Players who are trying to earn an invite to training camp this fall, or working to impress the various basketball scouts in attendance at summer league, need playing time in order to so. With that said, Hornets players had to happy with their opportunity Sunday night in Las Vegas.
New Orleans' final NBA Summer League game of the week featured three overtime periods, a chance for the eight healthy Hornets in uniform to provide an extended look at their ability. Denver posted a two-point win on Coby Karl's free throws with 26 seconds remaining in the third OT.
The Hornets were paced by Julian Wright's 24-point performance. New Orleans (1-4) was without both 2009 draft acquisitions to injury, Darren Collison and Marcus Thornton, as well as 7-footer Luke Nevill. Marc Salyers signed with a team in Europe earlier in the week and was not able to suit up as a result. In effect, that cut the initial 12-player roster down to eight.
"We ended up shorthanded," Hornets assistant and summer head coach Rob Werdann said. "But the guys who did play tonight really worked hard and took the game to triple overtime. We couldnt ask for more in terms of effort."
Five other Hornets aside from Wright reached double figures in the defeat. Jaycee Carroll tallied 22 points to lead that group. Earl Calloway netted 13 points, including two made free throws with 1.5 ticks left to force a second OT.