— Santa Cruz Warriors (@DLeagueWarriors) February 1, 2014
As an added bonus for the first Santa Cruz GSoM Night, the Golden State Warriors have announced that they are assigning both Kent Bazemore and MarShon Brooks to the Santa Cruz Warriors for tonight's game against the Bakersfield Jam.
According to the Santa Cruz Warriors' release, Bazemore will wear #2 while Brooks will wear #33.
For Bazemore, this is his first assignment of the 2013-14 season after spending considerable time in Santa Cruz for the first half of his rookie year last season. Brooks played in the D-League for a brief stint about a month ago (when the Boston Celtics assigned him to the Maine Red Claws), which Scott Rafferty of SB Nation's Ridiculous Upside has previously summarized.
The biggest knock on Brooks' game over his first three years as a pro is that he is a liability on the defensive end. While that certainly isn't a problem that is going to be solved in a handful of games with the Red Claws, it's good to see that the effort is there. Sure, blocks and steals aren't always a good indicator of sound defense, but, as you'll see in the video below, Brooks was rotating well and hustling, which is promising. As for his scoring, well, he's averaging 29.0 points per game on 49.3 percent shooting from the floor and 42.9 percent of his threes. In other words, he lived up to the hype.
For both players, this might also bring to mind a question similar to that which Ridiculous Upside's Keith Schlosser posed upon Brooks' assignment from the Celtics: How much will further D-League assignments benefit these players at this stage in their development?
After showing flashes of promise in Brooklyn, it would have made sense for Brooks to continue thriving with some extra minutes on a younger Celtics team this season. That however, has not proven to be the case.
Similarly for Bazemore, after showing flashes of effectiveness in his rookie year, it's not uncommon to see fans and media question why he's even on the floor at all this season as Golden State has been on a seemingly constant search for any sort of consistent production from its bench.
Nevertheless, that just makes tonight's GSoM Night in Santa Cruz all the more interesting. You can still get details and tickets by clicking here.