Show & Tell
February 10, 2018
Featuring 26 teams and 26 games in just four days, the G League Showcase is a scouting extravaganza that involves the next generation of NBA stars.
With the NBA’s new two-way contract system in the NBA and an expansion that results in almost every franchise having their own G League affiliate, basketball’s most prominent developmental league features more talent than ever before. Nowhere is this more evident than at the annual G League Showcase. The Raptors 905 hosted the event for the second year running in Ontario, Canada with scouts from all 30 NBA teams in attendance. After all, many NBA talents were propelled to stardom through previous editions of the event, including Jeremy Lin, Jonathan Simmons and Hassan Whiteside.
This year’s event was no different as multiple players staked their claim for a place in the big leagues. Among the standouts were two players who could hardly be more different – Alex Caruso and Joel Bolomboy.
The South Bay Lakers’ Alex Caruso was not a household name at the beginning of the season, going undrafted after a four-year stint at Texas A&M where he made his mark through defense. However, he soon won over Lakers fans through his heart and heart-nosed hustle in preseason play. After earning a two-way contract, Caruso continued to shine in Ontario and took home All-Showcase Second Team honors.
Joel Bolomboy from the Wisconsin Herd, on the other hand, seemed destined for the League even as a youngster from Ukraine. A 6-foot-9 leaper with a 7-foot-1 wingspan and the agility to match perimeter players, the Weber State product is most commonly described as a project. Despite his raw skills, Bolomboy is coming into his own as a solid rebounder and finisher around the basket and averaged 25 and 13 at the Showcase, along with an astounding field goal percentage of 73%.
These two seemingly disparate paths to professional basketball highlight the allure of the G League. No matter where they come from, hard work will give any player a chance to succeed.
Article written by Wong Chin Yi. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of the NBA.