has spent time in the D-League with the Iowa Energy. He played in 33 games last year—starting 31—and averaged 14.7 points, 5.4 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game on 48.6 percent shooting. He played for the University of Illinois-Chicago and Robert Morris in Illinois, finishing the 2007-08 season averaging 21.5 points per game on 60.2 percent shooting for Robert Morris.


Chris Johnson (F Wolves)

 

READ/WATCH: Johnson's impact on Wolves in 2012-13

Chris Johnson worked his way onto the Wolves’ roster through a pair of 10-day contracts before getting the guarantee for the rest of the 2012-13 season, and in the process he became a fan favorite. Johnson is a hard worker—a guy who can block shots, run the floor and finish flashy alley-oop jams. He heard “MVP” chants from Wolves fans in his first game with the team in January because of those traits. But Johnson, at 6-foot-11, lacked the weight and strength to play consistent defense in the post or fight his way into help defense position. He planned to work on his strength this summer, and we’ll see how that translates into his role on the Wolves’ Summer League roster. But Minnesota did have him at last year’s Training Camp, and after being cut he did the necessary work in the D-League to stay on the Wolves’ radar when injuries opened up a roster spot. He’s got the desire and work ethic—now we’ll see how his game is progressing.

Phil Jones (C Los Angeles-NBADL)

Phil Jones spent the 2012-13 Training Camp with the Wolves before getting cut in mid-October. He then spent 11 games with the L.A. D-Fenders, averaging 2.5 points and 1.6 rebounds per game in nine minutes of work per night last season. Prior to last year’s Training Camp, the 6-foot-10 center/forward played overseas for two years in Uruguay, Brussels and Romania. He played collegiately at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, averaging 7.5 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.9 blocks per game during his senior year in 2010-11.

Solomon Jones (F Liaoning-China)

Solomon Jones was a second round draft pick by the Atlanta Hawks in 2006 after playing collegiately at South Florida. He’s spent parts of the past seven seasons in the NBA with the Hawks, Pacers , Clippers, Hornets and Knicks, with his most recent stint being two games in 2012-13 in New York. He averages 3.1 points, 2.4 rebounds and 0.6 blocks per game at the NBA level. In China last year, he averaged 15.8 points and 10.4 rebounds per game while blocking 1.9 shots per night.

Demetri McCamey (G Fort Wayne-NBADL)

McCamey spent four years at the University of Illinois—overlapping with Brandon Paul, who is also on the Wolves’ summer league roster, for two years. He averaged 12.4 points per game during his four years in Champaign and was an All-Big Ten First Team selection in 2010. He also led the Big Ten in assists with 7.1 per game in 2010. The 6-foot-3, 200-pound guard played the 2011-12 season overseas before coming back and spending Summer League 2012 with the Bulls. He played the 2012-13 season with both the Rio Grande Valley Vipers and the Erie Bayhawks before signing in March with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants. He averaged 5.5 points, 2.0 assists and shot 34.5 percent from the field during his lone season in the D-League.




Shabazz Muhammad (F UCLA)

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Shabazz Muhammad is perhaps the most recognizable and most intriguing name on this roster based on hometown interest and national attention. He’s a scorer with a sweet shooting stroke and the size to maneuver his way to the basket, draw contact and get to the line. At 6-foot-6 and 225 pounds, he’s got the size to compete at either the 2 or the 3, and opposing coaches in the Pac-12 last year admitted he’s a handful to prepare for because of his scoring ability. As one of the top recruits heading into his freshman year at UCLA, he handled his share of personal adversity and is entering the NBA with a clean slate and a chance to showcase right away the type of talent he can bring to this Timberwolves’ roster this winter as a rotation wing player. Summer League is located in his hometown of Las Vegas, so he’ll need to find the balance between personal time and business during this trip—which is a good opportunity as he begins his NBA career.

Brandon Paul (G Illinois)


Brandon Paul came through Minnesota twice during the Draft workouts, once participating in the league-wide sessions in late May then came a second time to work out exclusively for the Wolves. In those two sessions, it was clear Paul is a character guy who gives a locker room a good teammate. And on the court, he gives them a pretty reliable player. Paul steadily increased his scoring during his four years with Illinois, capping off his senior year with 16.6 points per game as a senior. He can also hit shots in big moments, as Minnesota fans might remember from the Big Ten Tournament last March. Paul hit a game-winning buzzer-beater to send the Gophers home. Paul was a pretty effective rebounder in college for a guard, averaging 4.7 per game as a junior and 4.4 as a senior. He also shot a career-high 40.1 percent from the field in his final year with the Illini.

Ryan Rossiter (F Canton-NBADL)

Ryan Rossiter was a late addition to the Summer League roster. He played for the NBADL's Canton Charge in 2012-13, averaging 6.0 points and 4.1 rebounds in 43 games (16 starts). In three playoff games (all starts), he averaged 12.3 points and 7.0 rebounds. Rossiter played for Denain ASC Voltaire of the French LNB Pro B in 2011-12, averaging 13.8 points and 9.7 rebounds. He played four years at Siena averaging 11.0 points, 8.6 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in 133 games. As a senior in 2010-11, Rossiter averaged 18.7 points, 13.2 rebounds and 1.3 blocks and was named MAAC Player of the Year. He was named to the All-MAAC First Team in 2010 and 2011.

Luke Sikma (F Autocid Ford Burgos-Spain)

Luke Sikma makes his second trip to Summer League with the Wolves this year after playing a season in Spain. He averaged 10.2 points and shot 60.1 percent from the field while grabbing 8.1 boards per game—2.8 on the offensive glass. At 6-foot-8 and 235 pounds, Sikma is a big undersized for the power forward position but makes up for it with great hustle and positioning. He worked his way into the lineup during last year’s Summer League through that work ethic, and he’s likely to have that type of impact again this time around. On a personal level, Sikma is the son of Wolves assistant coach, Jack Sikma, and the two had the opportunity to work together last summer as a player/coach at the professional basketball level.

Mychel Thompson (F Sioux Falls-NBADL)

Minnesotans are familiar with Mychal Thompson through his incredibly successful Gophers career that landed him as the No. 1 overall NBA Draft pick in 1978. He eventually became a two-time NBA champion with the Showtime Lakers in 1987 and 1988. Wolves fans are also pretty familiar with Klay Thompson, who teamed with Stephen Curry to provide one of the most dynamic 3-point shooting back courts in league history. Now let’s get to know Mychel Thompson, Klay’s older brother, a little bit better. Thompson played at Pepperdine, had a stint with the Cavaliers in 2011-12 and spent the 2012-13 season in the D-League. Thompson averaged 11.8 points a night during 36 games with the Skyforce, shooting 39.6 percent from the floor. Unlike his younger brother, who is known for his 3-point shooting, Mychel is more apt to get to the rim.

 

WOLVES 2013 SUMMER LEAGUE ROSTER
No. Player Position Height Weight Birthdate Prior to NBA/Home Country NBA Exp.
22 Marqus Blakely G/F 6-5 225 10/22/88 San Mig Coffee (Philippines)/USA R
4 Lorenzo Brown G 6-5 186 8/26/90 North Carolina State/USA R
8 Kee Kee Clark G 5-11 185 10/08/84 Umana Venezia Reyer (Italy)/USA R
5 Gorgui Dieng C 6-11 245 1/18/90 Louisville/Senegal R
23 John Holland G 6-5 205 11/06/88 Cajasol (Spain)/USA R
6 Robbie Hummel F 6-8 215 3/08/89 Blusens Monbus (Spain)/USA R
12 Othyus Jeffers G 6-5 200 8/05/85 Iowa (NBADL)/USA 2
3 Chris Johnson F 6-11 210 7/15/85 LSU/USA 3
40 Phil Jones C 6-10 255 9/02/85 Los Angeles (NBADL)/USA R
44 Solomon Jones F 6-10 245 7/16/84 Liaoning (China)/USA 7
30 Demetri McCamey G 6-3 200 2/21/89 Fort Wayne (NBADL)/USA R
15 Shabazz Muhammad F 6-6 225 11/13/92 UCLA/USA R
33 Brandon Paul G 6-4 200 4/30/91 Illinois/USA R
43 Luke Sikma F 6-8 235 7/30/89 Autocid Ford Burgos (Spain)/USA R
24 Mychel Thompson F 6-7 215 6/01/88 Sioux Falls (NBADL)/USA 1

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