LAS VEGAS -- Rocky Ledo had one thing in mind when he hit the COX Pavilion basketball court Saturday afternoon against the Sacramento Kings.
"Just to show I belong,'' the Dallas Mavericks' rookie guard guard. "To show a kid that just came out of high school was able to play in the NBA, that it wasn't a mistake to pick him.''
Ledo was one of the top high school players in the country two years ago. But he sat out his entire freshman season at Providence this year year after the NCAA ruled he was academically ineligible.
Then after tossing his name in the NBA early entry draft pool, Ledo was the 43rd overall pick of last month's draft. But he has a chip on his shoulders because of what happened to him over the past year, and responded in his first game since high school with nine points and three rebounds in 23 minutes
"I think I did OK,'' Ledo said after the Mavs edged the Kings, 76-73, in their Las Vegas Summer League opener. "The first half was an adjustment period, and the second half I think went much better and I got a little more comfortable.''
Ledo indeed looked comfortable on the floor. He made 4-of-5 shots and didn't hurt the Mavs on defense.
Now, about putting on that NBA jersey for the first time?
"As a kid I always dreamed of doing it,'' Ledo said. "So I guess it's normal.''
-- Dwain Price
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