Vipers acquire two in trades as season nears

The RGV Vipers acquired two players in trades Friday, landing Kahlil Whitney and Antonio Blakeney in two separate deals.

Whitney was acquired via a three-team trade with the Greensboro Swarm. In return, the Vipers traded the returning rights to forward/center Dewan Hernandez to the Westchester Knicks. In addition, the Knicks agreed to trade their first-round pick (acquired via Delaware) in the 2021 NBA G League Draft to the Greensboro Swarm.

Whitney (6-foot-6, 210 pounds) most recently played in the 2021-22 NBA Summer League with the Golden State Warriors. The forward totaled five points in 9.6 minutes with a total of three rebounds.

Prior to Greensboro, the 20-year-old played for Kentucky in the 2019-20 season making 18 appearances and averaged 3.3 points, 1.7 rebounds in 12.7 minutes as a freshman.

Blakeney comes from the Cleveland Charge. In return, the Vipers traded the returning rights to Josh Huestis and William McDowell-White to the Charge.

Blakeney (6-foot-4, 197 pounds) played with the Charge during the 2020-21 season, making 15 appearances. He averaged 15.1 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.1 assists in 26.6 minutes. Prior to Cleveland, Blakeney was assigned to the Chicago Bulls NBA G League affiliate, Windy City Bulls for a short 2018-19 campaign.

During the 2018-17 season, the guard signed a two-way contract with both the Bulls and Windy City. Blakeney started in all 32 games, averaging 32.0 points, 6.7 rebounds, 3.9 assists and 1.2 steals in 38.3 minutes per game. Concluding the campaign, Blakeney earned the Rookie of the Year award, was named to the All-NBA G League 2nd Team and All-Rookie 1st Team. In addition, he was named to the NBA G League Showcase First Team.

Before declaring for the NBA, Blakeney played two seasons with LSU, totaling 54 starts in 64 games and averaged 14.8 points, 4.1 rebounds and 1.3 assists.