Day Two of the Orlando Pro Summer League are in the books. Let’s take a look back at some of today’s superlatives.
Best Individual Performance: Gerald Henderson, Charlotte Bobcats. Henderson, a contender for this award yesterday, stepped things up today. Active and aggressive, the second-year small forward led Charlotte to a buzzer-beating win over the Thunder with 21 points, 8 rebounds, and 4 assists. He averaged 8.3 minutes per game as a rookie, and appeared in only 43 contests, but his improved jumpshot could make him part of the Bobcats’ rotation if coach Larry Brown overcomes his aversion to playing youngsters. Bobcats assistant coach Dave Hanners compared his impact on the game to that of Michael Jordan in his prime, and while Hanner’s being generous, his point is well taken. Henderson’s an exceptionally tough cover, at least here in Orlando.
Honorable mentions: Terrence Williams, New Jersey Nets; Eric Maynor, Thunder.
Breakout Performance: Jodie Meeks, Philadelphia 76ers. The undersized two-guard from Kentucky, who’s entering his second season, upstaged the more heralded Evan Turner, his Philly teammate, with an efficient and versatile offensive game. Meeks scored 18 points on 13 shooting possessions, and is a threat of the catch or in transition. Without him, The 76ers might not have had enough firepower to beat the Celtics.
Honorable mentions: Patrick Ewing Jr., Orlando Magic; Damion James, Nets.
Most Disappointing Performance: Daniel Orton, Magic. I hate to pile on to Orton, who also earned this spot in yesterday’s wrap, but he’s the only real choice today. Drafted 29th overall, Orton continues to play without much purpose or confidence. The unpolished center missed all 6 of his shot attempts and grabbed only 2 rebounds in 17 minutes. That last number might be the most troubling one: he’s 19 years old and left Kentucky immediately following the tournament to improve his conditioning, but he readily admitted that he’s not in good shape. Magic coach Patrick Ewing played Paul Davis a majority of the center minutes instead.
Honorable mentions: Josh McRoberts, Pacers; Evan Turner, 76ers.