CRAWFORD | Harrell's summer league debut: heavier, but still hig - WDRB 41 Louisville News

CRAWFORD | Harrell's summer league debut: heavier, but still high-flying

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Montrezl Harrell dunks in summer league play. NBA TV photo. Montrezl Harrell dunks in summer league play. NBA TV photo.
NBA TV photo. NBA TV photo.
Wayne Blackshear photobombs his old Louisville teammate during a Montrezl Harrell postgame interview. NBA TV photo. Wayne Blackshear photobombs his old Louisville teammate during a Montrezl Harrell postgame interview. NBA TV photo.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — Montrezl Harrell made his Samsung NBA Summer League debut for the Houston Rockets on Sunday, and you might’ve had to do a double-take if you were watching NBA TV’s coverage.

Harrell played at around 240 pounds at the University of Louisville, but now is listed at 253 pounds, and might be a little bigger.

It was a different look, but definitely the same old Harrell. His first basket, just a little more than a minute into the game, was a follow slam in which he went over several people on his way to the basket.

Harrell also scored on a baseline jumper and a dunk along the baseline on his way to 11 points and a team-high eight rebounds in Houston’s 108-89 win over the summer league team from Phoenix. 

In an interview with NBA TV’s Jared Greenberg after the game, Harrell said he has moved past his initial disappointment over slipping out of the NBA Draft’s first round. Greenberg asked him if that has him playing with a chip on his shoulder, and Harrell agreed, to a point.

“Somewhat, but all that’s out the window now,” Harrell said. “All of us who got drafted are rookies now, and we’re all out there trying to prove ourselves and that we belong in this league. I’m just trying to do something so the Rockets see that I’ve got a niche that will keep me in the organization for a long time.”

Harrell said the team wants to see him do what he has always done best — rebound well at both ends of the floor, play defense, blocking a few shots and “play with an unbelievable motor like I always do.”

The game’s high scorer was a University of Kentucky product — Archie Goodwin finished with 20 points and former Wildcat Josh Harrellson had 7 points and 5 rebounds.

Devin Booker, a lottery pick out of UK, struggled from the field, making just 2 of 12 shots for four points but also added five rebounds.

Copyright 2015 WDRB News. All Rights Reserved. All photos via NBA TV.

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