How long will Bryce Brown be in the G League?
With NBA call-ups accelerating in the latest round of COVID positives, the 6’3” Long Island sharpshooter led all scorers Wednesday night in the G League Showcase with 36 points on 14-of-19 shooting from the field, including going 8-of-13 from behind the three point arc.
But in their final pre-regular season game, the Long Island Nets fell to the Agua Caliente Clippers, the G League affiliate team of the Los Angeles Clippers, 102-95, losing both games in the Showcase. It’s the G League’s annual tournament that normally brings all 30 teams together in Las Vegas. (The Raptors 905 did not participate this year because of the league’s health and safety protocols.)
Postgame, the 24-year-old Brown revealed that Long Island’s acting head coach James Maye had told him to simply be patient, essentially let the game come to him. Brown responded to the message from Maye and it led to his highest single-game scoring number of the young season — and in front of NBA scouts at the showcase.
The Auburn product, who went undrafted in 2019, is shooting 39 percent from three and averaging 15.6 points in 14 games for Long Island. This is his third G League season.
After dropping their first matchup of the Showcase to the Santa Cruz Warriors in thrilling fashion, the Nets looked to avoid another similar fate against the Warriors.
The first quarter was close the entire way, with a duel between Brown and the Clippers’ Nate Darling characterizing the period. Brown scored Long Island’s first 10 points and finished the quarter with just as many. Nets trailed by 1 after the quarter, 24-23.
Josh Gray, Long Island’s veteran point guard, made his mark in the second quarter, but the Nets were still behind at halftime, 53-50.
The low-scoring ceased in the second half when Long Island came out of the gates on a 11-2 run! Fueled by more hot shooting from Brown, the Nets captured a lead as great as nine points. Unfortunately, Long Island went cold on the offensive end and Agua Caliente reclaimed their three-point lead entering the final period of play.
The Clippers made their mark in the fourth quarter, starting out hot and pushing the lead to 10. The Nets cut their deficit to within three points with four minutes remaining, but it was too little, too late, and the Clippers sailed to a comfortable seven point victory.
Craig Randall II and Josh Gray each also contributed for Long Island. Randall continued his scoring ways with 16 points, while Gray’s all-around performance was good for 15 points, 7 assists and 6 rebounds.
As for Agua Caliente, Nate Darling and Xavier Moon each had 28 and 27 points, respectively. Center Shevon Thompson grabbed 15 rebounds and score 15 points, good for a double-double, in 33 minutes.
Long Island begins their regular season on the road against the Wisconsin Herd on Monday, Dec. 27, at 7 p.m. ET. The game will be on NBAGLeague.com.