Having dominated the Australian NBL for the last two-plus
seasons, the Breakers could be forgiven for seeking out their
But spotting Sydney a 15-point lead in Homebush last night
was one challenge the defending champions couldn't overcome,
with the Kings going on to win 75-62 and claim their first
victory over the Breakers in eight games.
It was the Breakers' third loss of the campaign, and their
first to a team not named Perth, dropping their
league-leading record to 8-3.
The Breakers never recovered from a horror first quarter in
which their handling was sloppy, their defence lethargic and
their shooting wayward.
They fought back on a couple of occasions but never got
within five as Sydney (8-5) played with impressive composure
down the stretch.
Ben Madgen, who poured in 30 points in Sydney's round-five
loss to the Breakers, recovered from a dislocated shoulder to
start but it was Corin Henry who did most of the damage.
The American guard scored 29 points and outshone Cedric
Jackson who, coming off a triple-double which earned him
player of the week honours, never threatened to replicate
last week's output.
The two sides came into the game ranked in the top two in
scoring, but only Sydney demonstrated their pedigree as the
Breakers took more than two minutes to get off the mark.
As the Breakers' shooting reverted back to early-season form,
the Kings continued to build on their advantage and held a
24-11 lead at the first break.
The Breakers didn't manage many defensive stops in the first
quarter but they stepped up their intensity in the second.
There were few improvements in their shooting, though, as the
Kings' lead grew to 16.
But a couple of three-pointers from CJ Bruton, one from well
beyond the arc, reduced the deficit to single figures and saw
Sydney take 39-31 lead into halftime.
The break appeared to squash the Breakers' momentum, and they
began the second half as flat as they started the first. The
Kings came out with a 12-3 run to extend their advantage to a
game-high 17 points and, for the first time, worry would have
crept into Andrej Lemanis' huddle.
Like he did in the second quarter Bruton brought the Breakers
back into the contest, and his third three capped a 10-0 run
to see the visitors pull within five heading into the final
But the Breakers' attempted comeback was again halted as
Sydney streaked away and closed out the contest with ease.
Sydney 75 (Henry 29, Madgen 13, Crosswhite 12), Breakers 62
(Bruton 18, Webster 11, Jackson 9). HT: 39-31.
- Kris Shannon of APNZ