Derrick White is dominating Utah’s Summer League

Feb 13, 2018; Denver, CO, USA; San Antonio Spurs guard Derrick White (4) in the fourth quarter against the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 13, 2018; Denver, CO, USA; San Antonio Spurs guard Derrick White (4) in the fourth quarter against the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado native and former University of Colorado superstar Derrick White is tearing things up for the San Antonio Spurs in his second time playing in the NBA Summer League.

After playing in 24 games in the G League in 2017-18, where White averaged 20 points and five rebounds, the second-year pro is making the case that he is ready to be a full-time NBA rotation member in 2018-19. In 17 games with the club last season, White shot 48.5 percent from the field and 33 percent from beyond the arch in 8.2 minutes played per game.

Through the first three games in the Utah Summer League, White leads all players at 23 points per game and is second in the league with seven assists. Only Grayson Allen (Jazz) is averaging more assists with 7.5.

What’s more, White has displayed impressive versatility and commitment to improve his game that he did at the collegiate level.

White has been an athletic and dynamic scorer since his days with the Buffaloes but what separates the former Division II transfer from the competition has always been his work ethic.

Following a disappointing recruiting process coming out of Legend High School in Parker, CO., White enrolled at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, where he broke the broke the UCCS single-season scoring record for freshmen with 440 points (16.9 points per game) and honored as the RMAC Freshman of the Year in 2012-13.

As a sophomore in 2013-14, White became the program’s first All-American, led the region in points per game (22.2) and set a UCCS single-season record with 621 points. White’s 22.2 points per game set a UCCS single-season record as well.

White followed up his extremely successful sophomore season with an even better junior year (2014-15), leading UCCS to a program best 27-6 record, its deepest postseason run in its history, and a national ranking of No. 2 in the NABC national poll.

His 25.8 points per game average broke his own season scoring average and White once again set the RMAC single-season scoring record with 851 points. White earned All-America honors for a second consecutive season and was named the MVP of the RMAC Tournament.

In an NCAA Tournament game against the Colorado School of Mines, White set a single-game scoring record with 50 points on Mar. 14, 2015. The win was the Mountain Lions’ first NCAA tournament game victory in program history.

After transferring to CU to finish his his collegiate career at the Division I level, White redshirted during the 2015-16 season but came back with a vengeance for a final season with the Buffaloes in 2016-17.

In his one and only season on the court for CU head coach Tad Boyle, White led the Buffaloes at 18.1 points, 4.4 assists and 1.2 steals per game while shooting 51 percent from the field. For his efforts, White was named to the Pac-12’s 2017 All-Conference First Team, All-Defensive Team and All-Tournament Team.

All of that hard work paid off when the Spurs selected the Colorado native with the 29th overall pick of the 2017 NBA Draft. Now, White is proving why NBA executives around the league will regret letting 28 players go off the board before him.

White is a versatile guard that score from anywhere on the floor and his range has improved on a yearly basis. His athleticism makes him a defensive mismatch because he can easily blow by defenders and get to the rim and he is an above-average distributor of the basketball, so he is equally likely to dish it out to an open teammate.

With Tony Parker no longer in the mix in San Antonio, White seems like the most logical candidate to see an increase in action, alongside teammate Dejounte Murray.

Related:

Derrick White’s former college teammate and recent second round draft pick of the Phoenix Suns, George King, has agreed to a two-way contract with the organization. Two-way deals allow a player to spend time with both an NBA organization and its G League affiliate. King will be able to spend a maximum of 45 days on the Phoenix roster this season.

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