NBA preseason: LeBron James, Lonzo Ball madness begins; Trae Young has signature moment; Jabari Parker benched
Here's what you need to know from Wednesday night's exciting preseason NBA games
If you didn't know we were still in the preseason, there's no way you'd be able to tell from watching moments of Wednesday's games. The Lakers and Warriors met in Las Vegas, and it might as well have been a playoff game given the atmosphere and intensity from the players ... at least in the first half.
Meanwhile out East, rookie Trae Young finally had his breakout moment as a pro, and real games haven't even started yet. We're less than a week away from the regular season, and the anticipation is only growing. Here are the scores from Wednesday's games, followed by some things that caught our eye.
NBA preseason scores for Wednesday, Oct. 10
- Washington Wizards 102, Detroit Pistons 97 (box score)
- Toronto Raptors 118, Brooklyn Nets 91 (box score)
- Orlando Magic 102, Memphis Grizzlies 86 (box score)
- Atlanta Hawks 130, San Antonio Spurs 127 (box score)
- Miami Heat 140, New Orleans Pelicans 128 (box score)
- Chicago Bulls 104, Indiana Pacers 89 (box score)
- Portland Trail Blazers 116, Phoenix Suns 83 (box score)
- Los Angeles Lakers 123, Golden State Warriors 113 (box score)
LeBronzo in full effect
If there was ever a recipe to drive NBA fans bonkers, it's LeBron James teaming up with Lonzo Ball. We finally got to see it on Wednesday, and it did not disappoint. On their first possession of the second quarter, the Lakers perfectly executed a play that ended with LeBron throwing an alley-oop to Lonzo for the slam.
LeBron wasn't done producing highlights, as he made a ridiculous, one-armed, 360-degree layup while getting fouled.
And as if that weren't enough, the King finished off the half by knocking down a buzzer-beater from just inside half-court, then stared down the basket as the cameras flashed.
James finished with 15 points, 10 rebounds and five assists in 17 minutes. Ball ended up with seven points, four rebounds, two assists and four steals in 23 minutes. And so it begins ...
Speaking of shots from just inside half-court, Hawks point guard Trae Young produced the signature moment of his young career on Wednesday, winding the clock down in the fourth quarter before confidently launching a game-winning 3-pointer from the logo.
Known for long-balls like this one, Young entered the game only 4-for-16 from deep in his young preseason career, but went 4-for-8 against the Spurs en route to 22 points and seven assists.
Two of the names commonly mentioned in Jimmy Butler trade rumors are Josh Richardson and Bam Adebayo. Understandably, the Heat have been reluctant to give them up, and they both showed why on Wednesday. Richardson caught fire early, putting up 25 points in 28 minutes in his preseason debut. Not to be outdone, Adebayo was all over the place, finishing with 26 points, 12 rebounds, five steals and three blocks.
They're definitely making the Heat think twice about including them in any potential deals.
Jabari benched in Chicago?
After getting a two-year, $40 million contract this offseason, Jabari Parker is set to become a key offensive piece for the Chicago Bulls this season. Let's just say he's not off to a great start. Parker has struggled mightily in his first few preseason games, and on Wednesday he was removed from the starting lineup in favor of Bobby Portis. We can't be sure if this was punitive or simply a rotation decision for Fred Hoiberg, but Parker once again had trouble putting the ball in the basket, making just four of his 12 field-goal attempts.
Meanwhile, Portis was excellent, scoring 20 points on 8 of 11 shooting (including 4 of 7 3-pointers), to go along with six rebounds, two steals and a block.
Parker complained about a lack of playing time last year with the Milwaukee Bucks, so it will be interesting to see how the Bulls proceed if Portis continues to outplay their prized offseason acquisition.
If the Wizards are going to improve this season, they're going to need John Wall to be elite. He looked to be in midseason form on Wednesday, putting up 32 points, nine assists and five rebounds, plus a clutch bucket to put the game away late.
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