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Rio Grande Valley Vipers 120, Los Angeles D-Fenders 117; Too Tired to Defend

This was your Versus game of the night, and the only one I was able to watch.  So this probably will be it for recaps.

  • Los Angeles kept it close for most of the game before RGV opened it up in the fourth quarter.  Without resorting to name-based puns, the D-Fenders don't do much defending.  The Vipers were driving to the rim whenever they wanted and creating space for outside shots.
  • Of course, RGV's defense wasn't great, either.  LA couldn't hit their threes, but shot almost 54 percent from the floor, and they were doing as much driving to the basket as the Vipers.  I'm going to blame it on playing the night before and being tired.
  • Ernest Scott led the way for the Vipers with 25 points, and he hit seven of his 11 three-pointers.  I'm not really sure he ever dribbled the ball, either, it was all catch and shoot.
  • Antonio Anderson had 19 points and 10 assists, but overall I wasn't blown away by his game.  He also had seven turnovers, and let both Dar Tucker and Ryan Forehan-Kelly get by him with regularity.
  • Will Conroy had 24 points, seven rebounds and four assists, and he would've had even more assists if RGV's big men could catch the ball and finish properly.  Several passes were bobbled out of bounds or not caught cleanly, allowing a defender to get back.  Julian Sensley and Mickell Gladness combined to shoot 2-13, and that's just gross.
  • For the D-Fenders, Tucker played very well off the bench with 26 points on 19 shots.  I know the D-Fenders have had some injuries this year, but coach Chucky Brown might have the most inconsistent rotation in the league.  A guy like Tucker will go from starting, to getting a DNP, to playing almost 27 minutes off the bench.
  • Ryan Forehan-Kelly front-rimmed the potential game-tying three with a few seconds left in the game, and actually he missed all of his threes, but otherwise he played a solid game.  18 points, five rebounds, three assists, along with only one turnover.
  • James Wright was huge in the second half, and finished with 24 points on 17 shots.  I like Wright; he's quick and he can shoot.  This was the perfect style of play for him.
  • Gabriel Hughes was very good off the bench, with 16 points and 13 rebounds in a little less than 20 minutes.  He seemed to be the only one interested in getting back on defense at times, though he also had five fouls in that time.