REAX: Wizards Summer League Game 1 — Tucked In by the Suns | Wizards Blog Truth About It.net

REAX: Wizards Summer League Game 1 — Tucked In by the Suns

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Updated: July 11, 2015

[Kelly Oubre, via @CSNWizards]

[Kelly Oubre, via @CSNWizards]

The Wizards lost their 2015 summer league debut, 77-86, to a Phoenix Suns team featuring several players looking to contribute when the real season starts—T.J. Warren, Alex Len, Archie Goodwin, and 2015 draft pick Devin Booker on top. The Wiz Kids, led by 15th overall pick Kelly Oubre and 49th overall pick Aaron White, started out pretty bad, even for summer league, with a nine-point, one-assist, eight-turnover first quarter. Washington settled down in the second half, out-scoring Phoenix 47-43. Five points is the closest the Wizards would get, when Oubre hit a 3 with 6:53 left in the game (64-69) and then when Jamil Wilson followed with a nice jumper (66-71). But after that, Alex Len went on a personal 5-0 run and Luke Harangody added two points of icing for Phoenix to put the game out of reach. Let’s react…

Thumbs Up

Kelly Oubre, Jr.
27 mins | 20 pts | 8-20 FGs, 1-7 3Ps, 3-7 FTs | 10 rebs (4 off) | 2 stl | 1 blk | 0 TOs

Oubre, starting at 2 guard, began out of control on offense, soft and uncertain on wild forays to the hoop. Summer league jitters, of course. Still, he was active on defense, anxious to back up all the talking, which was called out as noticeable by the sideline television announcer. Oubre scored his first basket after several ugly misses by finishing strongly through contact from Maryland’s Alex Len. Later his aggressive defense (but smart use of his length) forced Archie Goodwin into a shot clock violation. But then soon after Oubre got blocked by Luke Harangody on a weak drive (got blocked three total times on the game). Some junk that he threw up did land Aaron White a nice putback dunk.

Oubre settled down and found body control in the second half, dueling with T.J. Warren and making a couple winding, desperate finishes late when the Wizards were trying to mount a comeback. He missed a 3, he missed a lot of 3s (1-7), but off at least one miss he got his own rebound, charged to the middle of the lane, and performed a spin drop-step for the finish. Oubre showed the promise of why the Wizards traded up to get him, but he was also was so-so enough to wonder exactly how long he’ll take to develop. The short answer is: there’s plenty of time to find out.

Aaron White
20 mins | 4 pts | 2-5 FGs, 0-2 3Ps | 4 rebs (3 off) | 1 PF | 3 TOs

White didn’t fill the stat sheet in his debut, so maybe he’s more midrange. If he would’ve hit either of his 3 attempts, both of which looked nice form-wise, there might be slightly more hype. White, however, called plenty of attention to himself with a couple booming put-back dunks (one off a junky Oubre miss). If White is ever going to be an NBA stretch 4, he must have the will to charge in for offensive rebounds on a regular basis. He wasn’t present at times—natural in a game controlled by sloppy play, mostly from guards, early—but White showed other skills. One was the ability to work with guards on hand-off action around the 3-point line (something Kris Humphries first started getting used to in Boston and which continued to a degree in Washington). White also nicely drove the right lane once, sucked in the defense, and dished the ball to Oubre wide open for 3 on the wing. The kid missed.

Thumbs Down

  • Traevon Jackson, 6-foot-2 point guard out of Wisconsin, was a disaster off the bench. He was responsible for five of Washington’s 18 turnovers, some of which were unexpectedly sloppy, even for summer league.
  • Damion James seemed to be pressing after not making the team out of Wizards training camp last season (Rasual Butler won by a nose, or three). He started at the 3 and finished 2-for-8 from the field with three rebounds. Some of his attempts to drive to the hoop seemed a step slow—he was able to get past non-attentive defenders with a first step but slowed to a crawl as he approached the rim out of position to finish. James made a handful of small, dumb mistakes, like stepping out of bounds in the corner when he was a threat to drive the baseline.

Midrange

  • Scott Machado’s numbers weren’t terrible, but he did a poor job running the team as the starting point guard (and a relative summer league veteran, this is his fourth rodeo; played summers with Houston, Golden State, and Toronto). Machado had a nice drive or two, but his shots from deep were miserable and playing catch-up on defense too many times led to five fouls. He still scored 10 points on 4-for-7 shooting with five rebounds, four assists, and two turnovers—like I said, not terrible.
  • Scott Suggs didn’t hit a 3-pointer (0-4), but went 4-for-6 on 2-pointers (that midrange game was on point) and led the bench scoring with 10 points.

Trending

  • Jarrid Famous started at 5 and threw his 6-foot-11, 240 frame around like a man amongst boys—he’s a 26-year-old semi-vet who was last seen taking on competition in the Philippines. Famous put up a double-double in 25 minutes (10 points on 3-5 FGs, 4-5 FTs; 8 defensive rebounds, 2 offensive), and took advantage of Alex Len on the offensive glass early in the first quarter.

Notes

  • Dez Wells didn’t play and shook his head no when asked by TAI’s Adam Rubin if he thought that he’d play this summer league. Sounds like that sprained thumb is pretty bad. Update: Dez is out for the entirety of summer league.
  • Toure’ Murry didn’t play because of a right groin injury that he tweaked in practice on Thursday, per the Washington Post’s Jorge Castillo.
  • T.J. Warren (20 points) and Archie Goodwin (22 points) stole the show, and the game, for Phoenix. Alex Len added 17 points and eight rebounds. Warren got into a trash-talking session with Kelly Oubre; I imagine it won’t be Oubre’s last verbal duel this summer.
  • The Wizards play the D-League Select team at 4 p.m. ET on Sunday. Hasheem Thabeet, my friends, is on the D-League team.

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Kyle Weidie
Founder / Editor / Reporter / Writer at TAI
Kyle founded TAI in 2007 and has been weaving in and out the world of Wizards ever since, ducking WittmanFaces, jumping over G-Wiz, and avoiding stints on the DNP-Conditioning list. He has covered the Washington pro basketball team as a member of the media since 2009. Kyle lives in D.C. with his wife, loves basketball, and has no pets.