DaQuan Jeffries had a nice showing in Wednesday scrimmage between the Sacramento Kings and Miami Heat.
The 6'5'', 230-pound Jeffries entered the game off the bench and gave the Kings an immediate boost, throwing down an alley-oop from Yogi Ferrell and nailing a three shortly after entering. He finished with 12 points (on 5-6 from the floor), 2 assists and 1 steal in 18 minutes.
He showed athleticism, a shooting touch, court vision, nice patience and an ability to play within the flow of the game.
Jeffries averaged 16.6 points, 6.9 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.2 steals in the G-League last season with the Stockton Kings. He played in a handful of NBA games with the Sacramento Kings this season, but logged very minimal minutes in each.
Jeffries played power forward at the University of Tulsa and has developed the ability to defend and play offense on the wing. In December, he dropped 44 points (15-27 from the field) and 10 rebounds in a game against Sioux Falls Skyforce.
He also had a 20-point, 18-rebound performance in that same month against the Iowa Wolves.
During training camp in Orlando, Jeffries has been playing at the three and the four, according to Luke Walton. With Harrison Barnes' return still up in the air, Jeffries could be in line for a great opportunity.
“Yeah, that’s a realistic possibility if Harrison cannot join us,” Walton said. “What we like about him is he’s a very tough young man, and I mean that from both physically and mentally, and on defense and on offense. He does a nice job of not forcing anything. He looks to be aggressive, but he plays within what we’re trying to get done and defensively we feel very confident in his ability to guard multiple positions. And he’s been doing that during this camp so far, and I thought he did it again tonight.”
Jeffries considers himself a Three-And-D guy and appears to be aware of where he fits in and what he needs to work on. When asked what his biggest takeaway from the game was, he responded with a self-critique: "Making the right defensive calls on the defensive end. There [were] a couple screens that I didn’t call out for Yogi [Ferrell] and boxing out my man on the other side – small things.”
Even though he made both of his threes in Wednesday’s game, he shot 33 percent from three in Stockton, so he might not be a knock-down, three-point shooter over the long-term, but he can catch fire and his defensive presence and athleticism is something that should certainly help if Barnes remains out.
I am looking forward to seeing more out of this young man.