Jefferson and Howard star in summer league

Updated: July 26, 2004, 5:05 PM ET
By Chad Ford | ESPN Insider
It's not a time when stars are made or broken, but we did learn a few things in the last three weeks during the NBA summer leagues.

When judging what players did and didn't do in the summer league, there's one important fact to remember. Loren Woods once scored 28 points in a summer league game. Do we need to say more?

Success in the NBA summer leagues isn't a very accurate predictor of who will become an NBA star. While young players like LeBron James, Zach Randolph, Carmelo Anthony, Dwyane Wade, Josh Howard and Marquis Daniels gave us early signs that they were ready to have breakout years -- players such as DeShawn Stevenson, Qyntel Woods, John Salmons, Kedrick Brown, Zarko Carbarkapa and Lonny Baxter also dominated in the leagues. Where did it get them last season?

A more accurate predictor is summer league failure. Nine times out of 10, if a player can't produce against the watered-down competition in the summer leagues, he'll struggle mightily to get it done against real NBA players during the season. Last year only one player, the Bulls' Kirk Hinrich, rebounded from an awful summer league (he had a virus) to have a productive rookie season.

This year the NBA held five summer leagues across the country -- the Pepsi Pro Summer League in Orlando, the Minnesota Summer League, the Southern California Summer Pro League in Los Angeles, the Reebok Vegas Summer League in Las Vegas and the Reebok Rocky Mountain Revue in Salt Lake City.

Who played well? Who bombed out? Insider talked to a number of NBA scouts and executives over the past week to get you the skinny. Here's what the NBA Boys of Summer were up to in July.

Chad Ford

Senior Writer, NBA Insider

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