Upgrade Your Fandom

Join the Ultimate Denver nuggets Community!

Meet the Nuggets' 2018 Summer League team

Harrison Wind Avatar
June 29, 2018

The 2018 Summer League will run from July 6-17 at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas. For the first time, all 30 NBA teams will be in attendance and play a minimum of five games each. The Nuggets’ first three scheduled games are July 6 against the Timberwolves, July 7 against Boston and July 9 against Milwaukee.

Back from last year’s roster are Malik Beasley, Monte Morris, Tyler Lydon and Petr Cornelie. Joining them are 2018 second-round pick Thomas Welsh, 2017 draft-and-stash Vlatko Cancar and a slew of free agents. 2018 draft picks Michael Porter Jr. and Jarred Vanderbilt, who are both recovering from injuries, will not play at Summer League.

The Nuggets will hold Summer League practices beginning Sunday before departing Thursday for Las Vegas. This year’s team will be coached by Nuggets assistant Jordi Fernandez.

*SLER = Summer League Excitement Rating

Projected Starters

PG: Monte Morris – SLER: 10/10 – 23-years-old – 6-foot-3, 175 pounds – Last played with Nuggets

Morris, who the Nuggets selected 51st overall in 2017, only played 25 minutes with Denver last season but fared well in G League competition. With last year’s main options at backup point guard in Devin Harris and Will Barton about to become free agents, Morris could gain the inside track on next year’s backup spot with a strong showing in Las Vegas. He’s a high-IQ floor general who does a little bit of everything well. He has the ability to be one of Summer League’s standout players.

SG: Malik Beasley – SLER: 9/10 – 21-years-old, 6-foot-5, 195 pounds – Last played with Nuggets

If Barton does leave in free agency, Beasley is the guard off Denver’s bench set for the largest increase in minutes. He’s had trouble breaking into the Nuggets’ rotation over the past two seasons, but Beasley did flash some potential as a two-way wing last season and hit on 34 percent of his threes. This is the third consecutive summer Beasley will play with Denver in Las Vegas. Expectations are high.

SF: Vlatko Cancar – SLER: 10/10 – 21-years-old – 6-foot-8, 210 pounds – Last played with San Pablo Burgos (Spain)

Cancar is currently playing for his home nation Slovenia in the 2019 World Cup qualifiers. In Slovenia’s first game against Juancho Hernangomez and Spain, Cancar scored 17 points on 6-9 shooting and hit three of his six three-point attempts. The Nuggets are high on Cancar who isn’t the quickest athlete but can score, pass the ball and attack the rim. He has a good feel for the game but may still be a year away from figuring into the Nuggets’ immediate plans.

PF: Tyler Lydon – SLER: 10/10 – 22-years-old – 6-foot-10, 225 pounds – Last played with Nuggets

Lydon did not show well at last year’s summer showcase, but then flashed potential in the G League before a knee injury cut his rookie campaign short. What’s the book on Lydon? He’s an athletic combo forward with a plus-shot and some sneaky ability to defend the rim. He’s buried on the Nuggets’ depth chart at the power forward spot, but a strong showing this time around in Vegas can go a long way for the 22-year-old.

C: Thomas Welsh – SLER: 8/10 – 22-years-old – 7-foot, 255 pounds – Last played with UCLA

With Porter and 41st overall selection Jarred Vanderbilt both sitting out Summer League, Welsh, who the Nuggets nabbed 58th overall, is the lone Denver draft pick making his debut in Las Vegas. Welsh is a skilled 7-footer and gifted shooter who is a sniper from midrange and can hit the NBA three. He’s experienced and will likely fare well if he can contribute defensively.

Off the bench

Kenrich Williams – SLER: 9/10 – 23-years-old – 6-foot-7, 210 pounds – Last played with TCU

Williams was a projected second-round pick before questions about his previous knee injuries dropped the forward down draft boards. If he can stay healthy, Williams should be a factor in Las Vegas. He’s a versatile forward who can bounce between three positions. Williams shot 39.5 percent from three last season on 3.6 attempts from three and isn’t a slouch on defense either.

DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell — SLER: 8/10 – 25-years-old – 6-foot-5, 200 pounds – Last played with Bakken Bears (Denmark)

If Nuggets fans are looking for the next Torrey Craig, it might be Akoon-Purcell, who’s an NBA-ready athlete and terror in transition. After going undrafted out of Illinois State in 2016, Akoon-Purcell averaged 20 points per game last season and Denmark and just wrapped up on a 2017-18 campaign where he poured in around 18 points per contest to go with five rebounds and four assists per game. Akoon-Purcell has a good handle and shot 35 percent from threee in league play last year.

Stan Okoye – SLER: 7/10 – 27-years-old – 6-foot-6, 215 pounds – Last played with Pallacanestro Varese (Italy)

Okoye averaged 15.1 points and 7.5 rebounds per game in Italy’s first division last season. He also hit 39 percent of his threes. Okoye represented Nigeria’s national team at the 2013 and 2015 AfroBasket tournaments.

Andre Spight – SLER: 6/10 – 23-years-old,  6-foot-3, 170 pounds – Last played with Northern Colorado

A local product, Spight went undrafted earlier this month but can really fill it up. He broke the school and conference record for single-season scoring (855 points) last season and garnered Most Valuable Player honors at the CollegeInsider.com Tournament last season, which the Bears won.

Victor Sanders — SLER: 5/10 – 24-years-old, 6-foot-5, 195 pounds – Last played with Idaho

Sanders, a sweet-shooting guard who led the Vandals in scoring at 19 points per game last season, earned second-team All-Big Sky honors but went undrafted. He worked out for the Nuggets in the pre-draft process.

Scott Machado – SLER: 5/10 – 28-years-old, 6-foot-1, 205 pounds – Last played with South Bay Lakers (G League)

Machado has bounced around since going undrafted in 2012, but he averaged 16 points on 45.0 percent shooting from the field and  40.5 percent from three last season in the G League.

Petr Cornelie – SLER: 5/10 – 23-years-old – 6-foot-11, 220 pounds – Last played with Levallois (France)

The Nuggets’ 2016 draft-and-stash is back with the team for another go around in Las Vegas. He struggled last season in France but on paper, Cornelie is an athletic five man who can run the floor and shoot the three.

Kennedy Meeks – SLER: 5/10 – 23-years-old – 6-foot-10, 277 pounds – Last played with Raptors 905 (G League)

Meeks is a big body center who will likely show well in Vegas because of his size. He averaged 12.5 points and 9.5 rebounds in the G League last season.

Marcus Posley – SLER: 5/10 – 24-years-old, 6-foot-1, 195 pounds – Last played with Koroivos B.C (Greece)

Posley averaged 11.5 points last year in Greece’s top league but struggled to shoot the ball. He hit 36 percent of his field goal attempts and 32 percent of his threes.

Emaunel Terry – SLER: 5/10 – 22-years-old, 6-foot-9, 220 pounds – Last played with Lincoln-Memorial (Division II)

Terry posted big numbers last season against D2 competition and averaged 16.9 points, 10.3 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game. He also shot 71.1 percent from the floor.

Hayden Dalton – SLER: 5/10 – 23-years-old – 6-foot-8, 195 pounds – Last played at Wyoming

Another local product, Dalton is from Parker, Colorado, and played his college ball at Wyoming. He posted roughly 18 points and eight rebounds per game last season for the Cowboys.


Share your thoughts

Join the conversation

The Comment section is only for diehard members

Open comments +

Scroll to next article

Don't like ads?
Don't like ads?
Don't like ads?