New York Knicks‘ guard Luca Vildoza started for the second straight game for Argentina but hardly made an impact in a 94-71 loss to surging Nigeria in an exhibition game in Las Vegas, Nevada.
For the second straight game, Vildoza hit just 3-of-9 from the floor for eight points. He had 11 in a similar 3-of-9 shooting in Argentina’s 87-84 loss on Saturday.
Against Nigeria, Vildoza had his moments, especially in the third quarter. But the Nigerians, buoyed up by their historic upset win against Team USA over the weekend, were in total control since a big 13-2 run in the second quarter.
Vildoza, who trained with the Knicks’ developmental coaching staff for one month before joining Argentina’s pre-Olympic buildup, added two rebounds in 18 minutes. He also hit two of his five three-point attempts in 18 minutes of action.
Here are some highlights of Knicks guard Luca Vildoza (8p 3-9fg 2-5 3s 2r 2to’s 18mins) in Argentina’s 23-pt loss to Nigeria (94-71): pic.twitter.com/mjMeNYYePf
— alder almo (@alderalmo) July 13, 2021
In his first two games with Argentina since signing with the Knicks, Vildoza is averaging 9.5 points, 2.0 rebounds, and 1.0 assists in 18.5 minutes of play. He’s shooting 33.3 percent from the floor and 38.5 percent from deep.
Argentina will next play Team USA Tuesday at 6 p.m. E.T.
The Knicks signed Vildoza to a partially guaranteed four-year, $13.6 million deal before the NBA playoffs started. But he didn’t suit up as New York coach Tom Thibodeau referred to him as a “summer thing.”
The Knicks are closely monitoring Vildoza’s play with Argentina as part of their evaluation before picking up his $3.3 million option next season.
Follow this writer on Twitter: @alderalmo