If you were looking for bright spots in the Toronto Raptors' 88 to 57 loss to the Dallas Mavericks, you probably needed to focus on another Summer League match-up.
The Dinos were beaten up again, losing to a solid yet unspectacular Mavs' squad in a game where the Raps shot 30 per cent from the field and turned the ball over a ridiculous 30 times. Ricky Ledo, who we mentioned in our preview, led the way for Dallas with 18 points, and Dallas led pretty much wire to wire in this one.
It was bound to happen at some point, it's just unfortunate that it was in his third game, and in the midst of what's been a pretty rough Summer League affair for BRUNO and his teammates. The club has one lone win, and looks destined to finish their Vegas stint with said lone win, barring a surprise playoff performance.
Yes, playoffs! Summer League is set up so that each team plays three in a preliminary round of sorts, in order to determine seeding for a single elimination round of games that follows. With a 1 and 2 record, the Dinos won't be seeded very high, especially since ties between other clubs with 1 and 2 records, will be determined partly by scoring, both by "quarter system points" (team with higher quarter point total receives higher seed) and "point differential" (team with the better net result of total points scored less total points allowed against all opponents receives the higher seed.)
And yeah, Toronto hasn't exactly been playing close games of late, nor lighting Vegas up with its scoring.
In any event, we all know that win/loss record hardly matters in Summer League (although Jordan Clarkson and his Laker teammates would probably disagree) so let's get to the real reason we're here, player evaluations.
For this match versus Dallas, facial aside, BRUNO finished with a respectable 12 points, but was only 3 of 10 from the field, had five fouls, and didn't contribute much any other area. Obviously it's hard to be too critical considering how raw Caboclo is, but commentator Grant Hill made a good point during the match that for all this athletic talents, Bruno settles for contested three-pointers far too often. In fact, BRUNO took nine of his team's 23 long-range bombs himself!
Another five 3's went to DeAndre Daniels, but Daniels hit two of these, and rounded out his game nicely with a team-high 16 points, and 6 rebounds. So far, Daniels has been the club's most consistent player.
After these two, it was pretty damn ugly. No one else hit double-digits in scoring, and the other three starters were simply putrid. Scott Machado in particular continues to make me look like an idiot for thinking he was a solid late second-round draft pick option in the not too distant past. He somehow racked up five turnovers in 20 minutes of play to go with 1 point, 1 assist and 1 rebound.
Is that even possible?
(Ok, simmer down Franchise, it's freaking Summer League.)
Let's leave this on a positive note though and talk about Hassan Whiteside. The former Marshall block-monster saw only 15 minutes of action but was a perfect 2 of 2 from the field, got to the stripe four times, blocked two shots, scored 8 points, and pulled in a team-high 9 rebounds. Not too shabby and frankly, he's the one player on this squad, yes, above even BRUNO, Bebe and Daniels, that looks like he might belong on an NBA roster right now. Toronto could use some more protection at the rim, however it's hard to imagine the club putting Whiteside on the roster when a very similar player in Nogueira is already slated to be there.
But a training camp invite?
That's certainly not out of the question.