NBA Summer League: Day 10
Washington Wizards (2-2) 89 New York Knicks (0-5) 84
The Washington Wizards sent New York home winless in their 2009 SL, with a 89-84 win over the Knicks. The Knicks were without first round pick Toney Douglas, who was nursing a left calf contusion. Wizards leading scorer Nick Young (23.8ppg) also didn’t see any action. JaVale McGee provided the scoring for the Wizards in Young’s absence.
McGee started well, with 24 points in a superb first half, showing an improving skill set on the blocks. Both teams took care of the ball and shot a high percentage. Nikoloaz Tskitishvili entered the game in the second and hit 3/3 from long range, keeping the Knicks close throughout the second. McGee’s match up with Knicks first round pick Jordan Hill was compelling. Both big men had success against the other early in the first half with McGee’s output giving his team a narrow 51-47 lead.
Shooting cooled off in a low scoring third quarter. Wizards guard Tyrese Rice (17pts, 2rebs) played a strong second half, showing his outside touch and his ability to penetrate and finish in traffic, on one occasion challenging Knicks big man Mouhamend Sene and using his body well to finish.
Down 5 and needing a score in the last minute, the Knicks
missed three long range attempts to seal the win for the Wizards. Hill finished
with 21pts, 7reb, 6fouls and displayed some effective moves in the key, finishing
on McGee with both hands. Fouls continue to be a problem for Hill (6.75 avg)
committing 6 today. He could also show more urgency in transition defense as
he was beaten down the court on a couple of occasions today. Morris Almond made
a nice contribution for New York finishing with 14pts, 7reb, 2ast.
McGee finished with a line of 31pts, 8rebs, 4blks on 11/16 shooting. The second year center shows a lot of potential with his incredible length and athleticism and improving skill level. He appears to be one of the bright young center prospects in the NBA, who if he stays focused can make huge strides in the next few seasons.
Washington finishes their 2009 summer league with a 3-2 record, while Knicks head back East with their tails between their legs, winless in their 5 games.
Chicago Bulls (3-2) 93 Minnesota Timberwolves (1-4) 85
In a pre-game presentation, Minnesota’s #6 pick Johnny Flynn was the recipient of July’s T-Mobile Rookie of the Month award. Flynn didn’t start today with the Timberwolves going with Ben Woodside.
Chicago guards Anthony Roberson and DeMarcus Nelson gave the Bulls early momentum combining to score the team's first 8 points. Roberson’s nice stroke was on display early as he made a pair of three’s in the first. He would finish with 15pts on 5/12 fg shooting. Nelson (12.8ppg 4.3 rpg 3.25a) had a strong first half , finishing with 18pts, 2reb, 2ast himself and helping Chicago to a 9 point lead at the half. He blew by Flynn in the the dying minutes and sent down an impressive dunk much to the delight of the Cox Pavillion crowd. Once again the backcourt duo did a great job protecting the basketball combining for just the 1 turnover all game.
James Johnson had another quiet start today but did get going in the second half, helping Chicago to an 8 point lead going into the fourth. Johnson finished his final game with 18pts, 7rebs, 4ast on 6/12 shooting.
Minnesota’s Corey Brewer has his best scoring output of the SL, finishing with a team-high 20 pts on 9/16 shooting. Brewer was making outside shots, finishing breaks and looked more comfortable today. The Wolves needed more from Oleksiy Pecherov (10.8ppg 6.5rpg) who shot a poor 2/9 with only 4pts. He did contribute 8 rebounds with a few offensives. Garrett Siler started strong for the Wolves picking up 8pts, 4rebs early. He wouldn’t add much more ending the game with 12pts 6rebs.
Wayne Ellington didn’t have the best scoring game but did have some good moments on the break and although he didn’t register many assists, he did display a willingness to find the open man.
After a big week, Johnny Flynn only played 22 minutes, finishing with 7pts 7ast 2reb 4to’s on 3/10 shooting. He did spark a mini Wolves revival in the fourth but it wasn’t enough as the Bulls got the 8 point win. Flynn ended the game by treating the crowd to a spectacular windmill dunk.
Gerald Henderson did not suit up for today’s game.
Memphis Grizzlies (5-0) 76 San
Antonio Spurs (3-2) 75
A Marcus Williams drive and basket with 0.4 put Memphis up 1 and ensure his team would leave Vegas with a perfect 5-0 record in 2009 SL. The Grizzlies took the game 76-75 to defeat a gallant San Antonio squad who didn’t have the services of second round pick DeJuan Blair, who was suited up but didn’t play. In Blair’s absence, the Spurs were led by Ian Mahinmi who finished with 15pts, 9rebs.
The Spurs came out intent on attacking #2 pick Hasheem Thabeet and had early success, with Mahinmi scoring on Thabeet and drawing two fouls within the first two minutes. Romel Beck incredibly had 2 buzzer beating baskets at the end of the first and third quarters. He finished with 9pts 5 rebs.
With Thabeet off to a slow start, the play of the Grizzlies other draft picks DeMarre Carroll (#27) and Sam Young (#36) saw Memphis take a 6 point lead into halftime. Thabeet looked a little more comfortable in the second half, getting better results. He is still adjusting to the pro game and was called for two illegal defenses for patrolling the paint. He will also likely be foul prone as he adjusts, picking up 8 today. He will need to develop more reliable hands during the regular season.
Although Williams hit the go ahead basket, it was only
possible because of the play of the Memphis rookies, in particular Young and
Carroll. Thabeet’s UConn teammate Jeff Adrien had a game high 11 rebounds.
Denver Nuggets (4-1) 107 New Orleans (1-4) 105 - 3OT
The Denver Nuggets won a triple overtime thriller 107-105 tonight against the New Orleans Hornets. Sonny Weems led the way with 28 pts for the Nuggets, also adding 9 rebs and 2 stls. Even without 21st pick Darren Collison, who did not suit up, the game was entertaining and a fitting way to end the 2009 summer league.
The Hornets called a timeout with 14 second left in the fourth quarter with the score tied. An Earl Barron (11pts, 9rebs, 3blks) miss from the top of the key sent the game into overtime. The first extra period (2mins is SL) saw both teams trade baskets, before Weems put the Nuggets ahead with 20 seconds left. A Coby Karl foul with seconds remaining put Earl Calloway on the line, who made both to send the game into a second overtime.
Barron put the Hornets up 1 point with 14 seconds left in the second OT, before Weems was fouled on a drive with 0.7s remaining. Weems could’ve iced the game by making both but missed one to tie the game at 103, sending the game into a third overtime. Karl's two free throws with 30 seconds left put the Nuggets up 2. Calloway dribbled a bit too long, didn’t get the best look and couldn’t hit the shot to tie. The Nuggets got the win and Weems breathed a sigh of relief, with his late miss from the free throw line not coming back to haunt the Nuggets.
#18 pick Ty Lawson had another big game with 24pts, 6rebs, 4ast, making 3 in a row after a rough opening 2. He was assisted by Karl (19pts, 5rebs 6/13fg) who’s composure and decision making late in the game were near flawless. CJ Giles contributed a double-double, going for 13pts 10rebs.
Despite having a poor shooting night (4/12), Anthony Tolliver
was busy, finishing with a line of 12pts, 11rebs, 5ast. Julian Wright set the
tone early for the Hornets and led them with a team high 24points to go with
his 7reb 2stls.
D-League Select (3-2) 74 Portland Trailblazers (0-5) 73
The D-League select team staged a second half comeback to edge the Portland Trailblazers 74-73 to give them an overall winning record in this years SL.
Both teams were missing key players, with Portland's Jerryd Bayless (18 ppg) and D-Leagues Othyus Jeffers (20.5ppg 7rpg) missing from today's action.
Dante Cunningham and David Moss led the Blazers with 16 each. D-League’s Gary Forbes had an off night , shooting 3/13 for just 10 points. Jasper Johnson led the D-League team with 16.
After trailing by 14 at half time, the gutsy D-League select team outscored their opponents 44-29 in the second half to notch their 3rd win of the Summer league.
Phoenix Suns (3-2) 87 Los Angeles Clippers (2-3) 70
The final game of this years SL saw the Griffin brothers Taylor and Blake face off. #1 pick Blake Griffin received the MVP award for the SL in a pre-game presentation. Griffin again provided the crowd with some great highlights, however they alone weren’t enough to prevent a one sided contest, with the Phoenix Suns prevailing 87-70.
The Clippers found themselves behind early as the result of 7 first quarter turnovers. Suns #14 pick Earl Clark matched up with Blake Griffin and started the game strong, draining a pull up jumper. Clark played a solid game and shot the ball with more confidence today, even pulling up for a 17 footer in transition. He did settle for the outside shot too often but did have success when he put the ball on the floor and attacked the basket, going a perfect 6/6 from the line. He would finish with his best output of the SL, 16pts, 4reb, 2stl, 1blk on 5/13 fg shooting.
Goran Dragic (9.8pts 2.8rpg 5apg) had a productive game (21 pts) despite committing 6 turnovers. The Suns point guard was effective in the second half penetrating, getting to the line and creating for teammates. He was a big reason the Suns went into the 4th quarter with a 9 point lead and ultimately won by 17.
Poor all round shooting from the Clippers (38fg%, 53ft%) and turnovers didn’t give them a chance in the fourth, with the lead ballooning to 17. To make LA’s comeback harder, appalling discipline from DeAndre Jordan led to his ejection early in the final period.
The #1 pick and SL MVP played better as the game progressed
but forced some shots which led to his 6/16 shooting. He also pulled down 8
rebounds and dished out 4 assists. Maine native Nik Caner-Medley had some big
plays and competed well, fishing with 13pts, 10reb, 2blks on 4/9 shooting.
*Check back for further Summer League coverage as we will break down the top performers of the event tomorrow.
I hope Dragic can replicate some of that play in the regular season. The Suns really need someone to backup Nash other than Barbosa, who is not really a point guard.
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