Adelaide 106, Perth 102
The Sixers got the Perth Arena monkey of their back last night, coming from behind to pull off a memorable win against the Wildcats in the league's most hostile venue.
Adelaide hadn't beaten Perth in Perth under Wright. It's come to the venue with better teams and in far better form but these key factors secured the win.
1) Brock has arrived. The Boomer has been in top form lately, averaging 24.8 points and 7.4 boards in the last 5 games (this game included). He had 31 and 13 in this one, scoring plenty within 5 feet and two big threes, one with 2:30 remaining to get scores even at 97-97. Motum is removing the bad shots, dumb fouls and turnovers and showing why he's on the cusp of the NBA.
2) Shooting. The Sixers shot just under 50% for the game and more importantly outshot the Cats from range. Both teams hit 7 but Adelaide's came at a slightly better clip. 4 of those threes came from Motum and Crawford. Not big numbers but Motum is probably the team's best long range threat and PC was recruited to hit threes. Getting 7 was big, holding the Cats to 7 with their smaller lineup was crucial.
3) Turnovers. Adelaide had just 7, compared to Perth's 12. Adelaide's two biggest turnover offenders this year, Motum and Gibbo, combined for 0.
4)Wilson. Not as good as last week but was again big down the stretch and got to the line plenty, hitting a perfect 8/8.
Next up is the
Wolves Hawks tomorrow at home. Expect a good win. Coming back from Perth and suiting up the next day will be a challenge but expect the team to be full of confidence and ready to take on a struggling opponent.
As often happens in sport, the reduced rotation, meaning more minutes for the stars, is working well for Adelaide. The finals are now a very realistic option. The BJ Anthony replacement mustn't jeopardise what Adelaide now has going.
The D still need some work. Giving up 100 isn't good, especially to the lowest scoring team in the Top 4. The team has struggled containing athletic 3/4 types. Last night Daniels (24), Wagstaff (23) and Redhage (19) all gave Adelaide problems. Luckily though Perth only had U'u and Hire as other options sitting on the pine. It will be very interesting to see who they can bring in to cover injuries. Perth has a history of pulling surprises. The next one will want to be slightly more marquee than Luke Martin though.