Full Summer League Grades for New York Knicks

Tom FirmeAnalyst IIJuly 23, 2012

Full Summer League Grades for New York Knicks

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    The New York Knicks might have seen all five summer league games fall under the loss column, but the summer league wasn't a complete wash for the team. The Knicks had the opportunity to evaluate more than a dozen players who saw action in their games in Las Vegas in recent weeks.

    New York's summer league roster included a few young players on the official Knicks roster and several undrafted free agents.

    Some performed nicely in their attempts to make a case for a spot on the NBA roster. Others played forgettable ball.

    Following is a list of grades for the eight players who played at least three games and averaged 15 minutes per game for the Knicks' summer league team.

Chris Copeland

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    Grade: B

    Chris Copeland deserves applause for being the only Knicks player to average double figures in scoring while playing at least three games for the summer league squad. Copeland averaged 13.6 points per game on 47.3 percent shooting.

    He also shot 41.7 percent from three-point range.

    The 6'8" guard dropped 17 points twice.

    He also averaged four rebounds per game, including a high of seven against the Denver Nuggets on July 17.

    Copeland had played in Belgium, Germany and Spain before signing with New York last week.

    His scoring leadership was nice, and it might help earn him a spot on the Knicks bench.

Mustapha Farrakhan

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    Grade: D+

    Mustapha Farrakhan was the No. 2 scorer on the team out of those who played at least three games, averaging 9.6 points per game.

    He wasn't too consistent with his shot. The former Virginia Cavalier knocked down only 32.6 percent from the field. He only shot better than 40 percent in one game, but that was a lackluster 3-of-7 performance in a loss to the Toronto Raptors on July 19. In the Knicks' opener, he missed all five field-goal attempts.

    He didn't control the ball very well. His 1.8 turnovers in 17.8 minutes per game were high. Also, he had the same number of assists as turnovers.

    The grandson of Louis Farrakhan didn't impress at all and could very well be headed back to the NBDL in 2012-13.

Wesley Witherspoon

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    Grade: C+

    Wesley Witherspoon came on strong in the first three games. He scored 15 points on 5-of-11 shooting in the opener against the Memphis Grizzlies on July 14. Then, he scored 10 and 12 games in the second and third game, respectively.

    The last two games saw the Memphis product go quiet. He failed to score in 12 minutes of play against the Raptors. In the finale against the Cleveland Cavaliers, he shot 1-of-6 en route to just three points.

    Perhaps if he had hung on to score fairly well in the last two games, his NBA outlook would be mostly sunny. Currently, after averaging just eight points on 37.5 percent shooting, it doesn't look good for him.

Artsioum Parakhouski

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    Grade: A-

    Artsioum Parakhouski won't be a great star in the NBA, but if he had any hope he helped himself out tremendously. The Belarus native averaged eight points, six rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. He also shot 58.2 percent from the field.

    At 6'9" and 206 pounds, the former Radford standout doesn't have great size. But he showed that he can hustle and make himself noticed.

    Whether he can make head ways at an NBA camp this fall will be interesting to see.

James White

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    Grade: D-

    To fail in the summer league is difficult, and James White came very close to doing just that. He shot just 29 percent from the field. After scoring just four points in his first two games played, White scored 11 against the Denver Nuggets on July 17. But that came on a mere 4-of-12 shooting.

    To his credit, he did average 4.3 rebounds per game. He had seven boards against the Phoenix Suns on July 15.

    His shooting mark is a heavy weight pulling him down, and it could affect his chances of making the roster for his third stint in the NBA in seven seasons.

Mychel Thompson

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    Grade: C

    Mychel Thompson was generally unimpressive. He shot just 32.1 percent from the field and averaged 5.6 points per game. His 3.4 rebounds per game weren't too bad.

    He made an impact with three steals against the Nuggets.

    He still has plenty of work to do to make it in the NBA.

Chris Smith

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    Grade: D

    Chris Smith was very quiet. He averaged just 5.2 points and 1.4 assists per game. His 29 percent shooting mark was bleak to say the least.

    He didn't help himself by hitting just 62.5 percent at the line.

    Smith's spot probably isn't in the NBA this season, but some hard work could take him somewhere in the NBDL this year.

Jeremiah Rivers

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    Grade: C-

    Jeremiah Rivers doesn't have the star power that his younger brother, Austin, does. He didn't give people any reason to look into his profile during the summer league, either.

    RIvers didn't do too well offensively. He shot 38.5 percent from the field en route to 3.5 points per game.

    He had five rebounds against the Grizzlies, but only two in his other three games combined.

    Rivers' 17 minutes per game should have been enough to give him an opportunity to show his worth, but he didn't do enough to earn a spot on the Knicks.