The Sacramento Kings opened this year’s Las Vegas Summer League with a defeat, but ended up crowned champions thanks to a 77-68 triumph in the final over the Houston Rockets on Monday at Thomas & Mack Centre.
Ray McCallum, the title game’s MVP, sparked the Kings to bounce back from an eight-point in the final quarter to seal their sixth consecutive victory.
Ten days ago, Sacramento conceded, their only defeat in the tournament, against San Antonio Spurs.
Nevertheless, McCallum, the 36th overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft, made sure to keep his team on top by with a game-high 29 points as a result of a 9-for-15 effort from the field, including 3 three-pointers and eight made free throws.
“It means a lot. I’ve been trying to put in a lot of hard work this summer. It’s a championship game. You’ve got to bring your `A’ game. We just had to find a way to push through toward the end and as a collective group we found a way to get it done,” said McCallum after the game.
“Fortunately, God blessed me to walk away with the MVP trophy. I knew I had to make some big plays, score the ball, just make the right basketball play. Just find a way to win, I’m a winner.”
Nik Stauskas scored 6 of his 10 points from behind and Rashad James came off the bench to add 12 for the Kings.
One of the highlights of the championship game was a Ben McLemore’s 19-foot jumper followed by a layup by McCallum.
The Houston, who began their Vegas Summer League campaign conceding two straights defeats but resurged with five straight wins, were unable to keep up their momentum, falling to a 5-3 record.
Nick Johnson finished with a team-high 17 points, and Isaiah Canaan and Donatas Motiejunas combined for 31 points for the Rockets, though the Kings outrebounded Houston 46-39 to rule the league.
Glen Rice, Jr. of the Washington Wizards was named Most Valuable Player of this year’s edition of the Las Vegas Summer League, and was on the All-Tournament with Washington Wizards teammate Otto Porter. Chicago Bulls duo of Doug McDermott and Tony Snell and Donatas Motiejunas of the Houston Rockets completed the team.