Kennard Shines, But Drive Fall Again

The Grand Rapids Drive faced the Lakeland Magic for the second straight game, and despite Luke Kennard being assigned from Detroit, the result was largely the same.

The only difference from Wednesday night is that Grand Rapids fell behind early instead of sticking around, from then on it was a mirror. The Magic lead ballooned to nearly 40 points in the 3rd quarter, while Grand Rapids was able to make an honest attempt at a comeback, nearly cutting the lead to single digits at one point, they never managed to complete it and ended up losing 95-119.

Luke Kennard was highly effective in his rehab assignment. In just 23 minutes of work he scored 27 points, grabbed 5 rebounds, and had 5 assists. He was clearly given a minutes restriction of playing the first 5 minutes of each quarter, although he got a little extra run in the 4th.

Kennard was slow to start, not getting any points in the first quarter, but was on fire later on and was the primary reason for Grand Rapids cutting the lead by nearly 20 points in the 4th quarter.

After the game, Kennard said he felt fine, and was able to do pretty much everything he had been hoping to do.

Grand Rapids was without it’s two primary point guards in this game, Speedy Smith has a groin injury and Jovan Mooring said that he broke his wrist at the end of Wednesday’s game, although he had tried to play through it at the time. Veteran center Jon Horford also missed the game, saying that his shoulder keeps popping out.

Grand Rapids must find a way to stabilize the offense without Speedy Smith after back to back blowout losses to a Magic team that has been unimpressive otherwise this season.

 

Cover photo: Mitch Tiesma

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