Thoughts on the First Two Games of the 2022 G-League Elite Camp

May 16th, 2022

By Alan Lu

Today, I decided to watch the first two games that were played in the 2022 G-League Elite Camp that was played in Chicago, Illinois, with thanks to YouTube via NBA G League.  Players on four teams were competing to get the attention of NBA teams and scouts in order to move up draft boards, and there were a handful of strong performances in both games.  Some players played very well, while others struggled.  Here are my thoughts on how players fared in both of those games. Also, for those that are interested in the box score of both of those games, here is the link.

Kansas’ forward, Jalen Wilson put forth a strong performance in the first game of the 2022 G-League Elite Camp.
(Photo:
Handout/NCAA Photos via Getty Images)

Thoughts on Game 1 of the 2022 G-League Elite Camp:

It was a very competitive game that was played between Team 1 and Team 2 earlier today.  James Akinjo and Kenneth Lofton played very well throughout this contest to keep Team 2 competitive, but Team 1 managed to pull away in the second half as they shot the ball well, took better care of the basketball, and defended well, especially down the stretch.  In this game, I felt that Jalen Wilson, James Akinjo, and Kenneth Lofton, and Darius Days were the standout performers of this match.  Here are my thoughts on how they fared, as well as others that seemed to stand out from the rest of the pack in this game.

Jalen Wilson had a strong showing to lead Team 1 to a win in this game.  He really excelled on the offensive end, and he consistently played well to help his team throughout this contest. Wilson shot the ball very well, especially from beyond the arc.  He showed a knack for making spot-up threes off the catch, and he also pulled up to make a three on the break later on.  He also was able to score on a strong drive in transition and drew an extra free throw afterwards.  He showed a satisfactory ability to score off the dribble.  He did struggle more to make shots from the mid-range area, but overall, Wilson excelled at making shots from all over the court.

Also, Wilson passed the ball well.  He showed a knack for throwing crisp, accurate passes off the dribble and in transition to notch assists.  He also showed a solid ability to rebound the basketball.  He also played adequate defense.  Wilson was able to take a ball away to get a steal.  He also hounded an opposing ball handler and applied great ball pressure to force a shot clock violation early on.  However, he would sometimes be too aggressive to make plays as he would try to go for steals, which would lead him to commit reach-in fouls.

In general, Jalen Wilson is an athletic, energetic combo forward that played very well to help lead his team to get the victory in this game.  He played very well as he shot he ball really well and showed solid defensive potential.  In addition, Wilson turned in a strong all-around performance that could help him potentially secure an invite to the NBA Draft Combine later on this week.

James Akinjo also turned in a good showing to help Team 2 in this game.  He put forth a good all-around performance, and he consistently made plays to help his team throughout this match. Akinjo did a good job of scoring on quick, left-handed drives to the hoop.  He possesses a solid first step, and he showed off good speed in the open court.  He also was able to knock down a step-back, fadeaway mid-range jumper, and he also dribbled off of a screen to make a pull-up three to showcase his shooting skills.

Also, Akinjo showed off solid playmaking skills.  He is a fleet-footed guard that was able to consistently throw swift, drive and kick passes to set up numerous scoring chances for his teammates, and he would often find open shooters on offense.  Sometimes though, he would tend to be a bit of a ball-stopper on offense.  On one play, he dribbled around for too long, which led his team to commit a shot-clock violation.  On another drive, he carried the ball on a spin move, which led him to be called for a carrying violation.

Also, Akinjo did a good job of rebounding the basketball.  He would chase down balls to get defensive boards, and sometimes he would push the ball up the court afterwards.  He also played solid defense.  Akinjo was able to intercept a pass to get a steal, and he also poked a ball to get another.  He has good ball location skills, and he also contested a three to force a miss.  Sometimes though, he would struggle to defend opposing ball handlers, which would lead him to commit touch fouls.

In summary, James Akinjo played very well throughout this contest.  He showcased versatile scoring skills, showed off better than advertised athleticism, and he is a quick guard that made very good plays on both ends of the floor.  He was one of the best players in the first game, and he could project to be a solid role player in the NBA.

Kenneth Lofton also played very well to help Team 2 in this game.  He is a strong, mobile big man that played with great physicality, but he also showed off a good jump shot, and he also defended well when he was on the court. Lofton shot the ball really well, especially from beyond the arc.  He showed a knack for making threes off the catch, as he was able to make one off of a pick and pop play, and he also used a jab step prior to knocking down another.  He also has great strength that enables him to back down his man to get deep position, and he would score due to possessing very good strength, footwork, and scoring touch down low.  He also managed to use a crafty pump fake off of an offensive rebound to score on a powerful dunk.

Also, Lofton showcased perhaps adequate playmaking skills.  He is an unselfish player that would look to find the open man to notch assists.  He was able to push the ball up the floor off of a defensive board, and he threw a nice interior pass to set up a score for a teammate on the break.  Sometimes though, he would be turnover prone on offense.  Occasionally, he would throw inaccurate passes that would go astray, and he also was called for traveling when driving to the hoop due to taking too many steps another time.

Plus, he also did a tremendous job of rebounding the basketball.  Lofton also played satisfactory defense, and he managed to emphatically block a shot to prevent an opponent from scoring in transition.

Overall, Kenneth Lofton had a strong showing in this game, and he is a mobile, physical forward that really excelled as a shooter, scorer, and rebounder throughout this contest.  He played very well in this match, and he could project to be a solid role player in the NBA.

Darius Days also put forth a strong showing to lead Team 1 to a win in this game.  He showed off versatile scoring skills, and he also played well on both sides of the ball.  Days shot the ball very well, especially from the outside.  He showed a knack for making open, spot-up jumpers, particularly from beyond the arc.  He also managed to make a face-up jumper from just inside the arc while getting fouled to get an extra free throw afterwards.  Days showed a satisfactory ability to score in the post.  He also managed to throw down a thunderous dunk on an opponent after getting the ball on a roll to the rim.

Plus, Days also showcased adequate playmaking skills.  He was able to throw an accurate interior pass to a roll man to help set up a score for a teammate.  He also was able to rebound the ball on both ends of the court to help his team on the boards.  He also played decent defense in this game.  He would get his hands on passes to get plenty of steals.  However, he also fouled a three-point shooter another time due to over-aggressiveness.

Overall, Darius Days turned in a very good, all-around showing to help his team get the win in the first game of the 2022 G-League Elite Camp.  He played very well, and he is a second round prospect that may have the skills to be a solid role player in the NBA.

Gabe Brown played very well to help Team 1 to get the win in this game.  He is an athletic, energetic forward that played well on both ends of the floor, and he especially showed off a very good outside shot to provide floor spacing for his team on offense.  He excelled at making pull-up jumpers, as he was able to do so both from three-point land and mid-range, and he would use his length to shoot over the top of opponents to score.  He also was able to make a corner three on the break.

Plus, he also showed off satisfactory playmaking skills, and Brown is an unselfish player that would throw solid interior passes to set up scoring chances for his teammates.  On the downside, he struggled to consistently create his own shot at times, and he would sometimes end up committing ball-handling turnovers.  Also, Brown was able to haul in his fair share of rebounds, and he was able to push the ball up the court off of a defensive board.  He also defended well.  Brown managed to poke a ball away and intercept an errant pass to get steals for his team.

Overall, Gabe Brown had a solid showing to help get his team the victory.  He is an athletic sharpshooter that especially excelled at knocking down jump shots, and he consistently made good team plays to help his team on the court.  He is a second round prospect that could project well into a 3 and D role in the NBA.

Javon Freeman-Liberty had a solid showing to help Team 1 get the win in this game.  He is an agile, skilled playmaker that excelled at attacking the hoop to score and pass the basketball, and he also defended well when he was on the court.

He showed a satisfactory ability to score off the dribble, and he especially showed a knack for making dribble, mid-range jumpers.  He also generally did a good job of scoring in transition.  On the downside, he was unable to make any of the threes he hoisted up from beyond the arc.

Also, Freeman-Liberty showcased satisfactory playmaking skills in this game.  He is an unselfish player that would look to find the open man, and he also threw an accurate interior pass to a cutter to notch an assist.  On the downside, he also threw an inaccurate pass that sailed out of bounds another time.

He also was able to haul in several boards to help his team on the glass.  Freeman-Liberty also played solid defense in this game.  He would get his hands on passes to help his team get steals, and he also poked a ball away to nearly get another.  He also managed to contest a three to force a miss.

Overall, Freeman-Liberty excelled at making plays on both ends of the floor to help his team get the victory.  He will need to show NBA teams that he can knock down threes in this camp, but his strong play on both ends of the floor could help him get more draft stock, and he could project to be a solid backup point guard in the NBA.

Michael Devoe played fairly well in this game.  He excelled as a scorer on the floor, and he especially showed a knack for getting to the foul line to put points on the board.  Devoe shot the ball well from the outside.  He was able to make an open, spot-up three in transition, and he also made a nice, step-back jumper from the mid-range.

He also showed a knack for scoring on hustle plays.  Devoe would run the floor to score on strong drives in transition.  He also managed to score on fast breaks.  However, he struggled more to score on half-court drives, as he would sometimes struggle to get to the hoop quickly, and he would miss shots in traffic when he wouldn’t get foul calls.

On the downside, he was quite turnover prone on offense in this game.  For the positives, Devoe is an unselfish player that will look to find the open man, and he was able to make an accurate, drive and kick pass to set up a score for a shooter.  On the downside, he would throw hasty, inaccurate passes that would get intercepted.  Later on, he threw an off-target, no-look pass intended for a corner shooter that sailed out of bounds, as he tried to be too fancy with his pass that time.

Also, he was able to haul in boards on both sides of the ball.  Devoe was able to score off of an offensive rebound, and he also pushed the ball up the court after getting a defensive board another time.  He also played fairly average defense.  He was able to contest a long two to force a miss.  Another time, he over-helped in the paint and was late to defend a corner three-point shot, which led him to allow the score that time.

Overall, Michael Devoe had a decent showing in this game, as he scored efficiently, really excelled at drawing and making free throws, but he also was fairly turnover prone on offense.  He will need to take better care of the basketball, but he has had a good season overall this year.  He is a versatile guard that can play either backcourt position, and he currently projects to be a second round prospect for the 2022 draft.

Jamaree Bouyea also played fairly well in this game.  He did a very good job of scoring off the dribble, and he is a quick guard that would change speeds well to quickly score at the rim.  He also managed to make a step-back jumper from just inside the arc, but he also missed his lone three-point attempt in this match.

He also showed off solid playmaking skills.  Bouyea is an unselfish player that sees the floor well, and he was able to make an array of passes to notch assists.  On the downside, he threw an inaccurate pass that sailed out of bounds once.

He also was able to chip in to get a couple of defensive boards.  He also defended fairly well.  Bouyea was able to contest a shot off of a drive to force a miss.  Overall, Jamaree Bouyea is a fleet-footed playmaker that can score and pass the basketball.  He has had a good senior season overall, and he could project well into a backup point guard role in the NBA.

Houston Cougars’ guard, Marcus Sasser played very well in the second game of the 2022 G-League Camp that featured Team 3 and Team 4.
(Photo:
Randy Belice/NBAE via Getty Images)

Thoughts on the Second Game of the 2022 G-League Elite Camp:

I also took the time to watch the second game that was played between Team 3 and Team 4, with thanks to YouTube via NBA G League.  It was a very close, competitive game that went all the way down to the wire, but Team 3 was able to make enough plays in the end to get the victory.  In this game, I felt that Marcus Sasser, Pete Nance, Jules Bernard, and Jared Rhoden looked to be the standout performers in this match.  Here are my thoughts on how they performed, as well as the other prospects that I felt that stood out from the rest of the pack.

Marcus Sasser had a strong showing for Team 4 in this game.  He shot the ball really well, especially from beyond the arc, and he turned in a very good all-around performance overall. Sasser shot the ball very well, especially from beyond the arc.  He is a confident shooter that showed a knack for making pull-up jumpers, and he thrived at making threes in this game.  He has good footwork, shooting touch, and range that enables him to knock down plenty of jumpers.  He also moved off the ball to make a corner three, and he also drew free throws on a pull-up three another time.

He also was active at looking to score on hustle plays.  Sasser drew free throws on a speedy drive in transition.  He also managed to score on a quick cut to the hoop.   He also showcased satisfactory playmaking skills.  He would look to find the open man to get assists, and he also threw an interior pass to a teammate on the break to set up a score.  Another time though, he threw a hasty pass that ended up getting intercepted.

Plus, Sasser did a very good job of rebounding the basketball.  He also was able to jump a pass to get a steal, and he would jump on loose balls that his teammates would poke away to help his team get additional steals.  On the downside, there was one play where he made a bad reach-in attempt and got beat off the dribble to allow a score.

Overall, Marcus Sasser is an athletic playmaker that thrived at making plays to help his throughout this contest.  He shot the ball very well early and often, and he especially thrived as a sharpshooter to provide floor spacing for his team on offense.  He played very well in this game, and he could project to be a solid role player in the NBA.

Pete Nance also played very well to help Team 3 get a close win in this game.  He is a skilled, mobile big man that can stretch the floor, and he turned in a strong, all-around performance to help his team get the victory. Nance did a very good job of knocking down jumpers in this game.  He was especially great at making spot-up threes off the catch, and he would use his size and shooting skills to shoot over the top of defenders to knock down long-range jumpers from beyond the arc.  He also ran the floor to score on a runner on the break.  On another play though, he ended up missing on a step-back jumper from the mid-range.

He also showed off adequate playmaking skills.  Nance is an unselfish player that would look to find the open man, and he would find cutters to set up scoring chances for them.  On the downside, he would sometimes be careless with the ball.  When handling the ball once, a defender poked the ball away from him to get him to turn the ball over.  Another time, he threw a hasty pass that ended up getting intercepted.

He also did a decent job of rebounding the basketball.  Nance was able to haul in multiple boards to help his team on both ends of the floor.  Plus, Nance also played very good defense in this game.  He would jump on loose balls to help his team get steals, and he also would contest shots both out on the perimeter as well as in the paint to get numerous stops for his team.

Overall, Pete Nance had a strong showing in this game, and he especially thrived as a sharpshooter on offense.  He played very well in this game, and his size, shooting and defensive skills could enable him to be a solid role player in the NBA.

Jules Bernard had a strong showing to help lead Team 3 to a win over Team 4.  He is a fairly athletic, strong swingman that showed off his versatility by consistently making good plays to help his team on both ends of the floor. Bernard showed a knack for scoring on hustle plays.  He excelled at scoring on speedy drives in transition, and he would use swift, Euro-step moves to score at the rim.  He also would draw plenty of free throws on backdoor cuts to the hoop. 

He also utilized a pump fake to score on a strong drive in traffic while drawing an extra free throw afterwards to showcase his ability to score off the dribble.  Bernard was able to make pull-up jumpers from both behind the three-point line and mid-range, but he had trouble knocking down outside shots consistently. Also, Bernard showed off satisfactory playmaking skills in this game, and he did a good job of making passes to set up plenty of scoring chances for his teammates.

He also did a decent job of rebounding the basketball.  Also, Bernard defended well.  He would often get his hands on passes to get steals and deflections, and he also blocked a shot to help his team protect the paint.  Overall, Jules Bernard turned in a very good game, and he looks to have really helped his draft stock with his strong performance to help Team 3 get the win.  He will still need to continue to play well in this camp, but even so, he is a fairly athletic, skilled swingman that could project into a 3 and D role in the NBA.

Jared Rhoden also played well in this game.  He played well on both ends of the floor, and he especially excelled as a passer and rebounder when he was on the court.  Rhoden showed a knack for scoring on fast breaks. He would throw down strong, breakaway dunks to bolster his team on offense.  He also was able to drive to the hoop to score on a smooth, mid-range floater.  He also made a spot-up three off the catch.  However, Rhoden struggled to consistently knock down his threes on offense. 

Also, Rhoden displayed satisfactory playmaking skills.  He would throw accurate interior passes to find teammates on the move to notch assists.  Rhoden also would throw drive and kick passes to find open shooters.  Sometimes though, he would  struggle to handle the ball when pressured, which would lead to ball-handling turnovers.

He also did a great job of rebounding the basketball.  Rhoden also played solid defense.  He was able to get his hands on a pass to get a steal, and he also poked a ball away another time.  He also would contest shots both out on the perimeter and in the paint to force plenty of misses.  On the downside, he committed a reach-in foul due to over-aggressiveness.

Overall, Jared Rhoden had a solid showing to help his team get the win.  He played very well on both sides of the ball, and he consistently made very good team plays throughout this contest.  He will need to be a more consistent shooter in games, but his skill set and versatility could enable him to make his way to the NBA someday.

Quenton Jackson also played fairly well in this game.  He is a very athletic combo guard that made solid plays to help his team on both ends of the floor.  He showed off versatile scoring skills.  Jackson thrived at scoring on quick drives in transition.  He also shot the ball fairly well.  He managed to make an open, step-back three from beyond the arc, and he also made a long, pull-up two to showcase his outside shooting skills.  On the downside, Jackson struggled to consistently score on half-court drives to the hoop.

Also, Jackson showcased solid playmaking skills.  He passed the ball well in this game, and he did a good job of making passes off the dribble and in transition to notch assists.  On the downside, he was called for a traveling violation when driving to the hoop in transition another time.

He also did a good job of rebounding the basketball.  Jackson was able to haul in multiple boards on both ends of the floor due to possessing good athleticism, motor, and instincts.  He also played satisfactory defense.  He managed to get his hands on a ball to tie up an opposing ball handler to force a jump ball.  He also altered a shot off of a drive to force a miss.  On the other hand, he also fouled a three-point shooter due to over-aggressiveness.

Overall, Quenton Jackson is an athletic, skilled combo guard that played well on both ends of the floor.  He will need to trust his outside shot more, but his ability to make plays in games could enable him to make it to an NBA team’s roster someday.

AJ Green also had a good showing in this game.  He is an agile, skilled combo guard that excelled at making plays on both ends of the floor, and he especially thrived as a shooter and passer on offense.  Green showed a knack for making pull-up threes from beyond the arc, and he also made a pull-up jumper from the mid-range.  On the downside, he struggled to effectively make spot-up threes off the catch.

He also passed and handled the ball well.  He is a crafty player that showed a knack for making solid passes off the dribble to set up scoring chances for his teammates.  Green also was able to get a pair of defensive boards to chip in on the glass.  He also defended well.  He was able to jump on a loose ball to get a steal.  He also stayed in front of an opposing ball handler to force a traveling violation.  He also did a good job of contesting shots off of drives to force misses.

Overall, AJ Green played well, and he thrived at making plays on both ends of the floor.  He may need to show that he can reliably run the point on a consistent basis, but his ability to knock down jump shots could enable him to be a shooting specialist in the NBA.

Tevin Brown also played well in this game.  He turned in a solid all-around performance to help Team 3 get the victory over Team 4.  Brown shot the ball well, and he thrived as a spot-up shooter from beyond the arc.  He excelled at making threes off the catch, and he also managed to run off of a ball screen to knock one down from way out.  He also managed to score on a quick, backdoor cut to the hoop.

He also showcased good playmaking skills.  Brown did a good job of making passes off the dribble and in transition, and he would tend to throw solid interior passes to find teammates on the move to rack up assists.  On the downside, he also threw a couple of passes that ended up getting intercepted.

Also, he did a good job of rebounding the basketball.  Brown also played adequate defense.  He ran in to intercept passes to get steals.  On the other hand, he occasionally struggled to defend opponents out on the perimeter.  He had trouble fighting through a screen, and he was late to rotate back, which led his team to give up a three-point basket.  He also got beat off the dribble when defending in transition to allow a score another time.

Overall, Brown turned in a solid showing, and he is an agile, skilled combo guard that has good offensive skills and understanding of the game.  His skill set, basketball IQ, and ability to play either backcourt position may make him a very underrated prospect, and he could end up being a solid role player in the NBA.

Brady Manek also played fairly well in this game.  He showed off versatile scoring skills, and he is an agile, skilled forward that can really knock down threes to provide floor spacing on offense. Manek shot the ball very well, especially from beyond the arc.  He is a very good shooter, and he did a good job of making open, spot-up threes off the catch.  He has great size that enables him to shoot over the top of defenders, and he also was able to move off the ball to make a movement three from beyond the arc.  He also showcased some inside scoring skills.  He ran the floor to score on a turnaround jump hook in the post.  Manek also ran the floor to get the ball, and utilized a crafty pump fake to score around the basket.

He also showcased fairly average playmaking skills.  Manek threw solid interior passes to set up scoring chances for his teammates, and he can throw very long, accurate passes to get them the basketball.  On the other hand, he threw a hasty pass out of the post that got intercepted.  He also dropped a pass when receiving it on a backdoor cut that led to another team turnover.

He did a good job of rebounding the basketball, and Manek was able to bring the ball up off of a defensive board once.  Defensively, he looked to be about average at best.  He was able to contest a mid-range shot to force a miss.  On the downside, he committed a foul when defending in the post.  He also gave up too much space to a shooter another time, and allowed him to make a three-point basket.

Overall, Brady Manek played fairly well, and he especially thrived as a sharpshooter in this game.  He will need to continue to improve on the defensive end, but his ability to knock down jump shots could enable him to carve out a role as a shooting specialist in the NBA.

There were several other fairly solid performances from other players that were had today in both of the games, but I decided to make cuts in order to save time.  After the conclusion of the first two games of the 2022 G-League Elite Camp, there are still two more games left to go that will be played tomorrow on May 17th.  In the meantime, here are who I feel played the best in the two games that were played today.

The 3 Stars of the First Two Games of the 2022 G-League Elite Camp:

  1. Jalen Wilson, Team 1
  2. Marcus Sasser, Team 4
  3. Pete Nance, Team 3

Jalen Wilson really impressed me with his strong shooting skills, he also showed off solid shot-creation skills, and he also generally played tough, tenacious defense.  Marcus Sasser made big shots, as he is an agile combo guard that shot the ball very well from beyond the arc, and he showed a knack for making big plays to help his team in this contest.  There were lots of strong candidates to pick for the third spot, but I decided to go with Pete Nance as the third star of this day, as he is a tall, skilled big man that shot the ball very well, consistently defended well, and he consistently made good, efficient basketball plays when he was on the court.

Anyways, the Conference Finals will begin tomorrow, and that will also be the same day that the NBA will be hosting the draft lottery.  There will also be two more games that will be played during the G-League Elite Camp tomorrow.  Thanks for reading.

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