NBA.com is reporting the Denver Nuggets have assigned rookies Jordan Hamilton and Julyan Stone to the NBA Development League’s Idaho Stampede. Although this comes as a bit of a surprise to Nuggets’ fans, it should be noted this move has come in unison with other NBA teams — including the Rockets with Marcus Morris — doing the exact same thing just in time for the annual D-League Showcase on Jan. 9.
In reality, this is a good decision. Jordan Hamilton and Julyan Stone are both extremely talented players who have done nothing but ride pine since the start of the regular season a few weeks ago. As NBA D-League blogger Scott Schroeder put it, “The assignment of all of these players seems to coincide with something I’ve believed for quite some time: Young players are better off playing in games rather than sitting on NBA benches — especially when practice time is sparse during the lockout-truncated schedule.”
But perhaps the best part of Hamilton and Stone being assigned to the D-League is that Nuggets fans will finally get the opportunity to watch these promising young rookies in real-life game action for the first time this year. Because the D-League Showcase has expanded rapidly both in popularity and legitimacy over recent years, NBA TV will employ full coverage of the event which will include the airing of four games from each day’s action with the Stampede getting national exposure on Monday, Jan. 9, against the Erie Bayhawks at 11 a.m. EST, then on Wednesday, Jan. 11, against the Bakersfield Jam at 1:45 p.m. EST.
In case you’re unable to watch these contests, Roundball Mining Company will have a full scouting report on both Hamilton and Stone should either get the opportunity to play.