Taylor Impressing in Orlando Summer League

July 12, 2012

Game Highlights (NBA.com)

T. TaylorORLANDO, Fla. – Tyshawn Taylor will have to wait for another day to take the court against a former Jayhawk in the NBA. Taylor’s Brooklyn Nets matched-up with Cole Aldrich’s Oklahoma City Thunder in summer league play on Thursday, but Aldrich did not play.

Despite an 87-86 loss by the Nets, it was largely Taylor’s show as the Hoboken, N.J. native and 2012 second-round selection led all scorers with 23 points on 9-of-18 shooting. Taylor had a chance at a game-tying shot late in the contest and hit a three in the final seconds to trim the deficit to one. He also recorded five assists, two rebounds, a steal and a block in his best performance of the summer.

“I wanted Cole to play so bad because I was going to talk so much junk to him,” Taylor said before laughing and offering a jab anyway, “but he didn’t play today, he’s an old man.

“Cole’s been playing really well out here, I’ve been watching him a lot. He’s on a really good team. It’s all about competing. We talk, we have fun, chop it up after the game but out on the court its competition.”

Taylor was on fire right out of the gate as he led all scorers with nine points after the first quarter and dished out three assists, a steal and a block. He would go onto finish the first half with 15 points and missed just one of his seven shot attempts from the field.

Through four summer league games, Taylor has averaged 15.5 points, 2.5 assists and 2.5 rebounds while playing 29.8 minutes per game. Taylor and the Nets have one summer league contest remaining, a match-up with the Indiana Pacers Friday at 1 p.m.

“I feel like offensively, I’ve played pretty solid,” Taylor said. “Defensively, I’ve got to get better – getting over screens, pressuring the ball and things like that. These last couple days I’m going to turn it up defensively, but offensively I’ve been playing solid. Coach wants to make sure I defend, he wants to make sure I can run the team and be a point guard. I think I’ve showed him that.”

Aldrich and the Thunder will also be on the court Friday, as they take on Utah at 7 a.m. Former teammate and 2012 fifth overall selection Thomas Robinson will see his first summer league action Friday at 9 p.m. in the Las Vegas summer league.

Taylor had a special for Jayhawk fans following Thursday’s game.

“I miss you guys a lot,” Taylor said. “Thank you for all your support and just keep watching out for me. Hopefully I do some big things. Love you guys a bunch, thank you for everything.”