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Cameron Reynolds Has A Future In The NBA
As we recap the 2018-19 Timberwolves season, our Kyle Ratke and Julian Andrews will be taking a look at each player on the roster and how we'll remember their season. We continue with wing Cameron Reynolds.
KR: Most players who sign 10-day contracts at the end of the season are underwhelming.
That was quite the opposite for Timberwolves rookie wing Cameron Reynolds. After signing as a mostly unknown G League player with the Stockton Kings, Reynolds showed many signs of being an NBA caliber player in his 19 games with the Wolves.
The lefty has the size (6’8) to play multiple positions, which is what today’s NBA is all about. It takes 10 minutes of watching the playoffs to realize that.
Reynolds is so incredibly smooth that it’s hard not to imagine him contributing in the NBA for the foreseeable future.
Reynolds averaged 13.2 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.8 assists per 36 minutes. Nothing wild, but the fact that he shot 41.2 percent from the 3-point line is the exclamation point on Reynolds’ skillset. Reynolds is a player who isn’t afraid to let it fly (and with his stroke, he shouldn’t be), he can also finish at the rim and is a willing passer.
It didn’t take long to watch Reynolds play to realize he’s going to be in this league for at least a little while. He’s interested in making winning plays, which is sometimes half the battle in the NBA.
It is hard to judge players late in the season. Some teams are trying. Some teams aren’t. Some teams are making a push for the playoffs, while others are trying to rest. But with Reynolds, it’s pretty clear to see his role on this team moving forward as a versatile 3-and-D wing who can guard multiple positions.
There’s a reason why the Timberwolves signed Reynolds to two 10-day contracts before signing him outright. He’s a culture fit and a player that GM Scott Layden and Interim Head Coach Ryan Saunders were high on from the beginning. How he’ll fit in with this team in 2019-20 has yet to be seen but given the stretch we saw from him to end last season, I’d imagine he’ll be contributing somehow.
JA: Reynold’s late-season success is a perfect illustration of the value of the G-League. Reynolds wasn’t drafted but worked his way into a contract and a chance at an NBA future with the Wolves. While the draft is a dramatic event and captures the imagination in many ways, it isn’t the end-all-be-all of player evaluation—often players don’t put things together when they’re 18 or 19 years old (shocker, I know). That a player like Reynolds can work himself through the NBA’s developmental system into a career is a testament both to Reynolds and to the system that produced him.
It’s also a testament to the Wolves that they used this system how it was meant to be used—to find talent that hasn’t found a place. If Reynolds can continue to develop, he fits very well with the Wolves. He’s long, athletic, a growing defender and a good shooter. He won’t be a star, but he could be important nonetheless.
Going forward, Reynolds needs to continue to develop his 3-point shooting and expand his game around the rim. He showed flashes of ability using his athleticism to finish at the hoop but he needs to grow as a ball handler and distributor to really take advantage of all the space his shooting—or the threat of his shooting—could open up.
Reynolds is the ultimate team player. He’s competitive and wants to play as much as possible but he’s the ideal “star in your role” guy. That type of attitude often leads to NBA success and after seeing his work pay off this year there’s little doubt that Reynolds will enter the offseason ready to work. It will be fun to see him come back into camp next year and battle for a spot with a full NBA offseason under his belt. Nothing is certain, but I certainly wouldn’t bet against him.