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Pacers’ Domantas Sabonis tallies first career triple-double in win vs. Nuggets

Domantas Sabonis, Pacers Top International Big Men

Indiana Pacers forward Domantas Sabonis achieved a personal milestone on Sunday, notching his first career triple-double during his team’s 115-107 road win over the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center.

The 23-year-old Lithuanian big displayed his versatility by scattering 22 points (10-16 FG), 15 rebounds and 10 assists to lead the red-hot Pacers to their fifth consecutive win. He also received some much-needed support from the rest of the squad, led by Doug McDermott who had 24 points.

TJ Warren and Malcolm Brogdon had 22 points apiece.

Domantas Sabonis, the son of NBA Hall of Famer Arvydas Sabonis, was initially deemed as a role player during his rookie year with the Oklahoma City Thunder in the 2016-17 season. He was shipped to Indiana along with Victor Oladipo in exchange for Paul George the following season.

Oladipo emerged as an All-Star and the Pacers’ best player, while Sabonis developed into an all-around threat on both ends of the floor.

Sabonis has been getting better every year, currently averaging 17.8 points, 12.9 rebounds, and 4.3 assists in 39 games for Nate McMillan this season. Much like his legendary father, the 6-foot-11 lefty has displayed varied skill sets that are tailor suited in today’s game.

Apart from being a dependable banger on the low block, Sabonis can also stretch the floor, knocking down 25 percent of his 3-pointers this year. But perhaps his greatest attribute is his court vision and overall feel for the game, as Indy has been able to run plays off of him on offense.

Even without their star Victor Oladipo for long periods, Indiana managed to stay afloat in the much improved Eastern Conference, currently in fifth place with a 28-15 record.

Winners of seven of their last 10 games, the Pacers are expected to become more dangerous when Oladipo returns next week.