2023 NBA Summer League: 5 players who stood out

Cam Whitmore NBA Summer League
Houston Rockets’ Cam Whitmore dunks against the Detroit Pistons during the first half of an NBA summer league basketball game Sunday, July 9, 2023, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

The 2023 NBA Summer League has come to an end as the Cleveland Cavaliers took home the NBA 2K24 Summer League title Monday night, beating the Houston Rockets 99-78.

There were many players that caught the attention of the NBA and fans, but there were five players who noticeably stood out to us:

Lestor Quinones

Standing at 6-foot-4, Lestor Quinones of the Golden State Warriors put up impressive numbers and showed different ways of scoring the ball efficiently. Quinones’ confident shot selection led him to average 21.6 points on 42.6% shooting from the field and 35.5% from the perimeter. He showed his athleticism by utilizing his quickness to beat defenders to the paint and score at the rim. In addition, the Memphis product also found ways of leading teammates to score with an average of 4.4 assists. Many fans have even talked about Quinones being a potential replacement for Jordan Poole, who was recently traded to the Washington Wizards.


Isaiah Mobley

Isaiah Mobley
Cleveland Cavaliers’ Isaiah Mobley, center, shoots against Houston Rockets’ Darius Days, left, and Nate Hinton during the first half of a NBA summer league championship basketball game Monday, July 17, 2023, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

Cleveland Cavaliers power forward Isaiah Mobley, who won the Summer League championship game MVP, showcased his impact on the court. In the title game, he put up 28 points, 11 rebounds, and three assists. The 6-foot-10 forward averaged 17.8 points on 49% shooting and averaged 8.3 rebounds throughout the tournament. Mobley used his size and frame to his advantage by attacking the rim and getting comfortable in the paint to finish. In addition, he used his strength to create space and showed patience to look for a good shot. 


Jabari Smith Jr.

Houston Rockets forward Jabari Smtih Jr. played in only two games but showed how much of an efficient scorer he was. In two games, the 6-foot-11 forward averaged 35.5 points on 48.8% shooting, including a game-winner against the Blazers. Smith Jr. showed he was able to score from fadeaways and found open lanes for posting up a defender. With his frame, he was also able to take long strides and embrace contact while finishing around the rim. Defensively, he was able to box out and use his size to his advantage, averaging eight rebounds. When it came down to playmaking, Smith Jr was successful in that aspect as he averaged four assists throughout the tournament.


Keyonte George

Keyonte George
Utah Jazz guard Keyonte George brings the ball up during the second half of the team’s NBA summer league basketball game against the Memphis Grizzlies on Thursday, July 6, 2023, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Keyonte George of the Utah Jazz in his six games averaged 18.6 points on 45.7% shooting and shot 38.6% from three-point range. George’s shot selection paired with his efficient shooting proved to be dominant. He showed he was a consistent spot-up shooter by moving off the ball to find himself open all around the court. In addition, George had solid handles that allowed him to size defenders up and shoot off the dribble. Playmaking-wise, George spread the ball effectively around the court averaging 5.3 assists, finding teammates whether they were cutting to the paint or if they were open in the midrange or perimeter. He will definitely provide great contributions to the Jazz as he works his way into the rotation during the 2023-24 season.


Cam Whitmore

Summer League MVP, Cam Whitmore, proved people wrong with his Summer League performance after dropping from his expected No. 8 draft spot to No. 20 due to his poor workouts and his interviews. Whitmore’s defense was one of the main aspects that caught the attention of the spotlight. The 6-foot-7 forward averaged 2.5 steals where he anticipated the opposing team’s offense and put constant pressure while on defense. Whitmore had great athleticism as he finished strong around the rim and also showed a good change of speed and direction going down the court to find himself open lanes to attack the paint. In addition, his shooting proved to be effective as he averaged 19.3 points on 44.7% from the field. His performance and presence on the court gave solid reasoning as to why he was named Summer League MVP.

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