Bronny James struggles in NBA Summer League debut


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Bronny James got the start in his first Summer League game, but that was just about the lone bright spot.

The son of the NBA all-time leading scorer LeBron James was taken by his father’s Los Angeles Lakers in last week’s NBA Draft with the 55th selection, which has been a heavily debated topic.

On one hand, it’s historic. Lebron and Bronny are the first father-son duo to be active players in the NBA.

Yet, talk of nepotism has been rampant since the team hired James’ podcast cohost, JJ Redick, as its head coach.

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Los Angeles Lakers guard Bronny James Jr. (9) reacts after being called for a foul against the Sacramento Kings during the second quarter at Chase Center.  (Kelley L Cox/USA Today Sports)

Bronny was on the court for the Lakers on Saturday in San Francisco against the Sacramento Kings for his Summer League debut in his first chance to show what he’s got.

James scored just four points in the contest on 2-for-9 shooting, while grabbing two rebounds and handing out two assists. He also was a minus-16 on the floor, and the Kings took home a 108-94 win.

In his first press conference as a Laker, Bronny said he didn’t get “that much of an opportunity” to “showcase what I can really do” in his lone season at USC, where he averaged less than five points per game.

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Los Angeles Lakers guard Bronny James Jr. scores a basket against the Sacramento Kings during the second quarter at Chase Center.  (Kelley L Cox/USA Today Sports)

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Bronny was hampered by a sudden cardiac arrest during a warmup over the summer, causing him to miss the beginning of the season. He said the time missed in the summer kept him from “perfecting [his] game more.” In turn, it cost him throughout the season.

James did have three years of NCAA eligibility left, but it is difficult to turn down the opportunity to live out your NBA dream alongside your father.

LeBron once said his final year in the NBA would be with his son, so some have assumed in recent years LeBron would retire after playing with his son for one year. But, before the draft, their agent, Rich Paul, said the two were not a package deal.

It seemed odd, though, that Bronny had invites for workouts with at least 10 teams but only accepted two from the Lakers and Phoenix Suns. However, Paul says that was all “by design.”

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Los Angeles Lakers guard Bronny James Jr. against the Sacramento Kings during the second quarter at Chase Center.  (Kelley L Cox/USA Today Sports)

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Scouts weren’t too kind to Bronny, one saying he was “not an NBA prospect.” Yes, it is early, but surely Bronny would like to shoot better than 22.2% from the floor.

Bronny and the Lakers will be back in action Sunday against the Golden State Warriors. He will head to Vegas next week, where his father is gearing up for the Olympics with Team USA.

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