Photo credit: @SacramentoKings
By: Jeremiah Salmonson
SACRAMENTO — Wednesday was the third and final day of the California Classic at the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, California. The four teams participating in the Classic would travel to Las Vegas after the festivities wrapped up on Wednesday afternoon to continue Summer League action.
Two games were on tap for Wednesday: The Miami Heat and Golden State Warriors at 12 PM PST as well as the LA Lakers and Sacramento Kings at 2 PM PST.
Game one featured the Miami Heat and Golden State Warriors, who got off to a very slow offensive start. The Heat managed to put up a few baskets in the opening minutes, but the Warriors couldn’t muster anything. It wasn’t until 6:01 that the Warriors finally managed to score. Damian Jones was fouled and made both shots. The Warriors managed to regain control of the offense and score 38 in the first half. The Heat, on the other hand, stayed steadily mediocre. They scored 12 in the first quarter and 18 in the second to trail 30-38 at the half.
Damian Jones led the Warriors with 8 points into halftime. Davon Reed had 7 points. The Heat’s leading scorers in the first half were Yante Maten, who dropped 10 points, and Tyler Herro with 7 points.
In the second half, the third quarter looked much like the first. Both teams struggled on offense. Please give credit to good defense from both teams, but the real culprit was bad shooting. When the third was said and done, the Heat scored 15 and the Warriors had 12. The score was 50-45 in favor of the Lakers heading into the final quarter. In the final minutes of the game, the Warriors offense fell sharply and the Heat picked up the slack. The Heat scored 26 fourth quarter points compared to the Warriors’ 14. The Warriors fell to the Heat 73-65.
Kendrick Nunn led the Heat with 21 points. Other notable Heat scorers were Tyler Herro with 20 points and Yante Maten with 16 points. Leading Warriors scorers were Damian Jones with 15 points and Davon Reed with 12 points.
Unlike the first game of the day, the Kings offense got going early in this game. The Kings jumped to an early lead over the Lakers with quick points from Hollis Thompson. However, the Lakers began to roll offensively about halfway through the first and made it close at the end of the first quarter. The score was 23-22 in favor of Sacramento after the first quarter.
In the second quarter, the Kings and Lakers traded baskets without much separation coming between the two teams in the early minutes. Then, the Lakers offense slowed down as they were only able to put 17 points. Wenyen Gabriel led the Kings to a first half lead with 11 points. Hollis Thompson scored 10 points, and Kyle Guy had 10 points. The Kings took a 47-39 lead into the second half.
In the second half, the Kings kept the offensive pressure on the Lakers by scoring 28 in the third. That would be better than the Lakers’ 24 in the third. Sacramento was in the driver’s set 75-63 going into the fourth quarter.
However, in the fourth, the Lakers made it interesting. They outscored the Kings 36-22, and in miraculous fashion, won 99-97. The main reason the Lakers pulled this one out was because of Jordan Howard. Howard, who came into the fourth quarter with 8 points, dropped 17 points to lead the Lakers with 25 points. Other notable Lakers scorers were Nick Perkins with 20 points and Devontae Cacok with 13 points.
The Kings were also on the receiving end of many good performances from their young players, but were sadly downed by the Lakers. The most notable Kings performance came from first-year guard Kyle Guy, who scored 14 points on the night. Wenyen Gabriel added 16 points to his California Classic resume. Semaj Christon had 13 points.
All four teams now head to Vegas to continue their NBA Summer League Slate.