Brannen leads Bullets to beat Breakers - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Brannen leads Bullets to beat Breakers

By Dave Donaghy 14/01/2006 11:29:21 PM Comments (0)

Brannen inspired the 39-point turnaround from the previous night's humiliation against the Kings after the three-time defending champions flexed their muscles in Sydney.

It was a long plane ride home for the Bullets (14-15) but the short rest period worked in their favour in front of 3,421 fans at the Brisbane Convention Centre.

They rode a 17-4 run leading into halftime - where Brisbane was ahead 62-52 - before putting the game out of the Breakers' reach midway through the third quarter.

Brannen, who added 10 rebounds, scored seven points during the golden stretch while a three-pointer from Derek Rucker (nine points) with 6.36 remaining in the third all but sealed the result.

Sam Mackinnon lit up the stats sheet with 18 points, nine boards, five assists and three blocks while Mark Bradtke had 14 points and eight rebounds in only 22 minutes.

Mackinnon provided the highlight of the night when he blocked Ben Pepper at the defensive end before running the length of the court to receive an alley-oop pass from Rucker at the other end.

Sharp-shooting American Brian Green registered 26 points and six assists for New Zealand who crashed to 6-21 this season.

Bullets coach Joey Wright wasted little time in rushing star guard Stephen Black back into the line-up following his side's lack of penetration from beyond the perimeter against the Kings.

Black wore a protective cast on his lower left leg to help cope with a painful stress fracture but managed to get through the contest and scored 13 points.

Team medicos have limited Black to only one game and one training session per week in the lead-up to the play-offs.

He got the ball rolling for the hosts in the opening term with an early three-pointer before the Bullets took a 29-28 lead into the first break.

Breakers import Rich Melzer finished with a team-high haul of 28 points and 10 rebounds with former NBA draft pick Ben Pepper adding 15 points and 11 boards.

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