G.G. Jackson continues to shine as Vipers bite back, outlast Hustle.
Memphis, TN – Saturday was night 2 of 2 for the Memphis Hustle and Rio Grande Valley Vipers in the NBA G League cup. The Hustle and Vipers played back-to-back nights at the Landers Center in Southaven with both teams stealing a win to get to 1-1 on the season.
Unlike Friday night’s matchup, the young Hustle squad was outplayed by a Rio Grande team that was on fire and led by the torch of Jermaine Samuels Jr., who was virtually unstoppable with 38 points on 14/21 shooting from the field. The Hustle allowed a whopping 37 fast break points as the Vipers managed to get out on the break consistently throughout the entirety of tonight’s matchup, a glaring issue that is somewhat uncharacteristic for this squad. They also got attacked on the boards offensively and defensively, failed to capitalize on breaks, and seemingly had no answer for the trio of Jermaine Samuels Jr., Darius Days, and—once again—Cam Whitmore, who all poured in at least 25 points.
Not all was bad for the Hustle in Southaven on Saturday night, though, including another promising performance from—you guessed it—G.G. Jackson, who finished with 32 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists, 3 blocks, and a steal in 38 minutes of action. Jackson, who is only 18 years old, looks insanely fluid and comfortable on the floor for his age. His feel for the game is very natural and unforced; he makes good decisions, scores nearly at will, and he constantly hustles. He has the full package, and with continued effort, growth, and opportunity with this squad, I fully expect him to be contributing these qualities to the Grizzlies roster much sooner than later.
Matthew Hurt and Adonis Arms also put up solid performances for the squad tonight, as well. Hurt bounced back tonight with 24 points and 8 rebounds, and Adonis was all arms with 18 points, 6 rebounds, 7 assists, and 3 steals. Timmy Allen also contributed a double-double (near triple-double) of 11 points, 10 rebounds, and 6 assists. Unfortunately for Memphis, though, the squad couldn’t get it to all snap together for the win this evening.
The Hustle will resume action on Monday in Oklahoma as they battle the Oklahoma City Blue at 7:00pm, looking to avoid falling below .500 on the season.
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