Detroit Pistons 64, Minnesota Timberwolves 59 — As you can tell from the score, this was not a very elegant game to witness. Both teams shot under 35% from the floor as well as under 25% from long range. The difference was, perhaps, Minnesota shooting an absolutely dismal 2-for-25 (8%) from behind the three point line as the #25 seeded Pistons pulled the upset in the first round of the Summer League tournament against the #8 seeded Timberwolves.
At one point in this game, Henry Ellenson was shooting just 1-for-10..... after making his 10th attempt for the game..... and somehow, Detroit was still up 16 at that point in the second quarter. The lead would elevate to 19 at the half and stay there early in the third quarter, when it appeared that the wheels just completely fell off for the Pistons. They went from up 19 to trailing by three midway through the fourth quarter. One final push from Detroit combined with the continuation of Minnesota’s awful long range shooting allowed the Pistons to advance to a contest on Saturday afternoon against Chicago.
Bruce Brown was the straw that stirs the drink for the Pistons on this occasion, going for team highs in points (15), rebounds (11), and assists (6). Ellenson’s bad shooting night continued into the second half, as he finished with seven points on 3-of-17 shooting, including just one make on seven three-point attempts. He did, however, come up with seven defensive rebounds and came away with two steals to help Detroit’s cause.
Toronto Raptors 85, Denver Nuggets 77 — We got another upset in the later of these two games on Wednesday night, as the #29 seeded Raptors — aka the second worst seed in the field — knocked off the #4 seeded Nuggets in what was a massive turnaround late in the contest.
Outside of an early basket by the Raps, Denver led nearly the entire way outside of a brief tie at the start of the second quarter. Denver would lead by as many as 12 midway through the third frame as this one started to seem to be over. The Raptors closed the gap to just a handful of points at the start of the fourth quarter and then EXPLODED in the fourth, building a 17 point lead before holding on for the eight point win.
OG Anunoby led the way for Toronto with 22 points, but Giddy Potts coming off the bench and going 4-for-7 from behind the arc played a big part, too. Our man Andrew Rowsey was consigned to a role on the bench for this one as the Raptors advance to a Saturday contest with Charlotte.