Cam Thomas will start on the bench again, but sometimes fate intervenes

No one is aware of higher than Cam Thomas on how the fates can interfere. After Summer League closing yr, the place he led the league in scoring and was once named co-MVP, Thomas was once observed as a construction participant. At slightly two decades previous, he was once a precocious scorer but there have been a large number of the ones on the Nets roster. There have been some optimists. Kristian Winfield predicted he may reasonable 10 issues a recreation (he averaged 8.5) and would possibly have a 30-point recreation alongside the method (that came about in opposition to Utah in early February.) It depended on different guards’ availability.

Well, after averaging 39.5 issues in two G League video games, Thomas was greater than a construction participant. He was a go-to man with Kyrie Irving unavailable, James Harden forcing his method out and Joe Harris two times below the knife. He completed his rookie season taking part in just about 1,200 mins in 67 video games, He had some tricky occasions at the finish of the season, but in spite of the rookie wall, he proved dependable when wanted. As Brian Lewis writes Saturday:

Thomas was once certainly one of simplest two Nets to play each and every recreation from Jan. 7 thru Feb. 26, pouring in 13.6 issues in 24.4 mins in keeping with recreation. But after Dragic made his debut on Feb. 24, Thomas mustered simply 5 issues in 11.5 mins and sat out 4 video games over the ultimate 22.

That stretch integrated a 28-foot dagger at the Garden to cap a 28-point comeback he in large part engineered. Pundits might disagree on him but he’s a large fan favourite as a result of his familiarity with the second and rival GMs it seems that like him too.

Now, after all, issues are principally again to the place they began. He established himself as Mr. Summer League with every other 27.0 scoring reasonable in Vegas and significantly better lend a hand numbers. (Do no longer ask him if he can cross.) His 3-point capturing nonetheless wishes paintings and he struggled on protection as he did closing yr.

So, he will need to earn mins assuming (hoping) the Nets don’t get the harm plague once more this season. No worries, says Steve Nash.

“We’ll see how it goes after training camp. But he clearly is on a veteran team with a lot of guys who can play, have had a lot of success,” Nash famous. “We know Cam’s gifted, and simply seeking to proceed to expand him and notice if he can stay pushing and getting higher at positive issues that’ll assist him get mins.

“I said whether he plays or he doesn’t play, he has to stay positive, he has to keep the belief that this process is going to help him. So, as last year we saw he played stretches of the season and carried a large load at certain times during the year and then other times he doesn’t play, that’s very valid and possible this year. Whether he earns a ton of minutes or doesn’t, we still believe in Cam. He’s a very talented young basketball player that we want to develop.”

The reasoning is unassuming: between the go back of Joe Harris and Seth Curry, the availability of Kyrie Irving and the addition of avid gamers like Royce O’Neale, Edmond Sumner and in the end T.J. Warren, there are a large number of scorers on the roster, all of whom are higher defenders.

“There’s probably more competition this year with Kyrie playing every night, Joe Harris back, Ben being a versatile player. That’s before we get to Royce, Seth, Patty [Mills]. So a lot of competition with the guard spot,” Nash mentioned. “That’s why it’s in point of fact essential for Cam to proceed to imagine, proceed to paintings, no longer take any days off.

“Hopefully for his career he earns minutes, but if he doesn’t, look at the circumstances. He’s got a lot of tough players with a lot of experience, a lot of great complementary players in the group. So, tons of competition.”

The Nets, after all, can have traded Thomas in the low season. There have been a variety of rumors but not anything it seems that got here shut which for his enthusiasts in Brooklyn is a superb factor.

Nash praised every other younger guard Friday. He referred to as rookie two-way guard Alondes Williams “a natural passer” and a “developmental player,” in keeping with Alex Schiffer. The 23-year-old Williams went undrafted after being named ACC Player of the Year at Wake Forest but didn’t have a really perfect Summer League. He averaged 2.2 turnovers, but in part that was once a serve as of alternative avid gamers no longer being in rhythm with him. Williams has NBA dimension for a PG at 6’5” and 210 kilos.

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