Jordan Crawford Turning Heads

Wednesday, July 14, 2010
By Jon Newberry

First off, let’s cut to the chase. This kid needs a nickname, and I don’t think JC2 is going to cut it. Unfortunately, J.C., J-Craw, Crawdaddy, etc. don’t eliminate the confusion with Jamal, so feel free to list any suggestions in the comments below.

Jordan Crawford showed off his entire arsenal during Wednesday night’s Summer League loss to the Spurs on his way to 20 points on 6-of-11 shooting. He pulled from 5-feet off the line with two defenders lunging at him to no avail. He put it on the floor, spun left and finished with a fancy scoop shot, off glass with his left hand. He also continued to show a lot of skill as a playmaker, connecting on a few nice passes.

Two Summer League games into his professional career and there is plenty of evidence to support the idea that Jordan could end up being a steal as the 27th pick in this year’s draft.

That is not to say that there have not been some rough spots along the way. He had a costly turnover in the final minute of Wednesday’s loss (and four total in the game). Still, it’s Summer League, where the action is fast and the turnovers and fouls are as plentiful as (insert Vegas stereotype here). It is also where rookies like Crawford get their first taste of NBA rules and officiating.

Crawford’s numbers alone are encouraging, but it is his overall game and presence on the court that lead many to be so optimistic about his potential. He has been aggressive since the opening tip. He didn’t waiver after a stretch early in the first game where he seemed to be rushing and missing shots badly, showing a lot of confidence in his own ability as an offensive weapon.

As it has been well documented, the Hawks are very deep at Jordan’s natural position, with both Joe and Jamal anchored on the depth chart at shooting guard. Still, if Jordan keeps playing like this and progresses his skills through training camp, Coach Drew will be forced to find minutes for the rookie. Don’t feel too bad for Drew, as most coaches would gladly welcome the problem of having too many options or too many scorers.

It is early, it is a small sample size, and above all it is Summer League, but Jordan Crawford (still need a nickname) is starting to make people take notice.