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News » Pacers beat Nuggets in first-ever Taiwan NBA game

Pacers beat Nuggets in first-ever Taiwan NBA game

Pacers beat Nuggets in first-ever Taiwan NBA gameTAIPEI, October 8, 2009 (AFP) - The Indiana Pacers beat the DenverNuggets, 126-104, Thursday in the first-ever National Basketball Association game played in Taiwan, part of a campaign by the US league to win over Asian fans.Roy Hibbert, Troy Murphy, and Brandon Rush of the Pacers each scored 20 points and jointly led the way for the winning team with 60 points, 8 assists and 25 rebounds.The Pacers were ahead 68-54 at halftime led by Murphy. They pulled away in the third quarter, with 11 points scored by Rush.The Taipei Arena was packed to capacity, with more than 12,000 screaming and shouting fans.Lin Tsung-hua, 28, said it was his first NBA game, and that he was impressed by what he saw."This was a great game," said Lin, his face and arms covered in NBA stickers. "I hope the NBA will stage more games in Taipei."Taipei Mayor Hau Long-bin, whose government had spent two years seeking the right to host the event, also expressed a desire to see more NBA games here in future.Hau used a briefing prior to Thursday's gameto ask the NBA to hold regular seasonal games in Taipei, but NBA Commissioner David Stern was non-committal."I do not give a promise, because I don't want to break the promise," Stern said.Taiwanese fans responded to the game by snapping up more than 9,000 tickets 85 minutesafter they were put on the market, according to the mayor.

The other3,000 tickets were for local sponsors."Holding the game in Taipei isnot solely for economic reasons... but is a way to keep the enthusiasm of the fans," Stern said.The game was televised live by ESPN television channel and could be seen throughout the Asian region, organisers said.Taipei is the seventh Asian city to host an NBA game, after match-ups in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Macau, Tokyo and Yokohama.Taiwan has operated seven semi-professional men's Basketball teams since 2003, four years after the island's first professional Basketball league was dismissed due to poor management and reports of game-fixing scandals.

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: October 10, 2009


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