The NBL regular season and come and gone and now we’ve hit the post season as we offer our 2016 NBL Semi-Finals Betting Tips. Starting tonight NBL fans all over Australia will be tuning in to watch the Melbourne United take on a strong New Zealand Breakers in Finals Series One, and tomorrow night Final Series Two will begin with the Perth Wildcats face off with the Illawarra Hawks starting over in Perth.
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Here’s how this one should play out... Since Melbourne United Finished on top of the ladder, they’ve secured 2 of the 3 games this series being played at home. During the regular season these teams faced off four times, with the Breakers coming out with a 3-1 advantage, which included two wins in the final round. Their final win, which was on Hisense area on the 14th of February, will give them plenty of confidence going in to the series. Cedric Jackson has been on fire from the arc for the New Zealand Breakers, hitting 7/13 in his last game.
Melbourne also love to shoot the 3-ball. This season they averaged a staggering 29 attempts from the arc. New Zealand, however, dominate the paint and put up huge rebound numbers, averaging a league high 42 rebounds per game. Melbourne is also arguably the fastest team in the league, with Hakim Warrick’s seemingly unstoppable high pick and roll, coming off both Stephen Holt and Chris Goulding. The Breakers will have to really try and isolate Hakim or suffer the blunt of his raw athleticism.
I think this comes down to Melbourne simply having more depth in their line up. Nate Tomlinson and Brad Hill coming off the bench both have the ability to hit the scoreboard quickly and have a real impact on the game.
The Breakers are, however, a team built on defense, which is a going to be a huge influence seeing as the Melbourne United are arguably the fastest team in the league at moving the ball and setting up plays.
The home court advantage is going to play a huge part in what could be a tight one.
The Wildcats dominated for most of the season, including downing Illawarra 4-0 during the regular season. Interestingly enough the Illawarra Hawks have not been victorious over in Perth for 22 consecutive games. That stat paired with the two home games and the Wildcats have this series all but guaranteed them a spot in the Grand Final.
Perth has plenty of Playoff experience. This year marks the 30th straight Finals appearance for the Wildcats. It's going to be hard for the Hawks to overcome these numbers.
The big matchup in this one is that of Perth’s Damian Martin and Illawarra’s Kevin Lisch.
Here’s how it works... Lisch is the most vital part of the Hawks offensive game plan. He puts up 20 plus points per game. Wildcat Damian Martin, meanwhile is a 5-time league defensive player of the year, so Lisch will need to generate big performances if Illawarra don't want to see their season end early.
During the regular season both times when these teams faced off in Perth, Wildcat Jesse Wagstaff was on fire putting up 14 in their last bout and being a strong offensive option off the bench. The Wildcats are too big, too strong and have too much history on their side. I think this one is very much a one-sided affair.
Take note: Any of the tips in this article are simply the author’s opinion, so bet at your own risk and always gamble responsibly. Also be sure to check out the Before You Bet Twitter Page for all our thoughts in the lead up to bets! Happy punting!
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