Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey Review – Reinvigorates the reality sports drama

August 7, 2023 (Last updated: last month)
M.N. Miller 0
Amazon Prime, Movie Reviews, Movies, Streaming Service
Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey Review - Reinvigorates the reality sports drama


Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey reinvigorates the sports documentary that has grown stale over the past decade.

This review of the Prime Video and Freevee documentary film Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey does not contain spoilers.

Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey on Prime Video reinvigorates the reality sports documentary. This category has grown stale over the past decade. Yes, I’m looking at you, Hard Knocks. This is because basketball is a global sport with more stars than football; after all, their faces are visible.

Stars are forged at the collegiate level. Then, even fewer make it to the NBA due to the surge in the European game’s popularity. In 2017, over 25 percent of players originated from overseas. Some of the most prominent names in college basketball need assistance to reach or reclaim their position in the NBA.

Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey discovers exciting stories from diverse backgrounds nationwide. The stories are boundless and consistently fascinating, ranging from the first Orthodox Jewish player with NBA aspirations to a former first-round pick, a seasoned G League veteran denied opportunities, and an eagerly anticipated lottery pick.

Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey, at its core, is a grassroots character-driven exploration of determination, fame, and success. It doesn’t necessarily focus solely on the best players (with an exception) but rather on the league’s most compelling stories. An intriguing aspect of assembling an NBA roster revolves around seeking youth and fulfilling roles, not solely targeting stars.

Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey review and plot summary

And this is precisely what makes some of the selections intriguing. Yes, they follow a player named Scoot Henderson, a perennial star and a projected lottery pick in the upcoming NBA draft. Hailing from Marietta, Georgia, he bypassed college and entered the development league directly, playing for Ignite and declining scholarship offers from Auburn and Georgia.

Another story features Denzel Valentine, a former first-round pick who fell out of favor despite being chosen 14th in the 2017 NBA draft by the Chicago Bulls. Valentine played for Michigan State and entered the draft after a standout NCAA tournament. Despite earning over sixteen million dollars in salary, his career stalled, and he’s now working to shake off the “bust” label.

One of my favorite stories involves Gabe York, an excellent shooting guard from Arizona who slipped through the cracks. He went undrafted in the 2016 draft and has persevered for his chance, becoming one of the oldest players in the G League. The factors we discussed earlier work against him because NBA teams aren’t actively seeking a 29-year-old player to warm their bench.

Lastly, we have Ryan Turrell, who aims to become the first Orthodox Jewish player in NBA history. Turrell is so devoted to his faith that he declined an offer to play at West Point to join Division 3 at Yeshiva University. He is a Dirk Nowitzki type who, after the NBA, would like to wrap up his career in the Israeli league.

This sports reality film is a compelling drama with authentic emotional depth when it comes to pursuing your dreams. Even more so when focusing on the character types searching for redemption. The film captures the intense, high-stakes essence of sports competition.

Is Destination NBA good or bad?

Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey is an outstanding sports documentary. The incorporation of drama, rivalries, conflicts, and intense moments enhances the excitement and tension that can be felt throughout multiple storylines.

Is Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey worth watching?

Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey is worth watching for its fresh perspective of modern-day athletes trying to make their dreams a reality. If there’s one aspect I wish the film improved upon, it’s including additional valuable information through intercuts. This would explain the current status of the subjects’ lives.

What did you think of Destination NBA: A G League Odyssey? Comment below.

You can watch this film with a subscription to Prime Video.

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