When I say first ever, I mean the first in existence! The Golden State Warriors are the first ever NBA Champions!
Of the summer league, of course.
Ian Clake, the guy that nobody really knew until today, scored a game high 33 points, almost breaking the summer league record of 35 set by Reggie Jackson earlier. Clarke and Kent Bazemore, the likely summer league MVP, combined for 51 points.
Ah, summer league! Mark Jackson must be proud of his team, because the Suns were looking unstoppable with the twins Markieff and Marcus Morris controlling the paint. Unfortunately for them, however, the Warriors played excellent defense, and were able to win the championship.
The first quarter of this game was really high-paced and back-and-forth. The only reason that this game seemed to lack energy was because it was a summer league game and the 20 fans in the crowd can only do so much. Bazemore, as usual, was finishing strong at the rim and having his customary flashes of brilliance. He relentlessly drove to the basket. The game was tied at at a 22-22 stalemate to end the quarter.
In the second quarter, it was really more of the same. The one player on the Suns who was hurting the Warriors in a big way was Archie Goodwin, the 29th pick. He was fearless in his attempt to finish at the rim, and the Warriors were getting beat every single time. Then, however, the tides began to turn. Clarke, one of the best shooters in the draft class suddenly had 19 points with under a minute to go in the half. He lead the Warriors to a 50-45 halftime lead.
The third quarter, was again, evenly paced. The Suns and the Warriors battled back and forth, and Bazemore scored eight in the quarter to keep the Warriors above the Suns by a little bit. At the end of the third, the Warriors lead 65-61.
The Warriors really blew the game open in the fourth quarter. It seemed to go the same way as the previous three, but then Clarke got hot again, and he lead the Warriors with 3-point basket after 3-point basket. Clark went berserk to the tune of 33 points in the game. With 6:30 remaining in the fourth, the Warriors pushed their lead to nine, and then to 15 with 5:07 left. Mental mistakes for Phoenix meant good times for the Warriors.
Clarke really proved to us today that he should have been drafted. He was one of the best shooters in the draft class, again, but was overlooked.
Could he be this year’s Bazemore?