Is It Too Early to Bestow Hardware on Worthy Skyforce NBA Exploits
Opening night in The Association has come and gone. Let’s trot out the awards for most impactful Skyforce alums in their NBA teams’ first outing.
Earning the award for Best Return on Investment is Hassan Whiteside. He helped lead Miami back from a halftime deficit to build a 19-point lead after intermission in the Heat’s 108-96 win over Orlando. That $98 million free agent contract seems spot on with his 18 points, 14 rebounds and 4 blocks, but it’s just one game.
Honorable mention for the award goes to Miami’s Tyler Johnson who hit 7 of 11 shots for 15 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists and two steals. TJ also landed a sizable free agent deal worth $50 million this past offseason which originated from Brooklyn, but was matched by the Heat.
Grabbing the Welcome Back to the Association nod was Justin Hamilton of the aforementioned Nets. After one year overseas the sweet shooting center collected his third career double-double (19 points, 10 boards) upon his return in Brooklyn’s loss to the Celtics.
DeAndre Liggins who last played for Miami in 2014 gets runner-up in that category. His 4 points, 3 assists, 3 rebounds backed up a solid night for the Cavs win over the Knicks.
The Finally Hitting the Big Time Award goes to Rodney McGruder who saw his first ever regular season NBA action for Miami. In 23 minutes, there were 6 points, 3 rebounds and 2 steals for the former Skyforce swingman.
A long season awaits, but so far the Sioux Falls Skyforce can bask in a little NBA success. The reigning NBADL champs will get down to defending their title starting November 12.