You know you’re a Bulls fan when you’re anticipating Chicago Bulls Summer League action so badly that you woke up this morning clicked on yahoo sports and thought “Prince Fielder won the home run derby? I didn’t know it was the all-star break”. Such was my experience at O’Hare Airport this morning awaiting my plane to take off.
The first thing to remember watching Summer League action is that it’s more or less meaningless. It’s only slightly more useful as an evaluation tool as watching the guys run a charity camp with kids.
90% of the players in Summer League know they have no chance of catching on with their NBA team, especially this year, and are auditioning for the best European contract they can find. Team play isn’t likely to be on the forefront of everyone’s mind there. The offense will not be smooth.
The best players will be the ones with more developed one on one games, and the results won’t mean a whole lot. To put it in perspective, Derrick Rose had a really mediocre Summer League last year and then came out of the gates on fire in the NBA.
Lonnie Baxter was a summer league MVP. Jerryd Bayless averaged almost 30 points a game last year and went on to be glued to the bench whiel not playing horribly. All we can really expect out of Summer League is a small fix to our basketball obsession, the only one we’ll get until October, and a glimpse of how Johnson and Gibson play the game.
Finally, remember, the above disclaimer only applies if James Johnson scores less than 20 points per game. If he averages 25, then it surely means he’s the next LeBron James. At least until the regular season starts.