The fourth of six NBL24 games in Round 18 will be the Saturday night clash between Melbourne United and the South East Melbourne Phoenix. Tip-off is set for 8pm AEDT at John Cain Arena, and we have a full game preview and 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 18 Preview & Betting Tips
Melbourne United vs SE Melbourne Phoenix
Saturday 8pm AEDT, February 3rd, John Cain Arena
The only team not under any real pressure in the backend of the NBL24 regular season is Melbourne United. They did all their work early, amassing a stack of wins during the first half of the season to set themselves up perfectly for the last couple of rounds. As it stands, United are 1 game + percentage clear at the top of the ladder.
Most recently, United lost on the road against the determined Kings by 12 points. That was their seventh and final game of a massive road trip where they went 3-4. Undoubtedly, the entire roster and coaching staff will be excited to finally return home to John Cain Arena on Saturday night.
In contrast, the South East Melbourne Phoenix enter Round 18 glued to the bottom of the standings. They’ve been absolutely decimated by injuries once again this campaign, with all three of their imports missing large chunks of the season. The only real positive for the Phoenix is they’ve been able to get some game time into their development players who have all shown some promising signs in recent weeks.
Despite being heavily undermanned, the Phoenix managed to pull off perhaps the biggest upset of the season when they defeated the Kings in Round 17. That win snapped a five-game losing streak and was just their second victory from their past 10 outings. Unfortunately, they were unable to back it up a couple of days later against the Wildcats who defeated them comfortably.
Match prediction: With one side being at the top of the ladder and the other at the bottom, it’s no surprise that United have had their way with the Phoenix this season. They’ve defeated them in all three Throwdown’s in NBL24 to stretch their overall win streak to four.
For a variety of different reasons, Melbourne United are the overwhelming favourites to win their fifth straight meeting with the Phoenix. They got the better of them by 28 points in their most recent clash and another blowout win is seemingly on the cards on Saturday night.
Melbourne United -13.5
$1.80 (1.5 Units)