Knicks: Obi Toppin soars high in Vegas with NBA All-Summer League First Team selection

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Obi Toppin made great strides in Las Vegas and it didn’t go unnoticed.

On Wednesday, the NBA named Toppin to the All-Summer League First Team.

The New York Knicks‘ sophomore forward led the tournament in playing time (35.1 minutes per game) — a thing that he didn’t enjoy during his rookie year as he played sporadically behind Knicks’ All-Star forward Julius Randle. The Knicks basically slot in Toppin to Randle’s usage rate in the regular season in the Summer League. Randle led the entire league in minutes (37.6) last season.

“Obi put in a lot of time over the summer. And it showed,” Knicks Summer League coach Daisuke “Dice” Yoshimoto said earlier in the tournament. “He’s gonna continue to get better, put time in, and the result will gonna take care of itself. This is his chance to showcase who he is. He’s gonna continue to put his time in, work hard, and build the right habits.”

The 23-year old Toppin grabbed the opportunity to show who he is leading the Knicks to a 4-2 record.

Toppin flourished with an expanded role as a rim runner, roll man, and pick and pop big man. He led the team in scoring (21.0) and rebounding (8.3) while hitting two threes on 34 percent shooting. He added 1.3 assists and 1.3 steals.

Toppin joined fellow sophomores Payton Pritchard (Boston), Jalen Smith (Phoenix) in the First Team. Rookies Trey Murphy III (New Orleans), Jalen Johnson (Atlanta), co-MVPs Davion Mitchell (Sacramento), and Cam Thomas (Brooklyn) rounded up the selection.

Ties in voting totals by the media panel between Mitchell and Pritchard (backcourt) and between Johnson, Smith, and Murphy III (frontcourt) resulted in two additional players selected (one backcourt, one frontcourt).

Meanwhile, the All-Summer League Second Team consists of this year’s top two picks Cade Cunningham (Detroit) and Jalen Green (Houston), alongside Detroit’s two-way rookie Luka Garza, last season’s G League MVP Paul Reed (Philadelphia), and sophomore Patrick Williams (Chicago).

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