Drinkwise Preview: NBL24 - Round 17, Game 1 v Brisbane Bullets
Melbourne United Media
Looking to bounce back from their sixth loss of the season, Melbourne United will hit the road once again, this time to face off against the Bullets in Brisbane.
Over the past few years, United have dominated the matchup between these two sides, tallying 10 straight victories over the Bullets. This included a 35-point demolition in their most recent meeting in Round 10.
If Melbourne can secure a victory on Friday, they will move one step closer to securing a top-two finals position.
PLAYER TO WATCH
Against Brisbane this season, Chris Goulding has shot the ball at an unbelievable clip.
In his two meetings with the Bullets, Goulding has averaged 19.5 points per game, while connecting on 12 three-pointers on 63% shooting from behind the arc.
If Goulding can replicate these performances, he would extend his streak of consecutive games having made three or more three-pointers to 15 games.
For the most part, when Brisbane have enjoyed success this season, it’s been on the back of big-time performances from Nathan Sobey.
While the athletic guard has torched the league, he has struggled against United, in large-part due to the defensive attention he receives from Shea Ili.
Set to return to the court having missed Melbourne’s last two games, Ili will look to lock down Sobey once again, who is averaging just 14 points on 30% shooting from the field and 16% shooting from three-point range against United in NBL24.
THE OTHER GUYS
Having won five of their last six games, the Bullets will be hoping they can continue their run in hopes of solidifying their playoff position come the end of the regular season.
The big-man pairing of Aron Baynes and Tyrell Harrison showcased their ability to impose their will on the opposition in Round 16, combining for 31 points and 21 rebounds against the Taipans.
On the wings, the pair of former United championship winners; Casey Prather and Sam McDaniel, provide stout defence and an athletic presence.
A large X-factor will be the play of imports Chris Smith and Shannon Scott, who have struggled to find consistency over the course of the season.
Who: Melbourne United vs Brisbane Bullets
Tip-off: 7:30pm AEDT, Friday January 26, 2024
Where: Nissan Arena, Brisbane
Watch: ESPN via Kayo and Foxtel