Three former Huskers will take part in this year’s NBA Summer Leagues beginning on Saturday morning.
Tai Webster will play with the Charlotte Hornets in the Orlando Summer League from Saturday through Thursday then will join the Golden State Warriors for the Las Vegas Summer League July 8-17.
Terran Petteway will begin with the Boston Celtics in the Utah Summer League Monday through Thursday then will finish with the same team in the Vegas league.
Shavon Shields will play with the Miami Heat in the Vegas league.
Check here for a full schedule of game times and TV information.
Teams often overload their rosters, signing more players than can realistically get a chance to play significant minutes. We will have to wait until the games begin to discover whether or not the three Huskers will play significant minutes, but a quick look at the rosters can give us an idea of what each player has to compete with for playing time.
The Hornets will be without lottery pick Malik Monk who is out with an ankle injury suffered during the pre-draft process, but there are still plenty of guards left on the roster for Webster to compete with for playing time.
VCU product Briante Weber, a 6-foot-2, 165-pound point guard who is known for his defensive ability and distribution skills, has bounced around the league and has signed with four teams over the last two years. Gabe York is a 6-foot-2, 190-pound sharpshooter out of Arizona while Tyrell Corbin, the son of former NBA player and current coach Tyrone Corbin, is a 6-foot-1, 185-pound point guard. Rasheed Sulaimon, a 5-star recruit out of high school who started his college career at Duke and finished it at Maryland, is about the same size as Webster.
On the wing, Charlotte has second-round draft pick Dwayne Bacon by way of Florida State, Treveon Graham out of VCU and former Celtics draft pick Kris Joseph out of Syracuse.
Playing time might be a bit tougher to come by with the Warriors for Webster. Golden State has second-year player Pat McCaw in the backcourt who is likely to play significant minutes as well as a handful of undrafted free agents who just wrapped up their college careers in UCLA’s Bryce Alford, Oregon’s Dylan Ennis and Joe Rahon from St. Mary’s among others and a couple of second-year players in Missouri’s Jabari Brown and Rhode Island’s Xavier Munford.
As for Petteway, the Celtics have several drafted players from the last two years to get minutes for in wings Jaylen Brown and Abdel Nader, guard Demetrius Jackson and center Ante Zizic from last year’s draft and lottery pick forward Jayson Tatum, second round pick forward Semi Ojeleye and second-round guards Jabari Bird and Kadeem Allen. Those players will likely get an edge over an undrafted free agent like Petteway when it comes to playing time decisions.
Finally, a lot of the talent on the Heat’s roster is on the interior including 2017 lottery pick Bam Adebayo out of Kentucky. Miami has six players 6-foot-5 or shorter with Michigan’s Zak Irvin (6-foot-6, 215 pounds) as the only player on the roster with similar measurable to Shields at 6-foot-7 and 225 pounds. Shields has to show he’s talented enough to get minutes over the other perimeter players on the roster, but the fact that he brings something unique to the team could be a factor in his favor.
Even with a strong performance, all three former Huskers are unlikely to secure NBA contracts. Even so, it is an opportunity to put together some good tape for teams overseas to take a look at as well. Petteway and Shields have been playing professionally and should have a good idea of what to expect, but this will be Webster’s first experience as a professional basketball player.
Hail Varsity will bring you updates throughout Summer League as the former Huskers look to prove what they are capable of.
Jacob is in his third year with Hail Varsity covering Husker athletics. He has also written extensively for SB Nation’s Bright Side of the Sun and The Creightonian. His love of basketball can best be described as an obsession and if you need to find him, he’s probably in a gym somewhere watching, coaching or playing hoops.