Two years ago
Game 3: Sydney vs Perth
Name me one way in which Perth's roster is superior to Sydney's?
Any area of the game, any position on the court, anything.
There appears to be one answer: Bryce Cotton. He's the best player in this series.
But if you look at the entire backcourt, Ware/Lisch/Didi/Bruce is superior to Cotton/Norton/Martin.
Lisch is currently reminding everybody how good he is.
Bogut is making Plumlee look 2nd rate.
At forward, White has struggled all season to recapture his 2019 GF form, shooting only 39% from the field, and I think his defense has been shown up at times over the last 2 games.
Nick Kay dominated against Cairns, but he's got his hands full against fellow 1st teamer Tate, and Cooks who is tiring out the Perth front line. He's the most active player on the glass in the league. Historically Perth terrorised opponents with their rebounding, but Cooks is a major reason why Sydney has 28 O boards and is plus 14 in rebounding over 2 games. And lastly at the forward spot, Sydney's immense depth is showcased by Moller's lack of playing time.
This series is a bit like a heavyweight boxing title fight. Sydney is a world champion heavyweight.
Perth has been the undefeated champ at light heavyweight for 5 years, so they stepped up to challenge the heavyweight champ. They're quickly finding out what it's like fighting someone 10kg heavier. They have a world class trainer (Gleeson) but after round 4 the heavyweight just found rhythm. They're being battered around and the trainer's struggling for answers.
Perth is lucky Bruce and Kickert missed wide open threes in the last minute of game 1. And Casper missed the game winner. A tough shot, but one Casper often makes when he's not horribly out of form.
Heading into the crucial middle rounds of this heavyweight title fight, what answers can the trainer conjure up?
This is a bit like Fury vs Wilder actually. Cotton is the equivalent of Wilder's eraser. Wilder was beaten in fight 1 until he found something special in round 12. It ended a draw. In fight 2, Fury was far better. Fury has a more well rounded skill set, a more complete boxer, a bigger man with longer reach. He doesn't have Wilder's knockout punch (Cotton), but he's got more tools in his toolbag. It showed in fight 2.
Terrico White needs to become the jab that sets up the eraser. And they need to nullify Bogut. Right now, he's destroying Plumlee. 37 points in 41 minutes by a pass- first big man. Plumlee is hanging off, letting Bogut start his move to the basket under no pressure. Bogut doesn't need to pass when he's scoring at will.
Gleeson has an uphill battle when his cattle are a step below the Money Kings. But, they destroyed a talented United team in games 3 and 4 last year. They're absolutely still in this series.
What adjustments can Gleeson make in less than 48 hours, heading into Game 3?
My tip- Sydney by 7.