The NBA G League has became the new destination for High School prospects. As Jalen Green took the chance on the new route, numerous star athletes are following the new trail of the journey after High School. Jonathan Kuminga is a player who is ready for the professional atmosphere right away. The kid is a top notch talent that will make a difference come soon.
Kuminga was ranked number 4 in ESPN’s top 100 list. Transferring from High School to High School, Kuminga has been a five star athlete on every team he has played for. His talent has been astonishing through his three years and he seems to always add something new to his game every season. As Kuminga transitions from High School to the G League, his development will only improve under new circumstances.
The #1 player in the junior class, Jonathan Kuminga, has reclassified to 2020 🚨— BallerTV (@BallerTV) June 7, 2020
He recently cut his list of potential destinations down to Auburn, Duke, Kentucky, Texas Tech, and the NBA G League. pic.twitter.com/H28dy5mqT3
Kuminga is freakishly athletic for his size. He shows a lot of strength weighing at 210 lbs and shows to be very versatile with the basketball. Kuminga is skilled at playing anywhere on the floor, proving great spacing and being able to attack under the basket. He also shows to be a dominant force on the defensive end, swatting shots away and causing deflections from the opponent. Kuminga showed that he was a man amongst boys throughout his High School career. When the pressure got tight in certain situations, he showed everyone what he was capable of as a leader and a superstar when the lights were bright.
Kuminga averaged 16.2 points in his junior season playing for The Patrick School. This was well below his average from his sophomore season. But The Patrick School was a program that was orchestrated to build a winning environment. Kuminga was able to flourish with his new teammates, providing a spark on both ends of the floor, which would result in the win column.
Many will compare Kuminga’s High School career to guys in Zion Williamson or LeBron James. Both James and Williamson had the ability to dominate the High School game with their size and athleticism. When on the fast break, there was no one to stop them on the floor and the defense was put in shambles by these players’ physicality. Kuminga shows that same athletic ability as the other two NBA stars have. He has taken advantage of his physical ability and made a name for himself by dominating his opponents on a nightly basis. There’s a reason why four top notch College programs made an effort to recruit Kuminga throughout the years. He has an ability to make any go in the right direction that could possibly lead them into a contender.
Top-five prospect Jonathan Kuminga announced Wednesday night that he's bypassing college and joining the G League professional path select program.— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) July 16, 2020
He's the fifth ESPN 100 prospect in the 2020 class to choose the G League over college. pic.twitter.com/YhoyrxctRn
Looking at Kuminga’s decision to play in the G League, it may have been the best decision for his development going forward. He had great opportunities to play for programs in Alabama, Auburn, etc. But the G League was able to influence Kuminga that this was the route that will prepare him for the NBA. Playing for the G League Ignite puts Kuminga in a comfortable situation both on and off the court. He’ll be able to continue to gain the experience needed while also making a $500K salary that will help Kuminga financially. It’s a win-win situation for young prospects like Kuminga to make it to the next level in one of the best situations available right now.
As Kuminga heads to the G League next season, a place where I would like to watch him improve upon is around the mid-range, foul line area. Kuminga has shown the world that he can be a deadly three point shooter and amongst one of the best attackers in basketball. If he can become more comfortable knocking down pull up jumpers in the mid range then his offense could go to another level. Kuminga has shown to score around the mid range but doesn’t always display it in the games. As Kuminga plays in the G League, teams will figure out ways to close out his three point shots and the open lanes to the basket. So finding new ways to score around the mid range area could do wonders for Kuminga playing at the wing position.
Expect this season to be a productive one for Kuminga. As he played alongside other prospects in Jalen Green, Isaiah Todd, and other great players. Kuminga will learn how to play off the ball as he may have to share the spotlight with everyone else. His job on this developmental team will be to set the tone on the floor and attack with his athleticism. Kuminga will bring a lot of energy to this Ignite team as they match up with other exhibition teams. If Kuminga goes in and does his job well, this team will be a force to be wrecking with.
The future of the NBA is in great hands as guys in Jonathan Kuminga continues to emerge as top tier talents. This is a guy who can put on a show and has the ability to be a box office player once he enters the Draft. He will be one step closer to the NBA than the average college student while he plays for the G League. It will be no question that Kuminga will soak in everything he needs to know about what it takes to be an all time great basketball player.