Warriors Summer League Takeaways

The first two weeks of July gave Dub Nation their first look at their three 2019 draft selections, as well as an extended peek at former rookie Jacob Evans as a point guard, not to mention the dozens of others competing for a pro contract. Overall, the summer Dubs went 3-5 in Sacramento’s California Classic (0-3) and NBA Summer League (3-2) in Las Vegas. And even though the Warriors went 3-1 to start the NBA Summer League, tie-breakers placed the Dubs 10th overall and left them out of the eight-team tournament that resulted in the Grizzlies’ Summer League Championship victory on Monday night.

For the Dubs, the end results were not as important as the development of the young talent and ensuring the Warriors find the right fit, according to Director of Player Personnel Larry Harris.

“This is just tying to see what the rookies — and in Jacob [Evans] — is where we are going to be able to slot them in,” Harris said. “What minutes and what positions do they think they can help us?… The guys that are on our roster for Summer League [are] guys who are probably going to be spot minutes. So these games [were] very important to establish what we want from them and what they should expect come training camp,” Harris said.

So what did we see from the Dubs?

Jordan Poole: The 28th overall pick of the 2019 NBA Draft got hot in Vegas, bouncing back from a cold-shooting start to the summer to post back-to-back games of 20-plus points, showing he could adapt to the level of talent quickly and find multiple ways to score. Poole averaged just over 14 points per game, along with two steals per game over his final four games thanks to extra activity on defense and solid awareness when covering the passing lanes.

Eric Paschall: Though his summer was cut short due to a nagging injury sustained in the Dubs’ first game in Las Vegas, Paschall provided an impact on both sides of the court in his three games. With his size, strength and athleticism, Paschall had a knack to create his own shot with drives to the rim. He shot 55 percent for the summer and his 18 points in the second game of the California Classic led all Dubs scorers.

Alen Smailagić: The youngest Dub displayed extreme tenacity when working in and around the hoop. Smailagić had several emphatic dunks and finishes after finding his way to the bucket against opponents, while also fighting for any rebound that came his way. The center also displayed confidence in his three-point shot, making four treys over seven games. But perhaps the 18-year-old’s most attractive skill stemmed from his hunger and willingness to compete.

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Jacob Evans: After splitting time between Golden State and Santa Cruz last year as a combo guard, the soon-to-be second-year Dub got extended playing time at point guard. He responded by averaging 16.3 points, 5.8 rebounds and 4.8 assists while contributing 0.8 steals and 1.0 blocks per game. Evans was confident in running the offense and gelled well in the backcourt with Poole, who said in an on-court interview that they “gained a connection and chemistry that is absolutely amazing.”

Other Observations:

  • Santa Cruz Warriors Head Coach Aaron Miles led the summer Dubs and put a clear emphasis on defense this summer. This was on full display in their fourth quarter comeback against the Nuggets last Wednesday when they held Denver to just seven points in the final 10 minutes, as well as Friday’s consolation game against the Lakers when the Dubs ran a full-court press with every Los Angeles inbounds play and limited them to 33 points in the first half.

  • Juan Toscano-Anderson, who played under Coach Miles at Santa Cruz last season, had a productive summer, averaging 6.3 points, 3.7 rebounds, 1.0 steals, and 1.0 blocks (including a 10-point, 5-rebound, 4-steal, 3-block night against Denver) continuing his M.O. with the Sea Dubs: play hard and do a little bit of everything.

  • Veteran forward Travis Wear, who has played for the Knicks and Lakers during his professional career, was one of just four Summer Dubs, along with Toscano-Anderson, Smailagic, and Brandon Sampson, to play seven of eight total games. He earned 21 minutes per game in Las Vegas where he averaged 8.6 points and 5.6 rebounds.

  • Kevin McClain caught fire in the Dubs’ Summer Finale against the Lakers. Though he had only logged six minutes of game action prior to Friday’s game, he came out and led all scorers with 24 points, including 5-of-10 from beyond the arc, to go with four steals.

  • Now with Summer League in the books, the rough part of the NBA calendar has arrived... waiting. We’re more than two full months from the start of training camp, giving the young Dubs some time to build upon the impressions they left with their play in this year’s summer leagues.

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