While the majority of the NBA world waits with bated breath for the impending decisions from free agents such as LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony, many of the stars of tomorrow are lacing it up in the NBA Summer League.
The first wave of games is already underway in Orlando, but the action will shift to Las Vegas from July 11-21.
The entire Las Vegas schedule is below, and the official website of the Utah Jazz provides the following broadcast information: "NBA TV will be televising all 67 NBA Summer League games from Las Vegas, including 38 games live during the event, and every game will also be available live at NBA.com/summerleague and on the NBA Summer League app via a subscription-based package."
|Friday, July 11|
|1||New York||Dallas||4 p.m.|
|2||Toronto||LA Lakers||6 p.m.|
|4||Golden State||Charlotte||8:30 p.m.|
|5||Sacramento||San Antonio||10 p.m.|
|6||NBA D-League||New Orleans||10:30 p.m.|
|Saturday, July 12|
|7||Portland||New York||4 p.m.|
|11||Phoenix||Golden State||8 p.m.|
|12||Chicago||LA Clippers||8:30 p.m.|
|Sunday, July 13|
|15||Cleveland||San Antonio||4 p.m.|
|16||LA Lakers||New Orleans||4:30 p.m.|
|18||Atlanta||NBA D-League||6:30 p.m.|
|Monday, July 14|
|23||New York||Charlotte||4 p.m.|
|24||Sacramento||NBA D-League||4:30 p.m.|
|26||San Antonio||New Orleans||6:30 p.m.|
|28||Miami||LA Clippers||8:30 p.m.|
|29||Golden State||LA Lakers||10 p.m.|
|Tuesday, July 15|
|33||LA Clippers||Houston||6 p.m.|
|Wednesday, July 16 (Round 1)|
|37||No. 9 seed||No. 24 seed||4 p.m.|
|38||No. 10||No. 23||4:30 p.m.|
|39||No. 11||No. 22||6 p.m.|
|40||No. 12||No. 21||6:30 p.m.|
|41||No. 13||No. 20||8 p.m.|
|42||No. 14||No. 19||8:30 p.m.|
|43||No. 15||No. 18||10 p.m.|
|44||No. 16||No. 17||10:30 p.m.|
|Thursday, July 17 (Round 2)|
|45||No. 8 seed||Winner of Game 37||4 p.m.|
|46||No. 7||Winner of Game 38||4:30 p.m.|
|47||No. 6||Winner of Game 39||6 p.m.|
|48||No. 5||Winner of Game 40||6:30 p.m.|
|49||No. 4||Winner of Game 41||8 p.m.|
|50||No. 3||Winner of Game 42||8:30 p.m.|
|51||No. 2||Winner of Game 43||10 p.m.|
|52||No. 1||Winner of Game 44||10:30 p.m.|
|Friday, July 18 (Consolation Round)|
|53||Game 37 Loser||Game 38 Loser||4 p.m.|
|54||Game 39 Loser||Game 40 Loser||4 p.m.|
|55||Game 41 Loser||Game 42 Loser||6 p.m.|
|56||Game 43 Loser||Game 44 Loser||6 p.m.|
|57||Game 45 Loser||Game 46 Loser||8 p.m.|
|58||Game 47 Loser||Game 48 Loser||8 p.m.|
|59||Game 49 Loser||Game 50 Loser||10 p.m.|
|60||Game 51 Loser||Game 52 Loser||10 p.m.|
|Saturday, July 19 (Quarterfinals)|
|61||Game 46 Winner||Game 51 Winner||4 p.m.|
|62||Game 47 Winner||Game 50 Winner||6 p.m.|
|63||Game 45 Winner||Game 52 Winner||8 p.m.|
|64||Game 48 Winner||Game 49 Winner||10 p.m.|
|Sunday, July 20 (Semifinals)|
|65||Game 61 Winner||Game 62 Winner||6 p.m.|
|66||Game 63 Winner||Game 64 Winner||8 p.m.|
|Monday, July 21 (Finals)|
|67||Game 65 Winner||Game 66 Winner||9 p.m.|
The bracket for the tournament portion of the schedule and a complete list of rules and tie-breaking scenarios can be found at NBA.com.
|1||Teams assigned starting Nos. 1-24|
|2||Following third game, teams will be seeded|
|3||Seeds Nos. 1-8 receive first-round bye|
|4||The outcome of head-to-head matchups will only be used to break a tie in the case of a tie in preliminary-round records involving only two teams|
|1||Overall record in preliminary round|
|2||Quarter Scoring Totals|
Top Prospects To Watch
Andrew Wiggins, Cleveland Cavaliers
Was there any doubt that Andrew Wiggins would be on this list?
The Cleveland Cavaliers chose Wiggins over the likes of Jabari Parker and others with the No. 1 pick in the draft, and the Summer League is the former Kansas star’s first chance to prove that was the right move. Cleveland just so happens to play Parker's Milwaukee Bucks in its first game.
Sure, dominating at this level ultimately won't mean much once the season rolls around, but if Wiggins plays well in Las Vegas, it will give him some confidence going forward. It would also be the first step toward avoiding a performance similar to what Cavs fans watched from 2013 No. 1 pick Anthony Bennett.
Who has the better NBA career?
It may not be fair to lump Bennett's struggles on Wiggins' already pressure-packed shoulders, but that’s the reality of the NBA.
Wiggins was hyped as an uber-athletic defender during the pre-draft process, but the Summer League presents him with an opportunity to demonstrate that he can also do some things with the ball in his hands.
Who knows? Maybe King James himself will be watching and evaluating.
Julius Randle, Los Angeles Lakers
There were certainly some questions surrounding Julius Randle as the NBA draft approached, even though he was considered one of the best big men available.
Much of his college attack involved him simply going left and using his overwhelming strength to bully his way to the basket. He may not be able to do that as often in the NBA, so the Summer League represents a chance to work on some other low-post moves.
If Pau Gasol goes elsewhere, the Lakers are going to need another big man to establish himself down low as a rebounder and a scorer. Randle’s first steps toward becoming that guy begin in Las Vegas.
Los Angeles fans would also be pleased if Randle showed an ability to impact the game beyond just scoring, because playing alongside Kobe Bryant means his scoring opportunities may be limited.
"I kind of knew what the diagnosis was going to be as far as clearing me to play, but to finally have it over and that whole whirlwind of flying places and all that drama, to finally have that over with is definitely a relief and I can finally play basketball," Randle said.
Doug McDermott, Chicago Bulls
There was no more prolific scorer in the college game last season than Doug McDermott at Creighton. He led the nation with 26.7 points a night, finished with more than 3,000 points in his career (and 1,000 rebounds) and earned first-team All-America honors in three straight years.
There is a reason the offensively challenged Chicago Bulls traded for him on draft night.
Chicago has one of the best defenses in the league but needs a reliable scorer, especially since the health of Derrick Rose will always be in question. McDermott will get his first chance during the Summer League to prove that his game can translate to the next level and help the Bulls immediately.
There are questions about the level of competition McDermott faced in college, and a solid performance in Las Vegas could help answer those questions. It is also a chance to prove that he is more than just a scorer, although Chicago would probably be more than all right with the occasional defensive lapse if he consistently puts it in the bucket.
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