NBA Summer League 2013: Players Who Must Use Slate to Begin Bounceback Year

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NBA Summer League 2013: Players Who Must Use Slate to Begin Bounceback Year
Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

While the NBA Summer League 2013 is mostly a proving ground for rookies and guys trying to hang on to their NBA dreams, there are a number of veterans who can use the opportunity to begin a bounceback campaign.

If they're smart, they can use the summer league to rejuvenate themselves after a disappointing season. 

Which players must use the summer league slate to help reclaim their careers?

Read on to find out. 

 

Jeremy Lamb

Jeremy Lamb was the crucial component for the Oklahoma City Thunder in the James Harden trade. And while he proved he could score in the D-League, where he averaged 21 points a game, he was a disaster when playing with the Thunder.

In 23 appearances, he shot just 35.3 percent from the field, and according to NBA.com, the Thunder were outscored by close to 17 points per 100 possessions with Lamb on the floor. 

This could be a big season for Lamb. The Thunder have a hole at shooting guard after Kevin Martin left for Minnesota, and they don't really have anyone to fill that void. Lamb projects as a high-volume scorer, and he could take some of the scoring burden off of Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant

The Thunder miss James Harden's scoring, and they need someone who can create offense and alleviate some of the double teams off of Durant. 

Lamb has the ability, but he has yet to show it at the NBA level. If he has a big summer, then he'll have a chance to play significant minutes for the Thunder. If not, he could find himself back in the D-League. 

 

Miles Plumlee

USA TODAY Sports

Miles Plumlee was drafted with the 26th overall pick in the 2012 draft, but he showed absolutely nothing with the Indiana Pacers. Plumlee averaged just 3.9 minutes a game and did not play in the postseason.

While the Pacers are set at center with Roy Hibbert, it would be nice if they had someone who can spell him effectively. Hibbert is terrific, but by the end of the Heat series, he looked a bit worn down.

Plumlee showed in college that he can be an effective defender. If he can play even 10 minutes a game of solid defense, then Hibbert and David West will be much more effective late in games and in the postseason.

If he can prove that he can play meaningful minutes in the summer league, then the Pacers will be better off for it.  

 

Jeremy Evans

Jeremy Evans has one NBA skill—dunking. The former Slam Dunk Champion has ridiculous hops. But he has yet to translate that into becoming a productive NBA player.

Last season with the Utah Jazz, Evans averaged just 5.8 minutes per game, and scored just two points per game. Essentially, he's a non-factor.

His athleticism gives him a chance to be something special, and he could top out as an active defender who can provide energy off the bench.

But he's yet to show anything close to that. He'll be entering his fourth season, and without substantial improvement, he'll eventually peter out of the league. 

If Evans can dominate the summer league, playing good defense, grabbing boards and making plays, then he could see increased playing time on a rebuilding Jazz team.

If not, Evans' time in the NBA could be quickly coming to an end. 


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