‘It was a dream come true’: Luka Garza thankful for first NBA start

·2 min read

Luka Garza called it a dream come true to start in his first NBA game on Tuesday as the Detroit Pistons hosted the Miami Heat at Little Caesars Arena.

The Pistons were forced to turn to Garza with Isaiah Stewart out following a two-game suspension for his role in an on-court altercation with LeBron James on Sunday. The contest was the first for the Pistons since facing the Los Angeles Lakers.

Garza responded by producing seven points, three rebounds and two assists during the 100-92 loss to the Heat. He battled through some foul trouble, logging only 17 minutes, and scored all seven of his points in the second quarter on consecutive possessions.

Pistons head coach Dwane Casey liked the physicality Garza brought.

I thought Luka did a good job. I thought he came in and gave us some size, rebounding and some toughness in the paint. We were down a big man and don’t like playing Jerami there but it gives us some speed, quickness and scoring. They competed.

The appearance by Garza was only his ninth of the season and first logging significant meaningful time in the first half after previously only playing in mop-up duty. The team has often used him in the NBA G League in order to get him minutes with playing time at a premium.

Garza had been looking forward to starting in the NBA for a long time.

It was a dream come true. When you grow up, you think about starting every game in the NBA and to actually do it is an unreal feeling. I just wish I could have stayed out of foul trouble a little bit more and been able to be out there and help the team.

Following the loss to the Heat, the Pistons will have a quick turnaround and begin a five-game road trip on Wednesday in Milwaukee. Garza will likely start once again as Stewart finishes up his suspension following his actions on Sunday.

The team likes what Garza can bring to the table on a nightly basis and it will certainly need that once again from him with a shorthanded roster on Wednesday night.

This post originally appeared on Rookie Wire! Follow us on Facebook!

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