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Jalen Green shines for Ignite in thrilling escape over OKC

The NBA G League Ignite continued their winning ways in the new developmental league season with a thrilling 109-103 win over the Oklahoma City Blue on Friday, February 12 (Saturday, February 13, Manila time) at the Disney World bubble in Orlando, Florida.

Congolese forward Jonathan Kuminga led all prospects anew with a game-high 24 points on 7-of-15 shooting to go with 7-of-10 free throws, 5 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 steals and a block..

Fil-Am high-flyer Jalen Green, however, was right on his teammate’s tail with 21 points, 11 in the 3rd quarter alone, on an 8-of-12 clip with 5 boards, a steal, and a block.

It was a physical nip-and-tuck war for the entire contest as both sides were gunning for a 2-0 undefeated start.

After Green’s 11-point 3rd quarter that saw Ignite still give up a 12-2 run for a 78-69 Blue lead, both sides again traded blows and deadlocks up until the 3:48 mark of the 4th frame, when big man Moses Brown scored a go-ahead layup for OKC, 96-94.

However, Ignite made a crucial 6-0 run right after that, ending with another clutch Jarrett Jack jumper for the 100-96 lead with 1:32 left in regulation.

Although OKC guard Chasson Randle ended the short run with a big triple that cut the lead to one, 100-99, Ignite milked the clock down the stretch, and scored 7 straight free throws to put the game away for good. 

Randle finished with a team-high 22 points in the loss while Brown chipped in 20 markers and 8 rebounds.

Jack was the only non-prospect Ignite player to reach double-digit scoring with 16 points and 9 assists while prospect big man Isaiah Todd added 12 markers and 7 boards.

Daishen Nix was held scoreless in 21 minutes after a 12-point debut, but still added 5 assists and 3 boards to his totals.

Meanwhile, Indian center Princepal Singh was again inactive while Filipino tower Kai Sotto is left back home in the Philippines sorting out a possible departure following the cancellation of the final 2021 FIBA Asia Cup qualifiers window at Doha, Qatar.

All eyes are now on Sotto’s camp for their next move as the Philippines will host that final FIBA window once again at a later date.

Ignite will only have a night’s worth of rest as they next face the Raptors 905 on Sunday, February 14, Manila time, on the second game of a back-to-back set. – Rappler.com