As the basketball season resumes following an eventful All-Star break, Two-Way Players have formidable goals for the rest of the campaign. Having seen standouts like Chris Boucher and Jaylen Adams have their deals converted into standard NBA contracts midseason, the stakes for the near future are high.
While not everyone will accomplish such a goal, the season’s remaining weeks will still provide these talented youngsters the chance to make strong impressions with their teams that are lasting and perhaps open up a window of opportunity for greater things to come not just this season, but well beyond.
The NBA G League resumed play on Wednesday, so here’s a look at which players finished the first leg of the campaign with an exclamation point and are already looking to carry that momentum with them in the games that now follow.
NBAGLeague.com’s Two-Way Tracker will provide weekly updates on the development of players signed to two-way NBA contracts throughout the 2018-19 season.
Two-Way Tracker: Meet All of This Year’s Two-Way Players
Joe Chealey, Charlotte Hornets / Greensboro Swarm: Guard Turning Heads With Recent Rise In Production
Heading into the break, Chealey was showing tremendous strides and his first game back (a 27-point performance) suggested that he’s set to continue rolling with some rather dominant scoring prowess. Over the last four contests, the guard has averaged 27.8 points (more than 12 points more than his season average), 7.3 assists, and 1.5 steals. He’s slowly but surely transforming into a whole other player with multiple dimensions.
Chealey has a newfound hunger to take over a game and pour in points with abandon. At the same time, he understands that as he heats up, the defense swarms in. He’s keeping an eye out for whoever the open man ends up being, and those around him are reaping the benefits of his hot streak, too.
Theo Pinson, Brooklyn / Long Island Nets: UNC Champ Excelling For Long Island After Strong Stint In Brooklyn
Pinson averaged 10 points in four games during a recent stint with Brooklyn over the last month. Once again donning a Long Island uniform more consistently, he’s come back a seemingly elevated player after matching up with elite competition for a few weeks.
The guard has logged 23 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 4 assists in his last four games, demonstrating an aggressive slashing ability to get into the paint and evade defenders for high-percentage buckets. A versatile talent, Pinson can crash the defensive glass and push the tempo during fastbreaks and find teammates streaking to the hoop, as well. He finds other ways to contribute when not scoring the ball.
Troy Williams, Sacramento / Stockton Kings: Leaper Making The Case for More Time in the NBA
Williams’ array of talents present many options for him as it relates to a consistent role at the next level. Dating back to his days with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers and Iowa Energy, this high-flyer has long been known as someone who heats up the highlight reel with some extra sizzle. Honing his other skills in Stockton, he’s become much more than that. He can shoot, he can slash, and creates mismatches for the defensive down low due to his length and swift agility. In his most recent four games, Williams has strutted his stuff on both ends especially well, averaging 22 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 2 steals.
SHINING AT THE NEXT LEVEL
Kadeem Allen, New York / Westchester Knicks: High-Scoring Guard Now Dropping Dimes In Big Apple
Following the NBA trade deadline, the Knicks have looked to Allen to fill the gaps left by some departing players, and he’s answered the call rather prominently. In his team’s last four games before the All-Star break, Allen boasted impressive numbers with 16.5 points and 6.3 assists per contest. He’s looked like a rather unselfish floor general, especially gelling well with the team’s second unit (which currently includes two of Allen’s former teammates in Westchester, John Jenkins and Luke Kornet). He dedicates himself to finding the players he shares the court with in the right places. He’s the perfect example of the kind of player who scores in bunches in the minor league, only to make the adjustment and rise up as a consummate teammate at the next level.
— Westchester Knicks (@wcknicks) February 14, 2019
TWO-WAY PLAY OF THE WEEK
Daryl Macon, Dallas Mavericks / Texas Legends: Guard Dials Down To Make It Rain From Deep
It takes an especially aware player to make sure an offensive possession aren’t wasted before the shot clock expires. This past week, Macon knew full well his window of opportunity was narrowing down and tossed up a heave of a three-pointer, only to see it swish right through the net.