By: Anthony Oliva, NBADLeague.com
SANTA CRUZ, CALIF. — It’s not often you can win a championship before lunch, but that’s exactly what the Bakersfield Jam did today by defeating the Grand Rapids Drive to claim the first ever Showcase Cup Championship. The game, which tipped at 10am local time, was the first of three games on the final day of the 2015 NBA D-League Showcase presented by Samsung. Both the Jam and Drive exhibited excellent team ball throughout the week and several of the team’s prospects — most notably the Jams’s Earl Barron and Joe Jackson and the Drive’s Willie Reed and Lorenzo Brown — raised their stock in front of GMs and scouts from all 30 teams. In then end, however, it was an assignment, Bakersfield’s Archie Goodwin from the Pheonix Suns, that took home the Showcase Cup MVP after three strong games in Santa Cruz.
We’ve seen 19 games in five days. Here’s a recap of all the action from the final day.
PLAYER OF THE DAY
Joe Jackson, Bakersfield: Once a high school All-American, Joe Jackson is playing healthy for the first time this season and he’s immediately shown signs of his massive potential. On Monday, Jackson saved his best performance of Showcase for last when he contributed 24 points on 9-for-13 shooting to go with five assists to play a marquee role in the Jam winning the first-ever Showcase Cup. The 6-foot-1 guard will leave Showcase as one of the most intriguing players to follow during the season’s second half.
NBADLeague.com has updated the Prospect Watch each day during Showcase. Here is a look at two of the Prospects that saw their stock rise on Day 5.
|Lorenzo Brown||Joe Jackson|
|PREVIOUS: 15 / CURRENT: 11||PREVIOUS: UR / CURRENT: 26|
QUOTE OF THE DAY
Bakersfield’s Earl Barron on what continues to drive him after experiencing every kind of professional basketball:
“Just the love for the game man. I love helping the other guys — helping show them what it takes to win and how to play the right way in basketball. I want to see these guys be successful. We’ve got a lot of talented young guys on this team. Nate and I have a relationship from back in Iowa. Hopefully down the road, I’ll be a coach someday. I try to learn and continue to get better. I’m trying to take this team to a championship.”