Summer League Recap: Celtics 92, Pistons 90
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By Dan Savage
July 9, 2014
ORLANDO -- It’s been an ideal 2014 Southwest Airlines Orlando Pro Summer League for Kelly Olynyk.
The No. 13 overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft has displayed consistency both in his offensive output and on the glass, continuing to build on a solid rookie campaign.
He once again did his share of damage, tallying team highs in points (16) and rebounds (nine) as the Boston Celtics (2-1) held off the Detroit Pistons (3-1) to hand them their first loss in summer league play, 92-90, on Wednesday.
It didn’t come easy though.
Detroit’s Kenatvious Caldwell-Pope continued to make a case for Summer League MVP, scoring 14 of his 26 points in the second half to go along with nine rebounds. He was once again clutch down the stretch, drilling a trey with 5.2 seconds left that brought the Pistons within two.
However, he was unable to connect on a potential game-winning three at the buzzer.
“There was never a doubt in my mind that we were going to win, but we gave ourselves enough opportunities to blow the game,” Olynyk said. “But we just stuck together and won it on the defensive end instead of the offensive end.
The Celtics’ other prized prospect, Marcus Smart still has yet to display the same type of consistency as his teammate, but still managed to find ways to contribute and help his team come out with the victory.
Smart, the No. 6 overall selection in the 2014 NBA Draft, struggled from the floor, going 4-for-13, but still collected 14 points, six assists and five rebounds.
“He’s going to make leaps and bounds here every week and you’re going to see it,” said Olynyk.
Phil Pressey scored 14, while Mike Moser, an undrafted big man out of the University of Oregon, did his best to impress his coaches and catch the eyes of scouts from around the globe by turning in a 12-point night.
Detroit’s Justin Harper poured in 16 points on a perfect 7-for-7 effort from the field and 4-for-4 outing from downtown. It’s not unthinkable that Harper could find his way on to Detroit’s roster in the future as Pistons Head Coach and President of Basketball Operations Stan Van Gundy was head coach in Orlando when the Magic traded two future second round picks to acquire the forward out of the University of Richmond.
He had help from Ian Miller, who put together his second straight quality performance. After a 16-point outing in Detroit’s victor over Miami on Tuesday, Miller was awarded his first summer league start against Boston. The undrafted rookie out of Florida State made the most of his opportunity, posting 16 points.
Brian Cook, who spent the last two years out of the league tending to his wife while she battled cancer, had his most impressive outing thus far.
Cook notched 14 points and six rebounds, while going 4-of-7 from long range.
In the scariest moment of summer league action this year, Celtics guard Dairis Bertans was taken off the court on a stretcher after colliding face-first with the basket stanchion following a hard foul.
He was taken to the Florida Hospital for precautionary reasons.
"It was really scary," Celtics Summer league Head Coach Jay Larranaga. "We just hope for the best for him."
The Latvian native was in the midst of a solid contest, scoring seven points on an efficient 3-of-5 shooting.
Boston is back in action on Thursday when they go head-to-head with the Magic at 5 p.m. ET. Detroit has the day off, before playing again Friday on Championship Day. Their opponent and game time will be determined based upon the standings following Thursday’s games.