NBL 2014/15 Round 18: Adelaide fasten seat belts on drive to the playoffs
|Steve Chalmers||Feb 6, 2015|
A much improved performance from Daniel Johnson has the 36ers in seventh heaven as Adelaide defeated the Sydney Kings 97-78 on Friday night to record their seventh straight victory.
The resurgent Sixers squad, bolstered by their mid-season signings were no match for the depleted Sydney Kings, despite having a bit of luck pre-game with the unexpected return of Angus Brandt back from injury.
Adelaide's height was far supreme on a night which Brandt's return really didn't impact the game, as Brock Motum, Daniel Johnson and Anthony Petrie all stood tall in their fellow big man Luke Schenscher's 200th NBL game.
Motum was on pace for an absolute blinder early on, however succumbing to reality late to finish with 23 points and eight rebounds on a very efficient 10-12FG shooting. Johnson wasn't far behind registering 18 points and three blocked shots in 17 minutes.
In what was a tough night for the slumping Kings, their main unit tried their hearts out, as Ben Madgen's 19 points and five rebounds, plus the emergence of Kevin White's (20 points, 6 triples) unbelievable shooting display couldn't even get within single digits of their opponents.
While at one stage, White was a perfect 6-6 from the floor, all being three pointers, it was all too much for the brave Kings outfit, who now sit sixth with a 9-15 record.
Adelaide was never in doubt all night, from scoring the opening bucket of the game, they never trailed through forty minutes and was already up double digits just after the first break.
Brock Motum was extremely pleased that teammate Daniel Johnson could re-adapt to his old stomping ground so quickly, especially after a below average performance the week prior:
"It's good to see DJ get a few cobwebs out and really start showing his potential so hopefully we can keep it rolling."
In what was a surprising outburst through the match, Kendrick Perry showed glimpes of hope and what got him to Sydney after a commendable 12 point, seven assist performance in the loss. After fighting the game out right up until the end, as shown by the 16-11 final quarter scoreline in the Kings' favour, Sydney now must head home to meet the Cairns Taipans on Sunday.
The nearly 6,000 strong crowd that was in attendance for the game will certainly want more action in Adelaide for the remainder of the season, and the Sixers are hungry for more. Adelaide head across to New Zealand to face the Breakers on Thursday.
Adelaide 36ers 97 (Motum 23, Johnson 18, Wilson 15)
Sydney Kings 78 (White 20, Madgen 19, Perry 12)
@ Adelaide Arena