Victor Oladipo

In 'uphill battle' to secure NBA roster spot, UMBC hero Jairus Lyles is still an underdog

In 'uphill battle' to secure NBA roster spot, UMBC hero Jairus Lyles is still an underdog

Even though Jairus Lyles has shed UMBC’s crisp yellow for Utah blue, the spirit of an underdog still lingers with the star of the 16th-seeded Retrievers’ upset over No. 1 Virginia in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament — in his play, his life and his attitude.

“It’s still an uphill battle,” he said last week. “I still have a lot of work to do.”

In the first of three Utah Jazz Summer League games July 2, Lyles scored six points in nearly 18 minutes off the bench. In the second quarter, the 22-year-old took a pass from guard Kendrick Ray and launched a 3-pointer to help secure the Jazz’s lead over the San Antonio Spurs at halftime.

On Tuesday, a loss for Utah, Lyles...

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