Between LeBron James returning to Cleveland, Carmelo Anthony remaining in New York, a loaded 2014 draft class and what looks to be a wide-open race in the Eastern Conference, it is difficult to recall a July where there was so much excitement surrounding the NBA.
Enter the NBA Summer League into that discussion, where so many of those exciting prospects are getting their first taste of pro basketball in Las Vegas.
With that in mind, here is a look at the schedule and broadcast information.
Las Vegas Summer League Info
Watch: NBA TV (games shown live have asterisks in table)
Stream: NBA Summer League Live (subscription required)
Where: Mack Center and Cox Pavilion, UNLV campus; Las Vegas, Nevada
Bracket: The tournament bracket can be found on NBA.com.
|Date||Matchup (*denotes live on NBA TV)||Time (PT)||Location|
|Tue., July 15||Portland vs. Atlanta* (Game 31)||1 p.m.||COX|
|Tue., July 15||Chicago vs. Minnesota (Game 32)||1:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Tue., July 15||LA Clippers vs. Houston* (Game 33)||3 p.m.||COX|
|Tue., July 15||Miami vs. Washington (Game 34)||3:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Tue., July 15||Philadelphia vs. Phoenix* (Game 35)||5 p.m.||COX|
|Tue., July 15||Utah vs. Denver (Game 36)||5:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Wed., July 16||# 9 Seed vs. #24 Seed* (Game 37)||1 p.m.||COX|
|Wed., July 16||#10 Seed vs. #23 Seed (Game 38)||1:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Wed., July 16||#11 Seed vs. #22 Seed* (Game 39)||3 p.m.||COX|
|Wed., July 16||#12 Seed vs. #21 Seed (Game 40)||3:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Wed., July 16||#13 Seed vs. #20 Seed* (Game 41)||5 p.m.||COX|
|Wed., July 16||#14 Seed vs. #19 Seed (Game 42)||5:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Wed., July 16||#15 Seed vs. #18 Seed* (Game 43)||7 p.m.||COX|
|Wed., July 16||#16 Seed vs. #17 Seed (Game 44)||7:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Thur., July 17||#8 Seed vs. Winner of Game 37* (Game 45)||1 p.m.||COX|
|Thur., July 17||#7 Seed vs. Winner of Game 38 (Game 46)||1:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Thur., July 17||#6 Seed vs. Winner of Game 39* (Game 47)||3 p.m.||COX|
|Thur., July 17||#5 Seed vs. Winner of Game 40 (Game 48)||3:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Thur., July 17||#4 Seed vs. Winner of Game 41* (Game 49)||5 p.m.||COX|
|Thur., July 17||#3 Seed vs. Winner of Game 42 (Game 50)||5:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Thur., July 17||#2 Seed vs. Winner of Game 43* (Game 51)||7 p.m.||COX|
|Thur., July 17||#1 Seed vs. Winner of Game 44 (Game 52)||7:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Fri., July 18||Game 37 Loser vs. Game 38 Loser* (Game 53)||1 p.m.||COX|
|Fri., July 18||Game 39 Loser vs. Game 40 Loser (Game 54)||1:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Fri., July 18||Game 41 Loser vs. Game 42 Loser* (Game 55)||3 p.m.||COX|
|Fri., July 18||Game 43 Loser vs. Game 44 Loser (Game 56)||3:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Fri., July 18||Game 45 Loser vs. Game 46 Loser* (Game 57)||5 p.m.||COX|
|Fri., July 18||Game 47 Loser vs. Game 48 Loser (Game 58)||5:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Fri., July 18||Game 49 Loser vs. Game 50 Loser* (Game 59)||7 p.m.||COX|
|Fri., July 18||Game 51 Loser vs. Game 52 Loser (Game 60)||7:30 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Sat., July 19||Game 46 Winner vs. Game 51 Winner* (Game 61)||1 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Sat., July 19||Game 47 Winner vs. Game 50 Winner* (Game 62)||3 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Sat., July 19||Game 45 Winner vs. Game 52 Winner* (Game 63)||5 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Sat., July 19||Game 48 Winner vs. Game 49 Winner* (Game 64)||7 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Sun., July 20||Game 61 Winner vs. Game 62 Winner* (Game 65)||3 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Sun., July 20||Game 63 Winner vs. Game 64 Winner*(Game 66)||5 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
|Mon., July 21||Game 65 Winner vs. Game 66 Winner* (Game 67)||6 p.m.||Thomas & Mack|
Doug McDermott Scoring Points
Newsflash, the Chicago Bulls need offense.
The dream of Anthony leading the defensively-strong Bulls in the scoring department ended when he decided to re-sign with the Knicks, so Chicago has to turn within. What’s more, Derrick Rose is one of the best basketball players in the league when healthy, but there is no bigger uncertainty in the entire NBA than the status of his knees.
In the early going in Las Vegas, rookie Doug McDermott has proved to be up to the scoring task for Chicago.
He and his teammates drilled an NBA Summer League record 19 three-pointers in a victory over the Denver Nuggets, five of which came from the Creighton product. He finished that contest with 31 points on 7-of-12 shooting from the field and 5-of-9 shooting from three-point range.
Afterward he discussed his efforts to earn playing time under Tom Thibodeau, via Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times:
I feel like it’s too early to tell. I feel like I’m going to have to gain his respect, definitely. I’m going to have to work my tail off to get to that point and I definitely will. I’ll be in Chicago all summer up to training camp, work on my game and get in shape, and then we’ll see what happens.
If he can continue to hit from behind the three-point line and score with regularity, a spot in the starting lineup may just open up for McDermott.
Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett Look Ready to Run with LeBron
Even people who do live under a rock know by now that James signed with the Cleveland Cavaliers, and two of his young teammates will be thrown right into the spotlight alongside him.
Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett are the No. 1 picks in the past two NBA drafts and will have to perform accordingly if the Cavs plan on making it out of the suddenly wide-open Eastern Conference. Both scored 13 points against the San Antonio Spurs in a recent summer league game, but it was Bennett who was actually much more efficient.
He finished 5-of-8 from the field and grabbed 14 rebounds. Thus far in Las Vegas, Bennett looks leaner and is moving up the floor quicker. Better conditioning means he will be more suited to bang around in the paint and compete on the glass, which will be critical because Anderson Varejao has struggled to stay healthy in recent years.
That means the Cavs need players from other positions to step up on the boards.
Who scores more points in 2014-15?
Wiggins only shot 3-of-11 from the field in that particular game and is clearly still finding some consistency on offense. However, his athleticism makes the prospect of him running alongside James in the open court ridiculously appealing for Cleveland fans.
Wiggins has also been solid on the defensive end in Las Vegas, which is the most important aspect of his game this year because James won’t have to guard the opposing team’s best wing threat in all 82 regular-season games.
A fresher James come playoff time means a better chance at an elusive Cleveland title.
Noah Vonleh Rebounding Everything
Noah Vonleh was billed as arguably the draft’s top rebounder coming out of Indiana, and he hasn’t given any evidence to the contrary in Las Vegas. He even grabbed 18 boards in a double-double effort against the Sacramento Kings.
If Vonleh can rebound even half effectively as that in the regular season, Al Jefferson and the rest of the Charlotte Hornets will get some much-needed help down low.
Vonleh has also made some other impressions during the summer league’s early going, as Zach Harper of CBS Sports and Candace Buckner of the Indianapolis Star pointed out:
Noah Vonleh crossover, Dream Shake, then hits tough fadeaway. YUP.— Zach Harper (@talkhoops) July 14, 2014
The other areas need some work, but Noah Vonleh has so far learned how to foul in the NBA: 13 personal fouls in 2 Summer League gms— Candace Buckner (@CandaceDBuckner) July 13, 2014
The fouls are certainly worrisome (if not a bit amusing), but it’s only summer league. There is plenty of time for Vonleh to learn how to rein in his aggression when fouling out becomes a real possibility during regular-season contests.
As for the offense, he was very raw coming out of college, but it is clear that the potential is there. He won’t face many double-teams this season playing next to Jefferson, so expect the occasional outburst of scoring from the rookie.
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