Sydney earned a 95-78 home victory over Tasmania in the opening game of the NBL grand final series, but a question mark remains over the fitness of their league MVP, Jaylen Adams.
Former NBA guard Adams, who was the game’s leading scorer with 18 points, walked the run early in the fourth quarter with Sydney holding a 15-point lead.
The JackJumpers scored the next seven points to cut the deficit to eight, but the Kings leveled off and quickly returned to a double-digit margin and cruised to the finish line.
Sydney shot 54 per cent from the field and was 11-of-23 from 3-point range, while Tasmania made just 35 per cent of their shots.
The second game takes place in Tasmania on Sunday.
After a tight first half in which the Kings won by four and three in the fourth and halftime respectively, the locals took off in the third.
They outscored the JackJumpers 28-18 with Adams scoring eight points and Tasmania contributing to their own problems by committing eight turnovers in the third quarter.
Sydney’s other former NBA player, Ian Clark, enjoyed an excellent night of shooting, finishing with 17 points on 7-for-10 from the field and hitting all three of his long shot attempts.
Kings captain and forward Xavier Cooks recorded 14 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists.
Dejan Vasiljevic also had 14 points.
For Tasmania, Jack McVeigh and Mikyle Mcintosh each had 14, while Josh Adams and Clint Steindl each had 13.
The JackJumpers led for less than 80 seconds of the game, but never allowed the Kings to lead by more than seven points in the first two quarters.
In front of 12,765 fans at Qudos Bank Arena, Sydney scored the first five points of the game and the visiting JackJumpers missed their first four field goal attempts.
It took almost three minutes for Tasmania to record their first touchdown, but successive three-pointers from McVeigh got them going.
They trailed by seven in the second period, but four players each hit 3-pointers to keep them in the game.