I’ll save our “Fouling Out with Six Thoughts” posts for the regular season, but here’s an informal take on the Raptors’ first Summer League game against the Rockets.
- Off the bat, we have to mention Terrence Ross. Everything we hope to see from him once the season rolls around was on display in this game. Scoring, athleticism and a commitment to defence. Ross finished with 21 points, a handful of highlights and even a couple of steals. His shooting seemed to falter towards the end of the game (he finished 8-of-19), which may have been a testament to the fact that he played more minutes than anyone else on the floor, but all in all, I was impressed. He seems a lot smoother than I thought he would be.
- We’ve been hearing about Ed Davis’ rebuilt jumper for the last little while, and we saw some glimpses of that summer work on Friday night. Eddie finished with 18 points on 7-of-12 shooting to go along with eight boards in 24 minutes of action. I mentioned in my Summer League preview that I wasn’t so much concerned with what Davis’ numbers would look like in Vegas, but rather what his jump-shot and offensive game would like. I was pleased with those components against the Rockets, but obviously hope this is just the beginning of Ed’s offensive development. His five personal fouls were a bit concerning, but unless it becomes a habit over the next few games, I don’t think it’s anything to be worried about.
- Ben Uzoh continues to impress me. I thought he might have done enough to earn a full-time job towards the end of last season, and you would have to assume that a good Summer League showing will see him land a third-string point guard spot with the Raptors. He did turn the ball over four times, but overall, I liked that Uzoh was actually trying to run a proper offence, which is a rare thing to see from a guard trying to earn a job in Summer League (see Brown, Bobby).
- Due to their bevy of first round picks, the Rockets probably have the deepest roster in Vegas this week, and it showed. Jeremy Lamb and Terrence Jones looked solid and Royce White looked good in a couple of stretches, but the real story of this game was Donatas Motiejunas. The Lithuanian big man finished with 25 points on a super efficient 11-of-13 shooting, grabbed nine rebounds, played with energy and seemed to be everywhere on the court. I know it was only one meaningless exhibition game in July, but Motiejunas has been a highly-touted talent for the last couple of years, and if he can keep his head on right (he’s got a reputation as a bit of a head case), he can make a serious impact at the NBA level. I wonder if the Magic would want him to be a part of any package the Rockets put together for Dwight Howard.
Raptors Player of the Game: Ed Davis
Rockets Player of the Game: Donatas Motiejunas
Players to Keep an Eye On: Quincy Acy, Devoe Joseph