Demetrius Jackson saw very little action at the NBA level during his rookie year with the Boston Celtics.
Nobody really expected the 2016 second round pick to do much with the Celtics because of their guard depth and everybody assumed he’d spend most of the year in the D-League with the Maine Red Claws, which he did. Jackson averaged 14.8 PPG across 34 appearances with the Red Claws during the regular season although a 42.0% mark from the field and a sub-30% clip from beyond the arc weren’t that great, but he did lead the team with 6.0 APG and 1.3 SPG.
It was overall a pretty good season for the former Notre Dame star, but he was often outshined by his teammates on what turned out to be a star studded Maine squad and that made him go fairly unnoticed throughout the season. Jalen Jones and fellow 2016 second round pick were both D-League All-Stars while Marcus Georgus-Hunt played well enough all season to get himself signed by the Orlando Magic just last week.
But Jackson finally had his moment to step up and shine in the D-League and he did it in a game that will surly go down in Red Claws history. He scored 30 points on 9-for-16 shooting to go along with a team best six assists in their 110-106 overtime victory over the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, which marked the first ever playoff win in franchise history. Jackson also pulled in seven rebounds, recorded a steal and blocked a shot.
This game was a breath of fresh air. For much of the year, Jackson has been viewed as the worst Celtics draft pick from the 2016 class. Jaylen Brown has shown flashes of what he can be as an NBA player throughout the season, Guerschon Yabusele and Ante Zizic both dominated in foreign leagues and Nader – as previously mentioned – got to play in the D-League All-Star game.
But this latest game was for Jackson! He outplayed Nader, outplayed Yabusele – who joined Maine for their playoff run after his season in China ended – and he also outplayed Ben Bentil, another Celtics 2016 second round pick who was cut at the end of training camp and scored two points on 1-for-6 shooting for the Mad Ants in this game.
Maine can now sweep their best-of-three series tomorrow at home against the Mad Ants.