Nickeil Alexander-Walker Steals The Show In NBA Summer League


No. 21 pick Brandon Clarke may have claimed NBA Summer League MVP honors while leading the Grizzlies to the 2019 championship but Nickeil Alexander-Walker ranked first with 24.3 points, fourth with 6.0 assists and third with 2.8 steals among summer leaguers who appeared in at least four games.

Alexander-Walker signed a two-year, $6,078,000 contract with the Pelicans on July 7 and after splitting their first two games in Nevada, he helped them win three straight before losing for the only time in the semifinals, 88-86 in overtime against the Grizzlies on Jul 14.

It was only the second time in the seven years of the NBA Summer League’s tournament format that the Pelicans reached the semifinals and Alexander-Walker became just the third player in franchise history to garner first-team status in Las Vegas, joining JR Smith in 2015 and Seth Curry in 2015.

Nickeil Alexander-Walker was supposed to be the team’s starting shooting guard in Las Vegas but his playmaking and court vision facilitated a move to point guard for the Toronto native.

Alexander-Walker’s skills and potential from Virginia Tech were on full display in the NBA Summer League and he should play a significant role in the Pelicans rotation, even with Jrue Holliday and Lonzo Ball having the starting spots in the backcourt secured.

His game can translate well to the NBA because of his versatility to play at point or shooting guard and his length will help him see more minutes. With Jrue Holiday and Lonzo Ball helping him, Nickeil Alexander-Walker can become a special two-way player who can provide perimeter shooting, help on defense and create for himself and others.

Odds to Win the 2019-20 NBA Rookie of the Year Award
(Courtesy of BetOnline)

Zion Williamson -155

Ja Morant +333

RJ Barrett +450

Darius Garland +1500

De’Andre Hunter +1800

Michael Porter Jr. +1800

Coby White +2500

Cam Reddish +3500

Jarrett Culver +3000

Jaxson Hayes +4000

Rui Hachimura +4000

Sekou Doumbouya +5000

Nassir Little +5000

PJ Washington +5000

Bruno Fernando +6000

Keldon Johnson +6000

Mfiondu Kabengele +6000

Tyler Herro +6500

Bol Bol +7500

Nickeil Alexander-Walker +8500

Goga Bitadze +12500

KZ Okpala +12500

Kevin Porter Jr. +12500