The following are previews with betting tips for selected fixtures in Round 7 of the 2021/22 NBL season.
Illawarra Hawks vs Sydney Kings
Thursday Jan 13, 7:30pm
The Hawks are currently soaring under the guidance of Brian Goorjian, as they sit in 3rd place on the NBL ladder with a 3-1 record on the season. The Kings in comparison are playing nothing like their name down in 6th, with 3 wins and 3 draws to start the season off with. However Derby Basketball is the best kind as anything can happen.
We’ve already witnessed it once during this NBL 2021/22 campaign as Illawarra pulled off a huge shock at Qudos Bank Arena, etching out a well-deserved, albeit hard-fought eight-point triumph. Despite all five Kings starters scoring in double-figures, including Angus Glover with 16 against his former employers, they were trampled by Duop Reath and Antonius Cleveland. As the C and G poured in 27 and 19 points respectively. Whilst in typical fighting fashion, it was Glover who got ejected on the stroke of full-time for his unnecessary role in an ultimately unnecessary melee with the opposition. Regardless of whoever your backing here, or perhaps maybe your a neutral supporter, this is guaranteed to be one hell of a game.
Despite Sydney starting the season as perennial Championship favourites with multiple bookmakers, they’ve so far failed to live up to that tag and instead have (relatively speaking) flopped under new head coach Chase Buford. It hasn’t helped that Jordan Hunter hasn’t featured in a single game, while imports such as Jaylen Adams and RJ Hunter have barely seen the court, but every team goes through injuries and the Kings are no exception to the rule. However, this game presents them with the perfect opportunity to get their faltering campaign back up and running, because if they can’t get it going against their rivals, then realistically who can they turn on the motors against? Xavier Cooks at 13.2PPG and Jarell Martin at an even better 14.2PPG will both need big games close to the rim, given their sides lack of accuracy from deep this season. But if those two superstars can turn it on down in Woolongong, then Sydney will be left with a fighters chance in this match-up.
Betting tips: Choose the Hawks to win at $1.45 (Sportsbet)
Also look for the total points scored within the match-up to be over 167.5 at $1.92 (Sportsbet)
Sydney Kings vs New Zealand Breakers
Sunday Jan 16, 3:00pm
Hurrah! Hurrah! Hurrah! At long last the Breakers claimed their maiden win of the season after six previous attempts, as they bested the Bullets 88-83 at Nissan Arena. While it was the electricity of their game play that blew the encounter wide open after just Q1, as they prevailed 26-13. From there they would go on to produce 19, 21 and 22 points in the high-scoring affair. And that was in no small part thanks to the scintillating play of Yannick Wetzell who fashioned 27PTS on 9/15 shooting from the floor. While he also got 8REB, 4AST and 2STL to his name. Next up in line was Hugo Besson who came up with 12PTS, as he hit a pair of triples from deep. Not to mention his other stats included 4REB. Coming off the bench, Peyton Silva also had 11PTS and Jeremiah Martin 10.
While who is to say that New Zealand can’t continue their newly found momentum here? It will no doubt be a difficult task and over recent years Sydney have proved to be somewhat of a bogey side for them, but it’s not an impossible one! Besson, a former LNB Pro All-Star and scoring champion is an extremely capable play-maker and scorer. He had his fine outburst last round, whilst the game prior against Tasmania, his shooting was off, but he still found ways to make things work, as he went 2/3 from the FT line, along with grabbing 3REB. And earlier on in the season he had 8PTS against Melbourne. Not a huge amount, but still somewhat significant as his side fashioned only 60PTS overall, while he was also their third-highest scorer that day. If anyone is capable of helping cause an upset in the NBL then the Angers-born Point Guard/Shooting Guard is certainly one of the more elite players capable of doing so.
Betting tips: When the odds become available look for the Kings to win the game, as well as Q1.
Best Bets of the Round: