The NBA lockout may have put a halt to all league-sanctioned practices and exhibitions, but many of the players have found other ways of staying in shape and sharpening their skills during the indefinite standstill. One of the most popular choices is the Drew League located in L.A. This league features a variety of teams with talented professional/amateur basketball players who compete against each other - and many star players such as LeBron James, Kevin Durant, John Wall, James Harden, Josh Smith, Tyreke Evans, and many others have participated in it this summer.
Lebron James and Kevin Durant have made a name for themselves with remarkable performances in the Drew League (see videos below), a less expected name has also emerged among the noteworthy mentions. Kenneth Faried, a 2011 draft pick who was recently drafted 22nd overall by the Denver Nuggets, also put on quite a performance during a recent Drew League appearance. Faried looked incredibly athletic, energetic, and aggressive in the highlights of the game (also shown below), and may cause many fans and front office personnel alike to take notice.
Even in a relatively weak draft seemingly devoid of talented big-men, Faried was passed over by over two-thirds of the teams in the first round due to his reported rawness and lack of shooting ability. His energy and athleticism was never in question, but those aforementioned concerns may have been a little overblown if this game is any indication of what we can expect from him in the NBA.
Sure, the quality of the opponents in the Drew League is nowhere near the same level as that of the NBA, and it also takes more than one great game to make a great player. However, the fact that Kenneth Faried is making news alongside of the NBA's most elite players who are also competing in the very same setting should at least be considered.
Lebron James's Drew League Highlights:
Kevin Durant's Drew League Highlights:
Kenneth Faried's Drew League Highlights