Kings fightback to defeat Bullets
Written by Charlotte Austin
The Sydney Kings have solidified second spot on the NBL ladder by defeating the Brisbane Bullets 104-95 at Qudos Bank Arena on Sunday, November 12.
Played in front of 10,235 fans, the Kings have now attracted north of the 10,000 mark for eight straight contests - one game shy of the club's all-time record of nine games back in 1992.
The victory also marks Sydney's seventh overall against the Bullets and 10th straight at Qudos Bank Arena.
A hook shot from Tyrell Harrison placed the Bullets on the board early in the first term, before strong contributions from Sam McDaniel extended it further. Denzel Valentine, Jordi Hunter and Jaylen Adams then sparked the Kings into action, making it a one-point game early in the second. A jump shot from Shaun Bruce was swiftly cancelled out by Josh Bannan before a DJ Mitchell score put the visitors up by three (19-16). Despite a dunk from Jonah Bolden, the Kings fell back as Chris Smith, Aron Baynes and Nathan Sobey helped Brisbane build up an eight-point lead. A last-second jump shot from Adams had the Kings trailing by six (26-20) as the first term closed.
Brisbane maintained their early momentum, as a jump shot from Sobey extended their lead. Valentine and Alex Toohey began to cook for the Kings, with consecutive jump shots ending a scoring drought and lifting the Purple and Gold's momentum. Impressive lay-ups from Adams and Toohey placed the Kings back on the board, though strong contributions were unable to ward off Bannan and Baynes, as the Bullets pushed into a double-digit lead (41-31). Points from NBL Net Star Rocco Zikarsky saw Brisbane pulling away significantly, though last-minute jump shots from Toohey and Angus Glover as well as fouls in favour, saw the harbour city side team trail by just six (51-45) at half-time.
Adams' lay-up, followed swiftly by a jump shot from Toohey pushed the Kings' to a one-point deficit within the first minute (51-50), with a five-point blaze from DJ Hogg handing the lead over to the purple and gold. Strong defence and a close shot from Toohey swayed the recurring tie back into the King's hands, as the Bullets trailed by four (63-59). Involvement from Jonah Bolden and Valentine widened the lead and despite jump shots from Baynes and Mitchell prompting a comeback for Brisbane, the Kings consolidated their position matching Brisbane with jump shots from Bolden and Glover, as the Kings entered the final quarter on a five-point lead (76-71).
Sobey fired up early for Brisbane, with a dunk closing the gap to three. However, consecutive jump shots from Adams and Glover kept the Bullets' efforts at bay, with a lay-up from Jordi Hunter contributing to the Kings' lead. Jump shots from Smith and McDaniel saw the board tied once more, with a jump shot from Bannan handing the lead over to Brisbane. Another score by Adams ensured the points gap remained tight, though fouls in favour of the Bullets had the points gap extending to six (95-89). Adams came in clutch for the purple and gold, as back-to-back two-pointers saw the points gap close to one. Huge plays down the stretch from Hogg sparked the Kings on a 15-0 run to end the game, helping them secure their seventh win of NBL24.
Where the match was decided
Statistical wins in free-throw percentage (95-73 per cent), rebounds (42-37), assists (22-15) and fast-break points (14-5) powered the Hoops Capital side to the home triumph.
Huge plays on both ends of the court by Hogg, Adams and Bruce saw the Kings outscore their rivals 15-0 in the final 3.13 - turning a six-point deficit into a nine-point win.
Player of the game
Adams was named named of the game thanks to his 24 points, four assists, one rebound and one block.
Others to shine in the win were Hogg (16 points and three dimes), Bolden (13 points and nine rebounds), Toohey (12), Glover (12) and Hunter (10 points, seven rebounds and four assists).
Watch Mahmoud Abdelfattah and Alex Toohey discuss Sunday's win in the post-game press conference via Sydney Kings' YouTube channel above. While you're there, be sure to hit subscribe, to ensure you never miss out on any of our great videos.
Mahmoud Abdelfattah's side, who are now 7-3, have one more game before the FIBA break, a road trip to Melbourne to face United on Sunday, November 19 at 4pm AEDT in a top-of-the-table clash.
The Kings' next home game is against South East Melbourne on Sunday, December 10 - with tickets available here.