Coach Jimmy Alapag did not have a chance to meet Fil-Am star Jalen Green when they were in Las Vegas recently for the 2021 NBA Summer League.
“I didn’t get a chance to see Jalen while I was in Vegas,” the aspiring Sacramento Kings assistant told Radyo5’s Power and Play. “We had about six teams in our hotel, I think they were at another hotel during our stay in Vegas.”
The young bench tactician, though, was able to watch the highly-touted second overall pick in action. And he felt impressed with what he saw.
Green, 19, wasted no time proving his worth to the Houston Rockets until a hamstring injury he suffered late in the first half of their meeting with the Toronto Raptors. That cut short his stint in the annual off-season showcase.
He only played three games, but averaged 20.3 points on 51.4-percent field goal shooting. He also had 4.3 rebounds and 2.0 assists.
“Obviously, a big-time talent,” Alapag offered. “I think everybody sees the athleticism — you know, the speed and quickness that he plays with. You know, he was really, really impressive.
“I got the chance to watch a couple of his games before he came up with that hamstring injury. But really, really, impressive.”
Alapag believes that Green’s showing is thanks hugely to the experience he earned playing for Ignite in the NBA G-League, the Association’s trailblazing professional pathway program, where he’s among the pioneers.
“I think his experience last year in the G-League was a big help because it gave him an opportunity to really get a better understanding of the pro game, especially in the NBA,” the 43-year-old said.
The PBA great believes, too, that no one feels more excited than the Rockets in having Green, whom many see as a major piece in the franchise’s rebuild.
“He got off to a blazing start in Vegas, and I’m sure the Rockets are really excited about who they drafted this year.”