How Kings did vs. Bronny in his Lakers NBA summer league debut

How Kings did vs. Bronny in his Lakers NBA summer league debut originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

Oversized headphones on his ears and dressed in full Lakers gold as he geared up for his NBA Summer League debut, rookie Bronny James looked so much like his famous father it caused some people at Chase Center to do a double-take.

Even down to their familiar mannerisms, facial expressions and the way they run and shuffle back on defense. Then, Bronny James took his place in the starting lineup for Los Angeles and his professional career was formally underway Saturday — wearing jersey No. 9, not to be confused with his dad’s former 6 uniform he sported before switching to 23.

The younger James wound up finishing 2 of 9 for four points, missing all three of his 3-point attempts, with a pair of assists, two rebounds and a steal in just under 22 minutes of court time — 21:43 to be exact — as the Lakers lost 108-94 to the Sacramento Kings.

James missed his initial two shots while playing nearly six minutes in his first run of action — grabbing a defensive rebound 1 minute, 20 seconds into the game then missing a 21-foot jump shot moments later. He came up short on a 26-foot 3-point try at the 4:23 mark of the opening quarter before getting a breather.

James received cheers and a warm ovation when he returned to the court at the 8:17 mark of the second quarter. He was initially whistled for his first career foul on a 3-point attempt by Sacramento’s Xavier Sneed on the right wing with 7:23 remaining, and James argued briefly before the play went to replay review and was overturned. James missed a 3 off the front rim from the top of the arc at 7:04.

Then, at last, James scored his first NBA points on a driving layup 5:51 before halftime. He missed a pair of free throws at the 4:43 mark of the third period in his first trip to the line.

At one point during his warmup routine, the 6-foot-2 guard stood with hands on hips in a resemblant position to one of his father, LeBron. And during the game, the son leaned over by the baseline 3-point corner, gripping his knees while waiting for the offensive possession to begin.

Drafted by the Lakers with the No. 55 overall selection in the second round out of USC, Bronny James started against the Kings in his much-anticipated debut at the California Classic in the San Francisco arena home to the Golden State Warriors.

He likely will get another chance to play Sunday, when the Lakers face the Warriors at the Chase Center.

If all goes as planned, the 19-year-old James and his dad would become the first father-son pair to play in the NBA at the same time — and on the same team no less.

Bronny, the oldest son of NBA career scoring leader LeBron, survived cardiac arrest last July 24 during an informal team workout at USC and it was later determined he had a congenital heart defect. The younger James signed a four-year Lakers contract that will pay him $7.9 million.

“It’s for sure amplified the amount of pressure,” Bronny James said this past week when formally introduced by the Lakers. “I’ve already seen it in (social) media and on the internet and stuff talking about (how) I might not deserve an opportunity. But I’ve been dealing with stuff like this for my whole life. It’s nothing different. It’s more amplified for sure, but I can get through it.”

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