The Kuala Lumpur Dragons face off once again versus the Singapore Slingers, as the causeway rivalry resumes in the ASEAN Basketball League.
The Dragons (8-7, 4th place) will take on the Slingers (7-8, 7th place) at the OCBC Arena at 4 PM GMT +8.
The Dragons and Slingers will battle for the third time in a week, with Singapore winning their last head to head match. However, by virtue of a higher point differential, it was the Dragons that was still able to hoist the Straits Cup at the end of their match last Sunday. After losing the last three editions, it was definitely a big achievement for the Malaysia-based squad.
Singapore, on the other hand, is determined to right the ship after a big loss to the league-leading Mono Vampire Basketball Club. A lethargic performance saw the visiting team play coming from behind for the entire game and ultimately fall short in the end.
The Slingers came out flat out on the road against Mono Vampire, and paid the price down the stretch. Though Singapore tried to make a comeback down the stretch, Mike Singletary and company were able to preserve the win, 87-77. Only free throws were able to keep Singapore in the game, as they made 29 free throws in the contest.
Anthony McClain was a bright spot for the Slingers, during their funk in the first half of the game. He constantly mowed down the competition and marched to the free-throw line, making 9 of 14 en route to 15 points, 16 rebounds and 3 assists.
Xavier Alexander and Marcus Elliott, two former World MVPs in the ABL struggled all night long against Mono Vampire. Though Alexander and Elliott were able to score 25 and 20 points respectively, they shot the ball poorly and had a combined 7 turnovers.
Another problem was the strugglers of two key players for the Slingers. Delvin Goh and Leon Kwek were nowhere to be found in the loss to Mono Vampire. Goh and Kwek combined for a measly 6 points, on a total 2 of 10 from the field. Goh fouled in the second half, while Kwek was saddled with 4 fouls. How will the two respond in a critical match against the Dragons?
The Dragons, on the other hand, played a San Miguel Alab Pilipinas squad missing returning familiar import Justin Brownlee, and they didn’t waste the opportunity. Behind another dominant performance from Will Artino and company, the Dragons won their second game of the season against Alab Pilipinas, 92-80.
Cade Davis has been absolutely on fire as of late for the Dragons. Against San Miguel Alab Pilipinas, Davis had a monstrous 26 points on 6 made triples. And even more impressive, he also tallied 10 assists in the win.
Will Artino proved to be another thorn on the side of San Miguel Alab Pilipinas, registering a double-double of 29 points, 10 rebounds, and 2 blocks. His athleticism was a nightmare for big man Sam Deguara to control, and with no one else to match him, Artino dominated from everywhere on the floor.
The Slingers and Dragons have a lot riding on this important game. Which squad will come out on top?