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LaMelo shines but Bullets down Hawks

LaMelo Ball broke ankles but the Brisbane Bullets broke hearts by claiming a 90-81 win against Illawarra Hawks in their NBL season opener in Wollongong.

Flashy moves and highlight plays headlined Sunday's match, with likely NBA top-five draft pick Ball seemingly doing it all on the court to keep Illawarra in the contest.

The chemistry is already building between teenage import Ball and his teammates, getting the Hawks out and running on his way to 12 points, 10 rebounds and five assists in his NBL debut.

Veteran Hawks marquee signing Aaron Brooks also did not disappoint, scoring from all areas on the court to lead all scorers with 24 points.

However, teamwork was the key for a red-hot Brisbane side, with three players scoring 14 or more - Lamar Patterson (25), Nathan Sobey (17) and Matt Hodgson (14).

A quick 12-0 run by Brisbane to open the third quarter proved decisive with the Hawks not able to claw their way back into the game.

The Bullets next take on the Cairns Taipans on Friday, while the Hawks gear up to play defending champions Perth Wildcats.