As a basketball fan I desperately want the NBA, its teams owners and the players to for once and for all settle the lockout dispute and play ball.
At the same time, I am enjoying watching Patty Mills tear apart the Australian league in the iinet NBL championship.
On Sunday the Portland Trailblazer turned Melbourne Tiger stepped out against the Hawks – a game which he led his team to victory (82-74) in the second half. The lightning quick point guard didn’t exert himself too much in the opening two periods but come the final 24 minutes Mills was dynamite, drilling 13 points in the third quarter and showing his superior skills off to the enthralled crowd.
The Hawks were impressive early on in particular US import Joevan Catron who couldn’t miss in the first half. The former Oregon college student and second-team all-conference player starred with 12 points, however he only managed six after the main break as the Melbourne Tigers shut out the Hawks with strong and effective defense.
The Tigers kept clawing their way back into the match and once they hit the lead, the never looked like losing. The road trip that continued from their clash with Cairns on Friday eventually caught up with the Hawks.
Hawks coach Gordie McLeod summed it up best, “We played them hard, we played them tough, we just needed to play them smarter.”