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The Journal Gazette

Sunday, July 09, 2017 1:00 am

Summer League

Swanigan debut: Double-double

Staff, news services

Power forward Caleb Swanigan made his presence felt in his Summer League debut with the Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday night in Las Vegas.

The Homestead graduate, who left Purdue after a terrific sophomore season and became a first-round pick in June's NBA draft, led the Trail Blazers with 16 points. He dominated with 13 rebounds as the Trail Blazers beat the Utah Jazz 72-63.

Another local product, Notre Dame's V.J. Beachem, was less impressive in his first game of the Summer League season with Minnesota. The guard, who played high school basketball at New Haven, hit only one free throw while going 0 for 7 from the field in the Timberwolves' 97-72 loss to the Toronto Raptors.

Jordan Loyd, who played last season for the Mad Ants, had eight points for the Raptors. Will Sheehey, a former Mad Ants and Indiana University player, had seven points. 

Both Swanigan and Beachem will return to the court today as Minnesota takes on the Denver Nuggets at 6:30 p.m. followed by Portland's matchup with the Boston Celtics at 8:30 p.m. Both games will be televised on ESPN 2.

Tweet takes off

Elena Delle Donne is no stranger to the joys and pitfalls of social media. The star of the WNBA's Washington Mystics saw both sides of it Friday.

She was having a little fun watching Lakers rookie Lonzo Ball and his $495 shoe when Los Angeles played its first Summer League game. She tweeted out “How great would it be if (Lonzo Ball) blewout his shoe in his first summer league game? Should have gone with @Nike.”

Delle Donne, who has her own player exclusive shoe with Nike, had no idea what was coming over the next hour. Her tweet drew 2,000 likes and 800 retweets. It also had 459 comments, mostly negative.

“I was getting killed. Got to love it, though,” she said Saturday. “It was a joke, I like to mess around, think of myself as a kind of funny person.”

The response to the Ball comment was nearly double what she has had for most of her other tweets this year. A photo of her at the post-inauguration women's march drew about 1,000 likes.

Ball's first game was a dud; he missed 13 of 15 shots and had five points. On Saturday, he was 5 of 13 for 11 points in an 86-81 loss to Boston.

Sidelined rookie

Memphis rookie forward Ivan Rabb will miss the first three Summer League games as he recovers from a sprained left ankle. Rabb sprained it in a pre-draft workout. He played 31 games last season for California as a sophomore, averaging 14 points and 10.5 rebounds.