Damian Martin is back on the floor for the Perth Wildcats and it’s making all the difference as they grabbed their second win on the trot, but can they keep it going with a tough trip to play the desperate Brisbane Bullets? Join The Roar to find out with live scores and coverage from 7:30pm (AEDT).
Both of these sides are going to be absolutely desperate for a victory as the season continues towards the finals, which are just over a month away.
With few games and opportunities left for every team in the league, the ladder is remaining as close as it’s been all season and every game – every point, in fact could help decide which teams make the play-offs or have a home court advantage.
Brisbane will come into this one well rested, having only played two games in their last 14 days but the pressure is still on them despite a last start win over the Cairns Taipans in convincing fashion.
Playing the Taipans could be touted as the best preperation possible for the Wildcats, with both sides displaying similar, gritty qualities on defence.
With the run into the playoffs well and truly underway and the Bullets sitting just outside the top four at the moment – sixth to be precise with a record of nine wins and ten losses, the pressure is on them to hold their home court.
Unfortunately, it’s just been inconsistency from the Bullets. While Daniel Kickert has been a leading light, their guard combination has struggled at times and Cameron Bairstow has been far from his best.
At the other end of town, the Wildcats have risen from the bottom of the table just a few weeks ago to now sit in fifth, giving another tip of the hat to exactly how close this league is.
Perth now sit in fifth position, with a win over the struggling Sydney Kings on Friday giving them a real shot at being in the top four come the end of the round, something that was inconceivable just a few short weeks ago as the media called for change.
Bryce Cotton has brought that change to the club, their third import in the same position so far. On debut, he scored 26 against the Kings and with skipper Damian Martin back on the floor to lead the defence, the Wildcats look to be back in business but will need a big run to make the finals and not miss for the first time in three decades.
The sides have played twice this season, with the Bullets taking both matches so far. The first of those was the season opener and the second the Wildcats biggest ever defeat at the Perth Arena, going down by 15 to a rampant Bullets.
This is going to be one crazy match between two desperate teams. For the Bullets, it’s going to come down to how they shoot the ball, however with Damian Martin on the floor they will probably lose this one in a scrappy encounter even at home.
Wildcats by 3.
Be sure to join us here on The Roar for our live coverage of this pivotal Round 14 match from 7:30pm (AEDT) and don’t forget to drop a comment if you’re following the action.
Follow Scott on Twitter @sk_pryde