Deandre Ayton posts 2nd straight double-double vs. talented frontcourt in NBA Summer League
LAS VEGAS — Four days down, eight to go at 2018 NBA Las Vegas Summer League. Here’s a look at the Monday highlights from the alums of your favorite conference:
Another game, another double-double for Deandre Ayton
Deandre Ayton put together another impressive performance on Monday, posting 17 points and 13 rebounds in the Phoenix Suns’ 71-53 triumph over the Orlando Magic. After his second straight double-double, Ayton is now averaging 16 points and 11 rebounds on 67 percent shooting through three games in Las Vegas.
He hasn’t done it against a bunch of also-rans, either. After going to work against Harry Giles III, the No. 20 pick in 2017, and Marvin Bagley III, the No. 2 pick of 2018, of Sacramento on Saturday, Ayton had to go up against a front line in Orlando that featured back-to-back No. 6 overall picks in Jonathan Isaac (2017) and Mohamed Bamba (2018).
“With all the excitement and all the fans coming out here, it just really made me a lot more comfortable,” Ayton told NBA TV (as written by the Associated Press). “And I just want to put on a show for them, to be honest, and just win as many games as I play.
Troy Brown, Jr., leads Washington Wizards to win over Philadelphia
Good Summer League numbers are not close to the be-all indicator of future NBA success, but Troy Brown, Jr., has certainly put on a show in Vegas, and the Sin City native went to work again Monday at the Thomas & Mack Center.
The No. 15 pick of the 2018 NBA Draft led the Washington Wizards with 23 points in an 87-75 win over the Philadelphia 76ers, marking the second straight game in which he has scored more than 20. It wasn’t the most efficient performance, getting those 23 points on 22 shots (9-22 FG, 1-4 3FG, 4-4 FT), and he has been erratic at times when driving to the hoop, but he again was able to effectively get off his jumper in the mid-range. He also had a knack for beating the buzzer, winning a jump ball in the waning seconds of the first half that culminated in him converting a floater off the glass just ahead of the halftime horn and later hitting a smooth step-back three in the second half as the shot clock was expiring.
Through three games, Brown is averaging 19 points and eight rebounds on close to 18 field-goal attempts per outing.
Pac-12 Non-Rookie Shout-Outs
Let’s start with former Golden Bear Jabari Bird. One game after putting up 24 points against Denver, the No. 56 pick of the 2017 NBA Draft had the best plus/minus of anybody at Summer League on Monday, posting a +28 while contributing 16 points, three rebounds and five assists on 7-of-11 shooting and hitting both of his 3-point attempts to lead the Boston Celtics to a 100-80 win over the Charlotte Hornets.
And we’ll also give a fist-bump to former Bruin TJ Leaf, who chipped in 20 points, nine rebounds and two blocks in the Indiana Pacers’ 93-88 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers. He did take 21 shots to get those 20 points (8-21 FG), but this blogger is a big fan of Leaf’s skill set.