FRISCO – Texas Legends coach Bob MacKinnon voiced his displeasure following his team’s lopsided 139-113loss to the Sioux Falls Skyforce on Saturday night at Dr Pepper Arena.
One night after an impressive 27-point win over the top team in the Southwest Division – the Oklahoma City Blue – the Legends were no match for the Skyforce, who own the second-best record in the Southwest Division.
"It’s a challenge and we didn’t meet the challenge, and that’s just disappointing,’’ said MacKinnon, whose team fell to 13-16. "We kind of gave in.’’
With Henry Walker scoring 10 early points, the Skyforce took a commanding 38-23 lead into the second quarter.
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DeJuan Blair came off the bench to tally 10 points in the second quarter as the Legends got within 64-56 of Sioux Falls at intermission. But the visitors were off and running again in the third quarter when they outscored the Legends 41-32 and blew the game wide open.
MacKinnon said his team didn’t have much left in the tank 24 hours after defeating Oklahoma City.
"It was all about energy,’’ MacKinnon said. "They came out with energy.
"Last night we came out and threw the first punch. Tonight (the Skyforce) came out and threw the first punch, and then I thought they threw the third punch, and then they threw the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth punch, and we were punch less.’’
Manny Harris paced the Legends with 26 points on 10-of-17 shots, J. J. Avila finished with 17 points and 12 rebounds, and Blair added 12 points in 14 minutes.
Sioux Falls (21-11) had a balanced attack with four players scoring at least 22 points. Keith Benson collected 26 points, 13 rebounds and three blocks, Bubu Palo had 24 points, seven rebounds and nine assists, Patrick Miller finished with 22 points and 10 assists, and Walker added 22 points and eight boards.
Also for the Skyforce, Stefan Jankovic (16 points) and Luis Montero (14 points, eight rebounds) added to the Legends’ misery.
The Skyforce outshot the Legends from the field, 51.1 percent to 45.7 percent, and outrebounded them, 51-39. In addition, Sioux Falls outscored the Legends in the paint (52-40) and on fastbreak points (30-17).
Meanwhile, Walker, who changed his name from Bill Walker to Henry Walker in 2014, showed why his five-plus years playing in the NBA for Boston, New York and Miami was a huge advantage for the Skyforce.
"He’s a terrific player,’’ MacKinnon said. "He’s been in the NBA, obviously, and knows how to play and can really shoot it.
"He’s just a good player.’’