Forward Paul Reed wins 2020-21 G League MVP and Rookie of Year awards

Delaware Blue Coats forward Paul Reed has been named the 2020-21 NBA G League Most Valuable Player and NBA G League Rookie of the Year, the NBA G League announced today. He becomes the third player to win both awards in the same season, joining Tim Frazier (2014-15) and Devin Brown (2002-03).

A two-way player with the Philadelphia 76ers, Reed (6-9, 210, DePaul) averaged 22.3 points, 11.8 rebounds, 1.93 steals and 1.80 blocks while shooting 58.8% from the field and 44.4% from three-point range in 15 regular-season games with the Blue Coats. Among qualified players, Reed ranked third in the NBA G League in scoring and rebounding and tied for third in steals. He also recorded a league-high 12 double-doubles.

Among rookies, Reed was the league leader in rebounds per game and offensive rebounds per game (4.6), and he ranked second in scoring, tied for second in steals and seventh in blocks. Reed equaled a rookie season high with 35 points in Delaware’s 129-114 loss to the Oklahoma City Blue on Feb. 27, a total matched only by Raptors 905 guard Malachi Flynn.

Reed led the Blue Coats to a franchise-best seven-game winning streak to start the season, a stretch in which he averaged 22.6 points, 12.7 rebounds, 2.29 steals and 1.43 blocks. He was named the NBA G League Player of the Week for Week 1 of the season.

Behind Reed, Delaware posted a 10-5 record in the regular season and earned the fourth seed in the 2021 NBA G League Playoffs. The Blue Coats won two playoff games before losing to the Lakeland Magic 97-78 in the NBA G League Final presented by YouTube TV on March 11.

The 76ers selected Reed with the 58th overall pick in the NBA Draft 2020 presented by State Farm. Reed, who signed a two-way contract with Philadelphia on Nov. 27, 2020, has appeared in seven games for the 76ers this season.

NBA G League head coaches and general managers whose teams participated in single-site play at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort near Orlando, Fla., voted for both the MVP and Rookie of the Year awards.

Rio Grande Valley Vipers guard Kevin Porter Jr., who was on assignment from the Houston Rockets, finished in second place in voting for NBA G League MVP. Raptors 905 forward Henry Ellenson finished third.

In NBA G League Rookie of the Year voting, Lakeland forward Mamadi Diakite and Canton Charge guard Brodric Thomas finished in second and third place, respectively.

G League: Rob Murphy named President and GM of Motor City Cruise

The Motor City Cruise announced today that Rob Murphy has been named President and General Manager for the Detroit Pistons NBA G League affiliate.

Per the team, “the former collegiate head coach will oversee basketball operations for the team while using his deep connections within the Detroit community and administrative acumen to grow and oversee business operations for the franchise.”

“Rob Murphy is the perfect person to lead the Motor City Cruise and we are pleased to welcome him to the Pistons organization,” said Arn Tellem, Vice Chairman for the Detroit Pistons. “His basketball knowledge is well documented and given that he was born and raised in Detroit, Rob’s relationships throughout the city and region will help drive business and growth opportunities for the future.”

Murphy, 47, joins the Pistons after spending the past 10 seasons as men’s head basketball coach at Eastern Michigan University. Murphy accumulated 166 wins at EMU and is the second all-time winningest coach in the program’s history. He led the Eagles to three 20-win seasons and three postseason appearances while building one of the most stifling defenses in college basketball during his tenure. Eastern Michigan won its first Mid-American Conference West Division Championship during Murphy’s first season (2011-12) and he was named MAC Coach of the Year and NABC District 14 Coach of the Year.

Other highlights of his EMU coaching career included winning the Jamaican Classic Championship, the EMU Tip-Off Classic and defeating Big Ten foes, Michigan and Purdue. Murphy graduated 36 of 38 (95%) student-athletes while at EMU, the best academic showing in the program’s history, and philanthropically, he’s initiated a number of community programs through the Rob Murphy Foundation (The Reading Challenge, Gift of Sharing) tailored for under-served youth in the Ypsilanti and Detroit communities.

Murphy began his collegiate coaching career as an assistant at Kent State University and then spent seven years as an assistant coach under Jim Boeheim at Syracuse University (2004-11). The Orangemen recorded a 180-67 record during his time at the school and made the postseason each year with five NCAA appearances and two NIT berths.

Pistons General Manager Troy Weaver noted that similar basketball philosophies will create great synergy and understanding as they work to build the Pistons and Cruise franchises in unison.

“Rob brings tremendous knowledge, creativity and leadership to our executive team,” said Weaver. “He’ll work collaboratively with both the basketball and business sides of the Pistons organization to ensure we have systems in place that maximize the development potential of the Cruise franchise.”

A graduate of Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio, Murphy was a two-year starter on the basketball team and the team’s defensive player of the year as a senior. Following graduation, he returned to Detroit to begin his coaching career at Detroit Central H.S. as the associate head coach in 1996-98. Central won the state Class A championship in 1997-98 after finishing runner-up in 1996-97. Murphy then moved to become the boy’s head basketball coach at Crockett H.S. where they won three consecutive Class B District titles (2000-2002) and captured the state championship in 2000-01. He was named All-Metro Coach of the Year by the Detroit Free Press in the same season. Murphy’s Crockett teams compiled a 64-27 record over a four-year span.

“It’s an honor for me to join the Pistons organization and lead the newest professional sports franchise in Detroit, the Motor City Cruise,” said Murphy. “I thank Tom Gores for providing this opportunity and I’m excited to work with Arn, Troy, Dwane Casey, Mike Zavodsky and the rest of the leadership team in building long-term success on and off the court while fostering a culture that will help us achieve our collective goals.”

Galen Robinson Jr. wins 2020-21 G League Sportsmanship Award

Austin Spurs guard Galen Robinson Jr. has been selected by NBA G League players as the winner of the 2020-21 NBA G League Jason Collier Sportsmanship Award, which honors the player who best represents the ideals of character and conduct as a teammate on the court and in the locker room.

In his second NBA G League season, Robinson (6-1, 190, Houston) averaged 7.8 points, 6.4 assists and 1.38 steals in eight games after being acquired by Austin from the on-site available player pool on Feb. 19. Robinson made an immediate impact by handing out a career-high 14 assists in his season debut, a 122-107 loss to the Delaware Blue Coats on Feb. 21. He also recorded season highs of 14 points and three steals in Austin’s 102-88 win over the Long Island Nets on March 2.

Robinson played 30 games for Austin during the 2019-20 season, averaging 8.1 points and 5.4 assists. He scored a career-best 24 points in a 117-114 win over the Northern Arizona Suns on March 6, 2020. In 38 career NBA G League games, Robinson has averaged 8.0 points and 5.6 assists.

The Sportsmanship Award honors the late Jason Collier, who exemplified the qualities of a great teammate during his career in the NBA G League and the NBA. A 2003-04 All-NBA G League First Team selection, Collier was preparing to begin his sixth NBA season at the time of his death in 2005.

Each participating NBA G League team nominated one player for the 2020-21 Jason Collier Sportsmanship Award. NBA G League players voted for the winner from the list of nominees. Westchester Knicks forward Andrew White III and Long Island Nets guard Shannon Scott finished tied for second place.

Jason Collier Sportsmanship Award Winners

2020-21: Galen Robinson Jr. (Austin Spurs)

2019-20: Ivan Rabb (Westchester Knicks)

2018-19: Gabe York (Lakeland Magic)

2017-18: C.J. Williams (Agua Caliente Clippers)

2016-17: Keith Wright (Westchester Knicks)

2015-16: Scott Suggs (Raptors 905)

2014-15: Renaldo Major (Bakersfield Jam)

2013-14: Ron Howard (Fort Wayne Mad Ants)

2012-13: Ron Howard (Fort Wayne Mad Ants)

2011-12: Moses Ehambe (Iowa Energy)

2010-11: Larry Owens (Tulsa 66ers)

2009-10: Andre Ingram (Utah Flash)

2008-09: Will Conroy (Albuquerque Thunderbirds)

2007-08: Billy Thomas (Colorado 14ers)

2007-08: Roger Powell (Arkansas RimRockers)

2006-07: Ime Udoka (Fort Worth Flyers)

Raptors 905 GM Chad Sanders named 2020-21 G League Basketball Executive of the Year

Raptors 905 General Manager Chad Sanders has been named the 2020-21 NBA G League Basketball Executive of the Year, as selected by his fellow NBA G League team basketball executives.

In his third season as General Manager for the Toronto Raptors’ NBA G League affiliate, Sanders oversaw a team that finished with the best record in the NBA G League (12-3) during single-site play at ESPN’s Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Fla.

Sanders’ key player acquisitions included forwards Henry Ellenson (21.2 ppg, 8.2 rpg) and Alize Johnson (16.6 ppg and 13.3 rpg) and guard Nik Stauskas (18.1 ppg, 3.6 apg), who helped the team finish with the highest-scoring offense in the league (123.8 ppg). Raptors 905 also led the NBA G League in assists (28.9 apg) and three-point field goal percentage (37.9).

Before the season, Sanders acquired returning player rights to guard Matt Mooney from the Memphis Hustle in exchange for returning player rights to Ben Moore. Sanders also traded for the 15th pick in the first round of the 2020-21 NBA G League Draft, which was used to select Gary Payton II. Mooney (11.6 ppg, 5.7 apg) and Payton II (10.8 ppg, 2.5 spg) were key contributors for the top-seeded Raptors 905.

Prior to being named General Manager for Raptors 905, Sanders worked in the Dominican Republic’s Basketball Program from 2011-2017, becoming General Manager of the National Team in 2015. During his tenure, the club’s world ranking climbed 10 spots from 27th to 17th, highlighted by a 13th place finish in the 2014 FIBA World Cup.

Santa Cruz Warriors General Manager Ryan Atkinson and Oklahoma City Blue General Manager Nazr Mohammed finished second and third, respectively, in voting for the 2020-21 NBA G League Basketball Executive of the Year Award.

Pelicans recall Wenyen Gabriel, Naji Marshall and Will Magnay from G League

The New Orleans Pelicans have recalled forward Wenyen Gabriel from the Erie BayHawks of the NBA G League.

Additionally, the Pelicans transferred two-way players Naji Marshall and Will Magnay from Erie back to New Orleans.

Gabriel, 6-9, 205, who was assigned to the BayHawks on March 3, appeared in Erie’s lone postseason game against Lakeland, registering four points, four rebounds and two assists in 23 minutes off the bench.

Marshall, 6-7, 220, appeared in 12 regular season games for Erie, averaging 15.5 points on .490 shooting from the field, including .349 from three-point range, to go with 5.4 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.3 steals in 26.9 minutes. In Erie’s one postseason game, Marshall registered 16 points, five rebounds, three assists and one block.

Magnay, 6-10, 234, appeared in 10 regular season games, averaging 9.1 points on .576 shooting from the field, 5.4 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.4 blocks in 22.2 minutes.

Mavericks recall Nate Hinton from G League

The Dallas Mavericks have recalled rookie two-way guard Nate Hinton from the Santa Cruz Warriors of the NBA G League.

Hinton (6-5, 210) appeared in two G League games for the Long Island Nets before being flex-transferred to Santa Cruz on Feb. 13. He averaged 10.6 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.1 steals and 23.0 minutes in 10 regular season games (two starts) for the Warriors while helping the club advance to semifinals of the G League playoffs.

The 2020-21 NBA G League season began on Wednesday, Feb. 10, with 18 teams competing at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort.

The Mavericks’ G League affiliate, the Texas Legends, opted not to travel to the NBA G League’s campus. NBA teams without an NBA G League affiliate participating in Orlando have the opportunity to assign roster players and transfer two-way players using the league’s flexible assignment and two-way rules.

Mavericks recall rookies Josh Green and Tyler Bey from G League

The Dallas Mavericks have recalled rookies Josh Green and Tyler Bey from the G League’s Salt Lake City Stars.

Green (6-6, 210) was flex-assigned to Salt Lake City on Feb. 17 and appeared in six games (three starts) for the club, averaging 13.5 points (.455 FG%), 4.8 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 2.2 steals in 29.7 minutes per game. He recorded 22 points (10-19 FG), six boards, a game-high eight assists and a team-high four steals while posting a game-high plus-23 rating in the team’s 109-93 win over the Fort Wayne Mad Ants on March 2.

Bey (6-7, 216), who saw action in one G League game for the Long Island Nets before being flex-transferred to the Stars on Feb. 11, averaged 16.2 points (.497 FG%), 9.7 rebounds and 28.6 minutes in 12 games (nine starts) with Salt Lake City. He recorded five double-doubles and three 20-point efforts with the Stars, capping his G League stint with a 23-point night against the Delaware Blue Coats on March 5.

The 2020-21 NBA G League season began on Wednesday, Feb. 10, with 18 teams competing at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort.

The Mavericks’ G League affiliate, the Texas Legends, opted not to travel to the NBA G League’s campus. NBA teams without an NBA G League affiliate participating in Orlando have the opportunity to assign roster players and transfer two-way players using the league’s flexible assignment and two-way rules.

Thunder recall forward Aleksej Pokusevski from G League

The Oklahoma City Thunder recalled forward Aleksej Pokuševski from the Oklahoma City Blue of the NBA G League today.

Pokuševski appeared in 13 games (12 starts) with the Blue this season and recorded averages of 7.9 points, 7.3 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 1.08 blocks in 25.2 minutes per contest. He logged two double-doubles in his time with the Blue, recording a 12-point, 19-rebound performance on Feb. 26 against the Austin Spurs while registering 19 points and 10 rebounds against the Rio Grande Valley Vipers on Feb. 21.

The Serbian native has appeared in 17 games with the Thunder where he is averaging 3.3 points, 3.5 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 1.12 blocks (most among rookies) in 17.4 minutes per game.

Pelicans assign Wenyen Gabriel to Erie BayHawks in G League

The New Orleans Pelicans today assigned forward Wenyen Gabriel to their G League affiliate, the Erie BayHawks.

Gabriel, 6-9, 205, who was originally signed by the club on November 20, 2020, has appeared in four games for New Orleans this season. Gabriel will join fellow teammates Naji Marshall and Will Magnay, who are on two-way transfers from the Pelicans.

The BayHawks currently sit in second place in the G League with a 10-3 record and have clinched a spot in the 2021 postseason. Erie’s next game is Thursday, March 4 against the Oklahoma City Blue at 6:00 p.m. CST.