A new wrinkle from the NBA that started in 2013 has the Las Vegas Summer League squads ranked from one through 24 after three games apiece, setting up an elimination tournament that concludes, of course, with a champion. After going 1-2, the Lakers found themselves in the No. 17 slot, facing off against No. 16 Philadelphia.
Due in large part to a terrible second quarter in which the Sixers outscored L.A. 30-10, the Lakers fell 85-63 on Wednesday evening, meaning they're out of the tournament, even if allowed a consolation fifth game on Friday afternoon (3:30 p.m. vs. Denver).
Nonetheless, draft picks Julius Randle and Jordan Clarkson continued to play well, offering positive signs heading into training camp in October. They collectively led a third-quarter comeback that trimmed Philly's 22-point halftime lead to as few as seven before the Lakers conceded a run to start the fourth that put the game on ice.
Randle finished with 12 points, six boards, three assists*, a steal and a block in his 20 minutes of action, while Clarkson added 11 points, six boards, two assists, two steals and a swat in his 29 minutes.
*Randle was dropping dimes all night, often after pushing the ball himself in transition Lamar Odom style, and could have had several more assists if teammates converted open shots.
Randle's versatility was apparent in his scoreline, as he did a bit of everything, highlighted by consecutive plays in which he drove and dished to get a teammate a layup, then executed a dribble-drive move before finishing with his right hand near the rim. Clarkson was all over as well, at one moment stripping an opponent in the paint and the next finishing at the rim in transition.
Several guys on the end of the bench saw action in the final period, including Ronaldo Woolridge, Rodrigue Beaubois, Anthony Ireland, LaQuinton Ross and Jerome Jordan, though Philadelphia maintained its double-digit lead.
L.A. shot just 34.8 percent and committed 24 turnovers, hitting only 3 of 23 triples and 14 of 21 free throws in the loss.