The dream of a lifetime has been shattered. Janis Timma is not destined to conquer the USA
Latvian forward Janis Timma has finally tried his hand at the NBA. In the Summer League, he played five matches for the Orlando Magic and immediately managed to attract the attention of fans, although he did not become the main star of the team. However, at the end of the summer tournament, the player himself hinted that this is where his American adventure ends, and he still will not receive a contract from the club from the United States. And the statistics shown by Timma also do not imply a place in the application for the NBA season.
The Latvian decided to still try to conquer the USA after he stopped playing in Khimki in the spring after a conflict with head coach Andrei Maltsev . Before the expiration of his contract with the Moscow Region club, there were several months left, but Timma became a free agent ahead of schedule and began to actively train in Miami with a local coach. It became known that he would try to prove himself in the Summer League in early July. Timma still opted for Orlando.
In 2018, the club offered Janis a contract, but he refused, as he was not happy with the potential status of the 12-15th player in the rotation. Now the situation was compelling. In Russia (namely in Moscow) Timma cannot continue his career. The best option is the USA. This country is actually the second place of residence for Janis and his wife, the popular singer Anna Sedokova.
Despite the fact that now Timma does not claim much and would gladly become an insignificant role-player in the NBA, his performance in the Summer League cannot be called impressive. Janis averaged 7.0 points, 3.4 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 0.6 steals and 0.6 blocks with 38.5% three-point accuracy.
In the first game with the Golden State Warriors (91:89 OT), the Latvian basketball player scored 11 points (1/2 two-pointers, 3/5 three-pointers), 6 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal, 2 blocks in 16 minutes on the court … In the second match with the Cleveland Cavaliers (84:94) Timma scored 8 points (1/1 two-pointers, 2/8 three-pointers), 4 rebounds with 1 loss in 14 minutes. In the match with the Boston Celtics (71: 108) Timma did not score points in 6 minutes on the court (0/1 three-pointers). In the game against the Houston Rockets (89:76) in 17 minutes on the court, Janis scored 6 points (2/8 three-pointers), 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, 1 block shot with 1 loss and 1 foul. In the final match of the NBA Summer League with the Detroit Pistons (78:79) in 17 minutes on the court Timma chalked up 10 points (3/4 three-pointers, 1/2 free throws), 3 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal with 1 loss and 1 foul.
Timma demonstrated his trump card – a long-range shot – one way or another, although, as the above statistics show, he actually refused to pass under the ring and attacks from an average distance. On average, he threw 2 out of 5.2 three-pointers, that is, 38.5%, which is very solid for basketball (especially American, where the arc is slightly farther from the hoop than in Europe). Although there were some unpleasant incidents – for example, in the third quarter with Cleveland, Janis did not realize any of his six attempts from beyond the arc. It’s also worth noting that Timma was not that bad on defense. The statistics of interceptions and block shots confirm this.
In matches against Golden State and Detroit, Timma became the third most points scored in Orlando. But, despite this, in terms of average performance in the tournament, he became only ninth in the team (7 points). He was beaten by many young guys, including 19-year-old eighth pick in 2021 Franz Wagner (8.0) and 22-year-old Lithuanian Ignas Brazdeikis (8.8). And there was no particular zeal to get ahead of partners in personal statistics for Timma. This, of course, is good, but not in a situation where a player is forced to fight not for victories throughout the whole season, but for a contract at a seven-day summer tournament. Moreover, Janis did not get a lot of playing time, on average spending 15 minutes on the court. Although this is hardly the player’s fault. In the Summer League, even the top draft picks are not given many minutes and use a wide rotation,
Here’s what the Orlando Magic Daily wrote about Timma’s performance in the NBA Summer League:
“Timma certainly spoke with composure and confidence that he had a future somewhere else. He didn’t seem to be playing for an NBA contract. This is not a reason for criticism. He played well and did his job. He just did not play with the same persistence as the others, ”the newspaper notes.
Perhaps there is some truth in these words. This is not to say that Timma has zero chances of getting a guaranteed contract in the NBA. However, it was still initially clear that the likelihood of Janis getting into the best league in the world is low. It is possible that he just tried his luck without any special illusions, while negotiating with the Euroleague clubs. Timma finished ninth in Orlando in terms of points scored in the Summer League, seventh in rebounds, 11th in assists. Janis is 29 years old, despite the fact that in the Summer League most of the performers are raw youth.
Although Janis created a sensation in the USA. Timma was remembered by the fans for his unusual hair color. On the Web, many discussed the vivid image of the tattooed superblondine, as well as his relationship with Sedokova. On the court, the situation was not so rosy. But despair is hardly worth it. There are only 450 seats in the NBA, not enough for everyone. Timma can prove himself in the second best tournament in the world – the Euroleague.
Janis on his Instagram page has already addressed his family, friends and Orlando fans in a kind of farewell post.
“I don’t even know how to start. The last few months have been sheer insanity and have been very difficult for me. But as I said before and as my wife is wont to say, you should never give up. Anna Sedokova, you are the best wife in the world that you can only dream of.
I would like to say a big thank you to all my family and friends. Without your support, nothing would have worked for me. Special thanks to the coaching staff. And, of course, thanks to Orlando Magic and all the fans of the club. You have supported me so well these two weeks – I will never forget this amazing time, ”wrote Janis.
Timma was not afraid and took a risk, despite his age and frankly not the best chances of success. And, whatever the outcome of his speech, he got a useful experience. Now the Latvian has to urgently look for a new team. It is unlikely that Timma will remain in the unfamiliar status of a free agent for a long time, although nothing is known about the possible options for continuing his career in Europe. But, even if it did not work out with the United States, the doors to many strong clubs of the Old World are still open for Janis.