Todays NBA matchup in Long Beach proved to be a blowout with the Los Angeles Lakers besting the Dallas Mavericks 97-69 behind 14 points from center Andrew Bynum and a late game surge from guard Von Wafer. Dallas sent the lesser of their two summer league teams to Long Beach and it showed as they were outplayed and outmatched in the second half. In an interesting twist the Dallas roster featured Milwaukee Bucks second round draft choice David Noel.
Ryan Forehan-Kelly Ryan led the Mavericks in scoring with 16 points on 6 of 12 shooting. He showed a nice stroke and pulled up from 3 a couple of times draining them with ease. He showed some hustle on the boards too coming up with 3 offensive rebounds.
DeAngelo Collins Collins started the game looking like Dallas best player, but faded along with the rest of the team in the second half. He lead the team in rebounding with 8 and managed a couple of nice buckets.
Jelani McCoy Journeyman Jelani McCoy was given the task of guarding Andrew Bynum and was not up to it. However, on the Dallas side of the ball McCoy did have one of the better games, and even showed a few offensive moves on the block.
David Noel Although a Milwaukee draft choice, Noel showed up in Long Beach playing for the Dallas squad. Despite playing 33 minutes he was rarely involved in the offense, scoring only 4 points and not collecting any rebounds. When he did have the ball in his hands he did appear a little more polished then your average summer league competition so hopefully he can make a bigger impact in future games.
Andrew Bynum If Bynum was called out for being uninvolved in the previous game, then he went out today to set the record straight. Posting 10 points, 12 boards (5 offensive) and 5 blocks in the first half, Andrew was significantly more aggressive in todays game. He managed a few good passes out of double teams, and did a decent job hitting cutters. He appeared to be coming from weak to strong and that helped him get and maintain position more effectively. Something echoed afterwards by coach Kurt Rambis and by Andrew himself. If often seems like Bynum feels he can block anybody any time and this tends to get him into trouble. When he concentrates on just staying vertical and using his length hes much more effective altering shots and shutting down the paint.
Jordan Farmar Farmar stepped up his defense in this game and played much more aggressively. He continued to get beat on screens, but did a much better job of fighting through them. He did a good job of picking up his man at the half court line and pressuring him, managing to net 4 steals in the process. Despite going 1 for 1 from behind the arc today the NBA three seems a bit out of his range right now. Watching him during warm-ups, its clear that Jordan possesses a reliable shot from in between the college and NBA three line, however, once he steps out he gets less comfortable. His form is fine however, and his range should come around eventually. Regardless of his shooting form, Farmar once again excelled at running the offense, and penetrated for a variety of floaters any time things began to break down. After the game Farmar mentioned that he has yet to watch any real tape of the triangle and has been focused on what the coaching staff has been teaching them during practice. He also mentioned that he and Bynum are forming a quick friendship and Farmar was finding him on the offensive end which helped encourage Bynum on the defensive side of the court.
Von Wafer Wafer is an interesting player to try and figure out. On one sequence he showed some extreme athleticism as he went up for a monster dunk which got blocked, then he hustled down the court where Dallas scored a layup, only to inbound the ball and not realize the clock and have to rush it across half court and cross-over his man to swish a fadeaway three as the clock was winding down. Wafer has all the tools to be a good ballplayer, and yet he easily becomes uninvolved. Practically non-existent in the first half, Wafer took over the game in the fourth getting to the bucket repeatedly for layups, dunks or free throws. While arguably garbage time, it does show that when asked, Wafer can step up and play to the level of his competition. Following Wafers ups and downs should make for an interesting SPL.
Devin Green Devin spent the first half running the offense and playing excellent defense. Sometime in the second half he remembered he could score and showed an impressive mid-range game and several nice drives for easy buckets going 6 for 7 in the half.
Danilo Pinnock/JR Pinnock Pinnock played an interesting game again for the Lakers. His D was once again superb and he scored at a decent rate, putting up 11 points. The interesting part was how he got those points. Pinnock has an innate ability to get to loose balls, get deflections and find himself in a position to succeed. In the previous game Pinnock showcased an ability to hang in the air as he jumped on a pump fake and then hung until the offensive player tried to shoot, blocking the ball on his way down. Pinnock showed that same ability today with some nice hangtime on a put-back layup. Sequences like that along with a pretty running hook off the glass and a good midrange game should make the Lakers give him a long hard look.
Marcus Slaughter Marcus showed a decent jumper out to 20 and displayed some impressive athleticism on the defensive end. After the game coach Kurt Rambis remarked on how Marcus is a bit of a tweener and that he needs to prove he can guard both the 3 and 4 positions. Slaughter did a very good job guarding the SF position today and was able to rotate and guard the opposing PFs as well. Marcus got the start today in place of SPL regular Marcus Douthit and it gave him a boost of confidence that will hopefully carry over into the next game.