Players > Retired > Xavier Thames
Xavier Thames
PG/SG - 6'3, 195lbs - 33 years old - 0 years of NBA experience
Retired - Retired in January 2023
  • Birthdate: 01/19/1991
  • Drafted (NBA): 59th pick, 2014
  • Pre-draft team: San Diego State
  • Country: USA
  • Hand: Right
  • Agent: -
2014 NBA DraftNBADrafted 59th overall by Toronto.
2014 NBA DraftNBADraft rights traded by Toronto to Brooklyn in exchange for cash.
6th August, 2014SpainSigned a one year contract with Sevilla.
23rd January, 2015SpainReleased by Sevilla.
5th February, 2015D-LeagueDesignated as an allocated player by Fort Wayne Mad Ants.
10th September, 2015NBABrooklyn renounced draft rights.
2nd November, 2015D-LeagueDesignated as a returning player by Fort Wayne Mad Ants.
20th August, 2016MacedoniaSigned a one year contract with MZT Skopje.
24th August, 2016D-LeagueDrafted 33rd overall in the 2016 D-League Expansion Draft by Windy City Bulls.
27th July, 2017IsraelSigned a one year contract with Bnei Herzliya.
Career Moves
2009 - 2010Washington State (NCAA)
2010 - 2014San Diego State (NCAA)
July 2014Brooklyn Nets (Summer League)
August 2014 - February 2015Sevilla (Spain)
February 2015 - June 2015Fort Wayne Mad Ants (D-League)
July 2015Brooklyn Nets (Summer League)
November 2015 - June 2016Fort Wayne Mad Ants (D-League)
August 2016 - June 2017Skopje (Macedonia)
July 2017 - presentBnei Hertzeliyya (Israel)
Articles about Xavier Thames

June 19, 2014

Xavier Thames tells increasingly elaborate fishing story

Xavier Thames, San Diego State, Senior, 6'3 195lbs

2013/14 stats: 31.3 mpg, 17.6 ppg, 3.2 apg, 2.9 rpg, 1.6 spg, 0.1 bpg, 2.0 fpg, 1.4 TOpg, 41.1% FG, 37.2% 3PT, 83.4% FT

Thames is a high scoring combo guard who is essentially best as a half court driver. Inside the lane, he uses subtle fakes and hesitations to create spacing and looks, and can either get to the basket or shoot a pull-up. Thames gets to the line a lot, welcoming contact and able to draw it through his craft, as well as owning a useful floater for the occasions he is up against true length. He uses both hands to both handle and finish, and although he has little flair, he has good body control and positional awareness to be able to find and expose seams in the defense.

What Thames does not excel at is being able to take that ability to penetrate in the half court and turn it into being able to find looks for team mates. He does not often kick out to shooters when on the drive, nor does he drop off to the big men; he's driving to score, and seems to lack the vision to do more than that. Thames has some point guard abilities, able to find a roll man in pick-and-roll action and very secure with the ball, smooth and safe, but he does not move a defense much.

Outside of the arc, Thames is less effective, as his three point stroke has never been that good. For all his understanding of time and score, of when to carry the scoring load and when to step up, Thams lacks much in the way of dynamicism, being all craft rather than flair. That said, Thames can carry his team for stretches through this craft. Lacking great speed, Thames makes up for it on offense with reliability and an unflappability in the face of defensive pressure, and copes with it on defense with good anticipation, hands and rotations.

A lead guard at the college level, Thames is harder to peg at the NBA level. A bit like Nolan Smith before him, Thames is either big but slow for a point, or small and a bit slow for a two, with a skill set that resides somewhere between the two. Most aspects of his game are solid, but none are spectacular, which begs the question as to what role Thames fits. "Just a guard" is fine in theory, but what's his role in a half court offense, and who does he defend? A very good shot creator and defender at the college level, neither projects that well. Thames is good, very good, but might be better suited for Europe.

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