In his second game as a member of Strasbourg IG, Orlando Magic rookie Justin Harper struggled with his shot but still managed to produce. In 22 minutes, the former Richmond Spider shot just 4-of-13 from the field (1-of-7 on threes) for 12 points, grabbed nine rebounds, and blocked two shots as Strasbourg fell to SLUC Nancy, 67-62. Former Providence guard John Linehan led the victors, scoring 18 points and dishing seven assists in 24 minutes. Notably, Harper outplayed Nicolas Batum, Nancy's only NBA player. The Portland Trail Blazers forward shot 2-of-12 for 7 points in 33 minutes off the bench.
Harper's per-game averages now stand at 11 points, eight rebounds, one assist, and one block in 25.5 minutes. He's shooting 38.1 percent from the field, 14.3 percent on threes, and 83.3 percent on free throws.
The loss drops Strasbourg to 1-1 and into a 10-way tie for fourth place in France's Pro A league.
Harper, former Richmond teammate Kevin Anderson, and the rest of Strasbourg resume play this Saturday, October 22nd, against Le Havre.
In June, Orlando acquired Harper's draft rights from the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for two future second-round selections. The combo forward has drawn comparisons to Rashard Lewis, among other players, due to his combination of size and shooting range.
Harper elected to sign overseas rather than wait for a resolution to the NBA lockout. He joined Strasbourg in August. His contract includes a provision which will allow him to leave mid-season should the NBA lockout out.
Orlando Pinstriped Post will continue to monitor Harper's season with Strasbourg IG.