In the NBA minor league’s first season as the NBA G League, its impact at the next level continued to grow. With the introduction of two-way contracts, even more NBA G League prospects got their chance in the NBA.
Here are six facts to know about NBA G League alumni this season:
For the first time, more than half of NBA players have NBA G League experience. An all-time high 53% of the 500 NBA players on end-of-season rosters honed their skills in the NBA G League. In total, 265 players finished the NBA season with NBA G League experience.
NBA G League alums will leave their imprint on the NBA Playoffs, as well. 45% of players on NBA Playoff rosters have NBA G League experience, from two-time NBA G League All-Star Quinn Cook filling in for Stephen Curry in Golden State to former Maine Red Claws star Terry Rozier breaking out in Boston.
Every NBA team featured at least six NBA G League alums by the end of the season. Four expansion franchises brought the NBA G League to an all-time high 26 teams this season. The addition of two-way players also gave NBA teams up to two roster spots for minor-league prospects. That means that NBA teams’ rosters were stacked with NBA G League alums more than ever before.
Seven teams finished the season with more than 10 alums on their end-of-season roster. The Atlanta Hawks led the way with 15 players having NBA G League experience, while the Detroit Pistons (14), Chicago Bulls (12), Memphis Grizzlies (11), L.A. Clippers (10), San Antonio Spurs (10) and Toronto Raptors (10) also reached double-digits.
101 NBA players were assigned to the NBA G League this season. Those 101 players were sent to NBA G League affiliates more than 400 times in all. This year, that list included bigger names than ever, as established veterans like Blake Griffin, Isaiah Thomas and Tony Parker practiced in the minor league.
13 first-round 2017 NBA Draft picks played in the NBA G League this season. Over time, the NBA G League has become a regular part of the NBA rookie experience. Nearly half of this year’s first-rounders saw minor-league action on assignment from their NBA parent clubs, including lottery picks Jonathan Isaac, Malik Monk and Luke Kennard.
Getting the Call: 60 NBA G League players made the jump to the NBA this season. For the seventh-straight season, more than 30 NBA G League prospects were called up to the NBA. In total, 60 prospects received GATORADE Call-Ups during the 2017-18 season, tied for the second-most all-time. Highlights of that group included Trey Burke, who reinvigorated his career with the Knicks, and Andre Ingram, the 10-year NBA G League vet who scored 19 points in his NBA debut with the Lakers.
NBA G League Alumni on NBA Playoff Rosters (not including two-way players)
Boston Celtics: Aron Baynes, Shane Larkin, Marcus Morris, Abdel Nader, Terry Rozier, Marcus Smart, Guerschon Yabusele
Cleveland Cavaliers: Jordan Clarkson, Cedi Osman, Kendrick Perkins, Okaro White, Ante Zizic
Golden State Warriors: Jordan Bell, Quinn Cook, Damian Jones, Shaun Livingston, Kevon Looney, Patrick McCaw
Houston Rockets: Tarik Black, Clint Capela, Gerald Green, Chinanu Onuaku, Zhou Qi, PJ Tucker
Indiana Pacers: Ike Anigbogu, Cory Joseph, TJ Leaf, Alex Poythress, Glenn Robinson III, Joe Young
Miami Heat: Luke Babbitt, James Johnson, Tyler Johnson,Rodney McGruder, Jordan Mickey, Josh Richardson, Hassan Whiteside
Milwaukee Bucks: Eric Bledsoe, Sterling Brown, Brandon Jennings, Khris Middleton, D.J. Wilson
Minnesota Timberwolves: Cole Aldrich, Aaron Brooks, Marcus Georges-Hunt, Amile Jefferson, Tyus Jones, Shabazz Muhammad, Justin Patton
New Orleans Pelicans: Alexis Ajinca, Ian Clark, Jordan Crawford, Cheick Diallo, Solomon Hill, DeAndre Liggins, Darius Miller, Emeka Okafor
Oklahoma City Thunder: Terrance Ferguson, Josh Huestis, Dakari Johnson, Patrick Patterson, Andre Roberson
Philadelphia 76ers: Justin Anderson, Robert Covington, Richaun Holmes, Ersan Ilyasova, Amir Johnson, Furkan Korkmaz, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot
Portland Trail Blazers: Wade Baldwin IV, Ed Davis, Jake Layman, CJ McCollum, Shabazz Napier, Georgios Papagiannis, Caleb Swanigan, Noah Vonleh
San Antonio Spurs: Kyle Anderson, Davis Bertans, Bryn Forbes, Danny Green, Patty Mills, Dejounte Murray, Brandon Paul, Derrick White
Toronto Raptors: Lorenzo Brown, Alfonzo McKinnie, CJ Miles, Lucas Nogueira, Jakob Poeltl, Norman Powell, Malachi Richardson, Pascal Siakam, Fred VanVleet, Delon Wright
Utah Jazz: Tony Bradley, Alec Burks, Jae Crowder, Rudy Gobert, Raul Neto, David Stockton
Washington Wizards: Tim Frazier, Marcin Gortat, Ian Mahinmi, Chris McCullough, Mike Scott, Ramon Sessions