Summer League action from Las Vegas began in earnest Friday with the Detroit Pistons and Portland Trail Blazers getting proceedings started at 12 a.m. ET. That was the first of eight games on the day’s slate, which will be capped off with Suns-Lakers at 10 p.m. ET.
Here we’ll be recapping all the games for Friday, July 8.
NBA Summer League recaps
Detroit Pistons 81, Portland Trail Blazers 78
Jaden Ivey was the star of the show here, going for 20 points, six rebounds and six assists in a Pistons win. The big news from this game though was the injury to Shaedon Sharpe. He’ll be evaluated further and hopefully will not miss significant time.
Chicago Bulls 100, Dallas Mavericks 99 (OT)
What a great way to start off Friday’s main slate of games with an overtime thriller. This was largely the Jaden Hardy show for the Mavericks. Dallas made a decent commitment to Hardy after picking him in the second round and it looks like a good investment so far. The G-League player likely has a chip on his shoulder and produced a solid line Friday with 28 points, three assists and four rebounds. A.J. Lawson was great as well with 28 points. For the Bulls, Dalen Terry was a nice all-around contributor and finished with nine points, five rebounds and six assists. He did also have six turnovers. Marko Simonovic was another pleasant surprise with 27 points and 13 rebounds, even though his defense still needs to improve to crack Chicago’s main rotation.
Cleveland Cavaliers 99, San Antonio Spurs 90
The Cavaliers didn’t have to do much to get past the Spurs, who have some serious growing pains ahead. San Antonio rookie guards Malaki Branham and Blake Wesley struggled offensively and couldn’t stop anyone defensively. Josh Primo was solid with 20 points on 7-12 shooting, including a 5-7 mark from deep. On Cleveland’s side, RJ Nembhard looked solid with 20 points, five rebounds and five assists. The Cavaliers clamped down well defensively and look poised to upset some plans for the odds-on favorites in Las Vegas.
Indiana Pacers 96, Charlotte Hornets 84
If the Pacers had any doubts about Bennedict Mathurin, they should be cleared. The rookie was brilliant in the team’s domination of Charlotte. Mathurin dropped 23 points in efficient fashion. He had help from Chris Duarte (16 points) and Isaiah Jackson (nine points, 12 rebounds), signaling some strong development chops from Indiana’s young trio. Kai Jones and Bryce McGowens were notable contributors for Charlotte.
Milwaukee Bucks 94, Brooklyn Nets 90
The Bucks had a very balanced effort offensively, with four players hitting double figures scoring. The notable contributors were Lindell Wigginton and Sandro Mamukelashvili, although we may not see either in Milwaukee’s main rotation. MarJon Beauchamp’s performance was also encouraging. The Nets got big games from David Duke Jr. and Cam Thomas, but it wasn’t enough to top the Bucks. Thomas had 31 points and he is going to be in contention for Summer League MVP if he keeps this up.
New York Knicks 101, Golden State Warriors 88
The Knicks won this game behind five players scoring double figures, but the real story here was Warriors forward Moses Moody showing why he should get rotation minutes next season. Golden State lost Otto Porter Jr. in free agency and Moody looks like a good candidate to step up. The second-year player went for 34 points behind efficient shooting and consistently getting to the free-throw line. If he keeps this up, he’s going to get minutes early and often for the Warriors in the regular season.
Minnesota Timberwolves 85, Denver Nuggets 78
The Nuggets are going to need some players from Summer League to slide into big roles in the event their stars aren’t healthy. Christian Braun looks like he can play the part. Peyton Watson was underwhelming, but Collin Gillespie is a nice fallback option. The Timberwolves are desperate to fill out to the roster after gutting it in the Rudy Gobert deal. Look for Josh Minott (22 points, 10 rebounds) and Wendell Moore Jr. to get looks from Timberwolves management.
Phoenix Suns 104, Los Angeles Lakers 84
Summer League doesn’t hold much relevance for the Suns, who probably aren’t going to pluck anyone from this roster unless they do gut their rotation in a Kevin Durant trade. Louis King and Ish Wainright made good impressions tonight for Phoenix. The Lakers might give Scotty Pippen Jr. and Cole Swider a look. Max Christie has not made things easy for himself with his Summer League struggles, but he should be on the roster as well.