LAS VEGAS — It is completely, wildly unfair to compare a top draft pick with one of the better scorers the game has ever seen. Fans and draft evaluators need to stop doing things like saying “Ben Simmons is the next LeBron James” or whatever. Nobody is the next LeBron.
Yet, because he is an incredibly skinny, long and lanky scoring forward, there have been a lot of comparisons of Lakers’ rookie-to-be Brandon Ingram to Kevin Durant.
Kevin Durant was asked about that comparison and was kind to Ingram.
Asked Kevin Durant about Brandon Ingram today and he said Ingram's even farther along than he was at that age, really impressed.
Coach Mike Krzyzewski also praised Ingram and said he loved the kid — who happened to play at Duke.
“He’s strong minded. And he’s stronger physically than people would think,” Coach K said.
Maybe, but after watching him at Summer League where Ingram was buffeted around by physically stronger players, it’s something he has to work on.
Ingram is more polished coming out of college than Durant was — Ingram has a smooth, fluid game — and he is a better three-point shooter than young Durant. But even then KD was a better raw scorer in college — again, we are talking about one of the better pure scorers the game has ever seen. And Durant over the years polished those skills and took them to levels very likely beyond what Ingram is going to reach. That doesn’t mean Ingram is destined to fail — I’m talking to you, overly sensitive Lakers’ fans — but the Durant comparison was never realistic or fair.
One other note on the positive statements: At the USA camp, there is nothing but praise for everybody. Nobody says a negative word about a player publicly — not the coaches, not the guys on the team. Nobody. It’s a love-in. Part of that is that this is as impressive a gathering of basketball talent as you will ever see and so there is a lot of respect for everyone in the room. Part of it is these guys are media savvy and know better, they stick to their talking points.
Kawhi Leonard just destroyed Boston’s Daniel Theis on dunk
After the game, Leonard was asked about the dunk and he responded in about the most Kawhi way possible.
Clippers’ Kawhi Leonard goes full monotone to describe blow-by-blow his poster dunk on Daniel Theis and game-sealing block: “What do you want me to say? Patrick threw me the ball, I took two dribbles into the paint and tried to jump high and dunk the basketball.” pic.twitter.com/tKkwC7REmZ
DALLAS (AP) —Luka Doncic scored 33 of his 35 points in the first half and had yet another triple-double to help the Dallas Mavericks rout the short-handed Golden State Warriors 142-94 on Wednesday night.
Doncic fell a point short of matching Dirk Nowitzki’s team record set Nov. 3, 2009, against Utah. In just 17 minutes, Doncic was 10 for 11 from the floor, making 6 of 7 3-pointers, and hit 7 of 8 free throws.
The second-year star from Slovenia had 22 points, five assists and five rebounds in the first quarter alone. He played only 25 minutes total, but still managed 10 rebounds and 11 assists.
Doncic was coming off a 40-point triple-double Monday night against San Antonio, and has an NBA-best seven triple-doubles in 14 games this season.
The Mavericks never trailed and tied a franchise record with 22 3-pointers while sending Golden State to its worst loss since a 1973 playoff game.
The Warriors, who ended a seven-game losing streak by beating Memphis on Tuesday night, are an NBA-worst 3-13. Their five-year run of at the top of the NBA has collapsed under a weight of injuries, with Draymond Green out Wednesday because of right heel soreness.
With Green out, Golden State dressed only eight players, none of whom suited up for the team last season when it made the NBA Finals for the fifth consecutive year.
But Minnesota’s current NBA team – the Timberwolves – appear to be borrowing from that legacy.
The Timberwolves’ new alternate uniforms look awfully similar to the Minneapolis Lakers’ throwback:
Of course, the Timberwolves’ explanation contains no mention of the Minneapolis Lakers. The Timberwolves say the icy cool yet sky blue color … reflects the blue waters that are ubiquitous throughout the cities, namely the Mississippi River, which is outlined on the left side of the uniform.” It’s all about celebrating the Twin Cities – Minneapolis and St. Paul (MSP).
The best part: These alternates are officially branded as “City Edition” uniforms. The Timberwolves called theirs “Cities Edition.”