Payton Pritchard was too good for 2021 NBA Summer League

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Watching 2020 first-round pick Payton Pritchard slicing up NBA Summer League defenses came as no surprise to Celtics fans who saw the Oregon product have a solid rookie campaign.

He was a clear standout on a Boston team that made it all the way to the NBA Summer League championship game, and the eye test and numbers came together to prove one simple fact: he was too good to be in Las Vegas.

FiveThirtyEight’s Jared Dubin recently looked at what being “too good” for NBA Summer League would mean for players like Pritchard going forward. Using a metric called Game Score to determine their production in Las Vegas, Dubin found that Pritchard had the third-highest average Game Score of anybody in NBA Summer League.

Pritchard’s per game averages jumped off the page as he put up 16.8 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 8.5 assists. All of that production came on 47.8% from the field.

We saw a combination of range, handles, and on-ball creation that should translate to NBA success in year two. We probably won’t be seeing Pritchard in NBA Summer League again, and that’s a good thing.