December 12 2013 Latest news:
By James Cunliffe
Friday, October 25, 2013
London Lions coach Vince Macaulay says he won’t make sweeping changes for tonight’s visit of Plymouth Raiders and believes his side’s Devon triumph in the reverse fixture will stand them in good stead.
The capital club have had to sit out of action for two weeks, thanks to a quirk of the British Basketball League Championship fixture schedule, and that has left longer that usual to ruminate on two back-to-back defeats to Durham Wildcats and high-flying Worcester Wolves, which has left them in mid-table.
Macaulay said: “I think the first 10 games are always a bit of a look-see.
“But for us giving the ball away twice in that last 25 seconds [against Worcester] and a great defensive comeback in Durham we could be four and zero at the moment.
“We won’t change anything radically, it’s more about fine tuning what we are currently doing.
“We all wanted to get back into playing but actually, what it [the two-week hiatus] has done, is just allowed us to look at how we are implementing things and really make those connections, but obviously we are very keen to get back on the floor.”
Lions beat Raiders 79-70 in their second game of the campaign but the south-west side’s form has been good of late and they currently sit fifth in the standings, two places above London.
“We are not taking anybody lightly and we know that they are a very talented team,” Macaulay said. “We said so, even when we beat them.
“They looked like they can cause some trouble; they can run and get up and down the floor, which is the way they’ve used to beat other people.
“But that’s the way we play so it’s perfect for us and that’s why we were able to beat them down there.
“Having said that, they will have bonded well now and they’ve beaten Glasgow in Glasgow, Newcastle at home, so they’ll be feeling confident.
“We feel that we’ve got to defend our home court and in the first of two games, get us up and running.”
Macaulay criticised London’s first half performance against Worcester in their last outing but a fortnight of practice has him in buoyant mood that there won’t be a repeat of that first 20 minutes.
He said: “Our defence is certainly good enough now to be able to shut people down, make sure we can put a few extra points on the board and not give people second opportunities, which is what we gave to Worcester.
“If we execute a little bit better we’ll be fine.
“We know what Plymouth are offering but when you go through the season early on, you just don’t know what you’re facing.
“With Worcester, while we scouted them, until we saw them it was difficult to prepare fully.
“But with Plymouth we know what to expect and hopefully we go out and get the result that we had down there.”
• Tip-off tonight is 7.30pm with the game also being screened live on BBL TV.
• For a preview of Sunday’s 4pm tip-off against Glasgow return here on October 27.