Pacers drop preseason opener to Cavs, 107-104


CLEVELAND, OHIO – DECEMBER 12: Head coach Nate Bjorkgren of the Indiana Pacers yells to his players during the second half of a preseason game against the Cleveland Cavaliers at Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse on December 12, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Cavaliers defeated the Pacers 107-104. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

Isaac Okoro’s fast-break, and-1 layup provided the difference with 0.3 seconds remaining on the clock as the Cavaliers outlasted the Pacers 107-104 Saturday evening in Cleveland.

The game marked the NBA head coaching debut of Indiana’s Nate Bjorkgren.

“I thought we were very active on that defensive end,” said Bjorkgren postgame. “We got our hands on a lot of passes out there. Lotta deflections, were very disruptive, and I was most pleased coming out of halftime, we did it again. Really challenged them. First half, we were good at it. Second half, they came out to start the third quarter and were even better at it, so we were pleased there.”

Domantas Sabonis and Malcolm Brogdon led the way for the Blue and Gold, scoring 16 points apiece. Sabonis added 13 rebounds for a double-double. Myles Turner (14 points), Doug McDermott (13), Justin Holiday (12), and Kelan Martin (11) also finished in double figures.

The Pacers will remain in Cleveland for another game against the Cavaliers, scheduled for Monday evening at 6:00 p.m.

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