The Portland Trail Blazers again looked disorganized in another ugly Summer League loss, this one to the Los Angeles Lakers, who had minimal NBA-level talent on the court. In the Summer League Playoffs race (cue the "Playoffs?!" speech), the Blazers gained one point to six for the Lakers. Ouch.
Will Barton was injured in the third quarter when a player from the Lakers fell into his leg. It looked ugly live, but he was diagnosed with a right knee strain, with no MRI planned. No official word on his Summer League status, but there's probably a good chance he's done.
Boring first quarter. But the Blazers stayed ahead, and gained themselves a point for that big, big playoff run to come.
Remember the second half of the Phoenix game? The Blazers doubled-down and said they could do worse. What followed was an abysmal second quarter, where the Blazers stunk up the court with repeated turnovers. Words cannot fully describe this quarter. It ended with a 21-2 Laker run, including 17 straight points.
Things settled down into a boring little groove in the third quarter, with the Laker lead staying in the teens. Barton was hurt along the way, and the Lakers pulled ahead a little further to gain another point on the standings.
The fourth quarter was more of the same. The Blazers had a chance to gain a playoff point in the final seconds and blew that too, giving up a late three.
CJ McCollum will hopefully use this game as motivation. He didn't shoot too terribly (6-17, but 1-5 from three), but looked nothing like the star he did yesterday. He was quiet, fairly invisible, and had a few early turnovers that took him out of the game a little. 15 points, 5 assists, 5 rebounds, 3 turnovers.
Thomas Robinson had moments of energy and promise, followed by moments that left you wondering how he was drafted fifth one year ago. He definitely has a presence on the boards, which was one of the reasons Portland acquired him. With a little luck and some hard work, hopefully he won't be the Power Forward version of Jonny Flynn. 7 points, 10 rebounds, 2 assists, 5 turnovers.
With the Blazers playing a form of disorganized street ball, Will Barton had a few nice moments. Then there were the rest. He's still struggling with control, and the concept of "team". Of course, he left with an injury in the third, and we'll hopefully know his status soon. 8 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, 2 steals, 2 turnovers.
Meyers Leonard didn't play in this game. Wait, what? He did? Ouch. Poor rebounding, minimal offense, plenty of fouls and turnovers, and a memorable hook shot into the side of the backboard. He did have a nice run during garbage time of the fourth. 12 points, 5 rebounds, 2 blocks, 6 fouls, 3 turnovers.
Joel Freeland actually looks more balanced than he did during the regular season. His defense is much more solid. But he still has a ways to go. And had one of the cringe moments of the night, as he missed four straight free throws as the Blazers tried to close the gap in the third. 6 points, 5 rebounds, 2 blocks, 1 assist.
Allen Crabbe followed his invisible performance yesterday with another one today. I didn't get a chance to focus on him tonight, so I don't have much more to add. 7 points, 4 rebounds, 2 steals.
A day of practice for the Blazers, then the last "regular season" game, a Tuesday tilt against the Chicago Bulls. After that, the Summer League Playoffs begin. Stay tuned later for Ben's Media Row report, live from Vegas. -- Tim