Three games last night: all exemplify the reasons I love the D-League, and all featured hopeful NBA call-ups!
Colorado 141, Iowa 118 -- Well, I'm finally sold that Courtney Sims is really good. Without him, the Energy were outrebounded 53-37, leading to the 14ers new franchise record for points in a game. Being outrebounded wasn't the only problem for Iowa however, as starting point guard Curtis Stinson picked up two technical fouls and Energy trainer Tim Moran(!?) picked one up as well. Colorado was led by former Cavs call-up Billy Thomas, who scored 30 points, seven assists, seven steals, and six boards, along with converting SIX of his 10 3-pointers. Cleveland might want a looksie again this year after this one! Dominique Coleman scored 23, had 14 boards, and added six assists, while Josh Davis had 21 points and 13 boards in 33 minutes. Iowa had six player in double figures, led by Brian Evans with 21 points. The "Big Dawg from Clayton State", Aristide Sawadago, had two rebounds and just one turnover in over five minutes of action
Austin 110, Los Angeles 108 -- After the previous nights Nancy Lieberman controversy, the problem followed the Toros to California, as this time, Austin started just four players. Lucky for them, two of those players include Pops Mensah-Bonsu and Marcus Williams. Pops did his thing, scoring 25 points, grabbing 11 rebounds, and swatting two shots, along with hitting a jumper as time expired to win the game. Clutch! Williams had 23 points and six assists. For the D-Fenders, former Laker second round pick Joe Crawford led both teams with 32 points and Dwayne Mitchell, who was in camp with the Lakers, added 25 points, seven boards, and six assists.
Sioux Falls 116, Fort Wayne 114 -- There were only two officials in this game (Don't ask why.. I don't know), but don't you worry. They made up for it by calling six technical fouls and a 3-second violation on Sean Sonderleiter with 24 seconds left in overtime and the Mad Ants with a one point lead. Keith Brumbaugh made a 3-pointer with 13 seconds left and the rest is history. Four Sioux Falls, 5'8" David Bailey scored 32 points and 10 rebounds, playing all 53 minutes, the 1,000 call-up man Bobby Jones had 18 points, 10 boards and five turnovers before fouling out, while Frank Williams came off the bench to jack up ten 3-point attempts and and score 24 points. The Mad Ants were led by Carl Elliott, who was traded earlier in the season for Bailey, putting in 31 points and grabbing 11 boards, playing all 53 minutes. Walker Russell, the D-League assist leader, returned to form, scoring 15 points and dishing 12 assists, though he did turn the ball over four times. Potential call-up Chris Hunter did not play, and I don't know why, but Sonderleiter got the start over Coleman Collins. There's also a fan post up from webby356 who was at the game. Sioux Falls Glen McGowan signed overseas earlier in the day as well, but was still in the box score.