When the Utah Jazz summer league roster was made public, most people scanned right past Brock Motum’s name, focusing naturally on the returning players and recent draftees. A month later, people are much more familiar with the Australian forward.
Motum was very solid in Las Vegas, averaging 8.0 PPG (62.1 percent from the field), 4.6 RPG and 1.6 APG in 17.2 MPG (16.7, 9.6 and 3.3 per 36 minutes1). Against the Milwaukee Bucks, he posted 16 points and six rebounds and two games later, he added 14 and 8. Motum hustled, functioned well within the system2, made the right basketball plays and showed a penchant for making the extra pass–something that is clearly a focus for Utah Jazz basketball going forward. Motum showed solid athleticism and played with poise.
Motum’s efforts not only caught the eyes of the fanbase, but apparently the front office and coaching staff. Motum’s reportedly accepted the invitation to participate in Utah’s training camp this fall. This interview gives some insights into Motum’s experience at summer league.
So, who is Brock Motum? Hailing from Brisbane, the 6’10”, 245 lb forward’s life has been centered around basketball. He trained for two years at the Australian Institute of Sport, which has seen many other future NBA hoopsters grace its courts 3. Motum then went on to play four years for Washington State, displaying improvement each season. While his senior campaign was impressive (18.7 ppg, 6.3 rpg), his junior year was even better when glancing at the advanced stats (25.3 PER, .626 TS%, 4.7 WS).
Despite a solid collegiate career, Motum went unclaimed in the 2013 NBA Draft. After suiting up for the Philadelphia 76ers in summer league, he signed a two-year deal with Granarolo Bologna in Italy. Reports indicate he has an contractual out if an opportunity in the NBA arises. He also joins Dante Exum as a member of Airbnb Australian Boomers Team that will represent at the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup. His familiarity with Utah’s prized rookie would help should Motum make the Jazz roster.
With the recent trade with the Cleveland Cavaliers that jettisoned forwards Malcolm Thomas and Erik Murphy and guard John Lucas III back east, Motum’s chances improved a bit. While all three were non-guaranteed deals, Thomas and Murphy still signified front court competition for Motum. Utah is clearly stacked with Derrick Favors, Enes Kanter, Rudy Gobert, Trevor Booker, Steve Novak and Jeremy Evans, so it will be tough. But Motum’s camp can take solace in the fact that Utah had seven bigs in tow for most of the season 4.
Besides Gordon Hayward and Exum, Jazz fans should keep an eye on Motum during this international tournament. Likewise, he’ll be one to also watch come October’s training camp.