Last December, Nikkhah lost his brother, a fellow member of the Iranian National Team in a tragic car accident. The Utah Jazz made a very classy gesture at halftime, presenting a Jazz jersey with his name on the back to Nikkhah and his mother followed by a moment of silence in Aidin Nikkhah Bahramis memory. It was a very emotional moment for the Iranian National Team, and the fans in Utah responded appropriately.
Game One: Dallas Mavericks 84, San Antonio Spurs 77
Reyshawn Terry: 9 Points, 4-4 FG, 1-4 FT, 7 Rebounds, 1 Assist, 2 Steals, 3 Blocks
-Once again, Gerald Green blew up in the second half. The Spurs let him hit one three, and then Green just started letting it fly from all over the place. It may have taken the young wing a while to get going this summer, but his shooting touch has been nothing short of miraculous considering his extremely poor start.
Ian Mahinmi: 17 Points, 3-11 FG, 11-11 FT, 10 Rebounds, 3 Assists, 1 Steal, 5 Turnovers, 4 Fouls
-George Hill had another good game, and looked more poised defensively than he did during other contests. His four steals were the result of great ball pressure and anticipation. Hes got very long arms for a defender and could be a very good defender after a year in the Spurs organization.
Game Two: Golden State Warriors 108, New Jersey Nets 84
Dion Dowell: 20 Points, 7-11 FG, 3-5 3FG, 3-3 FT, 3 Rebounds, 1 Assist, 2 Blocks, 2 Turnovers
-Richard Hendrix had a good showing today, knocking down a desperation three and doing what he does best: use his size to collect rebounds. Anthony Morrow also played to his strengths, knocking down a handful of outside shots on his way to 23 points.
-Anthony Randolph continues to go to the line whenever he wants to at this level. He got very frustrated today when he stopped getting calls after the first half. He could have easily doubled his 13 free throw attempts if the officials had been looser with their whistles when Golden State took a commanding lead.
-DeMarcus Nelson ran the point surprisingly well, showing very good court vision. Rob Kurz also surprised with his shooting and hustle.
-Jamont Gordons first appearance in Salt Lake City was a good one, and while he over-penetrated a few times, hes a load to keep out of the lane.
Marcus Williams: 14 Points, 6-16 FG, 1-3 3FG, 1-2 FT, 6 Rebounds, 5 Assists, 4 Turnovers
-Brook Lopez and Ryan Anderson both struggled today. Neither looked very comfortable with the ball in their hands, but thats not a surprise since this is their first game since the Orlando Summer League. Their next performance should offer a better impression of how they can play at this level.
-Julius Hodge had a nice performance, but took advantage of Golden States big lead to score from easy layups when the game was essentially over. His 20 points looks good nonetheless, and hes a guy that always takes advantage of his offensive opportunities.
Game Three: Atlanta Hawks 74, D-League Ambassadors 70
-No one player on the Hawks played all that well today, but there were a number of guys who had notable performances.
-Thomas Gardner had a good day shooting the ball, and when hes not forcing things, hes incredible efficient. His ability to catch and shoot is a valuable asset in any setting, but he was a little too aggressive in trying to show his three point range.
-Acie Law struggled again today and hasnt been showing the pull up jump shot that let him be successful here last year. His added weight allows him to take contact better, but its hurt his leaping ability and quickness.
-Luke Jackson got to the line today and showed great court vision, but his shot wasnt falling. He also missed a free throw late in the game that the Ambassadors in position to tie things up, but came back and hit two more to put the game away.
-Othello Hunter continued his tremendous play, tallying 13 points, but not standing out as much as he did on Day 2.
Josh Gross: 12 Points, 4-6 FG, 1-1 3FG, 3-5 FT, 4 Rebounds, 1 Assist, 2 Turnovers
Gross is a gifted athlete and a very good shooter, and had a good showing today. Hes got great leaping and had two highlight reel caliber dunks today. He complements his leaping ability with three point range and decent slashing ability. The former UNC-Greensboro standout has tremendous form, but will take a lot of well defended shots. His ball handling ability is solid, but not spectacular and hes capable of scoring off the dribble in spurts. Defensively, Gross doesnt show much initiative, and considering his athleticism, could be much more effective if he made a concerted effort.
-Glen McGowan had a productive contest, but takes some questionable shots. He got to the line at a high rate today, essentially compensating for a couple bad misses from the perimeter.
Game Four: I.R. Iran 57, Utah Jazz 82
Mohammad Samad Nikkhah Bahrami: 23 Points, 10-25 FG, 0-5 3FG, 3-4 FT, 3 Rebounds, 2 Assists, 1 Block, 4 Turnovers
With Hamed Hadadi going down with a hamstring tweak early in the game, Nikkhah had to carry the load for Iran, doing his best to keep the score close. After the halftime ceremony in memory of his brohter, Nikkhah played inspired basketball, knocking down a handful a jumpers and lay ups on his way to 10 points in the third quarter. With his combination of shooting ability, size, and aggressiveness, Nikkhah is probably the second best player on Irans roster, and will be a key cog for them in the Olympics.
-No one played well for the Jazz today. The starters came out flat, and it wasnt until Hiram Fuller and Ricky Paulding were brought into the game that Utah started to pull away.
-Fuller has shown some nice skills this week, and has an impressive blend of athleticism and scoring ability from the midrange. Hes not an NBA player, but hes done a lot of good for his stock this week.
-Kevin Lyde rebounded the ball at a high rate today, grabbing 14 rebounds in a little over 12 minutes. He showed a lot of hustle, unlike the rest of Utahs frontcourt that seemed to be asleep throughout the game.