March Madness isn’t here quite yet, but two former collegiate stars in Shannon Scott and CJ Fair have certainly elevated their games even higher at the pro level. It’s the most opportune time, because NBA Call-Up season is indeed in full effect with 10-day contracts now available. Elsewhere in the NBA G League, a recent Skyforce acquisition is looking like a completely different player, and two big men are still laying down the building blocks following strong Winter Showcase performances. By picking up right where they left off, they too are hoping to remain fresh in the minds of big league scouts.
Here’s a look at what Scott, Fair, and three more prospects have been up to, to deserve NBA Call-Up consideration.
Shannon Scott, Long Island Nets: One would be hard-pressed to find a floor general who’s been stuffing the stat sheet more than Scott over his last four games. The Ohio State product has tallied two 20-assist outings and two triple-doubles. He’s averaged 12.3 points, 15.3 assists and 8.5 rebounds, all while applying the same kind of pestering defense that helped him become a two-time Big Ten All-Defensive Team member. Scott’s unselfish nature makes those around him better, which could be quite a telling trait as it relates to potential success at the next level.
CJ Fair, Windy City Bulls: Fair emerged as a lethal double-double threat during the Bulls’ recent nine-game winning streak. He’s aggressive around the rim and stays alert for second-chance opportunities. Over his last five games, Fair has logged 17.2 points and 8 rebounds, but that’s come to be expected from him as of late. The lengthy forward is also averaging 1.8 steals and 1.4 blocks, his physical frame serving as a glove hovering around opposing big men. Fair has made tremendous strides on the defensive end this year, and an even bigger transition from his days at Syracuse. His stock is rising and NBA teams could be on notice.
Emanuel Terry, Sioux Falls Skyforce: Sioux Falls recently traded for a minor league role player and have quickly turned him an absolute NBA G League stud. Skyforce colors have suited the big man so far, averaging 20.8 points and 7.8 rebounds through four games with his new club, up from 8.1 points and 6.2 rebounds with Canton. At 6-foot-9 and 220 pounds, Terry may have the look of a perimeter player, but his physicality absolutely helps him play above the rim. The Skyforce have made an effort to keep out for him constantly cutting to the basket, and as a result, he’s been a fantastic finisher pouring in points from the paint.
Cameron Oliver, Delaware Blue Coats: Otherwise known as “Space Cam,” Oliver has been proving his worth as a high-flying finisher all season long. Following two 20-point and 10-rebound performances at the Winter Showcase, the big man has continued to impress, averaging 16.4 points, 10.6 rebounds and 2.6 blocks in his last five games. Sure, dunking big men are often a dime a dozen, but Oliver’s more unique ability comes from the fact that he can also crash the glass, put the ball on the floor, and take it up himself going coast to coast for impressive buckets.
Johnny Hamilton, Grand Rapids Drive: Whereas many of the above players are athletically gifted offensive prospects, Hamilton serves as the kind of bruising big man who can stop such players at the rim with ease. Averaging 16 points, 10.2 rebounds and 2.6 blocks in his last five games, this 7-foot, 230-pounder could stand to be an underrated candidate for Defensive Player of the Year. He’s strong, plays in the pick and roll well and has a high basketball IQ when it comes to chasing down speedy guards, who often find themselves on the other end of a Hamilton deflection as he swats away opposing layups.