Las Vegas Summer League: Joseph Hits Game Winner; Thomas Impresses In Debut

By Michael Rehome

July 19, 2012; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Exterior view of the Thomas and Mack Center on the campus of University Nevada Las Vegas. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

San Antonio Spurs basketball is back! Okay, so it is the summer league edition but still, you know how I feel.  The rookie out of Ohio State and the second round pick of the San Antonio Spurs, DeShaun Thomas came out and quickly showed that he is a scorer and that he can play this game.  Thomas came out early looking for his shot as but came up empty on his first three tries.  He did settle in and paced the Spurs with 20 points on 8-of-16 from the field.

Some familiar faces on the floor for the Spurs were Nando De Colo and Corey Joseph.  Joseph did a great job in running the point for the

Mar 22, 2012; Boston, MA, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes forward Deshaun Thomas (1) reacts after making a basket in the first half of the semifinals in the east region of the 2012 NCAA men

Spurs.  He looked for his shot at times and showed that he will take it into the paint, ala, Tony Parker.  He finished with 17 points on 6-of-13 shooting from the field.  He also tallied five rebounds and five assists in over 30+ minutes.

De Colo played mostly the off-guard position tonight and at times played well but did force some passes that were clearly going to be picked off.  This is summer league and teams are thrown together for a few weeks so play would be pretty hectic at times but for those that have been in a system, like De Colo and Joseph, making mistakes that they did make tonight should not happen.  De Colo did settle in and knocked down a deep two in the fourth quarter that would put San Antonio up three.  He finished with 12 points on 4-of-11 shooting from the floor.

Marcus Denmon and Ryan Richards didn’t fare to well out on the floor.  Denmon shot 1-of-4 from the floor, and Richards, 1-of-5.  Denmon came out quickly looking for his shot and put up some ill-advised, shots that Coach Pop would not care for.  Though Richards did not have a good scoring game, to me he did look a little timid out there and I would of liked for him to get the ball more down in the block.  There was one point in the fourth quarter where he launched a three from the corner, it looked good, but did not fall.

The game came down to the wire as Corey Joseph hit the game winner for the Spurs as Taylor for the Bobcats on the previous play hit a three pointer to put the Bobcats up.

San Antonio edged out Charlotte 69-68.  Spurs will have off Saturday as their next game will be Sunday against the Toronto Raptors.  Tip-off is scheduled for 9:30 central time.