Like many rookies, the Hornets’ James Bouknight has been up and down at Summer League. He had 19 points on 7-of-14 shooting against Portland, but struggled against Sacramento with 4-of-11 shooting and five turnovers.
After that rough performance, Bouknight got a call from the Hornets’ owner — one Michael Jordan. And Jordan was calling with tips. Via Alex Kennedy of BasketballNews.com.
After struggling in second summer-league game, James Bouknight got a call from Michael Jordan.@jam3s210: “He critiqued my game, told me what he saw. Not many 20-year-olds fresh in the league can say the best player to ever pick up a basketball is calling to give them pointers.”
— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) August 12, 2021
The advice must have worked, Bouknight scored 23 points with eight assists in his next game against the Spurs.
Bouknight fell down draft boards to the Hornets at No. 11. The UConn star was an athletic wing who helped his cause with a strong NBA Draft Combine, but the question of his shooting remains — he is shooting 25% from 3 at Summer League. He’s also had issues with turnovers.
That’s part of what Summer League should be: A chance to see where a rookie is on the development scale and what areas need focus. Every team is making notes about the Summer League players who will end up on their roster, and player development coaches will step in with a plan.
But not every team has Michael Jordan making calls with tips, too.