Reality check for Perth, Canberra - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Reality check for Perth, Canberra

By Laine Clark 12/01/2003 08:12:13 PM Comments (0)

A reality check was delivered to No.1 outfit the Perth Wildcats while the Canberra Cannons just tried to stay alive after its last minute NBL return in round 15 action.

While Perth lost ground to No.2 side the Sydney Kings after a disastrous weekend trip north, Canberra dropped three games in four days as coach Cal Bruton went on a fundraising drive to ensure the club emerged from voluntary administration.

Perth had its seven game winning streak snapped in an upset 98-96 overtime loss to the Cairns Taipans on Friday night, then was jumped 122-103 in Townsville by the resurgent Crocodiles.

The Wildcats (1st; 15-5 record) had the Kings (2nd; 14-6) breathing down its necks on the NBL ladder after Sydney split its round 15 clashes - losing at Wollongong 87-79 today after smashing Canberra on Friday night.

"Hopefully we'll come out of this and be stronger for it or we'll collapse in a screaming heap, depending on how we react," Wildcats coach Alan Black said.

"The better teams react well."

Bruton was also wondering how to lift his troops after Canberra lost 114-100 to Victoria at Geelong on Wednesday night, 111-83 in Sydney and then 100-82 in Adelaide to the 36ers last night.

Canberra (6th; 7-8) played its first game in 32 days in Geelong after Bruton's consortium recently came up with a $300,000 short fix rescue package.

But Cannons administrator Eddie Senatore said he also had to recoup half of the $400,000 owing from sponsors and season ticket holders for the club to survive, forcing Bruton to juggle his hectic itinerary with talking with potential investors in Sydney.

In contrast, Townsville (5th; 11-11) continued to turn around its season by refusing to shave or get a hair cut until it lost.

Eight straight wins have earned the Crocodiles an 11-11 record...and a reputation as the NBL's scruffiest players.

Crocodiles coach Ian Stacker said the team had a new goal - winnings its next two road games.

"(We need to) try to do something better now. We've got a tough road trip coming up with Wollongong and Brisbane - they're two tough games for us," he said.

Meanwhile, 2001 NBL champions Wollongong (3rd; 13-8) snapped a three game losing streak - which included a shock 101-82 defeat in Brisbane last Wednesday night - with its win over Sydney.

In other results, Victoria suffered its 10th loss in 11 games when the Melbourne Tigers (8th; 9-11) kept its slim finals hopes alive by claiming their derby clash last night 115-86.

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