The marquee matchup for Gonzaga fans during Saturday’s Las Vegas Summer League games was certainly the afternoon matinee between Zach Collins and his Portland Trailblazers who tipped off against the Utah Jazz and his former roommate Nigel Williams-Goss.
Before the roomies took the floor, however, it was Gonzaga’s all-time leading 3-point scorer Kevin Pangos who caught the eye with an excellent game in a 91-88 Washington Wizards loss to the Memphis Grizzlies.
Following a strong season with B.C. Zalgiris Kaunas in Lithuania, Pangos did an excellent job showcasing his ability to impact a game in multiple ways while controlling the tempo for the Wizards in their summer league opener. In 30 minutes on the floor, Pangos scored 8 points, dished 7 assists, grabbed 7 rebounds, and limited himself to a single turnover. A few of those assists earned their own highlight reels:
There were stretches when Pangos looked like the best player on the floor for the Wizards. Whether or not he’s being looked at closely for a roster spot remains to be seen, but it never hurts to put out excellent tape for every other team that could be in the market for a backup point guard.
Gonzaga fans didn’t have to wait long for the next meaningful game, as Zach Collins made his NBA (summer) debut. It was an up-and-down debut for Collins, though, as he flashed the tools and potential that made him the #10 pick overall and prompted the Blazers to trade away two first-rounders to move up and get Gonzaga’s first one-and-done player.
At times, however, the areas where he needs to continue to build—namely his strength—were evident as he battled in the post against men who were hoping to get a sniff at a training camp invite. Collins himself did not hold back on his own assessment of his professional debut:
Zach Collins after his Blazers debut: "I was terrible ... terrible." He had 10 points, 7 rebounds and three blocks on 3-of-13 shooting.— Jason Quick (@jwquick) July 9, 2017
For his part, Nigel Williams-Goss continues to work to find his footing in the league. He played with great tenacity on the defensive end, and its clear that on-ball defense is a point of emphasis for him. Williams-Goss finished with 2 points and 2 assists in 20 minutes of action, but shot 1-6 from the field.
The Zags won’t have to wait long to get another game under their belts, as action continues today:
- Atlanta Hawks v. New Orleans Pelicans, 1:00pm PT (NBAtv) - Jordan Mathews (NO)
- Utah Jazz v. LA Clippers, 5:00pm PT (NBAtv) - Nigel Williams-Goss (UTA), Kyle Wiltjer (LAC)
- Portland Trailblazers v. Boston Celtics, 5:30pm PT (ESPN) - Zach Collins (POR)