The race to be the top team at the end of the 2014/15 National Basketball League season is really heating up on the eve of the semi-finals.
The Cairns Taipans finished atop the NBL ladder and will take on the Perth Wildcats in a best of three play-off series, with the winner advancing to the Grand Final series.
The Adelaide 36ers stormed home at the end of the season with 10 straight wins, which saw them finish in third spot. The Sixers will play the New Zealand Breakers in a best of three semi-final series, which begins at Vector Arena in Auckland on Thursday February 26.
Each of the semi-finals consists of three matches that are played over five days. The team that finished higher is entitled to the better of the home court differential – a major advantage given the location of the four competing teams. The two semi-finals will see teams making lengthy journeys between Perth and Cairns and between Adelaide and Auckland.
While the semi-final series between the Wildcats and the Taipans promises to be exciting, we are most interested in the action that will be taking place between the NZ Breakers and the 36ers.
The Sixers, led by captain Adam Gibson and coach Joey Wright, will cross the ditch to play the Breakers before the return journey back to Adelaide where the two teams will battle it out at Adelaide Arena on Saturday February 28. If required, the decider will be played at Vector Arena Monday March 2.
The Sixers are in lightning form at the moment and will hope to continue their 10-game winning streak in Auckland. The side was without star forward Brock Motum for their final match of the regular season but by all accounts he will be fit to take the court in NZ.
US-born point guard, Jamar Wilson, could be a wild card for the Sixers. He is always entertaining and exciting and has been in great touch leading into the semi-finals.
But the Breakers are also in lightning form. While they lost by a narrow four-point margin in the final match of the regular season – a massive win would have seen them finish first – they remain a serious threat to the title.
The New Zealand Breakers are striving to win their fourth title in five years; an epic record of success for any side. Key pair Cedric Jackson and Corey Webster have been in great form and are likely to be the vital players in the matches against Adelaide.
Whatever the result, the two semi-final series promise to be intriguing battles. The victors of both semis will play off in the Grand Final best of three playoffs.
You do not want to miss a second of the NBL semi-finals action! Be there to see your team and cheer them to victory. Click here to purchase tickets for the NBL semi-final between the New Zealand Breakers and Adelaide 36ers at Vector Arena on Thursday February 26.