close
close

Latest Post

Events in cities this week – Colorado Hometown Weekly Former head coach of women’s tennis, Mark Wesselink, has died

SAN FRANCISCO — Every offseason there are players who quickly prove they are too good for the Summer League. Brandin Podziemski and Trayce Jackson-Davis both have good chances to make quick moves to the championship, but their performance on Wednesday was not enough to do that.

Podziemski and Jackson-Davis, Golden State’s two rookie stars from last year, participated in Summer League action at Chase Center to close out the Warriors’ California Classic. They returned to the Bay from USA Select Team practice for a game and are expected to return to Las Vegas for more Summer League games.

If they are playing to their full potential, it probably doesn’t make much sense for them to get playing time in the friendlies.

Podziemski (15 points, four rebounds, four assists) and Jackson-Davis (11 points, six rebounds) didn’t dominate, but they helped the Warriors fend off a furious second-half Sacramento comeback. The Kings rallied with a 21-3 run to cut Golden State’s 21-point lead. They tied the game with 25 seconds left, but a Podziemski free throw put Sacramento away, 91-90. Kevin Knox II added 21 points, the most for his team.

“It was really good to see our team respond after getting hit in the face,” head coach Anthony Vereen said after the game. “It’s easy to be the bully, but sometimes we have to fight back. That’s what we did.”

After the narrow victory, the Warriors were allowed to raise the first Mitch Richmond trophy – which is awarded to the winner of the Battle of NorCal Summer League game between the Warriors and the Kings.

Here are three takeaways from the Warriors’ win.

What else can Jackson-Davis do?

Trayce Jackson-Davis’ athleticism is at NBA level. Of course, he would also play a role in the Summer League.

Everything Jackson-Davis does for the Warriors – protect the basket, finish lobs, set tough blocks and switch on defense – he did against Summer Sacramento. On the very first possession of the game, he managed a put-back dunk after a missed three-pointer. In the first five minutes alone, he scored four points, three rebounds and one steal.

Summer League should be an environment for Jackson-Davis to flex his muscles, not flex them. Everyone knows he can play a rim-running role with the Warriors. He should play a more prominent role in Summer League minutes like other NBA players who parachute in.

Give Jackson-Davis some post touches — he dominated on the block in Indiana. Let him run the offense as a facilitator on the break or from the elbow. See what he can do. If it doesn’t work, it’s Summer League; the outcome doesn’t matter.

“I want them to take full advantage of those opportunities, have fun playing and experience what it feels like to carry the game on their shoulders, so to speak,” Vereen said of Jackson-Davis and Podziemski. “These are roles they want to grow into at some point.”

Podz already shows summer works

There’s a particular move that the league’s best guards have mastered perfectly, and it’s the same one Podziemski has been working on this summer, bringing it from the lab to the California Classic.

After a high pick-and-roll late in the first quarter, Podziemski felt his defender breathing down his neck. With a patient crab dribble, he kept him there while wading horizontally through the zone. The defense collapsed and Podziemski kicked the ball to Ethan Thomas, who made an assist.

“I’m definitely working on it and I think it will work out for me this season,” said Podziemski. “So it’s good to repeat it now.”

Podziemski started the game with a post-move score over Keon Ellis. He threw a pocket pass for a Jackson Davis slam. He sank a three-pointer and a couple of ill-advised ones, pulled a patented charge and knocked down a difficult baseline jumper. He wasn’t perfect, but he was mostly effective.

But that particular play of weaving along the ball screen and maintaining control in the box stood out. It showed a natural progression that Podziemski can make this year when he has the ball in his hands more often.

The goal for Podziemski in Summer League is to have him be a lead guard. The Warriors want him to be comfortable making decisions with the ball in his hands. They want him to shoot without hesitation and find the balance to make the right play.

When Sacramento came back with a 21-3 run in the second half, he struggled to calm Golden State’s offense. When he and Jackson-Davis came on with two minutes left and a three-point lead, they didn’t take the lead. Instead, Podziemski allowed an and-1 to tie the game while trying to mount an attack. He was saved by a blocking foul at the midcourt and sank a free throw for the win.

These repetitions are important for Podziemski, perhaps even more important than for Jackson-Davis. He can learn a lot.