During the 2010-11 NBA Development League season, 20 different players earned call-ups to the NBA. In all, NBA teams made 27 call-ups last season with some players being called up more than once. D-League Digest is counting down the top 10 call-ups from last season and updating their current playing status. Coming in at number five on the list is Zabian Dowdell.
Details on the call-up(s): From the Tulsa 66ers to the Phoenix Suns on Jan. 9, 2011.
How he earned the call-up(s): Dowdell was the first call-up of the 2010-11 NBA season. He earned the nod after averaging 14.5 points, 4.6 assists, and 2.4 steals in 29.3 minutes per game through 18 games with the 66ers.
In the NBA: After being called up to Phoenix, Dowdell played in 24 games with the Suns, averaging 5 points, 2.1 assists, 0.8 rebounds and 0.8 steals in 12.2 minutes per game. In February, Dowdell was signed by the Suns for the remainder of the season. Michael Schwartz of Valley of the Suns wrote, “Dowdell has played some solid on-ball defense, done a little scoring and made some nice dishes, but the offense has also gotten stagnant at times with him running the show as it often does with Nash on the bench.” Dowdell was also the focal point of a January Sports Illustrated article about 10-day contracts.
Best game as a call-up: On March 14, Dowdell played a season-high 28 minutes in a 95-93 loss against the Houston Rockets. He scored 11 points on 5-11 shooting and added 5 assists and 4 steals.
Current status: Our TrueHoop Network partner Valley of the Suns has done some great work this summer regarding Dowdell. First, check out this post from July 6, “Zabian Dowdell not about to let lockout thwart NBA dream.” Then, this post from Aug. 21, “Zabian Dowdell hungrier than ever.” Finally, read this Q&A with Dowdell from August 22. The message seems to be clear: Dowdell wants to play in the NBA with the Suns next season. Of course, the lockout may render that impossible, but all indications are that Dowdell is willing to wait for now rather than pursue opportunities overseas.Previously covered in our series on the Top-10 NBA D-League Call-ups of the 2011-12 season: