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Bronny James Impresses in Summer League Debut Despite Lakers' Loss

Bronny James Debuts with 4 Points in NBA Summer League, Receives Warm Reception in San Francisco

By Ms. JahanPublished 6 days ago 3 min read
Bronny James makes his NBA Summer League debut, scoring 4 points in a game against the Sacramento Kings at the California Classic.

Bronny James made his NBA summer league debut on Saturday, receiving a warm welcome from fans in a city where his father, LeBron James, has had many epic NBA Finals battles. Despite the Los Angeles Lakers' 108-94 loss to the Sacramento Kings in the California Classic, the night was memorable for Bronny.

"The atmosphere," Bronny said when asked what surprised him most about the game. "It was more than I expected. It's a big game for me, but I didn't know if fans from Golden State would support me. It was nice to see."

In his 22 minutes on the court, Bronny scored 4 points on 2-for-9 shooting, along with 2 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1 steal. His performance showed glimpses of his potential, although he admitted he has room to grow.

Dane Johnson, the coach of the South Bay Lakers, the Lakers' G League affiliate, started Bronny, 19, along with Colin Castleton, 24, Sean East II, 24, Dalton Knecht, 23, and Maxwell Lewis, 21. "He's just got to keep learning and getting reps," Johnson said. "He's capable of a lot if he builds his confidence."

Bronny’s debut was notably different from his father's. LeBron James’ summer league debut in 2003 saw him score 14 points, 7 rebounds, and 6 assists as the No. 1 overall pick. In contrast, Bronny was the No. 55 pick. Despite this, the anticipation for Bronny’s debut was high, with cameras lining the baseline an hour before the tipoff to capture his pregame warmups.

In the second quarter, Bronny showcased his defensive skills by stealing a pass and starting a fast break that ended with a basket. He scored his first points with a driving layup, tying the game at 31-31. "Moments like that can slow the game down for you," Bronny said about his second-quarter performance. However, he struggled to find his rhythm, missing his first three shots, making one, then missing four more before hitting a 19-foot jumper in the third quarter.

This game marked Bronny’s first in nearly four months since his college career ended unceremoniously with USC’s loss to Arizona in the Pac-12 quarterfinals. In that game, he scored just 3 points. The rust was evident in his shooting performance on Saturday, particularly from three-point range where he went 0-for-3. "I was trying to get downhill to open up my midrange and 3-ball," Bronny explained. "The shots will start falling with more practice."

LeBron James, speaking at USA Basketball's training camp, put Bronny’s performance into perspective. "I just want him to keep growing from practices and workouts. The stats from these games don’t matter once the season starts. It's all about getting better," LeBron said.

Other notable performances for the Lakers included Dalton Knecht, their No. 17 pick, who scored 12 points, and Blake Hinson, who led the team with 17 points on 5-for-7 shooting from three-point range. Guard Tommy Kuhse also stood out, contributing 15 points, 8 assists, and 2 steals off the bench.

The Lakers will play two more games in the California Classic – against the Golden State Warriors on Sunday and the Miami Heat on Wednesday – before heading to Las Vegas for more summer league action. "He's going to play throughout this whole thing," Johnson said about Bronny’s participation. "We want to get him as many reps as we can because he needs more experience playing the NBA game."

Saturday's game was just the beginning of Bronny's professional journey. "Every first game at a new level, I get butterflies," Bronny admitted. "But once the ball tips, it all goes away, and I'm just playing basketball."

As Bronny continues to develop and gain experience, fans will be eagerly watching to see how he grows and what he can achieve in his basketball career. The support he received in San Francisco is a promising sign of the enthusiasm and excitement surrounding his journey, and his father’s legacy adds an extra layer of interest to his progress.

Bronny's debut may not have been a standout performance statistically, but it was a significant step in his path to becoming an NBA player. With more practice, game experience, and the guidance of his coaches and father, Bronny James has the potential to carve out his own legacy in the NBA.

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About the Creator

Ms. Jahan

A writer with a passion for storytelling, has written in various genres, including articles, short stories, and reflective essays to share their musings and creative adventures.

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    Ms. JahanWritten by Ms. Jahan

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