The stars were out at Jamal Crawford’s The Crawsover pro-am last Saturday, with Paolo Banchero and Chet Holmgren making headlines as the top two picks in the NBA Draft teamed up to drop a combined 84 points. But Banchero and Holmgren weren’t the only NBA stars who showed out.
Minnesota’s Jaden McDaniels had 52 points, 11 rebounds, and seven assists against Bachero and Holmgren at The Crawsover in Seattle. The Seattle native and University of Washington alum returned home to put it down for his city in an impressive performance.
In a recent appearance on ESPN’s NBA Today, Crawford was asked which player at the most recent Crawsover events (which also featured Trae Young, Dejounte Murray, and John Collins on Sunday) stood out to him the most. His response? Jaden McDaniels.
“The one I think is least talked about is Jaden McDaniels,” Crawford said. “His offense is so good, but right now, he’s in a role where he’s playing defense to stay on the court. But once his offense is unlocked, you’re looking at somebody who’s so fluid, 6’9, can handle the ball, make plays, very smooth when he plays, doesn’t disrupt the offense with how he plays.”
He’s someone who, I think, is the one that doesn’t get talked about enough,” Crawford said. “But he’s gonna be a great, great player for years to come.”
We’ve always known he’s had the hops, but McDaniels showed off an improved jump shot and handle at The Crawsover, making him a must-watch player heading into his third NBA season.
The 21-year-old averaged 9.2 points and 4.2 rebounds per game on 46.0 percent shooting from the field last season. McDaniels only shot 31.7 percent from three-point range in the regular season but saw that number jump to 50.0 percent in Minnesota’s hard-fought playoff series against the Memphis Grizzlies.
If McDaniels could find some consistency with his jump shot, he could be set for a breakout season with the Timberwolves. With a young core of Karl-Anthony Towns and Anthony Edwards, along with the blockbuster acquisition of Rudy Gobert, McDaniels and the T-Wolves will have to prove last season’s playoff appearance was the first of many to come in Minnesota.
Photos via Getty Images.
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