Fans at Dr Pepper Arena were instantly treated to a brand new, supremely talented Texas Legends team in Friday night’s home opener. Of the 10 active players, six are new and all six became fan favorites in the Legends’ (2-1) 130-114 win over the Salt Lake City Stars (2-1).
Especially Exhibit 10 player Codi Miller-McIntyre, who went for a triple-double in his first game under the Frisco lights. Miller-McIntyre had 11 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists for his first triple-double in career game number three. He secured the achievement via a perfect trip to the free throw line with 1:55 to go.
“I knew after I scored (that I had it.),” Miller-McIntyre said after the win. “One teammate came up to me and was like ‘yo, you need a bucket to get a triple-double’ and eventually I ended up doing it.”
Two-way player Daryl Macon stayed scorching hot with 27 points, including a perfect 8-of-8 from the free throw line. The Legends as a team were nearly perfect from the charity stripe, totaling 26-of-28 (93 percent).
Through his first three pro games, Macon is averaging 28.3 points per contest.
The G League set attendance records last season and the Legends had more of the same in the opener with 6,420 filling up Dr Pepper Arena. The crowd, which included several Dallas Mavericks personnel including former All-Star and current vice president of basketball operations Michael Finley, as well as rookie sensation Luka Dončić , impressed Miller-McIntyre.
“I think it’s amazing. If we can continue to win and keep playing with energy like we did tonight, we can get the arena packed out and I think it will be a great atmosphere for sure.”
Jameel Warney was fantastic again, adapting seamlessly to his new teammates. He had 25 points in 29 minutes, shooting 10-of-16 from the field, grabbing six rebounds, and dishing out five assists.
The other two-way Maverick, Kostas Antetokounmpo, stuffed the stat sheet with 12 points, seven rebounds, two steals and two blocks.
Another new face, former Milwaukee Buck Rashad Vaughn made 3-of-6 three’s en route to 12 points along with four rebounds, four assists and a game-best +22 in 21 minutes.
As the kids say these days, everybody ate for the Legends on Friday.
“I think, as a point guard, it’s your job to know where your teammates like getting the ball, giving it to them when they’re open,” Miller-McIntyre said of the already fluid offense. “Seeing that we have the ball in our hands for so much of the time, I just think they feed off of it.”
The Legends won the season opener last Saturday in Austin, then fell to the Stars in Salt Lake on the front half of the now concluded home-and-home. The home win is an important early victory against a division opponent, putting both Texas and Salt Lake City at 2-1. It’s never too early to scoreboard watch.
Win number two came courtesy of a stout defensive fourth quarter. The Legends held the Stars to 18 points in the decisive frame, 14 less than the other three quarters.
“I just think we played with high energy (in the fourth),” Miller-McIntyre said. “Last time we played them a couple days ago, we were up four with like five minutes left and let the game get away. The message to the guys tonight was just keep playing hard and keep running up the score and getting stops, and continue to do what we were doing and keep up the lead.”
That’s precisely what happened as the Legends ended up with their biggest win of the adolescent season by 16 points.
It’s the second straight win in the home opener for the Legends, who jump back on the plane for a quick one game road trip in Oklahoma City against the Thunder affiliate Blue (3-0). The game is a Sunday matinee, tip off arriving at 2 PM CT.