The US Professional Basketball Alumni and Westports Malaysia Dragons kept their promise and gave the fans an entertaining show at Stadium Malawati last night. Scottie Pippen and co. had a big second half to beat the Dragons 96-81 at the final buzzer.
“I like all the Dragons players,” said US PBAA’s guard Jason Williams after the game. Williams had the fans on their feet for the last three minutes of the game when he showcased his dribbling and passing skills. The climax was when Williams did his signature behind the back off the elbow pass to Pippen for a dunk. “Scottie told me that he was trailing behind me so it was the perfect timing to do it,” said Williams referring to the amazing pass.
Williams finished with 16 points in the game while Scottie Pippen added 12 points for the US PBAA who built a big lead in the third to get the comfortable 15 point win.
The Dragons put up a formidable fight however and the game was very competitive in the first half. Dragons’ sharpshooter Satyaseelan Kuppusamy had a great start and made two quick three point shots. John Ng also shocked the fans when he made a shot from almost half court with the shot clock still at 20 seconds. “I thought the shot clock was about to expire, that’s why I launched that shot,” said Ng. Dragons’also received a big lift from Kwaan Yoong Jing who displayed his scoring ability to keep the Dragons in the game. The Dragons were only down 39-41 at halftime.
In a show of regional solidarity, the Dragons played last night's game with the help of a few other familiar faces from the ASEAN Basketball League. This quintet of special ASEAN imports included Mario Wuysang from Indonesia Warriors, Rob Wainwright from AirAsia Philippine Patriots, Ratdech Kruatiwa from Bangkok Cobras, Desmond Oh from JobStreet.com Singapore Slingers and Attaporn Lertmalaiporn from Chang Thailand Slammers.
The US PBAA players showed their competition experience and stepped up their game in the third quarter however and dominated the Dragons. The fans cheers were resounding in the third quarter as Dennis Rodman made two three-point shots to spark a big run by the US PBAA in the third quarter. Chris Campbell also had a big third quarter and torched the Dragons with his explosive plays.
Eventhough the Dragons were not able to beat the US PBAA, all the Dragons players were thrilled to have a chance to play against their basketball heroes. “I was very happy and excited to be on the same court with all these great legends. I felt like a little kid when I was on court earlier on,” said Mario Wuysang after the game