BBL: London Lions 95 Plymouth 67
PUBLISHED: 16:44 23 December 2017
London Lions had a successful return to the Copper Box and BBL action as they handed below-par Plymouth Raiders a thumping 28-point defeat on Friday.
It was a particularly special night for new London signing Cory Dixon who, on his debut, chalked up 13 points, five rebounds, four assists and two steals against his former club.
Despite the attention being on Dixon, it was a full team effort that sees the Lions go into the Christmas break unbeaten at home in the league.
Captain Joe Ikhinmwin led from the front with a fantastic first quarter in which he scored 15 points, including back to back shots from behind the arc, causing the visitors problems under both baskets.
The rest of the team quickly took Ikhinmwin’s example, with Brandon Peel chalking up and impressive 16 points, five rebounds and two outstanding blocks.
Moritz Lanegger and Will Hall produced some great playmaking, with Lanegger getting seven rebounds and 10 assists.
The Lions finished the first quarter in commanding style, leading 33-10, but the second quarter saw them slightly stutter, allowing Plymouth the slight hope of getting back into the game.
But Plymouth simply couldn’t keep up and despite a 14-14 tied quarter, the Lions went into the break up 47-24.
Both sides struggled as the third quarter started, but you never really got the sense that the Lions would lose and just as Plymouth started to pick up the pace, London found another gear courtesy of Dixon and Paul Guede as the lead grew to 63-38.
By the time Peel tipped the ball into the basket and the buzzer went for the end of the third, the Lions were sitting comfortably at 78-45.
Lions took the foot off the gas a little in the fourth quarter, which Raiders took 22-17, but it was little consolation for the visitors in a heavy loss.
After enjoying Christmas, Lions travel to Glasgow on December 29, before a New Year’s Day trip to local rivals Surrey Scorchers.
The next home game will be against the Sheffield Sharks on January 7 (4pm).
Lions: Peel 16, Ikhinmwin 15, Dixon 13, Robinson 12, Isenbarger 9, Guede 9, Hall 6, Lockhart 4, Roberts 4, James 4, Lanegger 3.