Watford Finals MVP of NBA Summer League; Eason, Thomas on First Team
BATON ROUGE – Former LSU basketball players had some good moments over the course of the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas, including Trendon Watford being named the MVP of the championship game Sunday won by his Portland Trail Blazers.
Watford had 19 points, seven rebounds and made 7-of-15 field goals, including three treys in the 85-77 championship game win over the New York Knicks. Watford was a unanimous MVP pick
Watford in five games averaged 13.6 points, 7.8 rebounds along with 2.0 steals and 2.0 assists a contest.
Also having good performances in the event were first-round draft picks the last two years – Cam Thomas (Brooklyn, 2021) and Tari Eason (Houston, 2022). Both were named to the All-NBA Summer League First Team.
Thomas led the league in scoring average at 27.4 points for five games, also dishing out 4.2 assists. Thomas had scoring games of 31 (Milwaukee), 26 (Philadelphia, Minnesota), 29 (Memphis) and 25 (Boston).
Eason impressed Houston fans with his play during the summer league, averaging 17.2 points, 10.4 rebounds and 1.8 steals. Helping his double double average was that he doubled in four of the five games. His high points game was against San Antonio with 22 points, while his rebound high was 13 boards in his league opener against Orlando.
It was also an interesting time for another player from the 2022 LSU squad in forward Darius Days. Days in three games playing with the San Antonio Spurs averaged 13.7 points and 10.0 rebounds, including 17 points and 13 rebounds against Golden State. After that third game, he was signed to a two-way contract with the Miami Heat for the 2022-23 season.
Unfortunately, to make room for Days on the Heat roster, the team had to waive former LSU guard Javonte Smart. But before that, Smart probably put himself in position to get back on another team, averaging 15.0 points and 2.5 assists for Miami. Smart had 19 points against Atlanta and 20 points against Philadelphia.
Other numbers from the summer league:
Josh Gray (Portland), 1 game, 0 points
Shareef O’Neal (LA Lakers), 4 games, 4.8 points, 3.8 rebounds
Duop Reath (Phoenix), 2 games 6.5 points, 4.0 rebounds (11-7 vs. LAL)
Tremont Waters (Memphis) 1 game, 16.0 points (vs. Minnesota), 2 assists