North Vancouver’s Robert Sacré is set to earn his first career NBA regular season start tonight against the Houston Rockets.
Los Angeles Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni announced earlier today that the rookie will start at centre, filling in for veterans Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard who are both out with injuries.
Sacré, a Handsworth secondary grad, was the final player selected in the 2012 NBA draft but earned a spot on the team’s opening day roster thanks to a strong showing in the preseason. He hasn’t, however, seen the floor much in the regular season, racking up just seven points and 10 rebounds total while appearing in 13 games, almost exclusively at the end of blowout games.
Sacré has also had a couple of stints in the NBA’s developmental league where he’s fared much better, putting up averages of 11.3 points and 8.5 rebounds in four games, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Tonight Sacré will step into the spotlight, joining fellow B.C. native Steve Nash in what is likely the first NBA regular season starting lineup to feature two Canadian players.
Sacré also passed another important milestone this week as Monday was the final day for teams to cut non-guaranteed contracts. Sacré is still on the books so that means his contract is locked in with the Lakers for the rest of the season.
With the money in the bank and a spot in the starting lineup, Sacré now has a chance to show that he is more than just a great dancer.