NBL rivals await finals countdown - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

NBL rivals await finals countdown

By Laine Clark 24/02/2003 05:57:13 AM Comments (0)

Four teams will be tempted to pack calculators for this weekend's NBL final round in a bid to figure out how to snap up the one remaining play-off berth.

Melbourne Tigers (14-14 season record), Cairns Taipans (12-16), West Sydney Razorbacks (12-16) and Canberra Cannons (11-16) will all vie for the sixth and final play-off spot which could come down to points percentage after 22 rounds.

Melbourne is in the box seat after downing the Hawks 96-89 at Wollongong on Saturday night but kept the finals door ajar for its rivals when it succumbed 93-90 to West Sydney on Sunday night.

The Taipans undid the good work of this week's wins over Canberra (104-90) and Victoria Giants (102-77) by letting Shane Heal inspire the Sydney Kings to a 100-87 win.

The Cannons also had mixed success this week, bouncing back from the Taipans loss to down Brisbane Bullets 79-66, only to fall 106-94 to Perth on Saturday night.

Sixth place will be settled this week when the regular season comes to a close.

Melbourne takes on Cairns (home) on Wednesday and Townsville (away) on Saturday while Canberra plays Wollongong (home) on Tuesday and Thursday (away) and West Sydney on Saturday (home).

Cairns travels away to Melbourne on Wednesday then hosts Adelaide on Sunday while the Pigs complete their season away - Brisbane on Friday and Canberra on Saturday.

West Sydney - last season's losing grand finalists - had been hot and cold this year but was buoyed by the return from a three month lay-off with a serious knee injury by Simon Dwight.

While the finals formula was far from clear for some, it was crystal clear for the Kings after they re-claimed No.1 spot with the win over Cairns.

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