Bucks Summer League 2015: Game 1 Breakdown and Analysis


The first Milwaukee Bucks Summer League game of 2015 was played in Las Vegas last night, and while Seth Curry stole the show in a 101-89 Milwaukee defeat, fans got their very first glimpse of 2014 second-round pick Damien Inglis and 2015 17th overall pick Rashad Vaughn.

Though team continuity and fluidity had its obvious effects on the two at times, that’s to be expected from two rookies playing their first NBA-organized game with a completely unfamiliar set of teammates. Among the all-too-common Summer League sloppiness and friction were some genuinely significant plays from Inglis and Vaughn that deserve to be looked at again.

Damien Inglis

Though Inglis was drafted a year ago, fractures and surgery on his right foot kept him out the entire 2014-15 season. Though his second surgery came all the way back in January, a timetable hadn’t really been discussed with him by any Bucks officials or coaches until it was announced he’d be playing in Las Vegas this summer.

Inglis looked, put simply, out of basketball shape. He didn’t visually appear to be out of shape, but in the limited time he saw the court his movements looked heavy and sluggish as he fatigued.

The first video shows Inglis walk over to a potential rebound in an unaggressive fashion, not appearing to elevate at all. The second shows him, though switch onto the smaller Seth Curry, slow to move his feet and stay in front of him.

Ultimately, he then hand-checks him as a last ditch effort and gets called for the foul. If you’ve seen film of Inglis before, you’ll agree that this says much more about where he’s at in his recovery than what he’ll look like as a player in the NBA.

But before fatigue (and possible swelling) set in, Inglis showed some nice flashes. Jorge Gutierrez finds him in the corner here, and Inglis puts it on the deck and uses his size and strength to finish in traffic:

Oh, and this happened, too:

This is sort of the epitome of what fans hope Inglis will be as a Buck. Stranded in isolation, he demonstrates fantastic footwork and strength to keep his man in front of him, then blocks his shot before he can even leave the ground. Though it only came against undrafted Will Sheehey, this was probably Inglis’ most exciting point in the game.

Ultimately, after giving Bucks fans heart attacks midway through the third when he limped off the court and had his previously injured foot examined, Inglis had a cautiously optimistic game.

Eric Buenning reported that his removal from the game was merely due to him being out of shape, and that he intends to play on Sunday. We’ll hope, and ultimately trust, that the coaching staff remains cautious with Inglis and slowly increase his minutes when ready.

Inglis finished with 4 points on 2-4 shooting, 2 rebounds, 1 assist, and 1 turnover in just 11 minutes.

Rashad Vaughn

The 6’5″ guard out of UNLV was right at home in Las Vegas, and he looked like it on the court. On offense, he was mostly seen attacking his man off the dribble or operating as the ball-handler in pick-and-rolls, most of which resulted in smooth pull-up jumpers like this one:

When we did see Vaughn attack the basket more, it mostly resulted in floaters, which he converted at a decent rate. Though his floater is one of the better parts of his game, he often used them to settle at UNLV, not getting all the way to the basket. Improvement in this will come with getting stronger and more used to NBA-level size and talent, but Friday’s game seemed to showcase his weakness at least a little. Here, he made an attempt to be more aggressive, and it paid off with a nice finish over Curry.

Defensively, he looked pretty sound and locked-in. He didn’t really get pushed around (as he probably shouldn’t when guarding Seth Curry) and he made crisp rotations for a guy playing on a team without familiarity. At times, he had a few lapses in concentration.

Though not entirely out of position, Vaughn is caught falling asleep and ball watching, and his man is left with a wide-open three.

Probably the peak of his defensive game came after a Gutierrez turnover when Vaughn was found defending one-on-one in transition. He’s able to read his man well, and time his swipe perfectly for a strip and a forced turnover:

Though it’s only Summer League, the first game at that, we got to see a little of how Vaughn operates as a basketball player.

He certainly looks to be the shooter he’s been touted to be by Bucks coaches and scouts, and looks more than comfortable pulling up for a shot whenever he has space.

He looked a little sloppy in the pick-and-roll at times, forcing a few passes for turnovers, but that’s probably a result of the experimentation of Summer League more than anything.

At times, he looked a bit too shoot-y, but that’s expected when he’s one of only two players the Bucks will be moving forward with. When defenders started to show him more attention, he started to look for others and stopped forcing shots.

Vaughn finished with 14 points on 5-14 shooting, 0-4 from deep, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, and 2 turnovers.

Next: Are The Milwaukee Bucks Right To Go All In On Youth?

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