Old Rivals Ready To Rumble

Image courtesy of www.nbl.com.au/Pagemasters
The Perth Wildcats and Adelaide 36ers will rumble in the NBL Grand Final. Image courtesy of: www.nbl.com.au/Pagemasters

Long-time rivals the Perth Wildcats  and the Adelaide 36ers are set to rumble in Game 1 of the NBL Grand Final Series at Perth Arena tonight.

After finishing the regular season on top with 28 wins and seven losses, the Wildcats have a huge advantage with games one and three (if required) played on their home court in Perth, where they lost just two games in 2013/14. 

The post-game melee overshadowed the cats’ demolition job the last time these two sides clashed in Perth. The Wildcats were so dominant; they held Adelaide to 17 points below their next lowest score and attacked relentlessly in open court through Damian Martin, Jermaine Beal and James Ennis.

The only two sides to beat Perth in the West were the Tigers (83-80) and the Taipans (99-94) in January. The Wildcats are 2 & 0 against the 36ers at home, having beaten them 83-80 in week 1 and 85-61 in February.

However, the South Australians have toppled the premiers twice, albeit at Adelaide Arena; 91-86 in round 7 and 102-79 in round 22. On those occasions, the 36ers played an up-tempo, fast-paced get-it-and-go style.

Contests between these two sides have shown which-ever outfit is forced to play half-court basketball struggles to keep pace. The 36ers have pushed the cats to take 40 per cent of their attempts from outside the arc and they’d be happy to see that again in the finals series. To go one up, Perth will have to slow down Adelaide’s run to the boards, limit turnovers and pressure shooters.

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