Moritz Wagner And Josh Hart Shine, But Lakers Fall To Kings In California Classic Opener
Josh Hart, Lakers
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers rolled into Sacramento for their first Summer League game, matching up with a Kings team led by second overall pick Marvin Bagley III. The Lakers started with Xavier Rathan-Mayes, Josh Hart, Svi Mykhailiuk, Nick King, and Moritz Wagner.

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The Kings, meanwhile, start with De’Aaron Fox, Frank Mason, Justin Jackson, Harry Giles, and Bagley, which is an impressive summer lineup that has just one rookie on it.

Wagner started the game out by getting a steal and then the Lakers found Mykhailiuk in transition for a long two. In the early going, both sides were understandably sloppy with badly-missed shots and turnovers coming in droves, which is the norm for Summer League play. Wagner got another steal and found Mykhailiuk for a dunk.

Wagner then showed his skill by taking Bagley off the dribble from the elbow and getting to the line. Bagley answered with a jumper in the paint, and then Giles blocked Wanger’s shot for a transition basket. After another Lakers turnover, Bagley got out in transition and threw down a vicious dunk over Wagner to give the Kings a four-point lead, 9-5.

Bagley showed his range by hitting a three and sending Kings fans into a frenzy. Wagner responded by getting to the free throw line and then blocking a shot on the other end to get L.A. out in transition and keep the score close, 15-13.

Jonathan Williams and Jeffrey Carrol subbed in to give the Lakers some fresh legs and Williams threw down a dunk by rolling to the rim after setting a pick.

At the end of a sloppy first quarter, the Lakers had the lead, 24-18.

Hart, who bulked up a bit over the summer, put his muscle to good use by grabbing an offensive board and putting it back up and in and-one. Hart followed that up with a 20-foot jumper, pushing the Lakers’ lead to 12.

The Kings made a run and sliced the Lakers’ lead in half as the team turned the ball over time after time. Hart, who was playing well over all, kicked the ball out of bounds off the dribble, summing up their struggles.

Wagner came in and knocked in a three to step the tide, but Fox responded for the Kings with an and-one. Wagner didn’t box out on a missed free throw giving Giles an easy putback, then Fox pushed the ball in transition for a basket and the Lakers’ lead was two.

Mikhailiuk threw down another dunk, showcasing his surprising athleticism to go with his sniper-like shooting. Fox eventually danced his way to the basket to tie the game, with the Kings’ experience starting to show.

Mykhailiuk drained a three to keep the Kings at bay. He’s shown why the Lakers believe he can have success at the NBA level.

A hard foul by Frank Mason on Nick King caused both sides to square off, with Wanger running down the floor to help his teammate. The scuffle results in Mason getting a flagrant foul while Hart received a technical.

Hart nailed a three at the buzzer to give the Lakers a 54-48 lead at halftime.

The second half started with a free throw line jumper for Wagner to push his point total to 14. A Hart miss followed by a Kings basket in transition and then a Fox three suddenly made it a one-point game.

Rathan-Mayes dropped a nice pass into the paint for an easy dunk but the Kings continued scoring on the other end to keep it close. Wagner got a dunk out of a pick-and-roll but as the Lakers’ bench came on, play got increasingly sloppy.

An alley-oop in transition allowed the Kings to tie the game with just over a minute to play in the quarter as the Lakers’ offense went cold.

At the end of the third, the score was tied, 67-67.

The Lakers started the fourth with their struggling bench unit and Hart, who did what he could to keep them afloat.

After a two and a three from the Kings thanks to defensive miscues from Los Angeles, Hart fired back with an acrobatic two in the paint and then got fouled on the next possession to earn a trip to the line.

The Kings continued to surge with their starters on the floor but Hart made a nice backdoor cut to cut the lead to five with just over five minutes to play.

Wagner got blocked by Bagley in the post but was fouled and sank both free throws. After a Giles bucket, Hart knocked in a three to cut the Kings’ lead to two.

Fox got himself an and-one attacking the basket, taking advantage of a porous Lakers defense.

Bagley blocked Wagner at the rim again, demonstrating why one of Wagner’s weaknesses is finishing at the rim. Mason scored at the rim to push the Kings lead to seven with three minutes to play but Mykhailiuk drained a three to keep the outcome in question.

On the next possession, Mykhailiuk hit another three and suddenly the lead was just three, 87-84. The Kings scored on the next possession, prompting a timeout from Los Angeles.

Out of a timeout, Wagner drained a three to cut Sacramento’s lead to two. Bagley got an and-one with a foul by Hart and after a bit of complaining, Hart was ejected for his second technical.

With Sacramento up three, Mason hit a three with defense all over him, likely putting the game out of reach for the Lakers. When the final buzzer sounded, the Kings got the win, 98-93.

Wagner and Hart had 23 points each while Mykhailiuk was 3-for-6 from downtown and scored 15 points.

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