by Vlad Ionasc
Cheshire Phoenix will look to advance through to the Semi-Final of the BBL Trophy when they’ll take on the lowly Glasgow Rocks at the EPSV.
The Nix eliminated the Rocks at this stage of the the competition in the 2019/20 season, after a thrilling double-overtime game in Glasgow.
The Rocks come into the game as heavy underdogs, having picked up just one win (65-54 vs. Sharks) in their last 10 games.
Date: Sunday, 14th February, 2021
Tip-off: 5 p.m.
Competition: BBL Trophy
How to watch: BBL Player
The BBL Player is the new one-stop-shop for all BBL action as you can watch every club and every game (excluding Bristol’s home games) live and on-demand for £19.99 per month. Alternatively, single-game passes are priced at £4.99.
Because of how the BBL is structured, all the money from the BBL Player goes directly to the clubs, so make sure to select the Cheshire Phoenix as your ‘club to support’ when registering, as all the revenue will help carry the club through this incredibly difficult period of financial insecurity.
ROCKS SCOUTING REPORT
The Rocks have the poorest offence (70.5 points per game) and second-worst defence (84.9 points allowed per game) in the BBL.
Glasgow’s record on the road stands at 2-8 (all competitions).
The Scottish side hasn’t won away from home since the 13th of December 2020, when they beat the Plymouth Raiders 63-61 at the Plymouth Pavilions.
Gareth Murray’s team picked up a couple of wins against the Nix in the BBL Cup earlier in the season, however they succumbed to a 64-75 loss in the BBL Championship on the 3rd of January.
North Carolina alum Christian Keeling leads the Glasgow in scoring with 16.1 points-per-game on 46.6% from the field and 36.4% from three-point land.
British rookie Boban Jacdonmi is averaging 8.2 points and 5.1 rebounds per contest, whilst shooting 59.5% from the floor (5th in the BBL in FG%).
Isa Brandon leads his side in assists-per-game (2.9) and also ranks 7th in the BBL in steals-per-game (1.6)
Jonny Bunyan doesn’t get to the free-throw line very often, however he is the only player in the BBL that still has an 100% conversion rate.
Ronald Delph ranks sixth in the BBL in offensive rebounds (2.4) and ninth in blocks (0.7).
As a team, the Rocks are shooting 43.8% from the field, 30.7% from three-point range and 62.4% from the line.
The Rocks have won three of the last five meetings against the Nix.
Glasgow Rocks: Christian Keeling — The 6-foot-3 guard leads his team in scoring (16.1 PPG), and also ranks second in assists (2.7) and fifth in rebounds (3.6) per game. Keeling spent the final year of his collegiate career at North Carolina — one of the biggest programs in NCAA history — in the prestigious ACC conference.
Cheshire Phoenix: Kahron Ross — Phoenix’s floor-general is averaging 16.8 points (9th best in BBL) and 6.1 assists (4th best in BBL) per night in the regular season. Ross also ranks 4th in steals, with 2.1 per game. Ross and Keeling are good friends off-the-court, however don’t expect either guard to be too chummy once the game gets underway.
Ben Thomas: “With an opportunity to get to the semi final, tonight’s Trophy game is a must win.
“We have played the Rocks multiple times this season so we know it will be a tough game.
“After coming off a great win on Friday, this quick turnaround gives us an opportunity to keep this win streak going and that’s exactly what we expect of ourselves.”
NEXT HOME GAME
The Nix will be back in action at the EPSV on Wednesday 17th of February, against the Worcester Wolves in the BBL Championship. Tip-off is scheduled for 5 p.m.