Round 6 in the NBL24 season will include the familiar Friday night double-header. Second up on the slate is a Freeway Series battle between the Illawarra Hawks and the Sydney Kings in Wollongong! It’s always a great battle between these clubs, and we preview their upcoming matchup and provide our best bet below!
Also, we’re providing previews and expert betting tips for every game of the NBL24 season, so make sure to head over to our NBL Tips page regularly to keep up to date with all of our content.
NBL24 Round 6 Preview & Betting Tips
Illawarra Hawks vs Sydney Kings
Friday 7:30pm AEDT, November 3rd, WIN Entertainment Centre
Another instalment of the Freeway Series is on the cards for Friday night hoops in NBL Round 6, with the Illawarra Hawks playing as hosts this time around. The Hawks were in action twice in Round 5, beginning with a thrilling one-point win at home to the Snakes before losing away to United by double-figures for the second time this season.
The defensive end was always going to be troublesome for the Hawks who lack the personnel to get up and in and pressure the ball, but it’s their offence that we all expected to be potent, which has been disappointing to date. The Hawks have scored 85+ points just twice from their seven outings and that makes it difficult to win ball games when you’re consistently giving up 90+ going the other way.
The form of import Justin Robinson has been one of the key reasons why the Hawks have struggled offensively. He was supposed to be their go-to guy to carry the load on that end along with Tyler Harvey, but just hasn’t been able to find any rhythm whatsoever.
The Sydney Kings have had a quieter schedule over the past two rounds, playing only once in both Rounds 4 and 5. They lost on both occasions meaning they haven’t tasted success in nearly three weeks.
Most recently, the Kings went down to the Taipans on the road by seven points (80-87). That was off the back of a 105-95 loss against the JackJumpers at home in Round 4. That takes them to 4-3 on the season, which is still probably slightly ahead of expectation.
The start of the season was always going to be a slow burn for the Kings considering how much roster turnover they had in the off-season, coupled with injuries to key personnel. However, they’re almost back to full health now that DJ Hogg has made his return, so perhaps now we will start to see the best version of the Sydney Kings.
Match prediction: The Kings have had the wood over their crosstown rivals in recent times, winning each of their last seven meetings. However, the Hawks have nearly always kept things tight in those seven matchups, losing by more than 10 points on only one occasion.
If there’s ever been a time for the Hawks to flip the script and steal a win against the Kings, it’s this Friday night. The Kings are still working out their rotations and suffering back-to-back wire-to-wire losses leading into this one just might have them doubting themselves a touch. Even if the Hawks are to go down for the eighth straight time, I think they can keep it close enough to cover the big spread at home.
Illawarra Hawks +6.5
$1.90 (1 Unit)