After averaging 25 points on 47% shooting, 7.8 rebounds, and 2.5 steals per game, the Washington Wizards’ Glen Rice Jr. has been named MVP of the Las Vegas Summer League, according to an official release by the NBA.
Additionally, the NBA also named two all-LVSL teams.
Glen Rice, Jr. of the Washington Wizards was unanimously named Most Valuable Player of the Samsung NBA Summer League 2014, while nine additional standout players highlight the Samsung All-NBA Summer League First and Second teams, as selected by a panel of media members.
Rice, Jr. is joined on the Samsung All-NBA Summer League First Team by Wizards teammate Otto Porter, along with Chicago Bulls Doug McDermott and Tony Snell and Donatas Motiejunas of the Houston Rockets.
Rudy Gobert (Utah Jazz), Tim Hardaway, Jr. (New York Knicks), Jordan McRae (Philadelphia 76ers), Russ Smith (New Orleans Pelicans) and T.J. Warren (Phoenix Suns) make up the Samsung All-NBA Summer League Second Team.
Keeping in mind that the NBA’s criteria for best player at Summer League is different from the sheer talent evaluation standpoint that we like to discuss, these choices seem to be solid. The biggest thing that stands out to me is the presence of four rookies, including two second round picks, in a league that is typically dominated by older, more comfortable players.
Rice was a scoring machine in Las Vegas this year, and he looks ready to potentially step into some backup minutes behind Bradley Beal this season. Part of this is obviously Rice getting hot for ten days and shooting 44.4% from behind the three point arc, but he looked much more assertive generally than he did in any minutes for either the Wizards or Iowa last season.
As far as the other second-year players listed, Porter, Gobert, and Snell were the three other big standouts to me. Gobert looked much more fluid, causing all sorts of problems at the rim for opposing offenses. Snell looked to have truly improved his ancillary skills, such as his ball-handling and defensive intensity. Finally, I’ve written at length about Porter’s summer league development, and think he continued to improve from that first game.
As far as the rookies go, Smith looked entirely comfortable in this setting, making plays for both others and himself. Also, McRae looks like he’s going to play legitimate minutes on the Sixers’ semi-barren roster.
But ultimately, this was Rice’s week. His next step is proving that he’s simply not a “AAAA” type of player that dominates inferior talent, but can’t hack it against superior competition. This type of setting is great for Rice. The true test will be this coming season for the second-generation prospect.