The Final Four turned out to be blowouts and we were all dissapointed that we did not see closely contested games. The silver lining is that we probably get to see an incredible finals with 2 outstanding teams. The Finals will kick off on Sunday at 8pm followed by the All-Star Game and 3PT Shootout. We got food, prizes and music in store for what should be a fun night so we hope to see everyone there!
GRIZZLIES vs NUGGETS: This game was very competitive in the first half. GM Vimal had assembled a crew that made it to the Semis for the first time led by the scoring machine Anthony. They unfortunately had no subs again just like in the Quarter Finals but they managed to pull that off and were hoping to do the same here. The Grizz led by 4 at halftime but everything unraveled in the 2nd half. The biggest adjustment made by the Nuggets was to put Sen on Anthony for the entire 2nd half and he did a phenomenal job as he was on him like blanket. You could visibly see the frustration on Anthony's face as we was shadowed and hounded which meant he could barely get off any clean looks and was resorting to jacking shots from almost half court. The big men from the Grizz also missed some shots they normally make and Nisan was called for a few 3 seconds in the key violation which added to his turnover total. The Nuggets also played some great basketball on the offensive end as they moved the ball with purpose and got some great shots near the basket. Plus you had GM Ray drilling rainbow 3s which completely broke the game wide open and the Nuggets cruised to victory. Ray had his team prepared and made the necessary adjustments to dominate the Grizz in the second half and now will look to win his 2nd ETBL Championship on Sunday. The Grizz had a great season and should be proud of their accomplishments even though they ultimately fell short of their goal.
Final Score: Grizzlies 44 - 57 Nuggets Player of the Game - GLENN Ting 14pts/5rebs/4asts/1stl - 2 Triples - 50% Shooting
BLAZERS vs WARRIORS : There was alot of anticipation for this one as we had 2 talented squads going up against each other. It was a close contest in the first half but the Warriors were playing with much more intensity and energy compared to the Blazers. That was the biggest takeaway from this one as the Dubs just were alot more vocal and brought an extra level of hustle. The Blazers were not intimidated by any means but they just seemed a little more laid back and did not match the level of intensity from the Warriors. The Dubs also switched it up a bit by playing a 3-2 zone instead of their famous 2-3 and it worked out beautifully as Vijith and NJ were not able to get as many clean looks. They also left the non-shooters of the Blazers open and dared them to shoot and that worked out well too for them. Great job of game planning and executing on the strengths/weaknesses of their opponent. All of this helped get the Warriors a big victory but the main reason they won was the play of Amit Sieukumar who was amazing in this one. He dropped a season high 24 points and was unstoppable when he drove to the basket as he made some acrobatic finishes. He used his hang time perfectly as he would let the defender fly past him or release his shot once their hand was down. Then while he was feeling it...he also hit a couple dagger 3s to seal it for his team and he has progressively gotten better as the season has gone along! We shall see if he can continue it going into the biggest game of their season. The Blazers had an incredible year but they lose in the Semis once again. Their core is strong and they will just need to snag a couple gems in the back half of the draft (preferably bigs) and they will be strong contenders once again next season.
Final Score: Blazers 35 - 50 Warriors Player of the Game - AMIT Sieukumar 24pts/5rebs/4stls - 2 Triples - 54% Shooting