Preview of the BBL trophy: Plymouth Raiders vs Leicester RidersDate: 17/03/2017 | Author: BBL
We get the lowdown on the BBL Trophy Final at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow this weekend - with the showpiece game also being played alongside the WBBL Trophy for the very first time.
Sunday 19 March 2017
Plymouth Raiders v Leicester Riders (BBL Trophy Final) 3.30pm on the RED BUTTON and BBC Sport App, Website and via Connected TV.
Plymouth Raiders aim to end their 10-year wait for silverware when they face the streaking Leicester Riders in the BBL Trophy Final in front of the BBC Sport cameras on Sunday.
This competition holds fond memories for both these teams, being the last prize Plymouth collected, in 2007, and Riders entering this showpiece event as the holders.
Leading the BBL Championship having won 15 games in a row, Riders will no doubt be favouites, but Raiders pushed them mighty close in their previous meeting – a 96-93 overtime victory for Leicester – and will want to reward their passionate support for making the long trip.
Word from the Raiders:
Raiders guard Elvisi Dusha: “We have had a few performances lately that maybe you wouldn't want before a big game like Sunday, but at the end of the day the final comes down to which team wants it more.
“To Leicester, winning is everything and they have a fantastic coach with some serious players on that roster, so they know what it takes to win.
“They compete year in, year out in these big competitions so we really need to leave everything on the floor Sunday afternoon for a shot at winning.”
View from the commentary box
BBL commentator Daniel Routledge: “If sporting clichés have taught us anything, it is that the form book goes out of the window when it comes to finals. Let’s hope so, because the form book makes this look like a one-sided affair. Leicester come in on a club-record win streak, while Plymouth haven’t won a game in 40 minutes since the first leg of the semi-final almost six weeks ago.
“Plymouth’s woes are bizarre to me, because offensively I think they are one of the most talented rosters in the league. I still have faith that on the big stage, we will see the best of Plymouth and this game will be more akin to the league meeting in December, where Leicester staged a late fight-back to snatch an overtime victory.
“The key is obviously Plymouth’s offence versus Leicester’s defence. As we all know, Riders’ defence is one of the best in the league, in points against per-game terms they are on pace for top ten all-time in the BBL.
“Looking at the Raiders’ wins this season they’ve basically averaged 100 points per game, in their losses they’ve averaged not much more than 83 points.
“Leicester have only given up more than 83 points five times, but even then they’ve won three of those, and nobody has managed a century against them. I think Plymouth will need to be at least in the 90s to win this game, but I’ve no doubt they are capable of that, even though it has been a while since we’ve seen it.”
• Riders have won the last 15 meetings between these teams
• Riders could become the first team to retain the BBL Trophy since Esh Group Eagles Newcastle in 2010
• Raiders are one of only two teams to average more points per-game in the BBL Championship than Riders this season