Friday, July 08, 2005

Vegas Summer League Recap: Day 2

Here’s what went down on Day 2 at the Vegas Summer League yesterday:

New York 90, Orlando 87

Star of the Game:
G Nate Robinson (NYK)
24 points (6-13 FG), 2 assists, & 3 steals in 27 min

Nate the Great hasn't lost a step from UW

--Rookie C Channing Frye turned in a much stronger performance in his second VSL game, tallying 14 points (including 10-10 from the free throw line), 6 rebounds, and a block in just 21 minutes of play. Second year F Trevor Ariza, who led the team with 32 minutes, scored 12 points to go along with 4 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 steals. With the win, New York evened up their VSL record at 1-1 after their opening night loss to the Blazers.

--The most highly regarded player in this year’s VSL, F Dwight Howard, had a rather quiet showing with just 13 points and 5 rebounds in 21 minutes. However, his frame does look much stronger from a season ago and it appeared he has added some low post moves to his arsenal. Besides DH, three other Magic players went for double-figures, F Jerome Beasley (21 points, 7-14 FG), F Rich Melzer (11), and PG Jameer Nelson (10). Nelson, looking to solidify his starting point guard spot, played a rather sluggish game, dishing out just 1 assist while committing 4 turnovers and 6 personal fouls. It is only the summer league, but with management already skeptical about his ability to lead this team, Jameer must improve as the week wears on.

Cleveland 76, New Orleans 73

Star of the Game:
PG Chris Paul (NOR) 21 points, 5 rebounds, & 4 assists in 34 min

The Cavaliers, with perhaps the weakest roster in all of the VSL, were led to victory by former Gonzaga star PG Blake Stepp (16 points, 6-9 FG, in 21 min), while GF Luke Jackson, who missed the majority of the 04-05 season with injuries, shot just 3-15 from the floor for 8 points. Besides Stepp, two other Cavs scored in double-digits, F Matt Freije with 12 and G/F Jeff Varem with 10. PG John Lucas Jr. (Oklahoma State) tallied just 4 points and 1 assist in 20 minutes of action.

--For the Hornets, they were led by the rookie Paul, who in his first NBA game proved to be the floor leader the team believed to be drafting with the 4th overall pick. His backcourt mate, SG JR Smith, scored 15 points (5-12), while the other veterans on the team C Maciej Lampe (12 points, 7 rebounds), F Eddie Robinson (12 points, 6 rebounds), and F David West (8 points, 7 rebounds) also turned in solid performances. New Orleans’ other two rookies, F Sean Banks and F Brandon Bass, combined for 0 points and 4 rebounds in 14 minutes of action.

Denver 89, New Jersey 65

Star of the Game:
G Luis Flores (DEN)
16 points (7-12 FG) in 19 minutes

Besides Flores, Denver had to be thrilled with the play of rookies G/F Julius Hodge (13 points, 4 rebounds in 23 min) and F Linas Kleiza (14 points, 5 rebounds, and 7 fouls in 22 min). Journeyman G Tyus Edney also played a great game, tallying 13 points (6-7 FG) and 3 assists in 25 minutes of run. Finally, the Source’s favorite VSL player, F Boniface N’Dong, opened some eyes in totaling 10 points and 7 rebounds in 24 minutes. SS Rickey Sanchez was 0-4 with two throwing errors.

You know we needed a Bone Face picture

The Nets turned in their second awful showing in a row, but have to be happy over the play of F Sam Clancy who had 10 points and 8 rebounds in 33 minutes. Rookie SG Antoine Wright was still off the mark a bit, totaling just 11 points on 3-8 shooting. On the other hand, F Brian Boddicker shot 5-6 from the floor for 11 points, giving his best audition for Brian Scalabrine’s replacement. To make matters even worse for this VSL team, the Nets had an 8-point lead heading into the second quarter.

Boston 76, LA Clippers 59

Star of the Game:
G Tony Allen (BOS) 13 points, 9 rebounds, & 1 block in 27 min

The Celtics were enamored with the play of rookie F Gerald Green who totaled 14 points on 5-9 shooting, including a thunderous dunk that Danny Ainge called: “one of the best dunks I’ve ever seen.” Besides Green, F Justin Reed was also on his game, scoring 12 points while ripping down 7 boards in 27 minutes of run. The highly touted F Al Jefferson netted 9 points (4-9 FG) to go along with 8 rebounds in 22 minutes. It was reported that Big Al has lost the majority of his body fat from a season ago and was able to play consistently for longer stretches of the game. His play could be a key ingredient to Boston’s success this season. Another player fighting for a starting spot, G Delonte West, totaled 9 points and 6 rebounds in 20 minutes, but failed to record an assist. For a guy trying to become the team’s first point guard, that’s a stat he must improve on.

Green could be the real deal

--For the Clippers it was a miserable night from the opening tip as they dug themselves into a 23-6 hole to end the first quarter. LA had just one player in double-figures, rookie G Daniel Ewing, with 12 points (4-9 FG) in 24 minutes. Veterans G Shaun Livington (7 points, 2-8 FG, 2 assists), C Chris Kaman (7 points, 2-10 FG, 3 rebounds), G Quinton Ross (9 points, 2-7 FG) and G Lionel Chalmers (8 points, 1-7 FG) were, for the most part, dreadful. As a team they shot just 27.6% and were out-rebounded 51-34. GM Elgin Baylor was seen napping throughout the entire first half, but awoke at halftime for some animal crackers and apple juice.


At 12:32 PM, Blogger Paul Benedict said...

Ant-- I don't know if you noticed, but this Dennis Rogers cat that's compiling these box scores appears to be a complete nitwit. Aside from the computer crash debacle from yesterday, check this out-- In the Clippers/Celtics game yesterday, the Clips assisted on just 3 of their 16 FGs; the Celtics dropped only 2 dimes on their 28 FGs. Doesn't that seem a little ridiculous to you? Check out all the games-- the assist totals are all on the extremely low end. I'm guessing that either Dennis Rogers thinks you can't dribble the ball for there to be an assist, or that he's ripping scotch at the craps tables between games (which is also why it takes FOREVER for those box scores to get up). Rogers posts his e-mail address on the box scores, so I'm planning on signing his ass up for a ton of SPAM offers if this half-assed effort doesn't improve.


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