The NBA G-League is home to players that want to find their way into the NBA. Whether it be D1 players who were just out of reach in the NBA draft, overseas players trying to make a name for themselves, or even former big league players that could not find another chance in the NBA.
The G-League is the land of opportunity, with the 2020-21 season seeing 164 total call-ups to the NBA. Some may not find the success they worked so hard for, but others appear and show the world why they never should have been doubted.
Many players have made their way up the ranks and found opportunities, but the three listed below are the most prominent. These players made illustrious NBA careers after progressing in the G-League, making them legends across basketball.
Read about the best NBA Players here.
3. Rudy Gobert, C, Minnesota Timberwolves
Rudy Gobert may not be the most well-rounded player, but he is phenomenal at his job. During the 2013-14 season with the Bakersfield Jam, he averaged 14 points, 11 rebounds, and an astonishing 3 blocks.
His defensive prowess was outstanding, especially from a foreign player out of France. The second he found his way onto the NBA court, he found heaps of success. Since 2016, Gobert has averaged over 13 points and 10 rebounds. Not only this, but throughout his entire career, he averages 2.2 blocks per game.
He is one of the most profound defensive big men in the league, he has 6 all-defensive first-team nods and 3-time Defensive Player of the Year. A multiple-time all-star and all-NBA player, Gobert has solidified himself as one of the best success stories of the G-League despite only playing in 8 games.
2. Pascal Siakam, F, Toronto Raptors
Siakam actually found himself with an incredible amount of success in the G-League, earning some accolades along the way. He was a prospect out of New Mexico State with an incredible amount of upside. However, he was a project and spent a year in the D-League.
He played incredibly well, averaging 18 points with 8 rebounds throughout his time. His team, the Raptors 905, won the D-League championship that year. In the process, he won the finals MVP, and started his career on a high note.
Now, Siakam remains a staple of NBA basketball and a household name. He was the most improved player in 2019, and the next season made the All-NBA second team. This season he is averaging a career-high in points at almost 26, paired with 8 rebounds and 6 assists.
1. Danny Green, G, Memphis Grizzlies
Easily the biggest success story of the G-League, Danny Green was not expected to find much NBA time. Green played a total of 19 games in the G-League, averaging over 20 points on 49% from the field and from three. He was one of the most elite scorers in the league’s history, and once he was called up, he never went back.
In 2011 with the spurs, Green started his journey as one of the most elite sharpshooters in the NBA. He averaged 43.6% from three, putting him at 9th in the league. He has played 11 full seasons of NBA basketball, and still somehow managed to average 40% from three in all of them. He went from a multi-year G-League star to one of the best shooters in the modern era, making him the best G-League to NBA player to date.