Former BYU basketball star Brandon Davies isn’t looking back. After enduring a college career wrought with an Honor Code violation that killed his sophomore year--and his best chance at winning a national championship alongside Jimmer--Davies got back into the good graces of administrators at BYU and cleaned up his act.
Before long he was welcomed back on the BYU basketball team, completed his junior and senior seasons and was even picked up by the Philadelphia 76ers as a free agent--this after going undrafted last year.
Now Davies, who already has 51 NBA games under his 6-foot-10-inch frame as a rookie, is looking to continue what he started according to a Comcast SportsNet article on Thursday, July 10--and that’s improve.
Davies is already known for being a force on defense for the Sixers--but he is looking to ramp up his numbers on offense in the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas this week.
Last season, Davies averaged just three points per game and shot just 42 percent from the field--a number he will need to improve on if he’s going to take the next step and receive a guaranteed contract from Philadelphia.
Right now, Davies is getting just over $800,000 from the Sixers--again, it’s non-guaranteed money, meaning Philadelphia can opt out of the deal at any time.
That kind of pressure to perform well would probably make most grown men crumble. But after what Davies has been through, playing five games in a pressure-packed summer league tournament--and in a God-forsaken desert, no less--well, it’s child’s play.
In case you still think that Davies hasn’t learned his lesson and is enjoying his last moment in the NBA, peep what his assistant coach and Las Vegas summer league had coach had to say about Davies improvement--even during this seemingly endless summer.
“He’s been great. Ever since he showed up here last year, he’s been one of the hardest workers -- one of the first guys into the gym and one of the last guys to leave,” Sixers assistant coach Chad Iske said. “His effort on the court is contagious, which is one of the things everybody loves about him. He makes others around him play harder with his effort [and] he’s brought all that to the camp and a leadership quality, too.”
Davies opens the Las Vegas tournament this weekend against his hometown Utah Jazz--a match-up that will be worth watching, considering that former Utah Utes star Jason Washburn is with the Jazz summer league entry and may at some point be matched up against the former BYU star.