For the second year in a row, Brooklyn Nets guard Cam Thomas is turning heads with his performance in the NBA Summer League. He had 31 points in his 2022 debut.
“It’s real different, just being more comfortable knowing what to expect,” Thomas said to Brian Lewis of the “New York Post “So I’d say this year I’m more like prepared to what’s to come for summer league. So I’m just excited to be part of it.”
Thomas’ high ceiling is starting to garner attention from rival executives throughout the league. Multiple teams have begun to make calls to the Nets about the availability of the former LSU standout, according to Lewis.
“Sources told The Post that the Nets have received interest from multiple teams regarding the 6-foot-3, 210-pound guard, with league personnel saying he likely could bring back a first-round pick. The Cavaliers, Mavericks, and Pelicans reportedly made concrete offers, according to LegionHoops,” Lewis writes.
Nets head coach Steve Nash was in attendance for the team’s matchup against the Philadelphia 76ers on July 10. During an interview with NBA TV, Nash implored the Nets guard to improve his playmaking as he gears up for his sophomore season, per a tweet from NetsDaily.
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Teams Have Called About Cam Thomas
The Nets selected Thomas with the 27th pick in the 2021 NBA Draft. It’s not as attractive as a lottery pick, but there have been some star players selected 27th overall. Some household names that have been picked at 27 include 3-time defensive player of the year Rudy Gobert, Raptors forward Pascal Siakam, who was a key in Toronto winning the title in 2019, and Boston Celtics standout Robert Williams who showed he has a bright future during this year’s playoff run.
The consensus around the league seems to be that Thomas is going to be the next elite name on that list. One Eastern Conference coach told Heavy’s Sean Deveney that ‘just about everyone’ called the Nets to inquire about Thomas last season.
“We called about him last year, I think just about everyone called about him at the trade deadline last year if you were looking for young players. He wasn’t going to play if they were gonna make a Finals run if they had everyone. So we wanted to give up a veteran and take him back. Didn’t happen,” the coach said.
“He plays with great pace, and he has a knack for scoring the ball. Pure scorer. But they were not moving him last year, they made that pretty clear. Now, it would be even tougher to get him away from them because they don’t know what is next with KD and (Kyrie) Irving.
He could be a guy who gets a lot of minutes with them next year, they’re not looking to give him away. They don’t want to rebuild, they are not trying to do a fire sale there. They want to stay in the mix in the East. He can help them with that.”
Thomas Draws Comparison to Jalen Green
Per Stat Muse, last season, Thomas averaged 8.5 points, 2.4 rebounds, and 1.2 assists per game on 43/27/83 shooting splits. The percentages could be a bit higher, but those improvements will come with repetition the more he plays. The Nets guard is already drawing comparisons to one of the top lottery picks from 2021, Houston Rockets guard Jalen Green.
“Cam Thomas has some of the same top comps as Jalen Green, as both guards’ offensive numbers are very similar on a per-possession basis this season,” Zach Kram wrote for “The Ringer” back in March.
“For instance: Green and Thomas are both scoring precisely 18 points per 75 possessions, Green on 53 percent true shooting, Thomas on 52 percent.”
The futures of Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving in Brooklyn remain unknown. But having a guard with a future as bright as Thomas’, could be quite the consolation prize.
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