The Memphis Hustle have been in the midst of training camp this week at FedExForum and are close to finalizing a roster to start its third NBA G League season, which will be Friday, Nov. 8 at the Landers Center in Southaven against the Texas Legends.
New head coach Jason March put together a roster that started training camp on Monday, Oct. 28 with some familiar names from last season, including guard Dusty Hannahs and forward Yuta Watanabe, who is one of the team's two-way players with the parent Memphis Grizzlies. Jon Konchar is the other two-way player for the Hustle and Hannahs is one of five players with returning rights by the Hustle.
Nino Johnson and Marquis Teague, who both played for the Hustle last season, also come under the returning rights label, along with former Temple player Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson, and Jarrod Uthoff, a former Iowa standout. Their rights were acquired by the Grizzlies/Hustle in the off-season.
Three players were chosen by the Hustle during the recent NBA G League draft before the start of training camp. They were guards Shaqquan Aaron (Southern Cal) and Jimond Ivey (Akron), along with seven-foot center Asuhn Dixon-Tatum (Auburn). Dixon-Tatum has five years G League-D League experience and has also played professionally in Canada.
Three players were also picked for the training camp roster from the local tryouts held at DeSoto Central High School and Christian Brothers University. They were forward Venky Jois (Eastern Washington) and Jamal Rodgers (Faulkner State Comm. College), along with guard-forward Raynere Thornton (Memphis).
Training camp continues through Friday, Nov. 1 at FedExForum and we should know what the final roster may look like by the time the Hustle’s Media Day is held the following Monday, Nov. 4.
The team made a roster move ahead of the training camp when the Hustle received a second-round draft pick in next year’s draft in exchange for the returning player rights to former Hustle player Markel Crawford. He started 19 games and played in 47 contests for the Hustle with a 10.5 point average in an average 24.3 minutes per game.
Bob Bakken is Sports Editor for the DeSoto Times-Tribune.