This week in the NBL Round 14

Friday January 17th 2014

This week in the NBL Round 14

Here is a preview of this weekends action in the National Basketball League.

January 17, 2014
Cairns Taipans v Sydney Kings
Cairns Convention Centre
Tip-off 7:30pm (Local) 8:30pm AEDST
The Sydney Kings snapped their four game losing streak against the Adelaide 36ers in Round 13 behind a stellar overall team performance. On the other hand, the Cairns Taipans blew what was at one point a 16-point lead against the Wollongong Hawks.
The biggest challenge for Cairns will be containing AJ Ogilvy. The Kings big man scored 18 points and hauled in 14 rebounds against Adelaide, eight of which were on the offensive end.
The Taipans are still reeling without Cam Tragardh in the frontcourt. “Trigger” will be absent again with an ankle injury and Alex Loughton has struggled so far to step up in his absence.
Full Preview
Perth Wildcats v New Zealand Breakers
Perth Arena
Tip-off 6:30pm (Local)
ONE HD 9:30pm (Local)
The Perth Wildcats doubled up, knocking off the Townsville Crocs twice in Round 13 behind some hot shooting from the perimeter. James Ennis was spectacular as ever, showing off his range as well as his athleticism.
Meanwhile, the New Zealand Breakers snapped Melbourne’s six-game winning streak to move into sixth on the ladder, still well within reach of the top four.
Mika Vukona showed his versatility last week and will have his hands full with Perth’s frontcourt in what will be another rematch of the 2012/13 grand final. Casey Frank will again be on the Breakers bench and is expected to contribute his token hustle when he hits the hardwood.

January 18, 2014
Adelaide 36ers v Townsville Crocodiles
Adelaide Arena
Tip-off 7:30pm (local) 8:00pm AEDST
The Adelaide 36ers suffered their first home loss of the season last week in front of a packed house at the Adelaide Arena. You can be sure that they will be chomping at the bit to give their fans something to cheer about against the Crocs.
The road doesn’t get any easier for Townsville, after dropping two games to Perth they are now faced with second placed Adelaide. Shawn Dennis has been vocal this week, calling out the performances of players and putting them on notice.
Look for the 36ers to come out hard and fast in this one. It will be on the Crocs to weather the storm and grind out the win.

January 19, 2014
Sydney Kings v Melbourne Tigers
Sydney Entertainment Centre
Tip-off 2:00pm (local)
Broadcast on TEN at 2:00pm nationally (LIVE in NSW & Victoria)
The Sydney Kings looked like a different team against Adelaide, posting 102 points, well above their season average of 76.7 points per game. Five players hit double digits, former NBA player Sam Young leading the way with 24 points.
It appears that Shane Heal’s men are beginning to click but they face a tough test when the Melbourne Tigers come to town. The Tigers have taken up third position on the NBL ladder after a good run of form that was halted by NZ in Round 13.
Sydney will have to work hard to shut down Melbourne’s offensive threats. Chris Goulding still leads the league in scoring at a rate of 23.7 points per game and doesn’t look like slowing up in the second half of the season.
Wollongong Hawks v Cairns Taipans
Wollongong Entertainment Centre
Tip-off 2:00pm (local) 2:00pm AEDST
These two teams square off again in Round 14 with this being the second game of the round for the Taipans meaning fatigue could become a factor.
The Wollongong Hawks briefly held fourth spot after their come from behind win over Cairns in Round 13 and they will be eager to work their way back there. Tyson Demos is in doubt after being hospitalised with Cellulitis.
This will be a stern test for Aaron Fearne’s men and may prove their worth as a squad if they can go 2-0 on their NSW road trip but it won’t be easy with Rotnei Clarke shooting the lights out and the Hawks on the rise.