Chicago Bulls star DeMar DeRozan shines in second Drew League appearance of the summer

ByWilliam E. Ricks ESPN logo
Sunday, August 7, 2022

Few pro-am basketball organizations carry the level of star power as the Drew League. The Los Angeles-based summer hoops league features high-level competition from a collection of professional and amateur players. The circuit has seen plenty of big-name NBA ballers since its establishment in 1973.

Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant, Los Angeles Clippers forward Paul George and Philadelphia 76ers guard James Harden are among the players who thrilled spectators in the past with outstanding performances. The prominent talent has also brought out notable celebrities to watch courtside.

More NBA athletes have laced up their kicks for the Drew League this year, and the action hasn't disappointed. From long-awaited returns to young stars putting on a show, the hardwood action in L.A. has been electrifying.

Here's a look at some of the NBA stars who have played in the Drew League this summer:

DeMar DeRozan -- Aug. 6

DeRozan made his second Drew League appearance of the summer Saturday alongside Bulls teammate Patrick Williams. They helped the MMV Cheaters battle back from 19 down against Young Citi to win 102-94. DeRozan was named player of the game with 36 points and six rebounds. Williams logged a double-double with 14 points and 14 rebounds.

Isaiah Thomas-- July 30

Thomas, who recently played for the Charlotte Hornets this past NBA season, took his talents to the Drew League and put on a show. He played for Ghost, scoring 45 points in a 103-85 victory. He showed off his marksmanship from deep by hitting seven 3-pointers during the game and also channeled his inner Dirk Nowitzki with a one-legged shot in the third quarter. Thomas also logged 5 assists and 2 rebounds.

Thomas wasn't the only player from the NBA fraternity on his team. Former NBA forward Corey Maggette was also on Ghost, and he and Thomas connected for an and-one layup in the first quarter.

After the victory, Thomas took to Twitter to summarize his performance.

Trae Young and John Collins -- July 23

Young has been itching to play in the Drew League once he learned Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James and Chicago Bulls guard DeMar DeRozan participated the week before. He finally got his chance, sharing the court with Atlanta Hawks teammate John Collins on the Black Pearl Elite squad.

A highlight from the duo's outing on Saturday was a flashy alley-oop dunk from Young to Collins. The Hawks point guard continued to entertain the crowd by showing off his dribble package and accuracy from 3-point range.

The highlight-worthy plays weren't enough, however, as Black Pearl lost to the Citi Team Blazers 103-100. .

LeBron James and DeMar DeRozan -- July 16

After a decade-long hiatus, James made his Drew League return, teaming up with DeRozan on the MMV Cheaters. With stars like Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green and hip-hop artist Quavo in attendance, James and DeRozan took over.

James dazzled with 42 points, 16 rebounds, and 4 steals, while DeRozan balled out with 30 points and 14 rebounds en route to a 104-102 win over Black Pearl. Both NBA hoopers also brought the competitive edge, as James disputed a call with referees and DeRozan exchanged words with an opponent.

During the game, DeRozan showed his chemistry with James on a sweet dime that led to a dunk.

James, who is entering his 20th NBA season at 37 years old, showed he still has hops on a posterizing slam. He also wore his unreleased Nike LeBron 20 sneaker in a pink colorway.

Both players posted images to their social media accounts after a successful on-court collaboration.

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