Lonzo Ballís numbers drop in Under Armour but Lakers win
FILE - In this June 23, 2017, file photo, Los Angeles Lakers draft pick Lonzo Ball speaks during a news conference in El Segundo, Calif. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File)
By Kareem Copeland, Associated Press
Lonzo Ball’s stat line was down after two big games. He still had the building buzzing Saturday night (Sunday, PHL tiem) at the NBA Summer League.
The Los Angeles Lakers overcame a double-digit deficit to advance to the semifinals with a 115-106 victory over the Brooklyn Nets, with much of the focus again on Ball’s feet.
His choice of footwear has become one of the biggest stories of Summer League. After wearing his own ZO2 shoes in his first two games, which sell for $495 under his family’s independent Big Baller Brand, Ball wore the Nike Kobe AD and a James Harden signature Adidas in the following games. It was Under Armour’s turn Saturday (Sunday, PHL time) when Ball played in a pair from Stephen Curry’s signature line.
“When I wake up, I decide that,” Ball told ESPN.
When asked if the shoe rotation is part of a bigger plan, the No. 2 overall pick replied, “You could say that.”
Ball had 14 points, nine rebounds and seven assists. Vander Blue and No. 27 overall pick Kyle Kuzma carried the offensive load. Blue scored 27 and buried a three-pointer with 1:07 left to give the Lakers a 111-103 lead. Kuzma added 26.
Ball had a triple-double and a 36-point, eight-rebound, 11-assist performance in his two previous games.
No. 15-seeded Los Angeles (4-2) advanced to play third-seeded Dallas on Sunday (Monday, PHL time).
“Team effort,” Ball said. “They came through in the fourth quarter and got the win as a collective unit. Moving on.
“Long as we’re winning, [summer league is] successful. That’s all I care about.”
Two weeks of summer play in three cities has been enough for teams to hold out many marquee players late this week, though there was plenty of intensity on the floor Saturday (Sunday, PHL time) in the quarterfinal round of tournament play in Las Vegas.
The losers go home instead of the semifinal round Sunday (Monday, PHL time).
In other action:
GRIZZLIES 98, HEAT 95, 2OT
Wayne Selden scored 24 points to lead Memphis.
“It was a real sloppy game on our part,” Selden told the ESPN broadcast. “But down the stretch we got back to what we do and that’s guard and play defense. It was an ugly game, but we made it happen.
“We’ve got to get the ball moving.”
Gian Clavell, who finished with 20 points, hit a three-pointer with 5.1 seconds left in regulation to force overtime, but the Heat would manage just five total points in the two extra periods.
Selden hit a pair of free throws to force the second overtime and Wade Baldwin hit two more after rebounding his own missed free throw to go up 97-94 with 16.6 seconds left. Clavell missed a three-pointer to tie just before the final buzzer.
The No. 4-seeded Grizzlies (5-0) will face the No. 16 Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday.
Dillon Brooks, the second-round pick from Oregon, scored 14 and had four steals for Memphis, and 2016 first-rounder Baldwin had 12 points on 4-for-17 shooting.
Miami guard Matt Williams scored 18 and knocked down six three-pointers.
The Heat held out No. 14 overall pick Bam Adebayo.
TRAIL BLAZERS 94, SPURS 87
Portland’s Jake Layman warmed up in the fourth quarter and finished with his summer league-high 23 points, including 13 in the final quarter. The 2016 Maryland second-rounder scored nine of the Trail Blazers’ 11 points during a fourth-quarter stretch and his three-pointer with 4:46 pushed lead to 84-74. The Spurs never recovered.
“I was staying aggressive,” Layman told ESPN. “For me, the most important thing is defense. I’ve worked a lot on that this summer. That’s what I’m most proud of.”
Big Ten Player of the year Caleb Swanigan had 16 points and nine rebounds, while 2015 first-rounder RJ Hunter added 16 points for the Blazers.
Spurs guard Bryn Forbes, who entered the day as Summer League’s top scorer at 29.3 points per game, fouled out in the fourth quarter with 13 points.
Derrick White, the former Division II player who went No. 29 in the 2017 draft, paced the Spurs with 20 points and five rebounds.
The Spurs did not play 2016 first-rounder Dejounte Murray.
MAVERICKS 91, CELTICS 74
The Celtics decided not to play the last two No. 3 overall picks, Jaylen Brown (right quad contusion) and Jayson Tatum (knee soreness), and also sat 2016 first-rounder Ante Zizic (left hamstring strain) and 2017 NBA G League Rookie of the Year Abdel Nader (left calf strain). The Mavericks played their marquee players. The difference in decisions showed on the court.
The Mavericks never trailed after the first quarter as all-rookie second-team selection Yogi Ferrell put up 20 points, including four three-pointers. Nicolas Brussino added 18 points and five rebounds.
Dallas knocked down 15 compared to Boston’s nine.
Rosco Allen led the Mavericks with 12.