The Saigon Heat and Singapore Slingers go head to head for the final time in the elimination round of the ABL inside the CIS Arena in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam. Both squads will begin their battle 2:30PM local time.
The two squads are gearing up for the playoffs, but at different situations. With a 14-9 record, the Slingers are currently in 3rd place, trying to fend off the BTN CLS Knights and the Macau Black Bears currently at their position. They gained separation with a big victory over the Westports Malaysia Dragons in their previous game.
The Slingers looked like they were in playoffs mode, as they dealt the Westports Malaysia Dragons a crushing blow via a 88-73 victory at the OCBC Arena in Singapore. Though the Slingers started off slow, their running game left the Dragons in the dust, as they had 23 fastbreak points compared to only six for the Dragons. They also forced Malaysia into a bunch of turnovers, and that led to 29 points off turnovers for the home team.
Jerran Young filled the box score for the Singapore Slingers, as he cruised to a solid performance with 23 points, 5 rebounds, 7 assists and 4 steals. Playing alongside talented World imports may have made Young fly under the radar at times this season, but the Slingers have a gem of an import in Young, and he showed that he’s getting ready for the Playoffs.
Alongside Young, Xavier Alexander also made ABL playoff history as he achieved a new milestone: the second player to score 2,000 points in ABL history. Only Alexander and legendary Slingers World Import Justin Howard have achieved this momentous feat, which cements Alexander as one of the greatest players in ABL history.
The Heat on the other hand are smarting from a wasted opportunity to end their losing skid, as they fell to the BTN CLS Knights via a thrilling finish. As a result, the Heat (12-12) dropped their third straight contest. This is not the way the Heat would have wanted to end their elimination, but with two games remaining they still have time to right the ship and finish strong.
The Heat were absolutely in control, in the final two minutes of the contest. They were leading by double digits, and looking to cruise on the road to the win against the Knights. However the home team exploded with booming triples from Wong Wei Long, alongside a big shot by Doug Herring conspired to send the Heat to the disappointing 91-90 loss.
The big man of the Heat De Angelo Hamilton had himself a game, as he powered the Heat with 27 points, 10 rebounds and 3 assists against the BTN CLS Knight. Though Hamilton has been producing numbers as of late, it has not translated to wins for his squad.
The Slingers and Heat are ready to roll in the CIS Arena. Which squad will be able to get the upper hand?