Davon Reed doing everything he can in Vegas to stay on Suns roster
LAS VEGAS — For most, the NBA Summer League is all about fans getting a look at the top prospects coming into the league.
In reality, the games are about a majority of the players auditioning for jobs. Whether’s that’s on an NBA, G League or overseas roster, that’s what Summer League is truly all about.
That is the case for Suns second-year guard Davon Reed more than anyone.
Reed signed a four-year, non-guaranteed deal with the Suns after being selected No. 32 overall in the 2017 NBA Draft.
The guarantee date on his contract for this year was originally scheduled for June 29, but the Suns pushed it back beyond Summer League, essentially adding a tryout element to his time on the Summer Suns.
Reed is playing like it.
In Friday’s opener, Reed had a team-high 18 points on just eight shots, plus three rebounds, an assist and two steals.
That level of play continued on Saturday in the Suns’ 71-63 win over the Sacramento Kings.
Reed had 12 points, five rebounds, three assists and two steals.
The most important part isn’t the stats, but, rather, that Reed looks healthy.
He had knee surgery in late August and despite returning for the last third or so of the Suns’ season, was cited by interim head coach Jay Triano as a player still not looking 100 percent consistently enough to be trusted.
It was Reed’s second injury to that knee, which he said makes it tougher to come back from than the first time.
“At times I felt good, at times I didn’t feel as good,” Reed said on Friday.
Coming into Summer League, his goals were simple.
“I just want to lead this team and show that I belong here, show that I belong in this league and I’m going to do that every time I step on the floor,” Reed said.
The Miami product’s catch-and-shoot game has been on-point.
From working off-ball and squaring up to shoot as the pass comes to simple makes like this, Reed has clear value as a shooting NBA wing.
Defensively, Reed is rock-solid. He understands how to move his body both on and off the ball to get the most out of his movement.
Navigating through screens and cutting off dribble-drives are two things he projects to do at an NBA level.
Because of that and having a well-developed frame at 6-foot-5, Reed can switch on defense. That matches right along with what the Suns want to do with Josh Jackson, Trevor Ariza and Mikal Bridges next season.
“He has a decent game,” head coach Igor Kokoskov said of Reed on Friday. “I like his presence, I like his composure, I like his voice and I’m happy for him.”
Reed and Shaquille Harrison are the 14th and 15th members of the Suns’ roster and both are non-guaranteed deals.
As role players, both impact the game sporadically, which means they have to prove they are reliable enough to bring what they are supposed to bring in limited opportunities to do so.
That’s the danger in being on the edge of the roster, but Reed hasn’t been focused on that in Vegas.
“The situation is what it is, I’m just looking to come out, lead my team and lead by example,” he said.