While waiting on official word that Marcus Williams will get the D-League call up from the Indiana Pacers, I checked in with Scott Schroeder at Ridiculous Upside for a little more background on this type of deal since the Pacers haven't dabbled much in the D-League up to this point.
Scott's assumption is that the Pacers are making a deal similar to those by other teams at this point in the season, in which, they sign Williams for the rest of the season with an unguaranteed option for next season. This secure's his rights for Summer League and a spot on the preseason roster next year without really committing more than a week of minimum salary.
With such a low risk, any reward Williams provides in the future will be a bonus. Williams has been on the grind to make the NBA since leaving Arizona after his sophomore year. With nothing guaranteed as a second round pick by the Spurs in 2007, Williams was sent to the D-League to mature his game.
After a couple of years in the D-League, which included a couple of cups of coffee in the NBA, Williams went to China this year for money. Straight yen, homey.
As it turns out, everthing will work out quite well for Williams this year after not making the Spurs' roster out of camp. He made a lot of money in China, came back to his former D-League team and now got a call-up. According to Scott, the China yen grab is common among D-Leaugue players, but returning for a quick call-up to the NBA is a rare feat.
Since returning, Williams has averaged 23.4 points, 5.4 rebounds and 4.8 asissts per game. He's also averaged 4.1 turnovers so we know there's at least one big area of improvement he needs to address. Hopefully we hear this is officially done today, but regardless of how it works out in the end, I'm excited that the Pacers are trying a different approach to improve the future.
After the jump, a few links of interest that stick with the future prospects theme, including some Pacer advice for Gordon Hayward, Bruno's hunt for prospects at the Final Four and the Portsmout Invitiational tipping off.
NCAA final was epic drama but lacking in prospects
Bruno enjoyed Butler's run to the NCAA championship game against Duke but didn't see any talent that could help the Pacers out right now.
Portsmouth Invitational Tournament rosters
Won't find any lottery picks at Porstmout but there are plenty of familiar names and other undervalued players looking to make a name for themselves. Last year, caught everyone's attention Jon Brockman worked his way into the draft then proved it wasn't a fluke by making the Sacramento Kings' roster. The Pacers may have two second round picks this year so some of these guys will likely be in the mix.