It was another great night for Tyler Zeller and another struggle for Dion Waiters as the Cavaliers defeated a team of NBA Development League players 94-88 Monday at the NBA Summer League in Las Vegas.
The 7-foot Zeller, chosen by Dallas with the No. 17 pick in the NBA Draft and then traded to Cleveland for the 24th, 33rd and 34th picks, finished with 19 points and seven rebounds in 25 minutes.
Playing against D-League starter Marcus Cousin, a 6-11, 255-pounder out of Houston whose only similarity to Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins is their names, Zeller went 5-for-8 from the field and 9-for-10 at the line.
The North Carolina product had 14 points — and seven fouls — one night earlier as the Cavs fell 68-64 to Charlotte in their summer league opener.
Waiters, the No. 4 pick in the draft out of Syracuse, had another rough night, scoring 11 points on 4-for-14 shooting in 30 minutes, though he did have seven points down the stretch of a close game. The shooting guard, who is now 7-for-25 from the field in two games, added one rebound, three assists and two turnovers Monday.
In the loss to Charlotte on Sunday, Waiters went from hero to goat in a matter of seconds in what ended up being a very eventful pro debut.
Undeterred by what concluded as a 3-for-11 shooting night, he hit a long jumper from the top of the key to put the Cavs up one with about 20 seconds to play, only to commit a huge gaffe moments later.
After Kemba Walker scored for Charlotte and the Cavs called timeout — their last — Waiters called another timeout when he was trapped. The resulting technical foul proved too much for the Cavs to overcome.
Against the D-League team Monday, starting point guard Donal Sloan tied Zeller for team scoring honors with 19 points — like the rookie, he was 5-for-8 from the field and 9-for-10 at the line — but did not have an assist in 29 minutes.
In an ugly game, the Cavs had just 10 assists as a team, but went 38-for-45 at the line.
Tristan Thompson, the No. 4 pick in the draft last year, was held out, while fellow power forward Samardo Samuels started and had 11 points and seven boards in 21 minutes. The Cavs outscored the D-League team by 18 points while Samuels was on the floor.
In other news, Cavs point guard Kyrie Irving, who fractured a bone in his right hand when he hit a padded wall in frustration during practice on Saturday, was examined by head team physician Dr. Richard Parker and Dr. Thomas Graham at the Cleveland Clinic.
Irving will undergo a surgical procedure Wednesday at the clinic to address the fracture and is expected to be ready for the start of training camp in late September.
Contact Rick Noland at (330) 721-4061 or email@example.com.
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