Cavs’ Evan Mobley struggled against Rockets’ Alperen Sengun in Summer League.
Evan Mobley may be seeing that there is a difference between college kids and NBA rookies. Mobley made his Summer League debut for the Cavs against the Rockets on Sunday, having a showdown with fellow-rookie Alperen Sengun. Despite the Cavs falling to the Rockets 84-76, it was such a fun matchup that some on Twitter jokingly referred to the duo as Shaquille O’Neal and Hakeem Olajuwon
In what could be a battle of the next future greats at the center position, the two youngsters certainly had to work. Sengun went just 3-10 from the floor but 9-14 from the free-throw line for a total of 15 points and 15 rebounds. Sengun also threw in four assists and three assists. Mobley had a slightly better night from the floor, hitting 6-17 for 12 points, five rebounds, three blocks, and a steal, but also had five turnovers and four personal fouls.
Round one goes to Sengun. Though, Mobley did show some defensive instincts which were encouraging. The star of the Cavs had to be Lamar Steven who went 6-11 for 15 points and nine rebounds. Isaac Okoro also had a nice game, shooting 7-13 with 17 points.
No reason for Cavs fans to overreact about Evan Mobley
There may be some people who overreact and screech about how Mobley was overrated and this one game was proof. In fact, we know those people exist, because Twitter is a cesspool for terrible opinions. The fact is that yes, Mobley had a bad game. Mobley showed he has some areas offensively that need to be improved upon. Mobley showed he also needs to be in better positions to get rebounds. These are all things that were said about him by scouts heading into the draft.
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It’s not a surprise.
There’s no reason to overreact. Mobley was drafted first and foremost for his ability to protect the rim. He did a solid job of that on Sunday, and it’s not like this is as good as he’s going to be. The Cavs are going to work with him throughout the Summer League and then into training camp to make sure he’s ready for the NBA regular season.
There’s absolutely no reason to smack the bust label on him so soon. Give him time to grow into the game. It’s an adjustment playing from playing against amateurs to professionals. This is not an adjustment Sengun had to deal with, as he’s been playing against professionals for years. He was so good against other pros, that at 19 years old, he was named the MVP of a pro league that just ended in June of 2021.
Mobley was not going to have an easy night against Sengun. If he’s getting roasted by guys who were undrafted free agents in 2021 by the time March rolls around, ok, we’ll talk about sounding the alarm.
Until then, let’s chalk Sunday up to a solid outing by a rookie making his pro debut against an MVP-caliber player.