K.J. McDaniels Wins MVP for 2018 Las Vegas NBA Summer League Championship

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistJuly 18, 2018

LAS VEAGS, NV - JULY 17: KJ McDaniels #59 of the Portland Trail Blazers is names the 2018 Summer League Championship Most Valuable Player after the game against the Los Angeles Lakers during the 2018 Las Vegas Summer League on July 17, 2018 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2018 NBAE (Photo by Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images)
Garrett Ellwood/Getty Images

The Portland Trail Blazers are 2018 Las Vegas Summer League champions, and nobody was better than K.J. McDaniels during Tuesday's title game.

McDaniels led the Trail Blazers to a 91-73 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers with 17 points on 8-of-14 shooting from the field and seven rebounds. He was one of six Portland players in double figures, but the team's defense set the tone and didn't allow a single Laker to score more than 12 points.

The NBA shared video of the Clemson product being recognized for his efforts:

McDaniels said he was ready to take the MVP trophy back to Rip City after the victory:

He wasn't the only MVP in the contest, as the NBA named Lakers guard Josh Hart the Las Vegas Summer League MVP prior to the game. However, Portland held him to a mere 12 points on 3-of-12 shooting.

The Villanova product's frustration was obvious, as he was ejected in the fourth quarter after he picked up two consecutive technical fouls while arguing with an official.

He couldn't match McDaniels even when he was on the floor, though, as the Trail Blazers swingman lived above the rim on both ends:

McDaniels didn't appear in an NBA contest in 2017-18. He played for the Philadelphia 76ers, Houston Rockets and Brooklyn Nets from 2014-15 through 2016-17.

Last season, he played 31 games for the Grand Rapids Drive of the G League and averaged 16.2 points and 7.0 rebounds per night. If he continues to play like he did against the Lakers, he could earn a spot on an NBA roster.

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