Current record: 10-6
Last week: 9-5 (1-1)
It was an interesting week for the Bakersfield Jam, as Archie Goodwin, Tyler Ennis and T.J. Warren joined the team, following a loss to the Oklahoma City Blue. With the three prospects playing in their first game on Friday night, it seemed quite fitting to delay the roundup by a day, especially considering the monumental impact that Warren and Ennis had on the Jam in their most recent stint. However, the dynamic duo of Warren and Ennis was not nearly as impactful this time around, although the team did win its first game with the new additions.
Starting with the most recent game, Archie Goodwin absolutely shined against D-League competition. The former Kentucky Wildcat scored 29 points on 12-of-18 shooting (3-of-5 from three), while adding four rebounds and four steals. Goodwin was the game’s leading scorer, and he also had more points than the next two players on the Jam combined. However, while Goodwin was playing in his first game this year for the Jam, Ennis and Warren had already made their mark earlier in the season, which led to a considerable amount of buzz going around the D-League, prior to the game.
While the anticipation was certainly there, the final result was a bit of a let down, as neither Warren nor Ennis played especially well. Warren only attempted two shots in his 29 minutes of action, and he missed both of them. Perhaps the only saving grace for the Suns’ top 2014 draft pick was that he managed to grab ten rebounds, especially considering that he finished with the worst plus/minus rating on the team (-6).
Ennis on the other hand was decent, scoring 13 points, while adding a couple of assists, rebounds and steals, but he shot just 1-of-4 from three-point range and committed a combined seven fouls and turnovers in 31 minutes. While ultimately Ennis and Warren experienced a bit of a let down in their first game back, it felt a little bit more dramatic considering how unbelievably the two had played in their first stint with the Jam, where they averaged close to 60 points, 10 assists and 10 rebounds per game, while shooting over 55% from the floor and over 45% from three.
Looking past Warren, Ennis and Goodwin, there were other players on the Jam who really put together a solid week. Earl Barron continued to add to his already impressive season, with a big time performance in the team’s first game, against the Oklahoma City Blue. Barron posted an impressive double-double, scoring 30 points while racking up 11 boards, but he wasn’t the only one who stood out.
Elijah Millsap continued to show why he is one of the D-League’s most valuable players, as he went for 19 points, 9 rebounds and 3 assists. Millsap joined Barron as the only Jam players to score at least 30 points combined in the team’s two games, although like Barron, his numbers dipped a bit when the team was joined by Goodwin, Ennis and Warren.
Both games saw different role players stand out, starting with Adrian Thomas, who scored 14 points on 5-of-6 shooting in the team’s first game. Thomas was one of two players on the team to shoot better than 50% for the game, and the 14 points he scored were a season high. A few days later, it was Mac Koshwal (pictured above) and Casey Prather who sparked the team, combining for 26 points and 13 rebounds, while shooting a combined 13-of-21 (61.9%) from the field. Chris Wright also chipped in with 13 points in the second game, as the Jam defeated the Canton Charge by 24, 107-83.
Numbers to note
1. Last year Archie Goodwin averaged 26.4 points per game with the Bakersfield Jam. In his first game with the team this year, Goodwin already eclipsed that 26-point total, despite playing less minutes (31) than he averaged one season ago (35).
2. Earl Barron and Mac Koshwal currently sit at fourth and fifth (respectively) in the D-League in total offensive rebounds. In the Jam’s 16 games, the two have racked up 117 offensive boards, which is the most by any two D-League teammates.
3. With a 29-point outburst in his first game of the season, Archie Goodwin unofficially became the D-League’s leader in points per game, moving in front of the previous leader, Brady Heslip (27.1 points per game). That being said, Goodwin needs 354 points in his next game to tie Manny Harris of Los Angeles for most points on the season, and that doesn’t seem very likely.
4. Mac Koshwal scored 20 points in two games this week, and looking at his season, he’s scored at least 18 combined points in every set of back-to-back games this year, no matter which game is chosen as the first.
5. Bakersfield combined with its opponents to shoot 82 three-pointers in the last week (two games). Exactly seven days ago, the Reno Bighorns defeated the Los Angeles D-Fenders in a game that saw the teams combine for 84 three-point attempts. 63 of those attempts came from Reno; 31 of those attempts came from two players on the team (Brady Heslip and David Wear).
The Jam will play two more games in the upcoming week, both of which will be against the Erie Bayhawks. Despite starting the season 3-0, the Bayhawks are having a pretty disappointing year, sitting at just 6-8. That being said, the Bayhawks will certainly be playing with a bit of an edge, as their players will relish the opportunity to go up against some NBA-level competition, in Warren, Ennis and Goodwin, who will likely play in at least one more game with the Jam before rejoining the Suns. On the other side of things, the aforementioned trio will be looking to improve from the previous game, and Warren in particular will be a player to watch moving forward.