Brandon Miller’s slow start in NBA Summer League has fans concerned
By WVUA 23 Digital Reporter Sam Thornton
TUSCALOOSA-Former Alabama basketball standout and 2023 No. 2 overall pick Brandon Miller is off to a slow start at the NBA Summer League. Sporting his new Charlotte Hornets threads, Miller has struggled during their first two contests despite apparent confidence from his freshman season with the Tide.
The NBA social media scene has been sent into a bickering war between fans. The latest gossip occurred last night after Miller’s shallow performance against the Golden State Warriors where he scored six points and committed eight fouls. The NBA Summer League allows a player to distribute 10 fouls opposed to the established six during the regular season.
Through two games, Miller has committed more personal fouls and turnovers than field goals made. His play has caused some Hornets faithful to label Miller’s No. 2 selection as a mistake, noting that the organization should’ve taken rookie guard Scoot Henderson instead.
While fans league wide are predetermining Miller’s career as a bust just two outings in, most players who fit Miller’s mold aren’t there to prove themselves for a roster spot in the NBA. The majority of players who shine in Summer League are fighting for a rookie contract with their affiliated team.
Any lottery pick like Miller has nothing left to prove with their impact at the professional level. In fact, six of the last ten Summer League MVP’s weren’t lottery selections in their respective draft classes. The last No. 2 pick to win Summer League MVP was Lonzo Ball in 2017, who’s had a disappointing career riddled with injuries.
Declaring Miller as a bust two games into Summer League is another notion of NBA trolling on several fronts. A similar narrative, although positive, was displayed last year when 2022 No. 2 pick Chet Holmgren began his Summer League debut with comparisons to Kevin Durant.
The moral of the story is that Summer League doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of a players rookie performance. During the dog days of summer, fans will be quick to announce hot takes with nothing else to watch.
Although Michael Jordan and the Hornets organization have been notorious for underwhelming first round draft selections, Miller shouldn’t be counted on joining a group that mirrors a talent level to Charlotte’s last No. 2 pick in 2012, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.
The regular season will be the true determination of Miller’s trajectory while playing alongside the Hornets starting lineup.