The Wizards start their Summer League schedule tonight against the Warriors at 8 p.m. on CSN Washington. This will be our first opportunity to see John Wall in a Wizards (practice) uniform, as he teams up with JaVale McGee, Trevor Booker, Hamady N'Diaye and others in Vegas.
If the history of the Summer League has shown us anything, it's that Wizards fans will not be disappointed with Wall's performance this week. John Wall has several things going in his favor as he gets his first taste of NBA action.
1. Summer leagues are dominated by point guards - Summer league rosters are a mish-mash of young players from NBA rosters looking for valuable court time and players on the outside looking in who want to get an invite to a team's training camp in the fall. There isn't much time after the draft to round up players to play in Vegas and there's even less time to instill a semblance of an offense to execute. That means points guards have more free rein to call their own plays, push the tempo, and generally wreak havoc on the court.
It should come as no surprise that Nate Robinson and Jerryd Bayless - two quick-trigger guards who excel in up-and-down games - won Summer League MVP honors in 2007 and 2008, respectively. John Wall isn't quite as strong of a shooter as Robinson or Bayless, but his amazing court vision will help him rack up assists in ways that both of those guys could only dream of doing. And let's not forget there won't be many players in Vegas who can keep up with Wall, groin injury or no groin injury.
2. Wall has some solid talent around him this season - The Wizards have done an excellent job of surrounding Wall with players who fit Wall's style of play in Vegas. There may be other squads with a little more talent, but Wall has the players around him who can get up and down the court to finish transition plays and put pressure on the opposition's defense. It's a great Wallball (can I put in a trademark on that?) lineup.
3. Wall, as you may know, is pretty talented - Like I mentioned earlier, there isn't much time to put together much of a team offense or team defense. Advantage: Talented players. You can look through each team's roster here, but you won't find many players who can match Wall's explosiveness.