Tari Eason shines on her Summer League debut

When the Houston Rockets selected former LSU forward Tari Eason with the 17th overall pick in the 2022 NBA Draft, it was seen as a very positive pick for a team early in the process of what likely will be a length reconstruction.

It’s far too early to pass instant judgment on the pick, but after Eason’s Summer League debut in Las Vegas on Thursday night, it looks promising.

Eason and third overall pick Jabari Smith took on the Orlando Magic and first pick Paolo Banchero in a highly anticipated rookie battle. In 25 minutes of action, Eason finished with a double-double of 14 points and 13 rebounds on 6-of-17 shooting in a 91-77 loss.

He also kicked off the scoring for Houston after just 15 seconds with this emphatic dunk.

Eason was a dominant player at both ends of the court for the Tigers in 2021-22, but he mostly came off the bench in part because he struggled to avoid fouls. The NBA is more physical, and that could be a challenge for him early in his career.

But if he can handle it, he has the potential to be a mid-term steal for the Rockets. Here are some of the best photos from his debut.

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