The Detroit Pistons and former Oregon Duck Louis King are off to a winning 4-0 start in Las Vegas Summer League play.
After a quiet tournament, Wednesday’s victory over Philadelphia featured a filthy King steal and jam.
“(The NBA) is more intense,” said King after the win. “There are more guys that are more active on defense and they are longer (than college). Getting by them and finishing through contact (has been a challenge).”
The 6-foot-9 forward’s goal in summer league is to showcase his perimeter defense, rebounding and ability to score buckets in transition. King is long, fluid and surprisingly quick and explosive. On the defensive end, he was a menace at Oregon: He had at least one steal in 16 of the 31 games played as a freshman.
Through his transition from college to professional, the former five-star recruit is tapping into advice that Oregon coach Dana Altman gave him.
“(Altman’s advice) is to be a professional… To be aware that not every aspect of the league will be easy for me,” said King. “I’m going to have to grind every day and that’s what I’m capable of doing.”
King agreed to a two-way contract with the Pistons after going undrafted in the 2019 NBA Draft. King was widely expected to be drafted in the second round, but can still can make a pretty penny and develop into an NBA talent.
King is averaging 12 minutes in three games played in Summer League. He’s scoring an average of 2.3 points on 17 percent shooting and 2.3 rebounds per game.
King's numbers don’t pop but summer league play isn’t over. Continuing to show improvement in Las Vegas would go a long way in proving to the franchise that King is ready for G-League and NBA minutes.
King has the potential to be a force on both ends of the floor if the G-League Grand Rapids' staff can tap into his potential. King is a prospect who is able to play positionless ball and develop into a two-way player. His power forward size, tenacious defense and perimeter skill set make him an attractive pickup for the Pistons.