There are over 400 players on NBA opening-day rosters. One is from the University of Iowa. One is from Iowa State University.
Maybe that’s why there aren’t more NBA fans in Iowa.
(Yes, I know Wesley Johnson of the Lakers played for Iowa State. But he finished his college career at Syracuse, so that’s that.)
But the two representatives certainly have hung in there. Power forward Reggie Evans begins his 12th NBA season, and second with the Brooklyn Nets. Not bad for someone who wasn’t drafted out of Iowa. He averaged 11.1 rebounds last season, sixth-best in the league.
Point guard Jamaal Tinsley’s career was in a limbo a few years ago, or so it may have seemed. He was under contract to the Indiana Pacers, but was told to stay away from the team. There were off-court problems.
But he signed as a free agent with the Memphis Grizzlies in November 2009. He played in 38 games. But the following season, he didn’t play in the league. In 2011, he showed he was serious about trying to impress NBA teams by playing for the Los Angeles D-Fenders of the NBA D-League. The Utah Jazz signed him in the middle of that season. He finished his second season with Utah last season, appeared in 66 games, and started in 32.
Tinsley’s contract expired. He was without a team until the Jazz signed him last week.
Evans is 33. Tinsley is 35. Here are some comparative career statistics.
Games: Evans 708, Tinsley 539
Points: Tinsley 4,643, Evans 2,899
Rebounds: Evans 5,132, Tinsley 1,594
Assists: Tinsley 3,307, Evans 405
Blocked shots: Tinsley 155, Evans 107. That’s right. Evans’ season-high for blocks is 16. Tinsley’s is 40.
Field goal percentage: Evans .467, Tinsley .393
Free-throw percentage: Tinsley .716, Evans .521
3-pointers: Tinsley 396, Evans 1. Tinsley has tried 1,311 threes, Evans 9.
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