Former Spartan Jaren Jackson Jr. was selected No. 4 overall in the 2018 NBA Draft by the Memphis Grizzlies. If his Summer League debut is any sign of things to come, I think the entire Memphis organization is going to be very happy with that decision.
Jackson lit Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City on fire Monday night against the Atlanta Hawks. He dropped 29 points on 9-of-15 shooting, which included eight three pointers. Eight! He also hit three of his five free throws and added three rebounds. All of this was in just 23 minutes.
Look, I can go on about this, and I’m sure the Hawks are kicking themselves for passing up on Jackson (hey, I tried to tell them), especially after Trae Young’s pitiful performance. But why don’t y’all just take a look for yourself.
.@jarenjacksonjr pours in 8 3's and 29 PTS in his first #NBASummer action for the @memgrizz! #NBARooks pic.twitter.com/gGwURwDTtL— NBA (@NBA) July 3, 2018
How about that near half-court buzzer beater? Don’t forgot the dunk, either, as Jackson is also very good near the rim.
Jackson had been working on his shot with former NBA player, and current Grizzlies assistant coach, Jerry Stackhouse. He has also been working with his father, Jaren Jackson Sr., who also happens to be a former NBA player. It apparently has paid off.
Of course this is one Summer League game, and he was playing against a bunch of guys who probably won’t be on an NBA roster this fall, but what a promising start. Jackson still has a ton of work to do, but remembering the fact that he is only 18 years old, his ceiling is sky high.
Imagine if he would have spent more than one season in East Lansing. Can’t blame him, though, obviously.