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Perth Wildcats vs Melbourne United
2018-19 NBL Grand Final, Game 3
|Venue: Perth Arena, Perth, WA|
|Match time: Fulltime|
|Perth Wildcats||Melbourne United|
The Perth Wildcats will be back on their home floor for Game 3 of the NBL grand final series against Melbourne United, with the series tied at one game apiece. Join The Roar for live scores and coverage from 10:35pm (AEDT).
The Wildcats took Game 1, but then struggled in Game 2, and on both occasions it’s been home court advantage and very little else splitting the two sides.
Game 1 was a defensive slugfest, with the Wildcats eventually getting the better of the third quarter.
Incredibly, it’s the only quarter of the series where they have outscored Melbourne by more than a single point, and yet, because of their defensive intensity and the constant threat of Bryce Cotton, they have felt like the better team.
Game 2 wasn’t much better, but Melbourne again took it away from Perth after the quarter-time break, with DJ Kennedy and Casper Ware going to work.
Coming into the series, Melbourne had the better of the attacking weapons, and they still do. Ware was severely hampered during Game 1 on the road, and if he is held back again, the Wildcats will be halfway to taking the win.
But the pressure on Melbourne is going to be even greater this time. Game 1 was sort of a free swing, but they have to come away with it this time, because even though they might win Game 4, winning a sudden-death Game 5 on the road would seem impossible.
For them to win, they must get Josh Boone more involved on the pick and roll, dragging Angus Brandt out from his home under the basket, and messing the Wildcats’ defensive rotations around, which should open up more space for Ware and Chris Goulding.
The Wildcats, on the other hand, have to stay patient as they always do, and hit a high percentage of shots, given they simply don’t have the weapons United possess.
In saying that, it could turn into a three-point shootout, and if that’s the case, it’ll be whichever team can increase percentages and find open looks who head to Melbourne on Sunday up 2-1.
Despite Melbourne’s weapons, the home team have had all the running so far, and I’d expect it to remain that way this weekend, with the series back for Game 5 next Sunday.
Wildcats by 7.
Be sure to join The Roar for live coverage of Game 3 of the NBL grand final series from 10:35pm (AEDT) and don’t forget to add a comment in the section below.
Tip-off: 10:35pm (AEDT)
Venue: Perth Arena, Perth
TV: Live, Fox Sports
Online: Live, Foxtel app, Foxtel now, Kayo sports
Perth Wildcats (expected)
Point guard: Daniel Martin
Shooting guard: Bryce Cotton
Small forward: Greg Hire
Power forward: Nick Kay
Centre: Angus Brandt
Bench: Mitch Norton, Terrico White, Jesse Wagstaff, Clint Steindl, Tom Jervis, Rhys Vague
Point guard: Casper Ware
Shooting guard: Mitch McCarron
Small forward: D.J. Kennedy
Power forward: David Barlow
Centre: Josh Boone
Bench: Chris Goulding, Tohi Smith-Milner, Craig Moller, Alex Pledger, Peter Hooley, Sam Short, Sam McDaniel, Jenky Vois, Daniel Trist