What really happened between the Bucks and Pacers - The Game Ball
As the final buzzer sounded, there was confusion around the game ball and that Giannis wanted the ball, having broken the franchise scoring record. Something many NBA legends, including Shaquille O'Neal, agreed with.
Giannis wanted the game ball as it is something he has always given to his mother following a milestone performance.
One thing that has been suggested is that the Pacers deliberately took the game ball to the locker room and prevented Giannis from having it. In the clip linked, one of the Indiana assistants can be seen smirking and walking away with a ball.
Indiana wanted to keep the game ball for rookie Oscar Tshiebwe, who scored his first NBA point. Technically, Tshiebwe did score in their In-Season Tournament final, but that is not counted towards regular season stats. We are still unsure whether Giannis received the game ball or if it was a reserve ball that was passed onto him instead, but the incidents were explained in the post-game interviews.
Giannis can also be seen charging down the tunnel towards the Pacers locker room with teammates and coaches behind to try and calm the situation. Pacers players were heard saying to keep the ball, which made tensions boil over even more. Giannis and Haliburton were on the court, with the former demanding that he get the game ball from them.
Danny Carter, who is the Assistant Director of Team Security for the Bucks, has the responsibility of getting the game ball. As the buzzer sounds, he can be seen going over to one of the refs and retrieving the ball. It is then later that the Pacers are holding a ball, but we can't see whether that was the reserve or game ball had somehow been handed over to them.