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Kings best bet against United in another tight round of NBL

Wed, Dec 7, 3:14pm by Jake Equid

It’s turning into the closest NBL season of all time as the ‘experts’ continue to be proven wrong week after week.

There is only three games between first and last and as Melbourne United showed last week when they jumped from last to sixth with a single win, we are in for a sensational season.

I hope you followed my advice last week and got a piece of the suggested bet when the Taipans saluted in Brisbane, beating the Bullets 89-84 for a handy collect of $2.20.

Cairns were one of four teams to win on the road last week but it wasn’t all doom and gloom for the Bullets who managed a stunning win of their own in Perth on Thursday – which may be one of the reasons they were overrun at home two nights later.

The other two clubs to win away were the ladder-leading Sydney Kings, who beat the Hawks in Illawarra after the Hawks were able to win three nights earlier in New Zealand.

Appropriately, that’s where we start this week too, when the Breakers host the Bullets to tip-off Round Ten on Thursday.

The Breakers had a horrible time in round nine, first off losing at home to the Hawks and then losing in Melbourne on Sunday. Last season’s runner-up now find themselves in last place and needing a win.

They’re favourites to get that win at $1.65 with the second-placed Bullets at the juicy odds of $2.25. The Bullets can achieve the upset if Jermaine Beal can repeat his performance of 17 points and four assists from the win in Perth last Thursday.

Next up, the Taipans host the Kings on Friday night. Both sides are coming off wins in a match-up that should go down to the wire. The Kings are slight favourites at $1.78 with the Taipans at $2.05.

The 209cm centre Nathan Jawai has been every bit that big in the Taipans’ last two wins while the Kings snapped a two-game losing streak on Monday against the Hawks, once again led by former Hawk and MVP Kevin Lisch who top scored with 23 points.

Speaking of the Hawks, they head to Brisbane on Saturday to face the Bullets in the match of the round. The Bullets are $1.65 favourites, with the Hawks at $2.25.

If Rotnei Clarke can produce like he did in Illawarra’s 99-93 loss in Sydney on Monday where he finished with six of nine threes then they’ll be tough to beat. Brisbane lost on the same floor on Saturday.

The Friday night match between the Wildcats and United sees both teams at $1.90 for the win.

The defending Champions have really hit the skids, they’re on a four-game losing streak and come up against a Melbourne side that have finally started to find some form, winning three in a row.

Another club who have won three in a row are the Adelaide 36ers and they’re solid favourites ($1.56) to make it four straight when they host New Zealand ($2.44) on Saturday.

I’m going to take the $1.65 on offer for the Kings to beat United on Sunday ($2.25). As we saw last weekend with the Bullets, backing up 48 hours later after a tough road trip to Perth is tough and Sydney on their home floor is difficult enough anyway.

Here’s a couple of stats to leave you with, proving just how tight this season is. All eight teams have spent time in the top four this season and five clubs (New Zealand, Illawarra, Adelaide, Cairns and Melbourne) have all spent time on the bottom of the ladder. Amazing.

Suggested Bet: Sydney to beat Melbourne: $1.65

Round Ten:

New Zealand Breakers ($1.65) v Brisbane Bullets ($2.25), Vector Arena, 5:30pm, Thursday 8 December

Cairns Taipans ($2.05) v Sydney Kings ($1.78), Cairns Convention Centre, 7:30pm, Friday 9 December

Perth Wildcats ($1.90) v Melbourne United ($1.90), Perth Arena, 9:30pm, Friday 9 December

Adelaide 36ers ($1.56) v New Zealand Breakers ($2.44), Titanium Security Arena, 5:30pm, Saturday 10 December

Brisbane Bullets ($1.65) v Illawarra Hawks ($2.25), Brisbane Convention and Entertainment Centre, 7:30pm, Saturday 10 December

Sydney Kings ($1.65) v Melbourne United ($2.25), Qudos Bank Arena, 3:00pm, Sunday 11 December

Cairns Taipans ($1.56) v Adelaide 36ers ($2.44), Cairns Convention Centre, 7:30pm, Monday 12 December

All times are Australian Eastern Daylight Savings Time*

Odds were provided by Sportsbet and were correct at the time of publishing*

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