Dribbles: Running on in Las Vegas


BY SAM AMICO

A minimum of two random dribbles on each of the eight games in the NBA Las Vegas summer league Sunday.

 D-League 94, Wizards 74

1. Let there be no doubt, ladies and gentlemen, the D-League stars have something to prove. And they proved something in this one, mostly behind the play of Scotty Hopson. The former NBA swingman may be working his way back into the league — scoring 20 against the Wizards. That followed a 27-point performance vs. the Rockets.

2. I love watching Wizards rookie swingman Kelly Oubre Jr. He’s extremely smooth, heady and looks ready to make at least a solid impact when the real games begin. Oubre finished with 18 points and eight rebounds Sunday.

Rockets 108, Suns 89

1. Rockets newcomer Glen Rice Jr. has been everything the team hoped through two summer games — displaying an ability to get open and free himself for shots (much like Glen Rice Sr.), and then knock ’em down (ditto). Rice Jr. finished with 20 points on 6-of-13 shooting, including 3-of-6 from 3-point range. He should fit in well here.

2. Rockets rookie forward Montrezl Harrell made his summer debut and finished with a scrappy 11 points and eight rebounds. I like his game.

3. Second-year Suns forward T.J. Warren has also been impressive. He went for 22 points Sunday after scoring 20 in his first game. Bottom line: Warren just finds ways to put the ball in the basket.

Raptors 81, Bulls 66

1. The Raptors’ rookie backcourt of Norman Powell (20 points and seven rebounds) and Delon Wright (10 and three) offered another promising outing. They should make a nice tandem playing behind the talented regular backcourt of Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan.

2. Yes, I’ve heard the talk that DeRozan could be on his way out. I’m not buying it yet. The Raptors had better get a boatload in return if that’s the case.

3. Forward Doug McDermott and center/forward Cameron Bairstow led the Bulls with 11 points apiece. Meanwhile, rookie big man Bobby Portis finished just 1-of-10 shooting. No biggie. It’s July.

Spurs 89, Bucks 74

1. Second-year Spurs swingman Kyle Anderson has been great so far. You can tell the guy spent a season playing under Gregg Popovich — even if Anderson didn’t actually get in games much. He poured in 22 points Sunday, and the Spurs outscored the Bucks by 17 when he was on the floor.

2. After looking pretty doggone good in the opener, Bucks rookie guard Rashad Vaughnstruggled to a 4-of-16 shooting clunker Sunday. Vaughn finished with 11 points.

Nuggets 98, Kings 76

1. Rookie guard Emmanuel Mudiay looks like the real deal, sort of a more polished version of Pistons veteran Brandon Jennings (who also spent his first year out of high school overseas). Mudiay ended the day with 19 points, 10 assists and three steals. Get excited, Denver fans.

2. Kings forward/center Willie Cauley-Stein was a little better in his second attempt, finishing with 15 points. Then again, the fact he grabbed just one rebound is a little concerning.

Hawks 71, Warriors 70

1. One game after I glorified Hawks forward Lamar Patterson as a potential sleeper, he shoots 0-of-5 from the field for 0 points. But at least swingman Glen Robinson III and point guardStephen Holt (13 points apiece) looked pretty good.

2. Second-year forward James Michael McAdoo (17 points) gave another eye-opening showing. I’m still very intrigued by the guy. When locked in, he can fill it up.

Blazers 93, Mavericks 80

1. Finally, 35-year old Trail Blazers guard Keith Bogans got into a game. But check in was about all he did, as Bogans took just two shots, missing both for zero points in 15 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, third-year Blazers guard Allen Crabbe shined — scoring 24 points on 9-of-12 shooting. That included 3-of-4 on threes. With Wesley Matthews off to Dallas, I expect Crabbe’s role to increase next season.

3. Second-year Mavs big man Dwight Powell had a nice all-around night with 25 points and eight rebounds. Powell also went 7-of-10 on free throws.

Celtics 85, Sixers 76

1. What were the odds on the 76ers finishing with 76 points?

2. Nice game from Celtics rookie guards Terry Rozier (22 points and five assists) and R.J. Hunter (21 and three). Throw those two in a backcourt with Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradleyand Marcus Smart, and the C’s may find more reasons to smile soon.

3. Sixers rookie center Jahlil Okafor got the night off. He’s averaging 15.3 points and 9.0 rebounds in four summer games. Like what I’ve seen so far.