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Basketball: Indiana Pacers head coach Nate McMillan says NBA Global Games London 2017 clash is just like any other match

PUBLISHED: 13:00 09 January 2017

Head Coach Nate McMillan (second left) of Indiana Pacers (pic: Ron Hoskins/NBAE via Getty Images)

Head Coach Nate McMillan (second left) of Indiana Pacers (pic: Ron Hoskins/NBAE via Getty Images)

2016 NBAE

Denver Nuggets host Indiana Pacers at The O2 Arena on Thursday

Indiana Pacers head coach Nate McMillan says his side will treat their NBA Global Games London 2017 clash with Denver Nuggets like they would any other regular season match.

Both Pacers and Nuggets make the trip across the Atlantic for what will be the sixth regular season match to take place at London’s O2 Arena on January 12.

Ahead of the match, both sides will have to contend with media schedules far busier than a normal game week, but McMillan insists the clash on Thursday will be just like any other.

“Both teams know that this is a regular season game and there’s not going to be an exhibition atmosphere,” he said.

“The players will be focused on playing and winning the game so you’re going to see the best from both teams.

“The focus will be there on the players and the NBA know the focus will be there and it’s a big game, that’s why they’ve scheduled a regular season game as opposed to an exhibition game.”

The O2 Arena holds many special memories for McMillan, who was part of the coaching staff as the USA senior men’s team won Olympic gold in at the venue in 2012.

And he hopes he can add to those memories with a win for the Pacers come Thursday evening.

“I was over there in 2012 with the Olympic team when we won gold so I have pretty good experience of being there,” he added.

“It was an exciting time and our guys are looking forward to that. We’ll be able to travel with our families.

“The Pacer’s organisation is excited that the NBA has chosen us to represent the NBA over there. We’re looking forward to it and it should be a good game against Denver.”

• Denver Nuggets host Indiana Pacers at The O2 in London on January 12 as part of NBA Global Games London 2017. The game is live on BT Sport or via NBA LEAGUE PASS (www.nba.tv).

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