Lamb’s Professional Career Begins with a 10-Day Stint in Detroit
One of Vermont’s greatest players of all-time has officially put pen to paper, as the reigning two-time America East Player of the Year will reportedly sign a 10-day contract with the Detroit Pistons. Lamb’s decorated career as a Catamount wasn’t quite enough to make him the first ever Vermont player to be drafted, though a lack of pre-draft workouts and no NCAA Tournament surely didn’t help boost his stock. Nonetheless, this is an incredible accomplishment for Lamb and true testament of his determination and work ethic.
While there’s no denying Lamb’s tenacity he still faces an uphill battle. This 10-day contract is essentially an invitation to Detroit’s training camp where he’ll be competing for that final roster spot. In any given year Detroit would have the ability to assign Lamb to their G-League affiliated team (Grand Rapids Drive), but a G-League season is looking highly unlikely at the moment.
If Lamb can manage to parlay this 10-day contract into a spot on the official roster, he’ll become the first America East player since former Stony Brook standout Jameel Warney (2018) to reach the NBA. Warney took a similar route as Lamb, signing a 10-day contract with the Dallas Mavericks and eventually was able to briefly crack the rotation, scoring 8 points against the Knicks before returning to the G-League. Former Catamount great, Marqus Blakely also briefly suited up for the Houston Rockets (2011), though he never saw game action.
As we all know, Lamb was an incredible player during his time as a Catamount. His laundry list of awards and accomplishments were no doubt a major selling point with NBA teams and clearly helped propel him onto the Pistons radar. If not for the cancellation of the NCAA Tournament and pre-draft workouts there was a good chance Lamb could’ve snuck into the second round of the NBA Draft. The Athletic’s Big Board had Lamb ranked 58th in January, but tumbled down to 85th in-large due to a lack of opportunities to meet and workout for teams.
Lamb was a star at Vermont and thrived as their prominent point of attack. However, Lamb’s role will look significantly different moving forward should he manage to make the final cut. Lamb knows that in order to succeed at the next level he’ll have to carve out a specific role – one that is based more on off-ball than on. During an interview with Hoops Hype, Lamb was quoted as saying he hopes to translate his game similar to that of forward P.J. Tucker.
“I’ve heard some comparisons. I’ve watched a lot of film in order to see if those comparisons true. But for PJ Tucker, I know I can do a lot of what he does. People tell me he plays really strong, he makes three-pointers, he spreads the floor with space. He is able to guard one through five. That is something I know I can do. That is why I know that being able to bring that to a team right away would be able to help and create a positive impact on whatever team I go to in the future.”
With NBA teams now prioritizing shooting and small-ball lineups more so than ever, Lamb should be able to stick to a roster if he can mold his game in similar fashion to that of P.J. Tucker. Even if Lamb doesn’t make the final cut, this 10-day contract is still a monumental accomplishment for himself and the Vermont program as a whole. For now we can all enjoy the moment and wish Anthony the best as he prepares to team up with back-to-back Blake of the Year winner, Blake Griffin.