We Will Break You (36ers v Tigers 7/10/12)
Adelaide started with the predicted lineup of Cadee/Gibson/Weigh/Johnson/Schenscher. Melbourne opened with Braswell/Goulding/ Rush/ Scott/Burston. It was evident early this would be a dogfight with Melbourne having the bodies to trouble Adelaide's Twin Towers and the physicality to trouble our guards. Adelaide rode DJ early while Melbourne looked to Seth Scott. Johnson finished the quarter with 10pts, 2 rebounds and an assist. "Tower 2" finished the quarter with 2 assists, Weigh with a triple and an assist, Cadee with a triple and Gibson with 2 assists. Yep, DJ was the man and it was clear whoever won the battle between Johnson and Scott would likely lead their team to a win. Seth Scott finished the quarter with 9pts and 1 board.
The game shifted in the 2nd qtr with Adam Gibson deciding to impose himself. He let the game unfold in the first quarter but in the second, as the point, started to dictate terms. He scored 9 for the quarter, added an assist,steal and rebound but most importantly wrestled control of the game back for Adelaide. Melbourne didn't look to Scott in the 2nd and Adelaide forgot about DJ.
Johnson's 2nd Quarter- 2 rebounds, 3pts, 1 foul, 1 assist
Scott's 2nd Quarter- 1 rebound, 0pts, 1 turnover, 3 fouls
Adelaide went into the half up 44-41 and it started to look like they'd have too many weapons for Melbourne.
The game blew apart in the 3rd quarter with Gibson continuing to lead from the front, well supported by Steve Weigh. These guys look for each other a lot on court and Gibson's unselfishness might lead to Weigh winning back the Adelaide supporters. Weigh's shooting and Gibson's tenacity helped Adelaide build a handy lead. Then the fight happened. With less than a minute to go, former Blaze teammates Anthony Petrie and Chris Goulding got into a scuffle that led to a "stacks on". The refs got a tad caught up in the emotion and ejected both players. The losses hurt both teams for different reasons. Petrie had been very effective as Adelaide's main big off the bench, while Melbourne could not afford to lose another player as they had come into this game with only 9 guys in uniform. At the end of the quarter it was Adelaide 65-56.
One minute and twenty seconds into the fourth, Tiger Lucas Walker got his shoulder put out going for a rebound and would sit out the rest of the match. Adelaide went on a 16-5 run, led by Stephen Weigh and finished the game with a comfortable 84-61 win.
Adam Gibson- 12pts (3/11), 7 boards, 7 assists. Shot poorly but made up for it with his crisp passing, tough D and hustle. His play in the 2nd and 3rd quarters ensured Adelaide would always win. Lets the game come to him and imposes himself as needed. Impressed. 7/10
Steve Weigh- 21pts (8/12), 4 boards, 3 assists. Looked a completely different player. Played with great poise and camped out on the 3pt line, hitting 5/7 threes. If this is his role and he sticks to hit, he'll ensure Adelaide goes deep into the preseason. Even the haters would have been impressed by that game. 7.5/10
Jason Cadee- 6pts (1/4), 3 boards, 2 assists. Quiet debut for Adelaide. Committed some unnecessary fouls and was a little tentative at times. 4/10
CJ Massingale- 0pts (0/0), 1 board, 1 assist. Many imports have been sacked after debuts like this but Adelaide has the luxury of letting him find his rhythm. Didn't take a shot which was surprising for someone with such a scorer's mentality. I'm sure he'll come out firing next game. 1/10
Luke Schenscher- 4pts (1/7), 9 boards, 3 assists. The game we all feared. Missed a gimme ally and struggled with Melbourne's physicality. Logged 9 boards but most were ineffective. Did tally 4 steals and 4 blocks which is impressive but was largely an afterthought on offense. He won't come up against many teams with Melbourne's height though and will be glad to have that game behind him. Did pass well and had his moments but 1/7 doesn't cut it from a 7 footer who takes all his shots within 10 feet. 5/10
Anthony Petrie- 13pts (3/5), 2 boards, 1 assist. A very solid debut for Adelaide. Scored a point a minute and troubled Melbourne's bigs with his ability to shoot from range or put the ball on the floor. Will be a fan favourite. 6.5/10
Daniel Johnson- 21pts (8/18), 9 boards, 3 assists. Very good game. Carried Adelaide in the 1st quarter and always looked dangerous. 9 rebounds is a great return for DJ and did a few other good things. A star in the making. 7.5/10
Mitch Creek- 8pts (4/5), 6 boards, 1 assist. Very efficient as usual and is a much more confident this year. A solid game. 6/10
Nathan Crosswell- 0pts (0/2), 0 boards, 1 assist. Only got 9 minutes and many of those were as a 2 guard. Will likely be a 5-10 minute a game player this year with the need to put minutes into Cadee and the likelihood Gibson will play at the 1 when the team needs someone to steady the ship. 0.5/10
Pero Vasiljevic- 0pts (0/0), 1 board, 0 assists. Only played a minute and committed a silly foul and got 1 board. Would have liked to seen him early in the 4th but it appears he'll be a garbage time player for Marty. 0/10.
Nate Tomlinson- 1pt (0/4), 2 boards, 1 assist. Had limited opportunity but didn't show too much. Tigers need more, obviously. 1/10
Tom Greer- 0pts (0/1), 1 board, 0 assists. Very poor return from a seasoned player. 0/10
Ben Lewis- 0pts (0/2), 0 boards, 0 assists. Put his case for more PT back about 10 games. Tigers needed his shooting and he provided little. 0/10
Kevin Braswell- 11pts (5/14), 4 boards, 6 assists. A good first half but did little in the second. Has the tools but shot poorly and didn't provide the necessary leadership. 6.5/10
Liam Rush- 5pts (1/3), 5 boards, 2 assists. Poor return for 32 minutes of court time. 3/10
Seth Scott- 17pts (8/17), 6 boards, 2 assists. Threatened to beat Adelaide himself in the first quarter but faded in and out from thereon in. Sometimes his teammates didn't look for him but he hurt himself as well by getting in foul trouble. Should be one of the import finds of the year if his shots fall and he gets more involved on D. 7/10
Matt Burston- 8pts (3/10), 8 boards, 0 assists. Tired as the game went on and had minimal impact in the 2nd half. Troubled Schenscher but his team needed him for some easy baskets. 5.5/10
Lucas Walker- 11pts (4/6), 5 boards, 1 assist. Worked his backside off and was a threat on offense when he saw the ball. Let's hope that shoulder injury isn't serious or the Tigers will be setting up camp at the base of the ladder. 6.5/10.
Chris Goulding- 8pts (3/12), 3 boards, 3 assists. Fell in love with his shot early on and wasn't hitting. Best move was removing Petrie from the game. 4.5/10