Welcome to the NBA's Las Vegas Summer League. It's an underrated treasure of an event, somewhere you can sit back with the entire NBA universe and watch 61 games in 11 days. Mare than a game, it feels like you are at NBA Woodstock or NBA EDC.
This is my third Vegas Summer League in five years, so you can say I'm pretty much a pro. My day starts at the Hooters Hotel and Casino (it's the closest hotel, I swear). I hop aboard my death trap of a moped, which i keep out here for the Summer League, and then make 2.6-mile drive to Thomas and Mack Center at glacial speed.
My first big sighting of the day was none other than The Logo himself, Jerry West. Great start.
Blake Griffin and Chris Paul showed up together (who said they don't get along?) and chopped it up with their new coach Doc Rivers.
Next stop for Chris was chatting up JR Smith's dad. I assume they know each other from Chris and JR's days in New Orleans.
Doc Rivers doing some explaining. If Bill Simmons was here, it would have been awkward.
Tim Hardaway was here to support his son, Knicks rookie Tim Hardaway Jr.
Chris Broussard sighting.
The caged bird: Anthony Davis isn't playing in the Summer League (he didn't play last year either due to a Team USA obligation), but he was here to support his teammates.
I'm still sad we didn't get to see him and Nerlens Noel team up.
An incognito Mike Woodson signs some autographs.
Iman Shumpert is supposed to be the big fish in the small pond that is the Knicks Summer League team.
Lionel Hollins has had a turbulent offseason after a nice run of success in Memphis.
Mario Ellie. OG status.
Super rich baller/Raptors super fan Nav Bhatia is always one of the more popular people at the Summer League. Here Doc is congratulating him on their new GM hire, reigning Exec of the Year, Massai Ujiri.
Lucas Nogueira. He looks like me if I stood in one of those funhouse mirrors that stretch you out.
Mike D'Antoni being grilled by the New York Post's Marc Berman.
CP3 and Mike D'Antoni.
New Hawk Paul Millsap.
Allan Houston. Last year I told him "I loved you in 'Black and White'." This year I didn't even lie.
Iman Shumpert explains his 0-for-5 performance.
On the other end of the spectrum is Tim Hardaway Jr., who led the Knicks with 13 points.
Lou Williams, who is on the mend from a torn ACL.
Reggie Miller. He may have been stripped of his "Best Shooter Ever" title after Ray Allen's Finals heroics this year.
Tyronn Lue always seems animated.
Getting your Jerry West jersey signed by Jerry West is boss.
Kyrie supporting his teammates.
Just like French Montana, Mike D'Antoni seems to be "not worried 'bout nuthin, haaaahn." He's been playing with the house's money since he left Phoenix and seems to exude that.
One of my favorite players in the draft, Dennis Schroeder, was struggling.
Rick Fox, who toed the line between playboy and enforcer. Jarrett Jack, who would hang out literally all day at Thomas and Mack. He was here all the time last year too. He either really loves basketball, really loves Vegas or both.
It looks like Johnny Depp's latest role is as a Lakers fan.
The Morris Twins.
Chris Douglas Roberts is back from the NBA grave, and he brought a weird new hairstyle with him. I call it the Leaning Tower of Flat Top.
Mavs coach Rick Carlisle.
The Bobcats' controversial first-round pick (fourth overall), Cody Zeller. Twitter almost crashed when he was selected. Maybe MJ knows something we don't...
Patrick Ewing is still trying to break into the head coaching ranks.
Big Game James Posey.
Reigning Exec of the Year and best dressed GM, Massai Ujiri.
Otto Porter wasn't playing today, but that didn't stop him from hanging out.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist isn't very good at shooting a basketball, but it doesn't matter when you're this close.
Bobcats GM Rich Cho and his lovely wife.
That's a wrap for day one of the Summer League. Check back as I'll have a daily photo recap a day for the next 10 days.