11 Oct 2017: The Weekly Preview

An action-packed third week with nine games taking place including the start of the BBL Cup.

This week’s schedule:

Friday 13 October 2017
(CH) Leeds Force v Surrey Scorchers, 7:30pm
(CH) DBL Sharks Sheffield v Plymouth Raiders, 7:30pm
(CH) Esh Group Eagles Newcastle v London Lions, 7:30pm
(CUP) Worcester Wolves v Manchester Giants, 7:30pm
(CUP) Bristol Flyers v Cheshire Phoenix, 7:30pm

Sunday 15 October 2017
(CH) Surrey Scorchers v Worcester Wolves, 3pm
(CUP) London Lions v Leeds Force, 4pm
(CH) Plymouth Raiders v Leicester Riders, 4pm
(CH) Cheshire Phoenix v Glasgow Rocks, 5:30pm

Game Previews:

Leeds Force v Surrey Scorchers

Details: Friday 13 October, 7:30pm, Carnegie Sports Centre, BBL Championship

Last meeting: Scorchers 87-80 Force (Championship, March 2017)

Summary: Both sides head into Friday night in need of a win. Leeds have endured a tough start with three 20+ point defeats, while the Scorchers have dropped their last two since winning on opening night. Force showed signs of improvement and will be hoping for a stronger display on home court.

Stat: Leeds have never lost a home game against a Surrey side since joining the BBL, winning all four encounters.

Last season: Force 1-2 Scorchers

Info pack.

DBL Sharks Sheffield v Plymouth Raiders

Details: Friday 13 October, 7:30pm, EIS Sheffield, BBL Championship

Last meeting: Raiders 81-87 Sharks (Championship, March 2017)

Summary: Sheffield have won two in a row heading into Friday night, while Plymouth also responded from dropping their opener with a first win at home on Sunday. Sharks boast one of the strongest frontcourts in the league and their opponents have made a change by bringing in former Cheshire star, Kinu Rochford.

Quote: “Last Sunday was a great win for us. It’s always good to get the first one on the board, especially in front of our sell-out home crowd.” – Zak Wells, Raiders captain.

Stat: Mike Tuck is just four points away from reaching 3,500 BBL Championship points in what would be his 255th game.

Last season: Sharks 2-1 Raiders

Info pack.

Bristol Flyers v Cheshire Phoenix

Details: Friday 13 October, 7:30pm, WISE Arena, BBL Cup First Round

Last meeting: Phoenix 83-89 Flyers (Championship, April 2017)

Summary: The start of the road to Birmingham sees Bristol host Cheshire in the First Round of the BBL Cup. The two teams came through their league openers and will look to build on the momentum with a run in the Cup having both failed to get beyond the last eight last season.

Quote: “Very excited for this upcoming weekend – we have been working hard to prepare and I think we will be ready for our first Cup game,” Robert Sandoval, Phoenix guard.

Last season: Flyers 3-0 Phoenix (3-1 all comps)

Info pack.

Esh Group Eagles Newcastle v London Lions

Details: Friday 13 October, 7:30pm, Sport Central, BBL Championship

*LIVE stream on UNILAD Facebook page*

Last meeting: Lions 93-86 Eagles (Championship, April 2017)

Summary: It’s very early for a huge clash in the league, but Eagles and Lions have made strong starts and one unbeaten record has to end in the North-East. The Lions claimed an early victory at Sport Central in October last season and will be out for a repeat result with Newcastle +135 in winning margins on the season.

Quote: “They’re going to approach our game like one of the most important games of the season. I played for Newcastle and I know what Fab is like, and he takes every game seriously,” – Joe Ikhinmwin, Lions captain.

“Knowing that potentially we’re going to be one of the top teams this season, they are going to want to try and set the tone in that game, especially with it being at home.

“It’s going to be a big test for us, but I have got a lot of faith in our new team and our new system, and the direction that we’re going.”

Stat: The last eight meetings over the last two seasons between the two have all been decided by 10 points or less.

Last season: Eagles 1-2 Lions (3-2 all comps)

Info pack.

Worcester Wolves v Manchester Giants

Details: Friday 13 October, 7:30pm, Worcester Arena, BBL Cup First Round

Last meeting: Wolves 91-74 Giants (Championship, February 2017)

Summary: With both teams still awaiting their first league victory, the attention switch to the Cup provides the chance to kickstart their season. Worcester had last weekend off to re-group from an opening loss, while Danny Byrne’s Giants lost twice to fall to an 0-3 start.

Quote: “We’re looking forward to this game – having two weeks off can be bittersweet, but I feel as if we’ve improved over the time off,” – Wolves guard, Brandon Parrish.

“I expect us to come out strong against Manchester.”

Last season: Wolves 2-1 Giants

Info pack.

Surrey Scorchers v Worcester Wolves

Details: Sunday 15 October, 3pm, Surrey Sports Park, BBL Championship

Last meeting: Scorchers 77-89 Wolves (Championship, February 2017)

Summary: It’s another weekend double-header for the Scorchers, but they finally take to their home floor to host Worcester. The two sides met five times last season with Wolves sweeping the league series and they head into the game off the back of their Cup game on Friday.

Quote: “A win against Surrey would be great for our club just to level out our league record,” – Brandon Parrish, Wolves guard.

“Getting two wins this weekend would be perfect as we look to get things rolling this season.”


Last season: Scorchers 0-3 Wolves (1-3 all comps)

Info pack.

Plymouth Raiders v Leicester Riders

Details: Sunday 15 October, 4pm, Plymouth Pavilions, BBL Championship

Last meeting: Riders 99-69 Raiders (Championship, April 2017)

Summary: A repeat of last year’s Trophy fans which Plymouth fans will have tried to forget as the club embarks on a new era. An opening home win breeds confidence, but they face a tough test welcoming the defending league champs, who have started 2-0.

Stat: Leicester have won the last 18 meetings between the two sides with Plymouth’s last victory coming at home in December 2012 – nearly five years ago.

Last season: Raiders 0-3 Riders (0-4 all comps)

Info pack.

London Lions v Leeds Force

Details: Sunday 15 October, 4pm, Copper Box Arena, BBL Cup First Round

Last meeting: Force 83-100 Lions (Championship, April 2017)

Summary: Focus quickly turns to the Cup for both sides as they start the weekend in league action. The Lions have reached the Semi-Finals of the Cup for the past two years and will be aiming further, but have Leeds standing in their way first looking for a big scalp.

Flashback: Jack Isenbarger inspired Leeds to a memorable win in the capital over the Lions last season with 34 points, but will be in the home locker room this time around having made a summer switch.

Last season: Lions 2-1 Force

Info pack.

Cheshire Phoenix v Glasgow Rocks

Details: Sunday 15 October, 5:30pm, Cheshire Oaks Arena, BBL Championship

Last meeting: Rocks 95-82 Phoenix (Championship, February 2017)

Summary: Cheshire left it late to record an opening league victory at home last Sunday, while the Rocks have started 0-2 and desperate to get their season up and running. They added Earl Brown last week and he will make a return to his former side.

Quote: “It will be a big test for us playing two very well coached teams that are talented and we look forward to defending our home court against Glasgow,” Robert Sandoval, Phoenix guard.

Last season: Phoenix 1-2 Rocks

Info pack.

EVERY game is available LIVE via subscription at livebasketball.tv
Selected games streamed on UNILAD Facebook each week (as indicated above)