WELCOME TO 2017 NBA SUMMER LEAGUE! We get DAYTIME BASKETBALL for nearly three straight weeks, and there ain’t nothing wrong with that.
There are three Summer Leagues this year: Orlando (July 1-6), Utah (July 3-6), and Las Vegas (July 7-17), but for now, we’re only focused on the eight team Orlando league. Two former Marquette Golden Eagles will be playing in that setup: Henry Ellenson with the Detroit Pistons and Dwight Buycks with the Dallas Mavericks.
Ellenson will clearly get a featured role with the Pistons in Orlando as Detroit looks to get the Rice Lake native minutes against something resembling quality competition. Ellenson appeared in just 19 games for Detroit during his rookie season, averaging 3.2 minutes and 2.2 rebounds in 7.7 minutes per game. He played (relatively) heavy minutes in Detroit’s final four games of the season, averaging 9.8 points, 7.3 rebounds, and 0.8 assists. He also appeared in 21 games for the Grand Rapids Drive, Detroit’s G-League team, and was clearly dominant at that level. Ellenson averaged 17.9 points, 8.9 rebounds, and 1.3 assists for Grand Rapids.
Dwight Buycks should get a chance to shine for Dallas. Cat Barber, the former North Carolina State standout, and Brandon Paul, formerly of Illinois Fighting Illini, are the only other guards on the roster of note, and Dallas didn’t bring Buycks in at this point of his career to not see what he can do. Buycks has appeared in 20 NBA games in his career, but none since April of 2015.
There are no Marquette guys set to play in the four team Utah League, so we’ll have to wait a little bit before being able to confirm who is and is not playing in the 24 team Vegas League. It is worth noting that Dallas is fielding a team in Orlando and in Las Vegas, but the expectation is that the roster will change in between the two. It’s possible that Buycks could end up with an offer to go play in Vegas for the Mavericks, but we’ll have to wait and see. If he does end up going to Vegas, Buycks may end up missing Golden Eagles’ first two games in The Basketball Tournament, which are on the same days as the quarterfinals and semifinals of the Summer League tournament.
Here’s the Marquette related schedule for Orlando, with all times listed as Central and all games televised on NBA TV:
Saturday, July 1
2pm: Dallas vs New York
4pm: Detroit vs Oklahoma City
Sunday, July 2
12pm: Detroit vs New York
Monday, July 3
2pm: Dallas vs Orlando
Tuesday, July 4
12pm: Detroit vs Miami
2pm: Dallas vs Indiana
Wednesday, July 5
12pm: Dallas vs Oklahoma City
2pm: Detroit vs Charlotte
Thursday, July 6 (Championship Day)
7am-3pm Yet To Be Scheduled Quadruple Header