Las Vegas Summer League: The Undrafted Players to Watch

  • This article comes with a warning: nothing is guaranteed for early-career players with no deals or non-guaranteed deals. Since there are more talented ballers than available roster spots in the NBA, there are a variety of reasons that some of the enticing undrafted free agents in this class may not be able to make rosters early in their career, if at all. However, everybody loves to be the first to find the diamond in the rough, and there are some prospects in this pool who seem more likely than others to have a roster spot in the immediate future. Ultimately, this article could be titled “Undrafted Players Most Likely to Earn a Roster Spot,” but there could be some real fantasy value in the short-term futures of some of these athletes. Deep-league managers will surely want to know what to expect from whoever makes the cut this year. Whether they achieve their potential and get to debut in the league with their own draft class remains to be seen, but here is a look at some undrafted free agents from the class of ‘22 that may have some fantasy impact sooner than later.


    Trevion Williams
    F, Boston Celtics


    Notable 2021-22 Stats: 12.0 points, 7.4 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 0.9 steals, 0.6 blocks, .547 FG%, .597 FT%

    Williams processes the game well and makes plays on both ends, but it’s likely that NBA scouts might have focused more on his age and relatively pedestrian college numbers when advising their teams. Despite this, the former Boilermaker is a perfect fit for the modern NBA at 6’10” and 255 pounds with a 11’4” standing vertical reach, which is fifth overall in his draft class. While his abilities did not translate to overwhelming raw stats in college, scouts surely took note of Williams’ willingness to defer to top prospect Jaden Ivey while effectively sharing the post with another behemoth big, the 7’4” Zach Edey. Williams worked as a connector on offense while always being there for second-chance baskets and, while he didn’t overwhelm with his production, made smart decisions on the less glamorous end of the floor.

    The senior from Purdue is going to play for the Celtics at the NBA Summer League, meaning that he will likely be competing for what could be as many as four available roster spots, barring future changes. If he gets a deal with the Celtics, there are two Williams’ already ahead of him in the post rotation, along with Al Horford. His ability to carve out fantasy value in such a role will lie in high-impact categories like assists, blocks and steals, since Williams’ atrocious free throw shooting doesn’t inspire confidence in his ability to help from range or the line. Given his profile from the previous paragraph, it is reasonable to expect that Williams could function as a secondary playmaker and defender off the bench; producing some limited fantasy value in a rookie season where he may be used sparingly. Should things not work out with the Celtics and the Purdue alum finds himself on a different NBA roster, managers should hope that it’s a lowly team like the Spurs or Thunder. With increased playing time, Williams could have a “Diet Nance” fantasy profile.


    Justin Lewis
    F, Chicago Bulls


    Notable 2021-22 Stats: 16.8 points, 1.1 treys, 7.9 rebounds, 1.1 steals

    After posting the fourth-highest standing vertical leap and the sixth-fastest shuttle run at the NBA Draft Combine, Lewis started to gain attention as a stretchy, bouncy forward that should thrive with the physicality of the NBA. Coupled with his impressive 7’2.5” wingspan, many amateur scouts had Lewis pegged as one of the prospects to watch once the first round ended. In many respects, Lewis was one of the most surprising undrafted players this year, after matching his impressive physicality with floor-spacing and above-average rebounding in two years at Marquette. Lewis made strides as a shooter after being a complete non-factor as a freshman, while making notable improvements on the boards and 3-point volume. Although his offensive game and defensive instincts will need some fine-tuning, Lewis already has the profile of a successful grinder in the NBA, with a physical profile that should allow him to immediately make some impact, even if he’s likely to be mistake-prone.

    The Bulls have inked Lewis to a two-way deal for the 2022-2023 season, so he will have a chance to split his time between the NBA and G League in what’s likely to be a developmental year. If he is able to stand out at Summer League and in training camp, the Bulls may find more use for Lewis as a potential depth piece behind Patrick Williams as they need shooters and could use help at the four. It’s more likely that Lewis will only register on NBA radars in limited doses this upcoming season, leaving managers to wonder how his strengths of rebounds, steals and treys and growth areas of blocks and free throws will translate. Until he is able to become more consistent on both sides of the ball -particularly as a shooter- Lewis may not be worth any attention in fantasy leagues.


    Dominick Barlow
    C/F, San Antonio Spurs


    Notable 2021-22 Stats: 14.8 points, 0.8 treys, 5.9 rebounds, 1.1 steals, 1.2 blocks, .530 FG%, .769 FT%

    Barlow is one of the high-risk, high-reward candidates in this draft class. The rangy, energetic forward has potential as a two-way, transition playmaker, but it’s unclear if he has the skills or instincts to succeed in the half-court game after his year in the G League. Barlow is the sort of player that can, and did, impress in individual workouts and scrimmages, but his ability to process the game and make reads at a high-level is still being cultivated. Scouts have correctly noted his ability to interrupt passing lanes, protect the rim and space the floor, but the on-court value of these skills will be minimal until Barlow becomes more seasoned. If reports about his work ethic are true, then there is reason to believe that Barlow could be a diamond in the rough with this draft class. Demonstrating more of a willingness to box out, rebound and bang down low will help Barlow cement his projected role as a hustle player at the next level.

    The Spurs will bring Barlow to Las Vegas on a two-way deal, after which he will likely be splitting his time between the big leagues and the Austin Spurs. Given the projections for the upcoming season and their previous willingness to allocate playing time to young projects like Josh Primo, it’s possible that Barlow gets a few big-minute runs this year. Managers should always roster players like him with the notion that, as a raw prospect, Barlow is a high-risk gamble that might not pay off. However, if he does get results, it’s likely to be in three very impactful categories: blocks, steals and treys. He might not be a name to know this season, but Barlow’s potential in these categories inspire optimism for his fantasy future.


    Alondes Williams
    G, Brooklyn Nets


    Notable 2021-22 Stats: 18.5 points, 6.4 rebounds, 5.1 assists, 1.2 steals, .507 FG%

    Williams used his impressive offensive tools and physical advantage with great success at the college level, scoring with ease against overmatched opponents. The 23 year old demonstrated an ability to make plays on both ends with impressive size and physicality. Williams proved able to collect rebounds better than most guards while taking high-percentage shots, although his shot chart goes from hot to cold the further he gets from the basket. He will need to handle the ball at the next level in order to make an impact on offense, so his extensive experience as a primary creator in college should help Williams feel comfortable in this role. Williams is not such a transcendent playmaker that he would get many opportunities to work through the expected challenges, so his odds of success may hinge on his ability to keep the defense honest with an improved shot before he can pressure rim protectors with his pick-and-roll attack.

    Williams will suit up for the Nets this season after signing a two-way contract with the beleaguered franchise. In what should be welcome news for aspiring, unproven NBA players, the Nets seem to be on the verge of collapse as the Kevin Durant-Kyrie Irving situation comes to a head. The chaos has already begun in Brooklyn, and, to quote Littlefinger from Game of Thrones, “chaos is a ladder.” It’s unclear if Williams could be one of the beneficiaries when the pecking order with the Nets changes, but they will likely need perimeter creators once their offense is no longer so heliocentric. The only things that should really hold Williams back are his free throw shooting, treys and turnovers. Managers should take note of his status in the rotation, as Williams should be able to collect a reasonable amount of assists, boards and steals if given the chance. The upper-limits of his potential probably won’t be sky-high, but Williams’ college stats mirror a current deep-league player whose role and production he could mimic right away in the NBA: DeAndre’ Bembry.


    Adonis Arms
    G, Denver Nuggets

    Exhibit 10

    Notable 2021-22 Stats:  8.5 points, 4.3 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 0.9 steals

    True to his name, Arms has impressive strength and athleticism, but he’s a relative-unknown and was one of the older prospects in the draft. The 23 year old worked his way up from community college to become a key contributor at Texas Tech this year, helping the Red Raiders nearly beat the top pick Paolo Banchero and the Duke Blue Devils, finishing that contest with 13 points, seven rebounds, seven assists and two steals. There is no doubt that such production places him firmly in standard league contention, but those are lofty expectations for any first-year player, let alone an undrafted one. Given his low-level averages in college, Arms is more likely to function as a utility player in the NBA. Despite his under-the-radar production, it’s unwise to dismiss Arms as being unworthy of a look at the next level since he is switchable across multiple positions and is a solid secondary playmaker.

    The Nuggets have recruited Arms for Summer League with an Exhibit 10 contract, meaning he will still have to prove his worth before he has any job security. He will need to maximize his statistical production categories like assists, 3s and steals in order to register fantasy value and earn a roster spot. Arms is already a high-level athlete that can get above the rim with ease and functions well in transition, but his best value in the league could be as a 3-and-D player. A strong performance in Las Vegas could get some attention, but Arms will need a roster spot before getting consideration as a deep-league target. The Nuggets will have as many as seven roster spaces available -although it is highly unlikely to remain that way- so Arms could find his way onto the squad. He has the size, athleticism and utility that any team could use, so it’s reasonable to expect low-end production across the board if he does play, but it’s unwise to expect a full-fledged breakout.


    Orlando Robinson
    C, Miami Heat

    Exhibit 10

    Notable 2021-22 Stats: 19.4 points, 1.0 treys, 8.4 rebounds, 1.0 steals, 1.2 blocks, .716 FT%

    Robinson is a 6’11” big from Fresno State who has impressive length and athleticism for his position despite questionable physicality. Over the course of his three years in college, Robinson gradually raised his usage while working on stretching his shot further each season. Culminating in his junior year, Robinson was able to register one trey per-game on slightly less than three attempts. There is reason to believe this shot is translatable as Robinson was a .700-plus free throw shooter throughout college. However, the true value of his on-court production is on the defensive end where he used his impressive physical tools to disrupt shots and passing lanes to great effect. There is an argument that his individual defense may not be as strong as his stats indicate but there is obvious ability to develop and fantasy players are only judged for their statistical production.

    The Heat will have a look at Robinson on an Exhibit 10 deal this summer and he could have a chance to convert this into a two-way or regular contact with impressive play. Historically, the Heat are one of the best places for an undrafted free agent to wind up as they are filled with success stories like Duncan Robinson, Max Strus and Gabe Vincent, while offering a team culture that rewards merit. Quite simply, if Robinson commits in the gym and on defense, he has as good a chance to earn minutes as any other potential bench player with the Heat. The departure of PJ Tucker, coupled with the advancing ages of Dewayne Dedmon and Udonis Haslem should get Robinson some consideration as a potential rival to Omer Yurtseven as post options next to Bam Adebayo. Coach Erik Spoelstra wants shooters all over the floor, so Robinson’s continued development in that area could be a difference-maker. It’s far too bold to say so, but Robinson’s ability to mix it up on defense, in transition and from the perimeter is reminiscent of a long-tenured former NBA player who shared his surname: Cliff Robinson. The Fresno State product has a long way to go before his career measures up to the one-time All-Star and Sixth-Man of the Year, but all managers will need to see from him is one trey, one block and one steal in order to find all the fantasy value they need.


    Trevor Hudgins
    G, Houston Rockets


    Notable 2021-2022 Stats: 23.0 points, 4.3 treys, 4.2 assists, 1.4 steals, 1.9 turnovers, .482 FG%, .415 FT%, .901 FT%

    When a D-II player gets one of the first two-way deals with bigger names unsigned and on Exhibit 10 contracts, they definitely get an entry. The two-time D-II Player of the Year obviously has inflated numbers due to his level of competition, despite the obvious potential of his efficiency metrics: shooting and turnovers. Remarkably, Hudgins’ impressive rate from beyond the arc is actually a major dropoff from the previous two seasons, where he made more treys than he missed with around six attempts a game. In his senior year, Hudgins nearly doubled his three-point attempt rate with 10-plus shots per-game while also getting to the line and collecting steals at a solid rate. A career-high average of nearly six assists was set in his sophomore year, but Hudgins lost more than one full assist from his totals in subsequent seasons. Despite the drop-off, there are signs that he could function as a playmaker at the next level. As a primary option, his sub-2.0 turnover average throughout his career demonstrates a level of maturity in decision-making that should translate to the pros.

    Hudgins will suit up for the Rockets this year and seems to be a capable creator from the perimeter with spot-up shooting ability. While the premier prospects on the Rockets regular season roster are already well-known, the young and unproven squad in Houston should have room for anyone who demonstrates an ability to assert themselves in an NBA game. A two-way contract means that Hudgins is more likely to spend the majority of the season in the G League, but it’s typical for two-way players to appear in about a quarter of NBA contests and modern players like Naz Reid have had their contracts converted to standard deals in their rookie years. There is no reason that managers shouldn’t consider any player that breaks out with the Rockets this year, as they project to have plenty of opportunities in a developmental season. If Hudgins appears to be on the cusp of getting real playing time -even in small doses throughout the year- then he has value for his ability to generate assists, steals and treys without hurting you from the field, the charity stripe or with turnovers.


    Michael Devoe
    G, Los Angeles Clippers

    Exhibit 10

    Notable 2021-2022 Stats: 17.9 points, 2.2 treys, 1.3 steals, .365 3P%

    Devoe was the MVP of the 2022 Portsmouth Invitational Tournament during the pre-draft process and seems to have barely missed the cut on draft night after quickly winding up with the Clippers. The Georgia Tech alum has typical wing size and projects as a floor-spacer at the next level thanks to his impressive volume and accuracy from range in college. Without impressive burst, it’s unlikely that Devoe will be asked to do much playmaking off the dribble, but he did demonstrate a willingness to make the extra pass in college. This runs the risk of having him slapped with the specialist label, but Devoe has solid size to guard the perimeter and his steals average indicates his two-way potential. At less than 185 pounds, it’s likely that Devoe will need to hit the gym before seeing results on that end. Devoe will need to demonstrate an ability to function as a secondary playmaker or reliable defender in order to solidify his value as a pro.

    After signing an Exhibit 10 deal with the Clippers, Devoe will suit up for them in Las Vegas and could earn a two-way deal to spend next year with the Agua Caliente Clippers in the G League. There is an underlying assumption that Devoe will get a shot with the team this year, as he was considered draftable in the second round. While it’s unwise to expect any real rotational need for a swingman behind Paul George. Kawhi Leonard, Norman Powell, Terrence Mann, Luke Kennard and Amir Coffey, recent history does indicate that the Clippers may need to rely on their depth more than average to deal with injuries and rest concerns. At any level, there is one thing with Devoe’s role which should inspire confidence when he plays: shooting. For that alone, the Clippers prospect could catch on sooner than later and provide some limited fantasy appeal. After barely missing the cut in mock drafts, it’s likely that Devoe will have some form of NBA contract going into next season. Adding him to their rosters for a few end-of-bench treys will require managers to check if he can actually expect a few minutes first, however.


    Terrell Brown Jr.
    G, Minnesota Timberwolves


    Notable 2021-22 Stats: 21.7 points, 4.1 rebounds, 4.2 assists, 2.1 steals, .200 3P%

    The 6’3″, 24 year old Brown went undrafted after six years in college, despite impressive production. Age and perimeter shooting likely held him back, but Brown is a dynamic playmaker that could make an impact at the next level. His sky-high usage in college will not be replicated when he takes the floor with full-time NBA players, but players like Brown should be able to steal the spotlight against lesser competition in the lead-up to next season. After stops in community college and D-II ball, along with multiple D-I programs, Brown has demonstrated tenacity to get to this level. However, Brown fell off the radar after his 2020-2021 season with Arizona, where he was outshined by several other players -including Bennedict Mathurin- in a non-featured role that saw him lose about 13 points from his averages in the seasons that came before and after. Scouts may not have been satisfied that Brown can fit within a team concept at the next level after so much of his production seemed to be tied to his usage level, so the sorts of roles that may be available to him could be limited. He can be dynamite with the ball in his hands, meaning that Brown is likely to be pegged as a potential sixth-man at the next level for his ability to generate his own looks.

    The Wolves will bring Brown to Las Vegas on a deal with undeclared terms, and the 24 year old guard should have an immediate opportunity to shine. Fellow Class of ‘22 member Walker Kessler has already been shipped off in the Rudy Gobert trade, leaving one less name that the Wolves’ coaching staff will be expected to feature. Given the amount of assets that the Wolves just gave up for Gobert and the immediate opportunity to take the spotlight, it’s likely that Brown will find a way to an NBA deal of some sort. If he starts to appear on the radar, managers can expect streaky scoring with some potential for assists and steals, but Brown isn’t likely to help in efficiency statistics like treys, shooting percentages and turnovers.


    Tevin Brown
    G, Indiana Pacers

    Exhibit 10

    Notable 2021-2022 Stats: 16.8 points, 3.1 treys, 5.6 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 1.4 steals

    While it is far from a powerhouse program, Murray State has churned out some notable NBA guards, including Ja Morant and Cameron Payne. Brown may be the latest Racers alum to join their ranks, as the Alabama native finished his career as the best sniper in school history, while also registering top-10 all-time finishes in points, assists and steals. There is a ceiling for players of Brown’s caliber, but there are translatable NBA skills in his highlight reels that could allow Brown to have some notable games early on. On average, Brown would shoot about 3-for-8 from range as a senior, and he never averaged less than a steal per game throughout his career. Brown’s shot volume and usage were nearly identical from freshman to senior year, while his efficiency stats -shooting percentages and turnovers- remained almost the same as well.

    The Pacers are bringing Brown to the NBA Summer League on an Exhibit 10 contract. Nothing is guaranteed for players on Exhibit 10 deals, but teams tend to find opportunities for notable shooters and the Pacers can afford to take chances right now. Failing that, Brown may be able to generate enough interest with his reputation as a shooter to find a job elsewhere. He’s unlikely to be a standout player in the NBA, so it’s probably best not to put too much faith in Brown’s career and long-term fantasy potential. However, he can fill the classic low-usage 3-and-D role that deep-league managers looking to bump up their numbers in specific categories could consider streaming.


    Michael Foster
    F, Philadelphia Sixers


    Notable 2021-22 Stats: 14.8 points, 8.7 rebounds, 1.9 blocks, 0.8 steals, .490 FG%

    Foster may have regretted taking the G League route after falling out of the 5-star status that he opened the season with. While his potential may not be what it was once thought to be, Foster does still have a translatable base skill set which could allow him to impact games. Foster is only one season removed from hovering around the mock draft lottery conversation and joins the Class of ‘22 nearly averaging a double-double with nearly three combined blocks and steals.

    Foster will play for the Sixers in Las Vegas, competing for a roster spot alongside other prospects like Julian Champagnie and Aminu Mohammed. The G League product is an undersized post player who would traditionally be listed as a center if he weren’t barely 6’9”. However, Foster has a 7’0” wingspan and a knack for collecting boards that could allow him to carve out a role in the NBA if he can mitigate his size disadvantage in the post. Currently, it seems that the Sixers have 13 players on their roster for next season, leaving two spaces for the three aforementioned players to compete over. Barring future changes or other training camp contenders, the 19 year old seems as likely as any other to make the cut for his age alone. Even if Foster does make the roster, Paul Reed is likely to do everything he does -but better- off the bench for the Sixers next year. PJ Tucker will eat up a lot of supporting minutes, while Charles Bassey threatens to take time as well. There will likely be limited space for Foster to contribute in fantasy next year and if he does, it’s likely to be with garbage time rebounds and blocks. There is simply too much skill overlap and more-seasoned small-ball bigs in his way, so Foster’s fantasy relevance will rely on playing time. As with any player that can produce both blocks and steals in the same night, Foster deserves consideration the moment he is able to start getting some action; likely due to injuries or trades in his first year.


    Ron Harper Jr.
    G, Toronto Raptors


    Notable 2021-22 Stats: 15.8 points, 2.1 treys, 5.8 rebounds, 1.0 steals

    Fans may recognize his name because of father’s 15-year career, which included several seasons alongside Michael Jordan and the Bulls in the mid-to-late 1990s. The apple didn’t fall far from the tree with the younger Harper, who has a similar physical and shooting profile to his father at 6’4” with pedestrian shooting slashes at all three levels. After helping Rutgers to their first NCAA Tournament in 30 years in the previous season, Harper returned to school and repeated the feat this year. In what would be his final college season, Harper registered considerable improvements in his accuracy from the free throw line and beyond the arc, while also setting personal-best marks in points, assists and steals. After consistent improvement in four years of college, Harper has started to show the signs of a solid shot and impactful defense. Since he doesn’t specialize in any particular skill and isn’t a premier athlete, the combo guard projects as a floor-raiser in the NBA. Developing the intangible skills that make supporting players valuable will be crucial to his success in the league, but it’s fair to bet on Harper, given his pedigree.

    The Raptors have recruited Harper for the Summer League and beyond after they made the Rutgers product one of the first undrafted players to ink a two-way deal in the post-draft recruiting frenzy. In order to make an impact at the NBA level, Harper will need to use his impressive wingspan to be a disruptor on the defensive end. This may be an easier task than developing the offensive talents which may also help him to stay on the floor, as Harper’s low assist rate implies limited ability as a connector, while his shooting will need to develop before he could be considered a floor-spacing threat. Some combination of these skills should be reflected in his fantasy value, but even an optimized version of Harper will likely be a bench contributor in the league. With tapered expectations, deep-league managers may be satisfied with Harper’s production in rebounds and steals, while he could also have some nights of positive contributions in points, 3s and shooting percentages.


    Kofi Cockburn
    C, Utah Jazz

    Exhibit 10

    Notable 2021-22 Stats: 20.8 points, 10.5 rebounds, 0.8 steals, 0.9 blocks, .593 FG%

    Cockburn is used to being the biggest player on the floor after making a career so far as a low-post bruiser that can bully his way to the basket, get above the rim for lobs and collect easy second-chance baskets. At 7’0” and nearly 300 pounds, Cockburn would be the ideal big man for the NBA of the 20th century, but he will be one of many big men competing for limited minutes in a modern game that demands more skill. The Jamaican big man has unrivaled physical traits and is the only college player to rank in the top-20 for scoring and rebounds, so there is a solid foundation for an NBA team to build upon. He’s not an elite post scorer, so Cockburn will need to settle into a role as a rim-runner and second-chance scorer in order to secure playing time at the next level. Similarly, Cockburn defends the post effectively enough simply by having a hard-to-ignore presence around the rim, but he’s not a particularly effective shot-blocker. It will be hard for Cockburn to come out of the paint on either end and he may get caught on switches in the pros. He will need to learn to play within himself to avoid being exposed.

    The junior pivot from Illinois will suit up with the Jazz this summer and become part of a group of unproven big men competing to fill Rudy Gobert’s now-vacated playing time. Tacko Fall and Walker Kessler will be summertime rivals for Cockburn, who -if he is lucky enough to survive training camp- will also have to contend with Udoka Azubuike and any other already-proven big that makes the cut. If he doesn’t look lost this summer, it’s likely that Cockburn will be able to convert his Exibhit 10 deal into a larger opportunity. The beauty of the center position is that it arguably requires the least-diverse skill set and the players that define it are often so physically-imposing that they can have some measure of success based on their size alone. Cockburn shouldn’t be considered one of the favorites for a center rotation spot -even if he already looks the part- but he does seem to have the basic skills necessary to take advantage of the opportunity if it is given. His impressive size almost guarantees him a chance at the next level, so Cockburn may not be reliant on the Jazz’s good graces, but there is a definite gap in the post in Gobert’s absence, so this is as good a shot as any for him. Managers will have to circle back around to Cockburn’s status in October, as his future is too murky to make any declarations yet. However, Cockburn seems like he should be immediately able to move NBA-sized bigs around in the post to collect some high-percentage shots and boards. Managers can expect a small dose of points, rebounds and field goal percentage contributions if Cockburn ever does take the court, with some hope of getting a steal or block on a good night.


    Honorable Mention: Johnny Juzang, Jean Montero, Jaylen Sims, Julian Champagnie, Kenneth Lofton Jr., Quenton Jackson, Scotty Pippen Jr., Aminu Mohammed, Kyle Foster, Jamaree Bouyea, Keon Ellis, John Butler

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