The first battle between the two Macau-based teams ended up with the Macau Black Bears winning it over the Macau Wolf Warriors, 117-100.
The Black Bears were firing on all cylinders from the get-go as they capitalized on the Wolf Warriors’ mistakes on the offensive end. Mikh McKinney continued his stellar offensive production as he almost put up a triple-double with 23 points, 9 rebounds, and 12 assists, and he was supported by local Jenning Leung and import Kenny Manigault who scored a combined 53 points.
Even though the Wolf Warriors scored the first points in the game courtesy of Doug Herring, the Black Bears quickly found their groove and never looked back as they worked on the Wolf Warriors’ defense.
For the Wolf Warriors, the struggle was evident. They were throwing away possessions repeatedly, missing out on simple passes, and not finding ways to get others involved in the game.
By the end of the first half, the Black Bears had a 12-point lead, 56-44.
The story of the second half was pretty much the same as the Black Bears were simply better than the Wolf Warriors overall.
The silver lining for the Wolf Warriors lies in Cai Chen’s strong outing of 32 points on 52% shooting. As it was last year, Chen was the focal point of the Wolf Warriors’ offense and was on the receiving end of multiple assists.
Along with Herring and Boyd’s combined 40 points, the Wolf Warriors put in a much better effort to keep up with the Black Bears’ offensive onslaught. But it was the three-headed attack led by Edwards, McKinney, and Leung which silenced any potential comebacks that the Wolf Warriors looked to mount.
Turnovers were the name of the game as the Wolf Warriors coughed the ball up 16 times compared to the Black Bears’ nine.
The Wolf Warriors’ next game is against the struggling San Miguel Alab Pilipinas on November 27. Both teams are looking to pull off their first win of the season at the cost of the other’s second loss. With Alab and the Wolf Warriors struggling in their first games, expect both of them to play with more effort and to take care of the ball even more.