Because I live a rich and fulfilling life, I spent Monday afternoon watching YouTube highlights of NBA summer-league play. This isn't recommended for anyone with actual responsibilities, ambitions or even just errands to run. It's time-wasting distilled to its Platonic ideal. To give you something to watch instead of the home-run derby or the Tour de France, though, here are ten minutes' worth of "action" between the Lakers' and Raps' farm teams. I AM AN AMERICAN HERO.
This is actually a bit more compelling than I'd expected. There are players we've heard of, real offensive sets and spectators that might not have been paid to be there. But don't kid yourself: this is nothing but a cheap, temporary fix for the hoops addict who's way beyond help. Not that I'm one to judge.
Thrill to my commentary after the jump!
0:19 - You know how youth rec leagues name their teams after NBA franchises, like kiddy versions of the "Celtics" and "Rockets," even though they probably haven't properly licensed the intellectual property? And they give the kids crummy mesh uniforms manufactured by 10-cents-an-hour Burmese sweatshop labor? That's what summer-league uniforms look like.
0:38 - Is that David Aldridge on the color commentary? His career might be going sideways. Of course, I'd happily call summer-league games for $20 in chips and buffet comps from Excalibur. It's like traveling in a time machine to Arthurian England! If Arthurian England had Wheel of Fortune-themed slots and was overrun by Wisconsin tourists wearing Brett Favre jerseys.
0:55 - Aldridge becomes the 20,000th commentator to compare Adam Morrison to JJ Redick. This is still better than the Tour de France, but the gap is closing.
1:27 - Smush Parker, ladies and gentlemen! He will haunt Lakerdom for all eternity.
1:36 - Morrison hits a runner to put the "Lakers" up one. I actually clapped for a second before remembering this isn't real basketball.
1:46 - Smush again! He will have his revenge.
1:53 - Brent Petway, seen swatting away a jump hook, is well liked by our friends at Ridiculous Upside and, I'm told, won the D League's dunk contest in 2008. Similarly, I used to have a nerf hoop in my office that I dunked on when I was supposed to be listening to conference calls.
2:32 - DeMar Derozan gets whistled for a charge. My stathead friends generally think he's going to bust in the Association, but I think he might work out OK. He needs to either eat more or get on an HGH cycle.
3:00 - Fast break finish by Ben McCauley, who had a monster game (24 points and 15 ribs) in this one. He's a tweener out of North Carolina State and doesn't look half-bad, to be honest. He will never play for the real-world Lakers, however, so you have permission to resume not caring about him.
3:25 - If you're wondering about the difference in quality between the summer league and the actual NBA, please note that Adam Morrison is a devastating scorer in this game.
3:54 - Petway gets blocked on a dunk attempt. Jordan Crawford is unimpressed.
4:15 - But Petway redeems himself with the colossal basline flush! Chinemelu Elonu gets posterized, and the Nigerian version of Nike demands confiscation of the video.
4:42 - Holy crap... the "Lakers" are actually running the Triangle. I am legitimately surprised and impressed. It's really not a simple scheme to learn, and considering these guys have spent about 12 minutes together....
5:05 - I enjoy just making shit up, so here goes.... Morrison will be the summer league MVP. If not this year, then eventually.
5:32 - Sweet oop finish by Derozan. In regular league action, I suspect someone would have destroyed him with a Flagrant Two rather than allow that to happen.
6:04 - Morrison uncorks a brilliant 60 foot lob to someone named Tony Gaffney. I'm beginning to think this video was doctored.
6:26 - Taylor Rochestie puts the Lakers up one! My wife just scolded me for cheering too loudly hahaha just kidding. I am single and deeply antisocial.
6:48 - Look at that ball movement! This is a very credible version of the Triangle we're seeing.
7:08 - Someone named "Monds" scores for the Lakers. I have no intention of figuring out who he is.
8:23 - Raptor plans will be pleased to learn that Derozan can't guard Morrison one-on-one.
8:52 - Smush is back on the court! Just in time to throw it away on a key late possession. That seems so unlike him.
9:18 - Morrison blocks Derozan. This video has absolutely been doctored.
9:33 - The mysterious "Monds" hits a key jumper after a travel that isn't called. The refs really want to get to the blackjack tables before the minimum bets get raised.
9:46 - McCauley FTW with 15 seconds left! Suck it, Canada!
In conclusion, if I were in Vegas I would absolutely gamble on these games. The end.