The Raptors finished their 2014 Summer League stint with a 64-60 win over the Los Angeles Clippers last night, and finish with a record of 2-3. The Raps won the game despite only connecting on 3 of their 23 attempts from downtown, and shooting just 36% from the field. Another barnstormer, I'm sure.
Unfortunately neither Adam or myself actually got around to watching last night's epic contest -- Adam's at a wedding in P.E.I. (that's a good excuse) and I tuned into NBA TV at 6, saw that they were broadcasting another game and didn't feel like spending $4.99 to watch it online (that's a good-ish excuse). In all honestly, I thought the Rockets were the Raps' final opponent. Wishful thinking.
If you watched the game you're probably not too interested in me attempting to extrapolate talking points from the box-score, so maybe best to do something else with your next 30 seconds; but, if you didn't watch the game and are too lazy to look at said box-score, I'll break it down.
DeAndre Daniels, who's had a mixed Summer League, top-scored for the Raps with 15 points and also pulled down 14 boards. It's an impressive line, although the second-round pick wasn't very efficient from the floor. As mentioned previously, Daniels will likely spend the 2014-15 season away from the team -- in Europe or the D-League -- and there's a good chance he'll be back in Vegas next summer. An encouraging end to this year's Summer League for Daniels, however.
Bruno Caboclo, the player we've all been most interested in seeing over the last week, finished with 10 points and 7 rebounds -- according to TSN's Josh Lewenberg, Caboclo had his most impressive two-way game of the tournament, making the most of his ungodly length to generate turnovers and generally being a nuisance. Over 5 games in Vegas, Caboclo averaged 11 points, 3 rebounds, 1 steal and shot 39% from the floor. He's got a ton to work on, but that's not surprising given his age and experience level. If he can simply focus on the defensive side of the ball, making that his number one priority, as well as shooting the three-ball, he could contribute to the team next season in a positive capacity.
Lucas Nogueira, pictured above buying a
hotdog and some popcorn protein shake (thanks to ESPN's Adam Reisinger for the photo) snared 10 rebounds, including 3 on the offensive glass, after slotting into the starting lineup at centre in place of Hassan Whiteside. The Raps still need to work out a buyout with his Spanish team, but if he's able to play next season, I don't see an issue with him getting some back-up minutes at centre. He'll get pushed around by the bigger 5s in the NBA right now, but he has the kind of speed and length that Chuck Hayes, the team's other option, lacks.
The other question, as the Raps move towards finalizing their roster for next season, is whether the team has seen a third-string point-guard they're interested in. For me, this isn't exactly a pressing issue -- Lou Williams can be pressed into floor-general duty if the need arises -- but Dwane Casey mentioned a few days ago that the team is looking at some options.
Dwight Buycks didn't play last night, but he's been okay in Vegas and is a known commodity. Scott Machado, who started in Buycks place, appears to have done his chances no good last night. The former Rocket and Warrior went 0-6 from the floor. Myck Kabongo looks like he had a half-decent game, but as great of a story as Kabongo on the Raps would be, I don't see it happening.
Anyway, Adam and I will dole out some Summer League grades during the week (you know, based on the games we actually saw), so look out for that.