Wortho’s NBL Week 2 Preview


Sydney Kings at Adelaide 36ers
(19th Oct, 7:50pm AEDT)

These two teams played last week with Adelaide coming away with a 94–83 win in front of a big Sydney crowd. Coaches Joey Wright (ADEL) and Andrew Gaze (SYD) will be in charge of making changes before the next game with Wright’s coaching record far outweighing Gaze’s.

Keys to the game

– Limit Adelaide’s transition
– Get Bogut interior touches
– Get Kevin Lisch more involved

– Continue to get stops and run in transition
– Continue to look after the ball
– Match them on the boards

Inside word: How long will it take for the Kings to gel together? Adelaide on the other hand, only had three turnovers for the game last week, which was the lowest in any game since 1983.

Prediction: 36ers by 4

Brisbane Bullets at Perth Wildcats
(20th Oct, 3pm AEDT)

The Perth Wildcats are sitting pretty atop of the NBL ladder at 2-0 while Brisbane split their opening weekend at 1-1. Tom Jervis plays his 100th game for the Wildcats. Perth have won the last 10 times a player has celebrated 100 games at the club.

Keys to the game

– Gliddon to continue his great start to the season
– Cadee to get more involved and shoot more
– Brisbane bigs must match physicality of Perth

– Angus Brandt more minutes coming back from injury
– Continue getting shots for Cotton and White
– Dominance on the boards

Inside word: How will Brisbane bounce back after loss to the Taipans at home? These two have only played four times at this arena, splitting it with two wins each.

Prediction: Perth by 9

Sydney Kings at NZ Breakers
(21st Oct, 12:20pm AEDT)

Sydney are coming in from Adelaide, while New Zealand will be prepping all week after a split weekend, losing to the Bullets but defeating the defending champions Melbourne United to go 1-1. NZ has won the past four encounters at Spark Arena with Sydney’s last win coming in January 2015.

Keys to the game

– Ball movement into on-balls featuring Randle/Lisch with Bogut
– Lisch to lock down on Webster
– Bogut to protect the paint

– Getting Webster going
– Long/Majok to compete against Bogut
– Shae Ili to make Randle defend

Inside word: Daniel Kickett has never won at Spark arena (0-8) but he’s not alone, with Jerome Randle and Brad Newley yet to win there either. That being said I think Bogut will dominate this game.

Prediction: Sydney by 6

Adelaide 36ers @ Melbourne United
(21st Oct, 2:50pm AEDT)

Adelaide, coming off back-to-back games, come into Melbourne looking to push the pace against a talented Melbourne team. These two played in what most considered the greatest Grand Final series last season with Melbourne eventually winning (3-2). Josh Boone plays his 50th NBL game, and since debuting on Boxing Day in 2016 he has grabbed more rebounds (450) than any other player by a significant margin (Daniel Johnson 359 is second).

Keys to the game

– Nathan Sobey to get going from the perimeter
– Jacob Wiley to outwork Josh Boone
– Work through Daniel Johnson on every half-court possession

– Guards contain Adelaide’s backcourt of Sobey and Moore
– Limit turnovers to reduce transition points
– Casper Ware to step up offensively

Inside word: Adelaide lost all five of their games in Melbourne last season, including three in the Grand Ginal series.

Prediction: Melbourne by 5

Illawarra Hawks @ Cairns Taipans
(21st Oct, 5:20pm AEDT)

These two are both considered non-contenders this season. The Hawks put up a gallant effort against defending champions Melbourne before being trounced in Perth. Cairns got away to a flyer in the Mike Kelly era with new import point guard Melo Trimble lighting Brisbane up for 32 points. Cairns hasn’t been a great spot for the Hawks with seven of their players currently on a two-game or more losing streak in Cairns.

Keys to the game

– Play through Conklin against the Taipans’ power forwards
– Cedric Jackson needs to lead from the front
– Limit the Taipans’ three-point shooting

– Let Melo do what he does
– Shoot a better clip from the three
– Make Nate Jawai a focus when he’s on the court

Inside word: The Illawarra players aren’t the only ones who have struggled. Rob Beveridge hasn’t won a game in Cairns since taking over the Hawks. His last win came in January 2013 with a 3 and 14 record overall in Cairns.

Prediction: Cairns by 2


NBL markets here (odds subject to change)

What do you think?