By Matt Dykstra | July 6, 2021


Torrey Craig was acquired by the Phoenix Suns for “cash considerations” back in March. The team that gave him up? … The Milwaukee Bucks. Having played more than half of the regular season with Milwaukee, Craig would be eligible to win a championship ring regardless of who wins this year’s NBA Finals. Though, there’s no question a Phoenix victory would be much more meaningful.

Since 1989, only three Skyforce alumni have gone on to win an NBA Championship after spending time in Sioux Falls. Former Skyforce forward Earl Cureton earned an NBA Call-Up to the Houston Rockets in 1994 and later won a ring playing alongside the likes of Hakeem Olajuwon and Kenny Smith. More recently, Dexter Pittman played for the Skyforce while on assignment from the Miami HEAT, winning a championship with the club in 2012. Similarly, Jarvis Varnado was earned a call-up from the HEAT during the 2012-13 season, and signed a multi-year contract prior to becoming an NBA champion in 2013.

Nearly 500 players have donned a Skyforce jersey since the franchise began. Craig now has the opportunity to become just the fourth player all-time to win an NBA Championship after suiting up for the Skyforce in Sioux Falls.

Craig appeared in 32 regular season games (eight starts) after being acquired by the Suns in March, averaging 7.2 points, 4.8 rebounds  and 1.0 assists in just under 19 minutes per contest. Since the playoffs began, Craig has appeared in an additional 16 games for the Suns while averaging 4.4 points and 3.4 rebounds in just over 12 minutes per game.

Though Craig’s numbers on the year are modest, fans that watch him play know he brings much more to the game than what appears on a box score. In 15 games with the Skyforce (12 starts) during the 2017-18 season, however, Craig’s numbers did the talking for him. He averaged 22.9 points, 8.1 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 2.0 blocks and 1.1 steals per contest while donning a Skyforce uniform. Some called him the “G League LeBron” at times as he continued to stuff the stat sheet night after night.

Since his time in Sioux Falls, Craig was able to carve out a solid reserve role for a competitive Denver Nuggets team over the last few seasons prior to walking in free agency last summer. After initially signing with the Bucks, Craig now finds himself competing against Milwaukee for a shot at an NBA Championship. Rest assured, he’ll be plenty motivated.