Indiana Pacers beat Sacramento Kings in India’s NBA debut game

Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings, NBA India Games, India debut, pre-season game, National Basketball Association, Marvin Bagley, T Warren, Domantas Sabons, Harrison Barnes
At the end of regulated time, both the teams were standing at 118-118. However, the match was decided in the extra five minutes when the Pacers, who were trailing throughout the match, went ahead for the first time and managed to eke out a close win. Photo: @NBAIndia/Twitter

National Basketball Associations debut game in India had some breath-taking game on display in Mumbai on Friday (October 4) as Indiana Pacers edged past Sacramento Kings 132-131 in a thrilling contest.

This was NBA’s first pre-season game ahead of the upcoming season.

At the end of regulated time, both the teams were standing at 118-118. However, the match was decided in the extra five minutes when the Pacers, who were trailing throughout the match, went ahead for the first time and managed to eke out a close win.

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For Kings, a two-pointer by Marvin Bagley (overall 12 points) in the dying seconds of the game also could not seal the deal for them.

In the additional time, it was T Warren (overall 30 points) took the lead for Pacers with a three-pointer to take his side 121-118 ahead, but the Kings bounced back with Harrison Barnes (overall 21 points) grabbing two points.

However, Domantas Sabons (overall 21 points), with a two-pointer again, took the Pacers ahead 123-120.

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And once again it was Warren with a two-pointer took Pacers ahead, but the Kings came back but finally it was a lay-up shot by Sabons that sealed the game for his side.

Earlier, the first-ever NBA game in India turned out to be a good outing for the Pacers at the NSCI.

Initially, the Pacers went ahead with two back-to-back baskets (two pointers) to take a 4-3 lead but then it was Kings’ show at a jam-packed NSCI.

With a flurry of three-pointers, the Kings soon went ahead 17-6 as the Pacers defense was tested fully after first five-and-half minutes.

However, a small break seemed to have rejuvenated the Pacers as they reduced the gap to 16-22 with five minutes left for the first-quarter to end.

The first-quarter ended with the Kings enjoying a 10-point lead at 39-29.

The hoopsters from both the teams showed their class with dribbles, drills and shooting and dunks. A three-pointer from Nemanja Bjelica helped the Kings only extend their lead over the Pacers.

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It was more about three-pointers now and the Kings were exactly doing the same as their lead soon swelled to 51-38 with eight minutes for the second quarter to end and then they gave no chance for the Pacers to make a come-back.

Kings ended the second quarter with another three-pointer to lead 72-59.

However, the third quarter belonged to the Pacers as, after the first four minutes, they nearly equalised with the scoreline reading 76-77.

It was neck-and-neck from thereon as the Pacers continued to reduce the gap. But every-time, they inched closer, the Kings ensured that they stayed ahead and a late three-pointer by Corey Joseph tilted the tide in their favour as they ended the third quarter with a slender 97-92 lead.

But the Pacers continued to bounce back and eventually managed to draw level at 118-118 apiece after the regulation time and force the game into additional time.

The second pre-season game of the tour will be played on Saturday, while the regular season begins on October 22.

(With inputs from agencies)

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