Lonzo's night ends early as Lakers advance to summer league finals

by 6d ago
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The Los Angeles Lakers didn't need a full night's work from rookie Lonzo Ball on Sunday in the semifinals of the Las Vegas Summer League tournament, although the score did get too close for comfort near the end.

With a 108-98 victory over the Dallas Mavericks, the No. 15-seeded Lakers now advance to play the No. 16-seeded Portland Trail Blazers in the finals on Monday.

Ball headed to the back with 6:26 remaining in the third quarter due to apparent tightness in his calf, but did return to the bench soon after to catch the rest of the action.

Related - Watch: Ball delivers sensational full-court dime to Kuzma

Prior to leaving, Ball was on the verge of notching yet another triple-double, finishing with 16 points, 10 assists, and four rebounds without a turnover on 5-of-7 shooting in 21 minutes, while donning Jordan 31s.

He told reporters afterward that his calf still felt tight, and he'll work with the training staff and "hopefully" be ready to go Monday.

Down by as many as 26 points, the Mavericks rallied late on the back of a 19-2 run to cut Los Angeles' lead to one at 96-95. A clutch 3-pointer by Lakers forward Matt Thomas and a key turnover by Mavericks' top pick Dennis Smith Jr. was ultimately too much to overcome for the opposition.

Portland defeated the Memphis Grizzlies, 87-82, earlier in the day to punch their ticket to the finals.

This will be the first tournament finals appearance in Las Vegas for either organization. The Chicago Bulls beat the Minnesota Timberwolves in overtime a year ago.