The 3-2 Iowa Energy has finished already the superlong "on the road" adventure and are on their way now to Des Moines where on Saturday, December 6, will play the home opening game against the Delaware 87ers (which ICYDK is the Sixers affiliate team, but don't get too scary thinking about how atrocious the D-League team of the Sixers must be, because it's not true. Actually they are also 3-2 in the standings, so watch out #EnergyNation).
About this game against the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, well, the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum seemed really empty, and the music effects were really loud and funny, in an old-fashioned way, I suppose. "And Damn, how I'm gonna miss the game atmosphere of the past game in Santa Cruz against the Warriors. But anyway, I can't wait to see the Iowa Energy fans in the Wells Fargo Arena on Saturday."
And action. The game is ON. Henderson-Niles, Wilkins, Christopher, Garrett, and Lucas, the starters for the Energy while Hall, the new signing Hamilton, and the rookies Adams and Stokes wait warming the bench (I seriously think Hamilton, Adams, and Stokes should start, but hey! I trust and like coach Donewald).
Lucas started the game just in the same fashion he played the other day in Michigan: shooting everything and missing all that and more. (Grizzlies' fan note here: After years of watching Mike Conley controlling the tempo of hundreds of games for the Grizzlies, watching Lucas in this game was not pretty). Then the second unit came in with the rookies and Hamilton, and alongside the always good and trustful Wilkins, the Energy finished the quarter winning 30-21. Good vibrations.
But in the following quarters the poor ball movement (a total of 13 assists in the game for the Energy) and therefore, the horrible shooting keep happening to finish the game with an horrendous team field goals of 38% (31-82). The main characters in this matter were Lucas (2-13) and Hamilton (5-16). Lesson learned in the last couple of games and loses: "You ain't Westbrook, Lucas. So please..."
For the Mad Ants, the top performers were the shooter John Jenkins with 20 points, and both Andre Emmet and Glen Rice with 18 points.
And for the Energy, the best players of the game were Damien "I'm going for the D-League MVP" Wilkins (43 minutes, 28 points on 10-19 shooting, 9 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals), and Jarnell "First D-League experience" Stokes (22 minutes, 15 points on 6-11 shooting, and 8 rebounds) who did a really good job in the paints and showed how much basketball energy he can bring into the games, even if fouling too fast.
Jordan Adams played 28 minutes but he didn't touch the ball enough times to get his smooth rhythm going. He just scored 8 points (including an exciting four-points play) and grabbed 6 rebounds, but definitely the best Adams still remains to be seen.
So yeah, Mad Ants (3-4) 100, Energy (3-2) 89.
Stay tuned for the next game, home opening in Des Moines, December 6, against the Delaware 87ers.