The road to fulling your dreams is never easy and for Myck Kabongo the NBA dream is alive and well thanks to his hometown team, the Toronto Raptors.
Kabongo, long heralded as Canada’s next point guard prodigy for his blazing speed and contagious personality that made him into 2011 McDonald’s All-American out of St. Benedict’s Prep in Newark, New Jersey will get another opportunity to showcase his talent at the 2014 NBA Las Vegas Summer League.
Kabongo’s decision to leave the Texas Longhorns after a sub-par sophomore season in which he only appeared in 11-games, due to a 23-game suspension by the NCAA for accepting impermissible benefits. Despite the suspension and turmoil Kabongo and his camp were convinced that the Canadian point guard had showcase enough in a total of 45 college games played with the Longhorns. Leaving Texas seemed like a rushed decision and ultimately the 2013 NBA Draft came and went and Kabongo’s name was not called.
NBA scouts questioned his ability to shoot the ball and fundamentally run a NBA team. From there the Miami Heat came calling, offering a spot on their 2013 Summer League squad. Despite the Summer League pick-up Kabongo’s confidence seemed shatter – in three games with Heat, including one start, he struggled to showcase anything, putting up only 1.6 points per game and 2 assists in 16 minutes of action.
A short preseason stint with the San Antonio Spurs followed which led to Kabongo joining the Spurs D-League affiliate. In 45 games with the Austin Toros he earned 37 starts and averaged 9 points, 4.6 assists and 3.9 rebounds in 30 minutes of floor time.
Although it’s unlikely that Kabongo will stick with the Raptors the opportunity could potentially lead to more preseason games or eventually a 10-day contract down the road. Competition wise Kabongo will have his work cut out once again as the Raptors summer-league roster features other point guard hopefuls such a former Kentucky product Doron Lamb and American/Brazil Scott Machado.
Additionally, with the influx of Canadian point guards coming down the pipeline this summer could also prove crucial for Kabongo on the international stage. Canada’s senior men’s national team already features two NBA players in Cory Joseph and now Tyler Ennis. Kabongo is also expected to amongst the Canadian players who will take part of in the Canadian national team’s European exhibition series which kicks off from July 24-August 12.