The Saigon Heat was the last team to punch a ticket for the ABL Playoffs after last week’s action. However, the regular season is far from over as the all six teams are going head-to-head to determine their placing. The top two spots, which guarantees teams a semifinals berth, are still up for grabs.
Here’s a recap of last week and what can we expect as the regular season draws to a close:
- Chong Son Kung Fu (Record: 14-5)
Previous Week: 1
The hot streak continues for Chong Son Kung Fu. They started out last week with a statement win against the defending champions Hong Kong Eastern then followed it up by extending their streak to five games after crushing the Formosa Dreamers.
Heritage Import Mikh McKinney has been playing phenomenal basketball. His current averages of 22.7 points, 5.5 rebounds, 5.6 assists, and 2.2 steals have helped Kung Fu win five straight games.
- Mono Vampire Basketball Club (Record: 13-6)
Previous Week: 3
Mono Vampire proved that they are hungry to claim the outright semis-berth after they scored an emphatic 119-11 road win over Hong Kong Eastern last Thursday.
Mono also broke the ABL scoring record of most points in a single season. In their comeback season, they have already amassed 1,916 points after their bout against Eastern. Their offensive firepower is even more evident knowing that they can add on even more to the feat with their final game against the Westports Malaysia Dragons on Wednesday.
- San Miguel Alab Pilipinas (Record: 12-6)
Previous Week: 4
After losing their previous two games, San Miguel Alab Pilipinas bounced back in a big way with a 26-point rout over the Saigon Heat. They won at home, 126-100. Renaldo Balkman notched 30 points while fellow World Import Justin Brownlee added 24 points, including 6 shots from beyond the arc.
It was also a record-setting victory for the Philippine squad. Alab’s 126 points is the most points scored in a game in league history. Their 18 made three-pointers meanwhile tied a league record.
- Hong Kong Eastern Basketball Team (Record: 12-5)
Previous Week: 2
The last two weeks have not been kind to the defending ABL champions. They have now lost three straight, including two losses to Chong Son. Their recent defeat came at the hands of the improving Mono Vampire, despite a furious attempt to come back and gain the lead.
Eastern looks to regain their form when they host the Formosa Dreamers next Thursday followed an away game against the Dragons on Sunday.
- Singapore Slingers (Record: 11-8)
Previous Week: 5
Thanks to AJ Mandani’s 30 points and 7 steals, the Singapore Slingers inched closer to clinching the fifth seed after beating the Formosa Dreamers 87-69. Now with an 11-8 record, they keep an arm’s length distance over the Saigon Heat in fifth place of the standings.
Fittingly, the Slingers will lock horns with the Heat in their final regular season game on Saturday at the CIS Arena.
- Saigon Heat (Record: 10-9)
Previous Week: 6
The Saigon Heat were actually able to clinch a playoff spot despite losing to San Miguel Alab last Wednesday as the loss by the Westports Malaysia Dragons against the CLS Knights Indonesia catapulted them to the playoffs.
The Heat got back to their winning ways with a 115-103 victory over the Dragons last Sunday Maxie Esho had an eye-popping performance of 34 points, 15 rebounds, and 4 steals.
Sitting at the 6th seed right now, Saigon Heat can still make a run to improve their spot if they can beat the Singapore Slingers by more than 18 points on Saturday.
- CLS Knights Indonesia (Record: 5-13)
Previous Week: 7
CLS earned their first back-to-backs wins of the season after handling the Dragons an 87-68 loss. Freddie Lish flirted with a triple-double of 28 points, 7 rebounds, and 9 assists. Even though they are already out of the playoff race, the Knights have been playing their brand of basketball as of late.
They end their season with two straight games against San Miguel Alab Pilipinas on the road.
- Westports Malaysia Dragons (Record: 5-13)
Previous Week: 8
The Dragons were unfortunately booted out of the playoff race with their loss against the Knights last Wednesday. Now sitting with a 5-13 record, it seems to be another disappointing season for the Dragons.
They had a chance to keep their playoff hopes going when the Saigon Heat lost to Alab Pilipinas, but couldn’t finish the work on their end by losing to an upbeat CLS Knights team. The wound was only worse when they followed that up with a loss to the Saigon Heat later in the weekend.
The Dragons look to close out their season on a positive note when they take on Mono Vampire and Hong Kong Eastern this coming week, both at home.
- Formosa Dreamers (Record: 1-18)
Previous Week: 9
The Dreamers have not tasted victory for the last 16 games. Last week, they lost back-to-back games at home for a 0-10 overall home record.
The Dreamers have one last game left on their schedule and it will be against the defending champions Hong Kong Eastern no less.