There is no secret these teams have been the top of the NBL for the good part of a decade and often stood in each others way to get their own championship. The Breakers in the first year of new ownership with many eyes watching New Coach, Core Player group and Youthful Imports play a fast pace-small-ball.
Perth Wildcats vs Skycity Breakers NZ
Saturday 03/11/18 – 12pm NZ time / 3pm Perth
By: Leon Taylor – Basketball Yeti
This is the way basketball is played now with everyone being able to shoot from everywhere on the court. See it compared to the much larger Wildcats Angus Brandt, Jesse Wagstaff, Tom Jervis, Nick Kay going to make it full-time physical work for Shawn Long, Tai Wesley and Finn Delany in the post. It’s Wildcats Byrce Cotton who has been nothing short of excellent since he arrived in the NBL and it will be about keeping his activity on both ends if Breakers will have a chance to clinch a victory in Perth.
First quarter and Bryce Cotton looking hot to start. Shawn Long rebounds the miss with a put back layup 8-8 7:09. Tai Wesley hand off to Shawn Long dunk before Perth find Bryce Cotton open 3 and makes it 4/4. Tom Abercrombie finds some space and hits a three and Breakers get a four point lead Wildcats 12-16 Breakers 6:15. The Breakers Corey Webster finds Majok cutting to the key and dunks. Perth serge and level scores at 18 with 4 minutes to play.
Excellent shooting from both teams both shooting 65%. Wesley with a turn around jumper from about 15 ft and Perth are quick to reply. Armani gets called for the offence foul on Cotton and makes splits the defenders with the two in transition. Weeks in the corner and knocks down the three. Delany gets called for an offence foul on Jervis. Breakers winning the rebounding game and Tai Wesley gets the 2 and is on 7 points early for the Breakers and keeps it within one point and the end of the
First Quarter: Wildcats 28-27 Breakers
Second Quarter and Jesse Wagstaff gets Perth scoring but Breakers quick to reply. Defence intensity from the Breakers and refs. Delany gets called for another offence foul and Breakers Bench feel robbed. Staying calm with the 50/50 ball and calls on the road Wildcats 33-31 Breakers 7:55. Tai Wesley drives inside and is fouled making The layup and makes the and one and the lead by one. Breakers destroyed the Wildcats defence in transition and Abercrombie is open in the paint for the dunk. Breakers out running the Wildcats in transition. Weeks takes a huge charge and gets the Breakers the ball back.
Tai Wesley finds Majok wide open for the dunk and 5th for theBreakers in the second half. Tai Wesley again hits inside the paint and gives the Breakers a four point lead Wildcats 38-42 Breakers 4:15. Shea Ili shakes the rust after missing his first ten three attempts and hits the well contested three. Tai backs in and hits the grown man move hitting 7/10 early and leading by five. Smothering defence from the Breakers and moving the ball in transition. Armani hits his hand on the back board and dislocates his finger and cuts his hand open, the game is stopped to clean up (later find out it is a compound fracture that will need x-rays and is stitched up immediately). The final 2 minutes and rebounding winning the half for the Breakers. Cotton back to back 3’s and then is fouled going for the layup and that’s 7 quick points and a two point lead going to the to the half.
Halftime: Wildcats 49-47 Breakers: Breakers don’t close out the final 2 minutes go by from 5 up to down by 2. It’s been an epic battle so far and feels like it will be a tight one and down to the wire. Bryce Cotton will need to be contained. Breakers have had 1 foul call to the Wildcats 14. Breakers shooting 54% and Wildcats on 52%.
Third quarter Webster hits a three off the Shea Assist. Brandt with the one handed slam and the lead is going back and forth. Webster gets his back to back to back three and a 5 point lead Wildcats 53-58 Breakers 7:01 and Wildcats call a timeout after the 11-4 Breakers run. Brandt being the scorer for the Wildcats is fouled hits 1/2, Wildcats Norton is Fouled by Abercrombie and makes both and within 2. Shawn Long soon move on Brandt flop.
Corey Webster makes it 4 threes in a row. Bryce Cotton is fouled by Shea hits the three and misses the 4 point. Corey deep 2 and opportunity Wildcats 61-63 Breakers. Jarrad Weeks deep two over Bryce Cotton before Tai Wesley goes to the board and gives the Breakers a 7 point buffer. Cotton gets the offence rebound is fouled doesn’t make the and one and third miss from the line tonight. Patrick Richard reverse layup and Wildcats reply with a three in transition and it’s back within one with 42 seconds. Bryce Cotton finds himself open and snaps the lead back with a right hand floater.
Third Quarter:Wildcats 72-71 Breakers
Fourth Quarter Both teams shooting 49% heading in to the fourth and looking like a battle until the buzzer on our hands. Wildcats with an easy two and three point lead in the opening two minutes and a one possession game. Jesse Wagstaff is called for an unsportsmanlike foul on Shawn Long makes 2/2 and the Breakers get the ball back and within 3 before Jarrad Weeks hits a corner 3 to tie it up at 76. Wagstaff finds the lane open and gets the finger-roll. Clint Steinol with back to back threes shooting 5/5 on the night and Wildcats lead by 8 with five mins to play Wildcats 84-76 Breakers.
Kevin Braswell decides to call a Breakers timeout to see if he can inspire some rhythm. Shea looking a little rusty missing a few easy shots and Breakers not getting down the court like they have in the first three quarters. Bryce Cotton shooting 10/16, 9 rebounds and igniting the Wildcats when the news it and get a 13 point lead Wildcats 89-76 Breakers 2:50. Cotton finds Mitch Norton open and hits a three and dagger as Wildcats get a commanding 16 point lead with less that 2 minutes to play. Great ball movement, defence and teamwork in the fourth ultimately gets the win for the Perth Wildcats undefeated at home this season and on (5-1) to start the season. Wildcats outscore 20 to the Breakers 7 in the fourth who now sit on (2-3).
Fulltime: Wildcats 92-78 Breakers
Notable Breakers Points/Rebounds/Assists:
Tai Wesley 22 (62%)/4/6 – 2 steals, 2 blocks
Shawn Long 10/12/1
Corey Webster 19/2/0
Tai Wesley 22 points/ Corey Websters 19 points: Video Highlights:
Wildcats vs Breakers Video Highlight – added when uploaded:
Next Home game: 9th November Spark Arena vs Cairns Taipans 7:50pm NZ tipoff – CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS
Next Away Game: 11th November Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre 7:50pm AEST