No (G) Money? No Problems (Preview: 36ers v Crocs 31/12/13)
The last time Adelaide faced off against Townsville, aka "The Markovic game", Adelaide got a basketball lesson. Tomorrow night it's gets a chance to atone for that loss, albeit without superstar point guard Gary Ervin (injured).
In the December 6 clash, the Crocs exposed Adelaide's perimeter defense and built a big early lead on the back of some lights out shooting by Steve Markovic (8 triples). At the other end, Adelaide shot just 8/23 and struggled to get into first gear.
This game will be a big test for Adelaide. The Crocs haven't lost to Adelaide at home for over 10 years and have also won their last five games overall against Adelaide. The last time the 36ers beat the Crocs, Doc Ng was still playing, it's imports were Diamon Simpson and Chris Warren and Luke Schenscher was playing in opposition colours.
It's likely Jason Cadee will gets Ervin's starting spot and will be keen to show what he can do it extended minutes. He's been shooting the ball well and has shown glimpses of his passing prowess and an Adelaide win will likely be built upon a fast-moving Adelaide led by Cadee. The scoring burden will likely be shared by Gibson, Peach and DJ with Gibson especially keen to score the ball a little more and stop Markovic. He'll need to put in a similar performance to his excellent last game versus Cairns last round.
The Crocs will be confident and keen to provide their home crowd with a memorable NYE. It's unlikely Markovic will go for 30 again but expect Conklin and Crawford to lift from their last performances and for coach Dennis to have tweaked the game plan.
It should be a beauty but even without Ervin, who did score 22 in the last matchup, I'm expecting Cadee and Gibson to have key games and for Adelaide's depth to prove the difference.
My Tip: Adelaide by 6