The first edition of the newly introduced NBA Cup tournament goes to the Los Angeles Lakers. In the final against the Indiana Pacers, Anthony Davis excelled.
The Los Angeles Lakers have won their first title of the NBA season. Superstar LeBron James’ team won the final of the newly introduced North American Basketball League cup tournament in Las Vegas with 126:109 (65:60) against the Indiana Pacers.
Each player on the winning team receives $500,000 in prize money. For the Lakers, Anthony Davis excelled with 41 points, 20 rebounds and four blocks, and the center put up 14 points in the final quarter alone. When the Pacers had cut the lead to 99:105, Davis scored ten points in a row, eliminating any doubts about success.
Anthony Davis as Shaquille O’Neal
“He just dominated. That was a dominant performance from Shaquille O’Neal,” said LeBron James of his teammate’s performance, comparing Davis to former Lakers player and four-time NBA champion O’Neal, who was sitting in the hall. “When we’re on the field together, we know what we’re capable of. We’ve shared so many great moments,” said James. James also had a good game with 24 points and eleven rebounds, and the 38-year-old was named the cup tournament’s most valuable player.
For the Pacers, Tyrese Haliburton had 20 points and eleven assists. Thanks to Haliburton, the team from Indianapolis surprisingly made it into the final, but ultimately had too little to offer against the Lakers and was consistently behind from the second quarter onwards.
The NBA reintroduced the cup tournament this season to add more excitement to the current phase of the season. All 30 teams in the North American Basketball League took part in the so-called In-Season Tournament, with a group phase followed by a knockout round. Except for the final, all games also count towards the regular season.
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