Wrapping up the Wolves Summer League Performance

3 of 6

Jul 10, 2015; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves forward Adreian Payne (33) shoots the ball during an NBA Summer League game against the Los Angeles Lakers at Thomas & Mack Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Adreian Payne

Payne was acquired before the trade deadline in February for what will likely amount to a protected first-round draft pick. He was a clear disappointment over the course of the next few weeks, often struggling to figure out where he should be and when on both ends of the court.

The one thing that Payne showed was an ability and willingness to play hard all the time, and his activity on the glass and in the paint on defense was the only concrete, positive contribution that he made in the regular season.

In Summer League, Payne increased his intensity even more and it resulted in some nice stat lines. The combination of hustle and inferior competition was beneficial to the former Michigan State forward.

Payne averaged more than 30 minutes per game, second only to Towns of the players that appeared in all five games. He equaled Brown at 14.2 points per contest to go along with 8.4 rebounds per game. He only shot 40.4% from the field as he forced too many contested attempts in the post, but did manage to shoot 37.5% from beyond the arc and 70.4% in 27 attempts at the free throw line.

It was generally an encouraging performance, but it was definitely buoyed by Payne’s age and intensity compared to significantly inferior competition. If nothing else, Payne did what he was supposed to do as a 24 year-old second-year player in the Las Vegas Summer League.

Next: High-Volume Scoring