Kyle Lowry: On the Mend
LAS VEGAS, July 9, 2007 -- Although this will officially be Kyle Lowry’s second year in the NBA, the former Villanova star probably feels like a rookie.
His inaugural season in the league was cut short before it ever really began when he broke his left wrist in game No. 10. After averaging 5.6 points, 3.2 assists and 3.1 rebounds in limited action, his first season with the Grizzlies was done.
There would be no on-the-job training. He would have to gain his how-to knowledge from the sidelines.
“I try not to even think about it,” said Lowry following Memphis’ 80-78 loss to Detroit on Monday at the NBA Summer League. “It was a freak play in Cleveland. It was frustrating sitting out 72 games because I know I could have helped the team. It is time to move on.”
With the exception of the Pistons’ Rodney Stuckey, Lowry was the best player on the court. Showing off his trademark speed, he was a tough defensive assignment for several Detroit players.
Coming off the bench, the former first-round pick scored a team-high 23 points on 50 percent shooting from the floor. He was aggressive taking the ball to the basket and converted 12-of-13 free throws.
And like a good teammate, his offensive outburst didn’t matter because his squad didn’t win.
“I know it’s only summer league but we’re not out here just to play,” Lowry said. “We want to win these games. I played all right and I’m trying to get better each day."
This was Lowry’s second straight strong showing in Las Vegas. He scored 13 points, gave out five assists and made three steals in Memphis’ tournament-opening win against Team China Basketball on Friday.
After posting the worst record in the league a season ago, the Grizzlies hired Marc Iavaroni as their head coach and drafted Ohio State star Mike Conley Jr. with the fourth overall pick of the 2007 NBA Draft.
Against the Pistons, Lowry saw time on the floor with Conley, who is also a blazing quick point guard.
Instead of looking at Conley as competition, Lowry thinks the two players can mesh well together.
“We’re both fast and in this league, speed kills,” Lowry said. “The coach tried some different things today. It doesn’t matter which one of us brings the ball up, we just want to get it and go. I think we will make each other better.”
Despite playing 32 minutes, Conley struggled in his second professional game. He scored just eight points on 2-for-7 shooting, while handing out three assists.