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Georgia Tech #ProJackets Basketball Report

THE FLATSJosh Okogie makes it official re-upping with Phoenix … Michael Devoe makes a strong impression in NBA Summer League … Jarrett Jack coaching Pistons in Summer League … What are the Georgia Tech Mean Jackets? … more in this week’s #ProJackets Report.



Forward Josh Okogie‘s positive experience with the Suns last season convinced him to re-sign with the franchise on a one-year deal, he told Duane Rankin of the Arizona Republic. Okogie carved out a major role with Phoenix, appearing in 82 games, including 10 postseason contests.

“I took the deal looking at the long-term,” Okogie said. “Just in terms of being able to build, not only this year, but just my career. I’ve had a lot of success here, kind of revamped my career here last year, and they were able to give me a chance and be gracious on how they move in this organization. So I decided to take a chance on them again.”

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“Josh plays with relentless energy,” Suns president of basketball operations and general manager James Jones said in a press release. “His grit, intensity and athleticism are vital to the success of our team. He consistently makes winning plays on both ends of the floor. He is truly unique.”

In his first season with the Suns, Okogie played 72 games and averaged 7.3 points on 39.1 percent shooting (33.5 percent from 3-point range). He also averaged 3.5 rebounds per game.

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The Portland Trail Blazers defeated Victor Wembanyama and the San Antonio Spurs 85-80 in the second game of their 2023 NBA Summer League schedule. Wembanyama scored 27 points with 12 rebounds and 3 blocks against Portland’s bigs, but point guard Michael Devoe shot 10-17 for the Blazers, leading all scorers with 29. Devoe started the game in place of Scoot Henderson, Portland’s third-overall pick in the 2023 NBA Draft. Henderson sat out the game to rest a shoulder injury sustained in Portland’s first outing in Las Vegas, a 100-99 loss to the Houston Rockets.

But the game story was all about Devoe showing strong. He scored 17 in the first half alone, shooting 7-10 as Sharpe, his backcourt mate, went 0-9. Devoe finished with the aforementioned 29. He is not a natural distributor. Though he’s quick on both ends, he’s not a defender and would be outsized in the league. But dang, he put on a heck of an offensive display in this one.

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Jordan Usher is another highly athletic wing to watch in Vegas and you may see some highlight dunks from him. High flying, energetic, and a stellar finisher, Usher is someone looking for a shot to play in the States.

He spent two years playing at USC before transferring to Georgia Tech. He has been described as someone who has, “ability to switch 1 through 5, defending opposing point guards and centers equally well.”

He went undrafted in the 2022 NBA Draft and has been trying to break through for the past year. Usher said of himself, “I’m a tanker. I’m blue-collar. I’m from the country. I’ll put it down in a genuine way. I give energy. I’m a good, high-character young man. I’m a winner. You take a chance on Usher, I’m not going to fail you, I promise you that.”

Usher played last season in Turkey, playing 29 games for Besiktas S.J.. He was third on the team in scoring with 14.4 points, doing so on 63.9/40/72.6 splits. While the team finished 14th out of 16, Jordan was a highlight machine for the team.

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Moses Wright made his NBA Summer League debut for the Toronto Raptors last Thursday in a backup role, playing only 12 minutes. He scored two points, had two rebounds, had two steals, and one block.

Wright is still trying to find the right fit for him in the NBA after playing for the Dallas Mavericks and Los Angeles Clippers briefly. He is getting an opportunity with the Raptors this summer and hoping to make the most of his opportunity.

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Anthony Morrow looked like the next big thing in the 2009 NBA Summer League. He was so impressive that his 47-point explosion vs the New Orleans (now Charlotte) Hornets is still the highest-scoring game in Summer League history to this day, breaking Von Wafer and Marcus Banks‘ records.

Morrow made it to the league for his elite three-point shooting skills, and while he was never a star, he still managed to play in the league for a decade, which is a lot to say for an undrafted player. He shot 46.7% from three in his rookie season and 41.7% in his career, which is the 17th-highest percentage in NBA history.

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Just moments before the Pistons tipped off their Las Vegas Summer League opener against the Magic, coach Jarrett Jack turned around and saw a familiar face in the crowd. It was Paul Hewitt, his former coach at Georgia Tech, and the memories flooded back.

Nearly 20 years ago, Hewitt would lead the Yellow Jackets to an NCAA Championship appearance. Jack looks to pass on the lessons learned all those years ago to the newest generation of NBA players.

The Pistons named Jack their summer league coach and he helped push them to an 89-78 win over the Magic on Saturday. Jack is responsible to lead Pistons’ 2022 and 2023 lottery picks in Jaden Ivey and Ausar Thompson among others.

Jack looks to lean on some of the lessons that he picked up from Hewitt during his three years as a starter at Georgia Tech, as well as the other coaches he has played for.

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The Georgia Tech Mean Jackets will take on the Georgia Real Dawgs on July 22 at West Forsyth and boast a roster that features several professional basketball players that have played in the NBA and abroad. The Mean Jackets’ star-powered lineup is filled with plenty of all-state and all-region players, several of whom were highly rated prospects coming out of high school before their careers began at Georgia Tech.

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Eurobasket #ProJackets Report

Courtesy of Eurobasket LLC

Charles Mitchell (6’8”-F/C-1993, played in 2014-16, plays pro in Uruguay) led Urunday to a victory over the 12th-ranked Welcome (3-5) 94-87 in a derby game in the Uruguayan Metropolitan (second division) in Wednesday night’s game. He was MVP of the game. Mitchell had a double-double by scoring 24 points and getting 13 rebounds. He also added 5 assists and 2 blocks in 39 minutes. Urunday Universitario Montevideo (7-1) is placed first in the Metropolitan. It was his team’s fifth consecutive victory in a row. The Regular Season already ended. Mitchell has individually a very good year with high stats. He averages 17.5ppg, 11.1rpg, 2.0apg and 1.8bpg in eight games he played so far.

Michael Devoe (6’5”-G-1999, played in 2018-22, plays in the NBA) was the main contributor in a Portland Trail Blazers’ victory against the San Antonio Spurs (1-1) 85-80 in the NBA Summer League last Sunday. He was MVP of the game. Devoe scored 29 points (!!!) and added 5 assists. It was his first game for Portland Trail Blazers this season; quite an impressive performance considering it’s only his first season in pro basketball. His team have 33-49 record this season. There are only two games left until the end of the NBA Summer League Regular Season. So now every game will be critical.

Robert Sampson (6’8”-F-1992, played in 2013-13, currently in Vietnam) contributed to an easy victory against the closely-ranked Warriors (4-4) crushing them 100-73 in the Vietnamese VBA on Saturday night. He had a double-double by scoring 16 points and getting 13 rebounds. Sampson also added and 5 steals in 34 minutes. It was the game of the round between two top 4 ranked teams. Nhatrang Dolphins (5-2) is placed second in the VBA. It was his team’s third consecutive victory in a row. Sampson has very impressive stats this year 21.4ppg, 16.4rpg, 2.0apg, 1.6bpg and 2.1spg in seven games. Worth to mention Sampson played also at Eurobasket Summer League, which helped him get the job in pro basketball.

Jordan Usher (6’7”-SF-1999, played in 2019-22, plays pro in the NBA) contributed to a 3-point Phoenix Suns’ victory against the Miami Heat (1-1) 73-70 in the NBA Summer League in Monday night’s game. Usher scored 9 points and had 3 steals. It was his first game for Phoenix Suns this season. His team have 45-37 record this season. There are only two games left until the end of the NBA Summer League Regular Season. So now every game is very crucial.

Moses Wright (6’9”-F-1998, played in 2017-21, plays in the NBA). Wright could not help the Toronto Raptors (41-41) to beat the Cleveland Cavaliers (2-0) in the NBA Summer League. He scored 6 points in only 12 minutes. The Toronto Raptors (#9) were crushed99-76 on the road by the Cavaliers. There are only two games left until the end of the NBA Summer League Regular Season. So now every game will be important. This year Wright averages 4.0ppg, 2.5rpg and 1.5spg in two games. .

Other former Georgia Institute of Technology players, who play in pro basketball:

  • Ben Lammers (6’10”-C-1995, played in 2014-18) played for ALBA Berlin in German BBL
  • Josh Okogie (6’4”-G-1998, played in 2016-18) played for Phoenix Suns in the NBA
  • Thaddeus Young (6’8”-F-1988, played in 2006-07) played for Toronto Raptors in the NBA
  • Joseph Alvarado (6’0”-PG-1998, played in 2017-16) played for New Orleans Pelicans in the NBA
  • Derrick Favors (6’10”-F-1991, played in 2009-23) played for Atlanta Hawks in the NBA
  • Adam Smith (6’1”-PG-1992, played in 2015-16) plays for Bilbao in Spanish Liga Endesa
  • Avi Schafer (6’8”-C-1998, played in 2017-19) played for SeaHorses Mikawa in Japanese B1 League
  • Joshua Heath (6’1”-PG-1994, played in 2014-17) played for Stella Artois Leuven Bears in Belgian Pro Basketball League
  • James Banks III (6’10”-F/C-1998, played in 2018-20) played for Texas Legends in the NBA G League
  • Trae Golden (6’3”-PG-1991, played in 2013-14) played for Beijing Royal Fighters in Chinese CBA
  • Brandon Alston (6’5”-G-1995, played in 2017-19) played for Batumi in Georgian Superleague
  • Anthony McHenry (6’8”-SF-1983, played in 2001-05) played for Shinshu BW in Japanese B1 League
  • Marcus Georges-Hunt (6’5”-F-1994, played in 2012-16) played for Kuwait in Kuwaiti D1
  • Tadric Jackson (6’2”-G-1994, played in 2014-18) plays for Atlanta Aliens in the ABA
  • Evan Jester (6’7”-F-1999, played in 2017-19) plays for Atlanta Aliens in the ABA
  • Khalid Moore (6’7”-F-2000, played in 2018-22) plays for New York Knicks in the NBA Summer League
  • Gani Lawal (6’9”-F/C-1988, played in 2007-10) played for Runa Basket in Russian Superleague 1
  • Glen Rice Jr. (6’6”-F-1991, played in 2009-12) plays for Power in the Big3
  • Ja’von Franklin (6’7”-F) plays for Miami Heat in the NBA Summer League
  • Abdoulaye Gueye (6’9”-C-1994, played in 2014-15) signed for in Turkish TBL

The list above includes only some of alumni playing currently in pro basketball. Check complete list of Georgia Tech basketball alumni.


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