Following their 14-point victory over the Houston Rockets Thursday, Paolo Banchero and the Orlando Magic took on another top-five pick in Sacramento’s Keegan Murray this past Saturday.
That said, it did not take long for the No. 1 overall pick to make an impact, as he racked up nine points, two steals and an assist in the opening quarter of the game.
But Banchero’s stellar stat line did not come without struggle, as he totaled four turnovers in the first quarter, contributing to the 14 combined turnovers from both squads in the opening period.
Although Orlando trailed by six after the first quarter, they opened the second period on an 8-0 run (26-24), capped off by a nifty Caleb Houstan layup before Sacramento called their first timeout.
Later in the quarter, Orlando’s Admiral Schofield drilled back-to-back threes, sparking a 13-0 run and extending the Magic’s lead to eight (39-31) with 3:21 remaining in the first half.
But the Kings finished the second quarter on a 9-3 run, bringing themselves within two (44-42) as the teams entered halftime.
Schofield lead all players in scoring at the break with 14, and Banchero was one of three players to score in double figures with 11.
Orlando’s R.J. Hampton picked up a flagrant foul on Sacramento’s Murray with 7:31 remaining in the third quarter, a play that was indictive of his game as a whole. Hampton finished the contest with 13 points on 4/9 shooting and three turnovers.
That said, Khobi Price of the Orlando Sentinel summed up Hampton’s performance well with this tweet:
-- It won't show in the box score (1-of-5 shooting), but Hampton's approach has been better this game compared to the first one. More patient with his attacks/not forcing as much.— Khobi Price (@khobi_price) July 9, 2022
In the middle of the third period, Banchero found his groove once again; getting to the free throw line a handful of times and finding his teammates for open looks.
As the two teams headed into the fourth, the Magic led by 11 (70-59) and Banchero had a game-high 19 points and four assists.
Orlando’s Justin James threw down a monstrous two-hand slam to open the fourth quarter, Banchero continued to display his remarkable passing ability and Hampton slammed home a rim-rattling dunk: three potential indicators that Orlando would leave the arena with an easy win.
But the waning minutes of the game were chock-full of drama. Two late-game turnovers helped the Kings cut Orlando’s lead to just four after the Magic led by nine with 45 seconds remaining in the game.
Following two Orlando free throws, the Magic led by six with 7.4 seconds remaining.
But on Sacramento’s second-to-last offensive possession, Neemias Queta knocked down a three-pointer and brought the Kings within three (87-84). Sacramento then forced a turnover on Orlando’s inbound and Murray drilled a game-tying three with 0.2 seconds left on the clock, subsequently forcing overtime.
In the first overtime period, Sacramento’s Keon Ellis converted a bank shot three-pointer over Hampton, giving the Kings a three-point lead with 21.9 seconds remaining.
But on the ensuing possession, Orlando’s Devin Cannady received a handoff from Banchero, launched a three from the left wing and was fouled in the act of shooting. Cannady calmly knocked down all three free throws, tying the game at 92.
On the final play of the first overtime period, Ellis was rejected by Orlando’s Emanuel Terry which resulted in a runout for the Magic, nearly ending in a half court game-winner from Cannady.
In the second overtime period, which follows “sudden death” rules, Banchero committed his eighth turnover on Orlando’s opening possession. And on the opposite end of the floor, Banchero was called for a shooting foul against Queta. But upon official review the call was overturned, giving possession back to Orlando.
On the final play of the game, Banchero drew a double team, nearly turning the ball over in the process, and whipped a pass to Terry for a game-winning layup. Orlando won 94-92 and moved to 2-0 in this year’s Summer League.
Banchero led all scorers with 23 points and added six rebounds and six assists. Queta scored 23 points for the Kings as well.
Banchero seemingly had more difficultly against the savvy Murray, both offensively and defensively. But perhaps his toughest test is yet to come.
On Monday, Orlando will take on Chet Holmgren and the Oklahoma City Thunder at 9 p.m. EST in what is likely the most anticipated Summer League game this year.