Must-see Summer League debuts in top Heat draft pick

Jaime Jaquez Jr. (R) poses with NBA commissioner Adam Silver (L) after being drafted by the Miami Heat with the 18th overall pick during the first round of the 2023 NBA Draft at Barclays Center on June 22, 2023 in the Brooklyn borough of New York. .  City.
(Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)

The California Classic, which is essentially the start of the NBA Summer League in Sacramento, kicked off on Monday afternoon with the Los Angeles Lakers going head-to-head with the defending Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat.

Even though the Lakers have been making all the headlines for the past few days due to their moves in NBA free agency, it was the Heat’s time to shine on Monday when one of their rookies put on a clinic against the Purple and Gold.

One player coming into this game that all eyes were on was former UCLA Bruins star Jaime Jaquez Jr., who was selected by Miami with the No. 18 overall pick in the 2023 NBA Draft, a pick after guard Jalen Hood was picked by the Lakers. Was. Schiffino at number 17.

Despite getting one pick short, Jaquez dominated Hood-Schiffino’s debut for Los Angeles to overpower him, which was less than stellar.

Second-year guard Max Christie led the Lakers with 17 points, while Jaquez led the team with a game-high 22 points.

Although the summer league technically started in Sacramento on Monday, and games are also being played in Salt Lake City, Utah, the real competition will take place this weekend in Las Vegas, where each team in the league will showcase its youth players. is testing.

All eyes will be on two potential superstars in this draft as Summer League continues in Las Vegas, with Victor Wambanyama and Scooter Henderson set to play for the San Antonio Spurs and Portland Trail Blazers in Nevada, respectively.

Analyst believes Damian Lillard could be forced to move to Miami