A year ago, the NBA was unable to hold its summer leagues in Orlando and Las Vegas due to its lockout. The absence of the summer leagues hurt the development of first-year players last year, but also was detrimental to veterans looking to secure a spot with a team.
Jermaine Taylor was one of those veterans. In 2010-11, his second campaign in the NBA, the former UCF star played in 32 total contests with Houston and Sacramento. He appeared in 26 games with the Kings, averaging 7.1 points in 15.6 minutes an outing. Despite showing off his ability to score, Taylor was cut from the Kings after the team acquired another offensive-minded shooting guard in Marcus Thornton.
Players like Taylor could have utilized the summer leagues to showcase their talents, not only to the teams that they were competing with, but to other organizations as well. Due to the lockout, that was not possible.
Once the lockout concluded, Taylor, who was coming back from an injury, was not able to quickly catch on with an NBA team. He ended the season in the NBA D-League, averaging 14.2 points in 26.3 minutes per contest with Rio Grande Valley.
On Tuesday evening, Taylor will suit up for the Chicago Bulls in Las Vegas. He will be one of 12 players on the Bulls' summer league squad. The group includes a few wings, most notably second-year Bull Jimmy Butler, but Taylor appears to have a good shot to earn a decent amount of playing time as Chicago is scheduled to play five games. Hopefully Taylor will be able to take advantage of the opportunity, one that did not exist for him last summer.