Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was disappointed in his play last season

3 Comments

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist had an okay rookie season — he averaged 9 points and 5.8 rebounds a game but his shot from outside five feet was a disaster (29.6 percent from the midrange and he just doesn’t shoot threes, nor should he). He had the ugliest jump shot in the NBA. He  brings the intangibles of defense and effort, he has a good basketball IQ, but he was a No. 2 pick who lacked the handles to create his own shot or the jumper to knock down the looks he had.

Given the expectations, it was disappointing. I’d hoped when I saw him at Summer League there would be improvement in those areas, but not so much.

It’s not just me or Bobcats fans that were disappointed, MKG himself was, he told the Charlotte Observer.

“I was disappointed in myself,” Kidd-Gilchrist said at media day, on the eve of training camp Tuesday morning at UNC Asheville. “It wasn’t the losses. I like all my teammates and we bonded a lot. I was mad at myself. I set goals and I didn’t reach any of the goals that I set. All my life I did that and last year I didn’t reach one goal.’’

Asked for specifics, Kidd-Gilchrist said he set out to be rookie of the year and failed. He set out to make first-team all-rookie, and failed.

Say this for MKG, he is motivated. He wants to get better, and that’s step one. At Summer League, another writer used the Kawhi Leonard comparison — he defends, he hustles and once he fixed his shot everything came together for him. Kidd-Gilchrist is working currently on overhauling his jump shot with Bobcats coach Mark Price.

He’s just 19, there is a lot of time to fix what needs work. If we start to see that improvement this season that disappointment everyone senses will fade away fast.

But he’s got a long way to go, based on what we saw in July.

Lakers blow 5-on-1 fastbreak (video)

Leave a comment

Corey Brewer is better at finishing fastbreaks than leading them.

Nice defense by Emmanuel Mudiay, too.

But at least the Lakers won.

Did Reggie Jackson distract Jimmy Butler into missing game-tying free throw? (video)

Leave a comment

With the Timberwolves trailing the Pistons by three and 6.2 seconds left, Jimmy Butler drew a foul on a 3-pointer.

Butler made the first two free throws then, just before he got the ball for the third, Reggie Jackson interrupted to talk to Stanley Johnson, who was in rebounding position. Butler missed the free throw, and Detroit won 100-97 after an intentional foul.

Butler said Jackson didn’t affect him, but Butler’s side eye during the delay at least appeared to speak loudly.

Bulls’ Kris Dunn dunks on T.J. Warren after savvy/explosive halfcourt drive (video)

Leave a comment

Kris Dunn had a nice weekend – 39 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds as the Bulls beat the Hornets and lost to the Suns – punctuated by this dunk in Chicago’s 113-105 loss to the Suns last night.

T.J. Warren paid the price for Tyler Ulis overplaying a Robin Lopez screen Dunn cleverly never used.

Orlando Magic will no longer host summer league

Getty Images
1 Comment

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — The Orlando Magic has decided to end their annual summer league.

Magic president of basketball operations Jeff Weltman said Sunday the trend of NBA teams playing in the Las Vegas Summer League led to the decision end Orlando Pro Summer League. Orlando’s Summer League, which showcased rookies and young players, began in 2002.

Las Vegas will host all 30 teams for the summer league beginning in the summer of 2018. The Orlando Pro Summer League began as a 10-team tournament but there were just eight participating teams this past summer.

The summer league in Orlando, which is played in the Magic’s practice gym, was the only one of three summer leagues that did not allow fans to come in to watch.