The talk of Summer League is heading home.
Paolo Banchero, the Orlando Magic’s first overall selection for the 2022 NBA Draft, will play in Jamal Crawford’s pro-am league, the CrawsOver, to showcase his talents.
The Seattle native is excited to go back home and compete in this professional basketball tournament after being drafted before his peers in June. The fans in Central Florida look forward to watching the future of their franchise lace them up before the start of training camp.
For Magic fans who wanted to see more of Banchero after his two-game cameo in Summer League, they will get to see him play a bit more. With Banchero’s participation official in the weekend games, the Magic will get to see him play again this summer.
The Orlando Magic shut down Paolo Banchero after he found a little success in two Summer League games, but if fans want to see him again they can see him play for Team Real Ballers in the CrawsOver.
The CrawsOver was founded by 20-year NBA vet Jamal Crawford and is held at Seattle Pacific University and is free to the public.
In last year’s CrawsOver Banchero averaged 31.5 points per game and created a nice buzz for himself heading into his lone season at Duke. It was quite clear Banchero would be a problem once he was able to showcase his skills to a larger audience.
That helped propel Banchero to the top pick in the draft after a stellar season at Duke. In his two-game run at Summer League, he averaged 20.0 points per game and 6.0 assists per game. He was clearly the best player on the floor and made some big plays for the team in clutch moments.
The whole NBA world was talking about him and are still talking about him.
Four-time NBA Champion power forward Draymond Green believes that the Magic have finally selected a player who can move the needle:
This is some real high praise coming from a proven NBA champion and a veteran player who has competed on the highest level for multiple championships. He is not talking about playing for a playoff spot, he is talking about competing at the highest levels.
To make a long story short, Green has experience competing and being around greatness and he thinks that the Magic organization made the right selection at number one.
So expectations are high for Banchero.
Fortunately, the NBA world is not going to have to wait until the fall to see him play. The CrawsOver is going to put him on the floor again and give everyone that taste of his play again.
Even in a Pro-am like the CrawsOver, people are expecting him to play similar to how he played in his two Summer League showings. And he was pretty darn good in Summer League.
Now fans get another opportunity to watch him play in a looser type of venue away from the confines of the Orlando Magic. This is expected to be a highly competitive tournament full of oohs and ahh’s.
Do not expect a ton of defense and Banchero will likely be working up a light sweat. But it is a good chance to kick back and play loose and free. It will be good for a few highlights.
Some of the highlights from the first weekend last weekend was Malachi Flynn dropping 74 points in a game Saturday and Jamal Crawford rolling in late and scoring 46 points in three quarters Sunday.
This year the rookie is highlighted playing with Atlanta Hawks guard Dejounte Murray, whose trade to the Atlanta Hawks made some noise around media circles. It should be an exciting time.
And it is going to be good to see Banchero playing again for the next few weekends, even in this relaxed competitive setting. But everything is pointing to camp. And everyone cannot wait for that.