NBA Summer League Rundown - July 6th

While the predictable NBA season is over, the fantasy basketball season never stops. Draftkings pulled off the incredible and introduced NBA Summer League DFS.

Your first thought might be that anyone who bets on the Summer League needs serious help, but actually if you put the time in, it can be far more profitable than the regular season.

While many of us have preconceived notions about the guys we think we know of, keep in mind that role’s in summer league change drastically, and the end of the bench guys in the NBA often have the ability to take over one of these games.

As an avid basketball fan, I keep up with the Euroleague, G League and Summer League every year as well as some familiar names playing overseas. You would be wise to follow my advice as it is very feel based, with stats to back it up.

There are plenty of players to watch and target on this 10 game slate and I am going to walk you guys through it!

Point Guards:

Collin Sexton – (8,500) Sexton is going to have free reigns to do whatever he wants in this summer league. At times it might be Trae Young-esque (Hard on the eyes), but at the end of the day, Cavaliers Alphas typically do whatever they want in the summer league. Kay Felder took over 17 shots per game despite shooting a woeful 31% last year in Summer League, while posting a usage rate above 30%. Jordan McRae had a 36% usage rate two years ago, and now it’s Collin Sexton turn to do whatever he wants. Sexton admittedly has a flat and ugly jump shot, but he is going to have the green light to shoot through it all game long. Expect heavy minutes and usage, and if his shot is falling, he could be the must have of the slate. That said, there is a good chance the shot won’t be falling so temper expectations here that Sexton will win you a GPP alone at his price tag. Sexton fits the Donovan Mitchell, Eric Bledsoe and Jordan Clarkson mold of athletic shoot first guards who can get to the free throw line and slash in the lane. Look for Sexton to post a line something along the lines of 18-4-4-2 with upside for more.

Kendrick Nunn – (6,400) Kendrick Nunn is a name you probably never heard of, but Kendrick is a guy who is not scared to shoot. Golden State is the only team playing today that played in the Utah or Sacramento Summer League, and therefore we have a sample on Nunn, who rested yesterday to gear up for this tourney. The matchup is less than ideal, but his price and volume will make up for it. Nunn averaged over 25 points per game at Oakland last year, while hoisting over 11 threes a night, and Nunn has had a similar leash in this tournament. With Josh Magette playing last game, there is a good chance that Nunn will be the primary ball handler for his team and he has already posted a 27% usage rate with 14 ppg and 8 rebounds per game. The only concern here is being matched up with NBA experienced plus defenders in Sindarius Thornwell and Jawun Evans, as well as the long first round pick in Shai Gilgeous-Alexander from Kentucky. Nunn has all the usage to thrive in this matchup and if he can catch fire from downtown, it won’t matter who is covering him.

Monte Morris – (5,800) – While your first impression might be that Malik Beasley (7,900) is the guy on this Denver Nuggets summer league team, I would be willing to bet that Morris gets more DK points than Beasley. In 34 minutes together on the court last year, Morris had 8 assists, as well as 7 hockey assists indicating that he is the primary ball handler in this unit. Beasley also took 2 less shots than Morris. So while this sample is small, the Nuggets are reportedly hoping that Morris can lead the Summer League in assists while also putting up gaudy scoring numbers. Sometimes a quote like that is meaningless, but in this case it is an indicator of the role that the Nuggets expect Morris to have here. With Mudiay gone and Devin Harris a UFA, there are minutes to be had behind Jamal Murray. Don’t think Monte Morris doesn’t know that.

Shooting Guards:

Daniel Hamilton (5,300) – Triple Doubles are fun. Hamilton led the G league in triple doubles last year, and averaged 11 points 5 rebounds and 6 assists in last year’s summer league, while shooting only 30%. Hamilton has a lot to prove this summer, but his peripheral stats make him a cash game lock at this price assuming he is starting which would make the most sense given that he is a veteran on the team. Hamilton will be low owned and I am personally all in on the guy tomorrow as he will handle the ball a lot and create plays in transition.

Josh Jackson (8,800) – Jackson may very well be the best DFS player in this tournament. I worry a bit about Ayton taking away rebound potential, but Jackson should post monster numbers regardless as a primary ball handler. With Shaq Harrison, Dragan Bender and an unpolished Ayton inside, expect Jackson to do the bulkwork offensively and set guys up throughout the game. Jackson actually really struggled last year in the summer league despite his 17 and 9 averages, and his game took off late in his rookie season as he averaged over 18 points per game after the all star break, while taking 16 shots per game against NBA competition. I’d expect monster usage and peripheral stats to give him a floor in case his shaky jumper gives him problems.

Kadeem Allen (5,700) – Kadeem Allen will not be the most exciting roster in the world, but with Tatum, Brown and Nader out of the picture, Allen makes the most sense to start at point guard this summer. Boston encourages ball movement and team basketball in summer league, so don’t expect a lot of iso heavy ball, but that makes a guy like Allen safer, as he is not a huge usage point guard, but rather a great facilitator and knock down shooter. Allen is very cheap for a starting point guard on a team is lacking star power and guys who can create their own shot. Allen should go underowned and rack up a bunch of assists while knocking down a high percentage of his open jumpers would make him a very good play.

Small Forwards:

Alex Poythress – (5,200) – This is a massive summer for Poythress who has a lot to prove to the Indiana brass. Poythress is athletic and long, and can jump out of the gym, which means you will likely have a highlight dunk or two to go crazy about while people around you question why you are freaking out over summer league basketball. Poythress can rebound, shoot and finish at the rim, and he has a good balance of upside and safety for his price considering that Indiana will likely ride their veterans a lot in this tournament given the prospects waiting in the brinks. The Pacers are lacking a true center besides Henry Sims, and Poythress will see some time at the 4 and even the 5 according to the Pacers’ brass. He is simply too underpriced at a shallow position and might go overlooked regardless.

Caris LeVert – (8,400) – Caris does it all and in a tournament like this, his skillsets might make him look like a superstar. LeVert is a 5 stat category guy, and will likely have a big role in the starting five. The Michigan grad still has parts of his game to work on from the perimeter, but his slashing ability, playmaking and NBA experience will likely lead to him being an extreme standout player in this tournament. Don’t let his price tag scare you.

TJ Leaf – (6,400) – Leaf had a decent Summer last year, but he has put on weight and gained a year of NBA experience, and now has goals in play to make the Pacers rotation. Leaf will likely see a lot of time at the 4 and 5, and he has a good shot of scoring at a very high rate with Joe Young out of the summer league picture. Aaron Holiday is a good creator and will likely help bring out the best in Leaf’s game. He is not the most exciting pick in the world, but his high floor makes him a terrific cash game option.

Power Forwards:

Cheick Diallo – (7,600) Cheick has some big goals for the summer including winning the Finals and Summer League MVP. While the championship is harder to guarantee a chance for, Diallo will definitely be in the MVP conversation if he improves in the slightest from his last summer in which he almost averaged a double double with 18 points and 9 rebounds per game. The Raptors summer league team is exclusively G leaguers with the exception of OG Anunoby, and they will be very vulnerable inside with backup center Shevon Thompson, and Team Brazil’s backup, Auguston Lima serving as the only threats to clog the rim. Diallo was a fantasy point per minute player during the season against NBA competition, and with more usage and weaker competition, Diallo could really put up a gaudy stat line in this game and every game.

Henry Ellenson – (7,100) Ellenson may not be the most exciting name to click, but he should be. With Anthony Tolliver gone, Ellenson is going to have a huge chance to earn backup minutes with a strong showing this summer. Dwane Casey has encouraged him to shoot as much as possible, and the Pistons want him to push the tempo when he gets a rebound as opposed to finding a guard. Ellenson has massive scoring upside and a 25/10 game is certainly in play against the Bucks. Ellenson fits the mold of a poor man’s Pozingis, but considering all of his opponents are of the “poor man’s” mold, Ellenson can really stand out in two man games where he pops, and even in the post where he will have easier matchups than he’s used to.

Alfonso McKinnie – (4,600) McKinnie is a young, wiry player who saw a bit of NBA experience last year. He averaged 14 and 8 in the G league on a team that made it to the G League finals. The Raptors have not sent any NBA players besides OG to this tournament so the primary focus in this tournament will be on developing Anunoby, and seeing what they really have in Malcolm Miller and Alfonso McKinnie. At 4,600 you’re getting an athletic, long, rebounding stretch three/four, who can really run the floor and shoot the basketball. This is a pick that will go under the radar, but is one you should be considering.


Johnathan Motley – (6,100) The Mavericks centers in this tournament consist of Motley and Summer League stash players. I can’t wait to watch Motley play entire games with Dennis Smith Jr. and hopefully Luka Doncic. Motley is terrific at running the floor in space for a big guy, and has endless energy to get rebounds and putbacks. There are always more rebounds to be had in the summer league, and Motley is no stranger to those as he posted a 23.82 DREB % last season for the Mavericks in limited action. He should see around 30 minutes, and his hustle and athleticism lead to him being a FPPM player even on his average nights.

Ante Zizic – (6,200) Zizic should be featured as the second option in the Cavs offence. He really struggled last summer posting 9 points and 7 rebounds, but he shot really poorly from under the basket and left the Cavs wanting more. Considering his averages, if he plays a little better (which he can), he could be a double double machine this summer.

Shevon Thompson – (4,000) This is a bargain bin play, but Thompson will likely start for the Raptors. In just over 20 minutes as the backup center for the 905, Thompson averaged over 10 points and 7 rebounds per contest, and had Kennedy Meeks not been around, Thompson would have had around 30 minutes to average a double double. With no Meeks or Poeltl in Vegas, look for Thompson to try to make a statement and I can see a cheap, unowned double double from him.

Keep in mind that fouls don’t matter (Unless you’re Greg Oden or Diamond Stone) as you can use 10 fouls in a 40 minute game.

Good luck and let’s have a winning day!

About the Author

  • Warren Kosoy (billsfan777)

  • billsfan777 has had multiple live final appearances and has numerous tournament wins in MLB, NFL, NHL and NBA . Born and raised in Toronto, the Leafs fan can be found on twitter talking hoops, NFL and the NHL @billsfan777dfs.

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