By Tom Robinson, NEPASportsNation.com
The Salt Lake City Stars, the NBA G League affiliate of the Utah Jazz, selected Abington Heights graduate J.C. Show with a third-round pick in Saturday’s G League Draft.
“There’s still work to be done,” Show said Sunday afternoon while waiting to board an airplane to Utah where he said he expects to be among 15 players trying to land 10-12 roster spots.
Training camp opens Monday, including orientation and testing. Then, Show will be trying to do the remaining work necessary to fit into the NBA’s minor league.
“I definitely feel urgency about getting a basketball job this year,” Show said. “ … It’s more goals that my wife and I have set and conversations we’ve had about how long I wanted to keep playing.
“I want to give it a real good chance. I believe that I can do this. This is part of me going for it.”
Show, the Pennsylvania Gatorade High School Player of the Year for the 2013-14 high school season, scored more than 1,000 points in a college career that began with one season at Bucknell University before continuing at Binghamton University. After undergoing surgery on an Achilles injury following his college career, Show made his professional debut in the spring, playing for The Finest, an Omaha-based team in The Basketball League.
“I wanted to go to Omaha as a means of kind of getting myself back into the game and kind of get something on my resume that was recent – statistics, highlight film, etc.,” said Show, who has attended other workouts and tryout camps since. “There were connections that I made. I don’t know how much the TBL and the season that I had played a role in my being selected. But, the goal was to get somewhere for this basketball season and I have an opportunity to do that here at this training camp.”
Formerly known as the National Basketball Association Development League – or D-League – the league was named NBA G League at the beginning of the 2017-18 season as part of an expanded partnership with Gatorade. The G League has 29 teams, 28 of which have one-to-one affiliations with NBA teams, with the other made up of prospects.
Of the 17 players on the Utah Jazz roster at the end of the 2020-21 season, 11, including Rudy Gobert, Jordan Clarkson and Royce O’Neal, had NBA G League experience. League-wide, 45 percent of the players on the opening rosters for 2020-21 had some type of experience in the league.
Salt Lake City’s other two selections Saturday were used on Zaire Wade, son of Dwayne Wade, and Pedro Bradshaw. Show and Wade are 6-foot-3 guards. Bradshaw is a 6-foot-7 guard who was an Atlantic Sun first-team, all-star last season at Bellarmine University.
Stars training camp begins Monday in preparation for the Nov. 5 season opener at Oklahoma City.
The NBA G League was limited to a 15-game, single-site season in Orlando in 2020-21.
The league will be back in home arenas this season and will debut a new scheduling format. The NBA G League will begin with a 14-game Showcase Cup competition, followed by a single-elimination tournament leading to a championship game, then proceed to a 36-game regular season. A trophy and prize money will add incentive to the Showcase Cup. The regular season begins Dec. 27.
Nathan Peavy is head coach of the Stars, who went 30-12 in their most recent full season in Salt Lake City.
Show, who trains young basketball players at Riverfront Sports in Scranton when not working on his playing career, made a successful return to competition when he ranked second in The Basketball League in 3-point shooting percentage and seventh in free throw shooting percentage.
“I feel like I’ve gotten better since when I was in college and I feel like I’ve gotten better even since when I was in Omaha,” Show said. “I continue to try to improve.
“ … I feel like that’s something that comes with age and comes as you get more mature. I’m trying to figure out, ‘how can I make myself valuable? How can I carve myself out a role with this team?’”
At 26, Show will be facing some players as much as eight years younger.
“If anything, I’ll try to use it as an advantage,” Show said. “I’ve played more basketball. I’ve lived more life and had to deal with more things and overcome more things than I kid who is 18 or 19 would have had to.
“That’s how I’ll approach it; to try to use it to my advantage.”
Show shot 43.1 percent on 3-pointers and 89.7 percent from the line while averaging 18.8 points, 3.2 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.3 steals. He said he has learned to adjust to being an effective shooter without having the entire offense build around him. Defensively, he generally played man-to-man against shooting guards, but in The Finest system, which was heaving on switches, he was expected to be ready to pick up anybody from a point guard to a “stretch 4” power forward.