Tornike Shengelia, who is basically LeBron James


Tornike Shengelia Brooklyn Nets
Tornike Shengelia (AP)
Number: 20

Position: SF

Height: 6’9”

Weight: 220

Years Pro: 1

Hometown: Tbilisi, Georgia

Prior to NBA: Spirou Charleroi

Twitter: None

Shengelia had very few moments to strut his stuff last season, playing less than 100 NBA minutes in a smattering of meaningless games and moments throughout last season. He looked promising in those moments, playing solid-for-a-rookie defense and attacking the basket, though his jump shot and ballhandling still need work. Frankly, Shengelia’s most memorable moment last season was probably when he compared himself to a “taller Manu Ginobili” on draft night.

But when the Nets decided they had no use for Shengelia in the NBA, choosing instead to run out their combination of limited veterans, a different Shengelia took form in the D-League. This Shengelia was aggressive, forceful, dominant.

If you conclude anything from our analysis of the Brooklyn Nets, from last year, this year, and beyond, it’s that Tornike Shengelia is basically LeBron James… of the D-League.

That above is Shengelia’s D-League stats per game, compared with LeBron James’s NBA stats per game. Like I said, nearly identical. Indeed, Shengelia put up monster LeBronesque numbers in his ten games with the Armor, including one 39-point, 18-rebound, 7-assist performance that left us speechless and wondering just what exactly goes on during these D-League games.


The Nets have the right to send Shengelia up and down from the D-League as much as they want in this upcoming season, and now that they’re two deep at every position, chances are they’ll take full advantage of that opportunity. After all, when the Nets acquired the Armor as their independent affiliate, general manager Billy King said the team was looking to win D-League championships as well as NBA championships.

One more fun fact: The 21-year-old Shengelia got married over the summer to his longtime girlfriend, but his honeymoon only lasted one day because of Nets training camp. The perils of fame.

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Full List:

| Shaun Livingston | Deron Williams | Tyshawn Taylor | Alan Anderson | Joe Johnson | Jason Terry | Andrei Kirilenko | Paul Pierce | Tornike Shengelia | Reggie Evans | Kevin Garnett | Mirza Teletovic | Andray Blatche | Brook Lopez | Mason Plumlee |