WE’VE finally reached that point of the year.
It’s the play-offs and the 32nd consecutive time the Perth Wildcats have made the NBL finals.
It’s an incredible streak and something that is in your mind at the beginning of the season.
I remember at the start of my career, reaching the play-offs was a near certainty. But it’s become extremely difficult to cement your top-four position.
It will be crucial to maintain focus in the next two weeks before we face Adelaide in game 1 on March 3.
The week off will be used wisely to recharge our batteries, but I know the guys will be raring to go that first game away from home.
Heading into the contests against Melbourne United and Cairns Taipans, we wanted to gather some momentum before the FIBA International break and solidify our style of play.
It’s well known we haven’t been playing consistent basketball in recent times.
To me, consistency has always depended on our intensity, which is driven on the defensive end.
It’s our identity and the backbone of this group.
We have proven extremely tough to beat when each player is committed to the game plan in defence.
While we didn’t get a favourable result against a talented United side, we took a step in the right direction.
We were aggressive, but hurt ourselves significantly by giving them second chances. Coming off that loss, it was terrific to see us make a stand at Perth Arena against Cairns.
We’ve been extremely disappointed by our home performances recently so the convincing win was just what we needed.
It was a great opportunity to rest some of the guys that have had a huge workload and also allowed others to gain confidence before the playoffs.