Atlanta’s Trae Young struggling in summer action
Young looked like the player who led the nation in scoring and assists as a college freshman.
”I just try to play my game,” he said. ”I try to make the right plays, and if I see an opening, I’m going to knock it down or find my teammates. I’m just trying to get more into rhythm each and every game. I’m just trying to get better and progress and get better. That’s my main thing. I think I’m headed in the right direction.”
Young made just 12 of 52 shots in three summer league games in Utah, and before Tuesday, he had shot just 29 percent in two games Las Vegas. After showing signs of figuring things out with a 21-point, 11-assist performance against New York this past Saturday, he suffered a minor right quadriceps injury on Sunday against Portland. He seemed fine on Tuesday, playing a team-high 33 minutes.
It’s still just July and the sample size is small, but Young’s early struggles reflect the concerns about him being too frail, short and undisciplined to succeed in the NBA. Even in his breakout game against Chicago, he missed all six of his shots inside the 3-point line.
Young isn’t the only high profile rookie point guard who has encountered rough times in Las Vegas, though. Second-round pick Jalen Brunson, The Associated Press National Player of the Year for Villanova, is averaging just seven points and shooting 19 percent from the field in three games for the Dallas Mavericks.
Meanwhile, Cleveland’s Collin Sexton has been on point. The eighth overall pick out of Alabama is averaging 16.7 points per game and shooting 43 percent from the field in Las Vegas.
Other rookie point guards have been shining in Las Vegas.
– Houston’s De’Anthony Melton, the 46th overall pick from USC, is posting 16.3 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.7 steals per contest.
– Indiana’s Aaron Holiday, the 23rd selection from UCLA, has averaged 15 points, 5.7 rebounds, 6.0 assists and 2.7 steals.
Gary Trent Jr. scored 20 points to help the Trail Blazers (3-0) hold off the Spurs.
Trent, a second-round pick, made 4 of 8 3-pointers.
Jaron Blossomgame and first-round pick Lonnie Walker IV each scored 12 points and Olivier Hanlan and Trey McKinney-Jones added 11 for the Spurs (1-2).
The Spurs trailed by 13 heading into the fourth quarter but cut their deficit to two in the final minute before the Trail Blazers held on.
Bam Adebayo scored 24 points to help the Heat (1-2) top the Jazz.
Ike Nwamu scored 18 points, Yante Maten scored 14 points and Duncan Robinson added 12 for the Heat, who made 27 of 30 free throws.
First-round pick Grayson Allen had 17 points and seven rebounds for the Jazz (1-2). Diamond Stone scored 17 points, Georges Niang scored 12 points and Trey Lewis added 11 for Utah.
The teams were tied at 47 at halftime, but Miami took control by outscoring the Jazz 30-19 in the third quarter.
HAWKS 101, BULLS 93
Trae Young scored 24 points to help the Hawks top the Bulls.
Young, the No. 5 overall pick, made 7 of 13 3-pointers and had five assists. Jaylen Adams scored 23 points, Jaylen Morris added 17 and Omari Spellman had 10 points and 10 rebounds for the Hawks (1-2).
Wendell Carter Jr., the No. 7 overall pick, had 23 points on 9 for 13 shooting for the Bulls (1-2). Antonio Blakeney scored 23 points and Kaiser Gates added 14 for Chicago.
Atlanta took over in the third quarter, outscoring the Bulls 30-21.
Harry Giles added 11 points and 12 rebounds and Frank Mason had 10 points and 13 assists.
Ivan Rabb and Wayne Selden had 17 points apiece for the Grizzlies (1-2).
The Lakers led 75-50 in the third, but No. 9 pick Kevin Knox scored 16 of his 29 points during a 30-3 Knicks run that gave New York (1-2) its only lead of the game early in the fourth quarter. Los Angeles responded with 16 straight points.
Knox finished 5 of 7 from 3-point range and grabbed nine rebounds. Allonzo Trier added 21 points and 10 rebounds.
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