The Oklahoma City Thunder sent 2012 first-round picks Jeremy Lamb and Perry Jones to their NBA Development League affiliate in Tulsa 10 times last season alone. Since 2005, the Washington Wizards have assigned one of their players to the D-League six times. That includes Glen Rice's injury rehab stint with the Iowa Energy last month. The primary reason for the difference in usage rate? Apparently location, location, location. Thunder coach Scott Brooks shuttles players 109 miles each way to maximize practice and playing opportunities. The players learn Oklahoma City's desired systems while in Tulsa because the Thunder own the 66ers and tell the 66ers what systems to run. Wizards coach Randy Wittman would like to partake in a similar opportunity one day. "It would be nice," Wittman said on Monday when asked if would view the D-League option differently if distance between the teams became a non-factor. The coach appeared to pullback from his initial remark about the D-League and distance by next saying "I don't view it any differently," before acknowledging, "Convenience, that would be a good thing." Until fairly recently, the D-League existed largely as feeder system for NBA teams in need of healthy or capable body, if not two or three. Current Wizard Garrett Temple came from the Reno Bighorns on Christmas Day, 2012. Cartier Martin, Othyus Jeffers and Alonzo Gee were also D-League pickups by Washington.
Wittman favors trend of closer D-League affiliates
CSN Washington | Feb 5