Knights, Rebels square off
THE much-anticipated FLOW/National Basketball League (NBL) Southern Conference final will be decided this evening when Urban Knights square off against Runnin Rebels at the National Stadium courts starting at 6:00 pm.
After slow starts to their campaigns, both teams turned their season around to finish atop the points table.
The Knights topped the 14-team standings with 24 points, one more than second-placed Rebels to secure their places in the incentive final.
Urban Knights, the more seasoned campaigners, will start as slight favourites after their first-round win over the Rebel.
However, Rebels coach Pete Matthews says they are a much better team than when they played the Knights earlier in the season and they will be giving their all come this evening.
"They beat us in the preliminaries so they will come very confident, but we are coming to give them a hell off a fight for this title because we are hungry for it," he said.
The Rebels have in their ranks last season's MVP and arguably the league's best player in Kemar McLeish, the former Urban Knights and Majesty Legends.
And he should be well assisted by former Kingston College player Omari Green, who has done extremely well for Matthews' team this season along with veteran Paron Brown.
Matthews pointed out that when they played the Knights in the preliminary round they were still getting their act together, but he said the defeat served as a "wake-up call" and they are now ready to face them again.
"We are extremely ready and waiting for the game and we will be coming to play hard," he said.
Meanwhile, Knights assistant coach Kevin Alexander said their early-round win over the Rebels is in the past and he expects an even tougher game even though he's confident of victory.
"This is a whole new ball game and the stakes are higher, so I'm expecting them to come at us," he said.