NBL1 mid-season review: Melbourne Tigers

IN the mid-season break, Basketball Draft Central takes a look at each National Basketball League (NBL)1 team in both the men’s and women’s competition and will analyse how they have performed to date, some of their top performers, and the run home to see if they can make finals. Today we analyse the Melbourne Tigers, with the men on an impressive run of late, while the women have been inconsistent, but their best is good enough to match it with the top sides.

Men:

Position: 4th
Wins: 8
Losses: 4

Home: 7-1
Away: 1-3
Last 10: 7-3

Points For: 1038
Points Against: 1015
Percentage: 96.6
Points: 24

Summary:

After a shaky start to the season that saw the Tigers drop four of the first six games, Melbourne has turned its home venue, Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre (MSAC) into a fortress. The Tigers are on a six-game winning streak, largely thanks to a 7-1 record at home. On the road they are less confident, winning just one of four, but have set themselves up for a run at the double chance. The star all season has been Nic Pozoglou (21.8 points, 9.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.3 steals) who has been near-unstoppable at times, while Dane Pineau (16.8 points, 15.4 rebounds, 2.9 assists, 1.0 steals and 1.1 blocks) has become a massive addition to the line-up, teaming up well with Mike Wells (12.7 points, 1.5 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.8 steals) and Michael Luxford (11.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 4.4 assists and 2.2 steals), while William Hickey‘s (9.3 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.0 steals) work off the bench has been handy.

The run home:

R10: Nunawading Spectres (A)
R11: Baskewtball Australia Centre of Excellence (H)
R12: North West Thunder (A) | Hobart Huskies (A)
R13: Frankston Blues (A)
R14: Hobart Huskies (H)
R15: Ballarat Miners (A) | Eltham Wildcats (H)

The run home is far from easy, facing the top two sides in the final eight games, while also having to play a further two sides in the top eight, and do the double down in Tasmania. Given their record, the Tigers would only need about three wins to lock up finals which they should do easily, but they will also be keen to aim higher and go for top four.

Women:

Position: 10th
Wins: 6
Losses: 6

Home: 4-4
Away: 2-2
Last 10: 5-5

Points For: 853
Points Against: 864
Percentage: 96.5
Points: 18

Summary:

The greatest claim to a yo-yo season to date, the Tigers have not won nor lost more than two consecutive games. They looked down early, then had a nice couple of wins, dropped back and have picked up again. Trying to work out where they will finish is difficult given the talent on the list, but the obvious inconsistency thus far. Only two players – Louella Tomlinson (16.5 points, 10.4 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 3.3 blocks and 1.2 steals) and Kasey Burton (7.8 points, 7.8 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.1 steals) – have started in all 12 games, while Monique Conti (20.9 points, 5.3 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 1.4 steals) and Molly Matthews (7.3 points, 4.8 rebounds) have been important players throughout the season. The addition of Jenna O’Hea (25.3 points, 9.7 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 1.3 steals and 1.0 blocks) was massive, but she has only managed the three games to-date.

The run home:

R10: Nunawading Spectres (A)
R11: Baskewtball Australia Centre of Excellence (H)
R12: Launceston Tornadoes (A) | Hobart Huskies (A)
R13: Frankston Blues (A)
R14: Hobart Huskies (H)
R15: Ballarat Rush (A) | Eltham Wildcats (H)

The main goal for the Tigers will be to get more consistency in their game from week to week and try and push into the top eight. They will look to win more than half of their remaining eight games to be a chance of finals, and with the evenness of the competition, they will need to knock off those teams around them. With just Nunawading Spectres (sixth) and Eltham Wildcats (eighth) above them, every game is winnable for the tenth placed Tigers, they just need to find the grove.

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