NBA G League Showcase Cup Championship 2021: Blue Coats Defeat Blue to Win Tournament

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured Columnist IVDecember 23, 2021

LAS VEGAS, NV - DECEMBER 22: Braxton Key #2 of the Delaware Blue Coats celebrates during the 2021 G League Winter Showcase Championship Game at the Mandalay Bay on December 22, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2021 NBAE (Photo by David Becker/NBAE via Getty Images)
David Becker/NBAE via Getty Images

The No. 1 Delaware Blue Coats lived up to their seeding on Wednesday at the NBA G League Showcase Cup Championship, beating the No. 6 Oklahoma City Blue 106-98. 

NBA G League @nbagleague

CHAMPS! 🏆<br><br>The top-seeded <a href="https://twitter.com/blue_coats?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@blue_coats</a> are your <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/ATTWinterShowcase?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#ATTWinterShowcase</a> champions, defeating OKC 106-98. The Showcase Cup Championship trophy and $100K cash prize are headed to Delaware! <a href="https://t.co/8TnVYJTH59">pic.twitter.com/8TnVYJTH59</a>

Marc J. Spears @MarcJSpears

Delaware Blue Coats win the G League Winter Showcase Cup with 104-98 win over the Oklahoma City Blue. Winners split $100,000. Players split $90K and coaching staff, led by head coach Coby Karl, $10K. <a href="https://t.co/CiQUanEQLb">pic.twitter.com/CiQUanEQLb</a>

Braxton Key went off for Delaware, putting up 28 points to go along with 11 rebounds, while Jarron Cumberland (24 points, eight rebounds, six assists) did a little bit of everything for the Blue Coats. 

NBA G League @nbagleague

How in the world did Jarron Cumberland get this to fall?? 👀 <a href="https://twitter.com/blue_coats?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@blue_coats</a> <br><br>He’s up to 15 points and counting on ESPNews. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/ATTWinterShowcase?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#ATTWinterShowcase</a> <a href="https://t.co/Hs3dROaJS4">pic.twitter.com/Hs3dROaJS4</a>

Rob Edwards, Melvin Frazier Jr. and Zavier Simpson led the way for the Blue, each scoring 17 points, while Edwards added 13 boards.

Cumberland was named the MVP:

Justin Persicketti @j_persicketti

The MVP of the <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/ATTWinterShowcase?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#ATTWinterShowcase</a> championship game is <a href="https://twitter.com/Jarron3434?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@Jarron3434</a>!<br><br>24 points<br>8 rebounds<br>6 assists <br>5/10 from three<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GetYourCoatsOn?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#GetYourCoatsOn</a> | <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Sixers?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Sixers</a> <a href="https://t.co/Heq1lVHYv3">pic.twitter.com/Heq1lVHYv3</a>

The Blue Coats are red hot, stretching out their win streak to 12 games on Wednesday. Their last defeat came on Nov. 14, a 113-108 loss to the Maine Celtics. They've won 14 of 15 games in total this season. 

Like many of the other teams in the G League, the Blue Coats have seen plenty of roster turnover during the COVID-19 pandemic, with young players like Jaden Springer, Paul Reed, Aaron Henry and Charles Bassey, among others, spending time with both the Blue Coats and Philadelphia 76ers.

As The Ringer's Jonathan Tjarks noted, "Two G League teams didn’t even participate in the showcase because they didn’t have enough able-bodied players to field a team."

As COVID-19 affects the NBA, the effects trickled down to the G League Winter Showcase. 

However, Wednesday was all about Key and Cumberland leading the Blue Coats to a title.

Paul Hudrick @PaulHudrick

Love that the Blue Coats have been using Braxton Key as a five this season. I’ve always thought he was intriguing. As a switchable big? Love it.

The Blue Coats looked as though they were going to cruise to an easy win, heading into the fourth quarter with a 13-point lead. But Oklahoma City went on a 9-0 run to start the final frame, making things interesting.

Key's six points down the stretch paced the Blue Coats as they held off the Blue's rally, however.