Ian Clark completed the first half of the Las Vegas Summer League title game with 19 points on 7-of-9 shooting, including 4-of-5 from deep. The undrafted rookie was a huge spark off the bench for the Golden State Warriors, who prevailed over the Phoenix Suns, 91-77.
Clark finished with 33 points to lead all scorers and won the game’s MVP Award.
“It’s definitely up there,” said Clark when referencing where the award and championship rank in his basketball career. If the Belmont University product does not stick with Golden State, he should definitely land with another NBA team.
Eleven days of intense NBA Summer League action have led to this — the inaugural championship game between the undefeated Warriors and No. 3 seeded Suns. As if a regular season roster spot were not enough, surely becoming the very first Summer League champion is something to play for. Then finally, there is the simple fact that competitors like to win. Emotions were high, there were even technical fouls called, and it was evident that both teams came to play.
The Warriors certainly had experience on their side with contributing players from last season’s deep playoff run on the squad in Draymond Green and Kent Bazemore. The latter got it going early with 10 points in just the first quarter, and with the recent departure of Jarrett Jack and Carl Landry, looks poised to step up and help fill the void.
Despite strong play from Bazemore and Clark that continued in the second half, Phoenix kept it close for most of the contest due in large part to the rookie out of Kentucky, Archie Goodwin. In the end, however, Golden State was able to pull away and hoist the tournament’s trophy following a 91-77 win.
Mission accomplished. NBA dreams potentially fulfilled.
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