LONG ISLAND – The Long Island Nets (1-0), the NBA G League affiliate of the Brooklyn Nets, defeated the Rio Grande Valley Vipers (0-1) 117-107 in Game 1 of the NBA G League Finals at Island Federal Arena. The team is now one win away from clinching the NBA G League Championship and will visit Rio Grande Valley on Tuesday, April 9, for Game 2.
Long Island forward Thomas Wimbush built off his performance in the NBA G League Eastern Conference Finals, finishing with a game-high-tying 23 points, six rebounds, two assists and two blocks in 28 minutes. Brooklyn two-way forward/center Alan Williams posted a double-double with 19 points and 16 rebounds to go with two steals and three blocks in 33 minutes. Brooklyn guard/forward Dzanan Musa put up 23 points, four rebounds, two assists, a steal and a block in 36 minutes while on assignment with Long Island.
Long Island came out on fire on both sides of the ball, scoring 37 points in the opening period, while holding Rio Grande Valley to just 18. Jordan McLaughlin came off the bench to lead the Nets in scoring with 10 points off 4-for-6 shooting from the field. Rio Grande Valley answered back in the second with 31 points of their own and 22 rebounds, 11 of which came on the offensive glass. Long Island led the way heading into halftime by a score of 59-49.
The Nets continued to add to their lead in the second half. Thomas Wimbush scored seven points in the third, going 3-for-3 from the field as the Nets extended to a 14-point lead, 90-76, heading into the final period of play. Long Island held its biggest lead of the game, 29 points, with 5:48 to play before securing a 10-point victory, 117-107.
Houston center Isaiah Hartenstein put up a double-double with 21 points and 17 rebounds along with two assists, a steal and a block in 30 minutes while on assignment with Rio Grande Valley. Rio Grande Valley guard Jordan Johnson posted a game-high-tying 23 points with eight rebounds and two assists in 33 minutes.