Summer league games are generally like sifting for gold. There is a whole lot of ugliness, and you're trying to find some excitement here and there. Boy, did we find some.
Cox Pavilion, which is capable of seating 10,000 fans, was filled past capacity, and wanton onlookers were turned away. The object of their affection -- the professional debuts of Andrew Wiggins and Jabari Parker -- did not disappoint.
Both came as advertised, with Wiggins (18 points of 7-18 shooting, 1-8 from 3) displaying feats of ridiculous athleticism and defense mixed in with a streaky outside shot and so-so ability to create. Parker (17 points and 9 rebounds, 5-11 from the field), who quite honestly didn't look to be in the best of shape just yet, was a bull in a china shop driving to the hoop and displayed great touch when he got there.
Second year players shined as well. Anthony Bennett is in incredible shape, and showed off with a few monster slams. He ran the floor well and played with a lot of energy. Matthew Dellavedova was his normal pesky self. Giannis Antetokounmpo was everywhere. More specifically his arms were everywhere.
There were rough patches like most summer league games. Days of two a day practices and workouts led to a mountain of flat jumpers, especially in the fourth quarter when Anthony Bennett was chucking, and Jabari Parker bricked a game tying dunk off the back of the rim.
Whats to like?
- Andrew Wiggins step back jumper. 3-5 times, he flashed a lightening quick escape move that left his man in the wind, and hit the shot. His three needs some work, but this move will open up a world of options for him if its sustainable.
- David Blatt. The offense was in constant motion, and he fouled when he was up 3 with the game pretty much over.
- Anthony Bennett. Unrecognizable from last season, he uncorked a few of these:
Anthony Bennett…nasty https://t.co/Sufwn4CzJL— Baxter Holmes (@BaxterHolmes) July 12, 2014
Whats not to like?
- The fourth quarter. Seriously, it was awful. Everyone was pretty much exhausted.
- That we missed out on this alley oop because of an errant lob:
Where you have to throw a lob for Wiggins to NOT convert. pic.twitter.com/oagrMMNR08— Patrick Claybon (@PatrickClaybon) July 12, 2014
The Cavs will be playing the Spurs at 4PM EST on Sunday.
Until next time.