Manchester Giants will looking for revenge for their BBL Cup exit against Glasgow Rocks when the sides clash in BBL Championship action tonight.
The two sides met at the Emirates Arena in mid-October with the Rocks winning a tight game 88-85 to progress to the last eight of the Cup.
Giants come into the game in joint ninth place in the BBL table with three wins from 11 games, but have only one win in their last nine Championship games. Meanwhile the Rocks have played only eight games and are in seventh place with a 5-3 record, but have less losses than the two sides immediately above them.
Manchester coach Jeff Jones was happy with how his side played last time they met the Rocks, but knows they will need a good performance to take the Championship points: “Obviously we have played them in the Cup in Glasgow earlier in the year and played pretty well just coming up short of getting the win. They are a very experienced team and have been playing well this season and have been very consistent – they will represent a real test for us especially at the moment.
“They really have some very experienced players that provide great leadership in Sterling [Davis] and EJ [Harrison]. In Gareth [Murray] they have one of the best domestic players in the league. From our point of view we have to do a much better job on Harrison and make sure we don’t let the others have a career night.
“We stayed focus and we competed for the majority of the game when we played them in Glasgow. We probably played our best overall game against them on both ends of the floor. If we are to have a chance for the win we need to do a much better job on the boards and keep them out of the lane on their offensive end.”
Rocks’ player-coach Sterling Davis expects a tough test at Wright Robinson College: “They are a very dangerous team being the experience and talent level they have. I’m sure they feel things have not always gone to plan for them but when they are clicking is when you have to be concerned.
“I think David Watts has had a very solid season so far. It seems a lot of what they do goes through him and he has done well in accepting his role.
“It was a huge grind for us the last meeting and we don’t expect anything less this time around. They had a never say die attitude which almost allowed them to sneak out with the win.”
Giants’ shooting guard James Jones expects a tough game against the Rocks: “Kieron [Achara] has gone from them, but I know they’ve got a new big guy, and I’m sure the other guys will step up and fill in. They’ll be tough and Sterling has them playing some good defence, but we need to concentrate on our game and hopefully that will be enough to get the win.”
Victory for the Rocks will see them unbeaten through the whole of November!