There are some new faces in the third BBL All-Star 5 after the busiest week of the season so far across BBL Championship and BBL Cup action, led by Tahj Green’s unbelievable performance in the North-West derby live on Sky Sports.
Tajh Green – Manchester Giants
For the third week in a row the All-Star 5 is led by a Manchester forward, but this time it’s rookie Tajh Green with perhaps the best performance of any player so far as Giants won the North-West derby live on Sky Sports and the 6’8″ American produced probably the play of the season. While his eye-popping dunk from a pass to himself off the backboard went viral over the weekend, perhaps more impressive and decisive to Manchester’s victory was his career-best 6-6 shooting from the three-point line, setting the tone for a Giants team that went 14-25 (56%) from long-range on the night. Overall, Green finished with a double-double of 31 points and 10 rebounds, nailing back-to-back threes to spark a 17-7 first quarter burst that gave Giants the lead for good.
Sam Dekker – London Lions
Appearing for the second week in a row as Lions improved to 4-0, former NBA man Sam Dekker is going from strength-to-strength and showing his versatility early in the campaign as Lions edged past Caledonia Gladiators in midweek action at the Copper Box Arena. Dekker finished with 30 points on 10-13 (76%) shooting, along with eight rebounds and two assists, including 10 points in the last four minutes of the game to break a tie and settle the contest, with the hosts having come from behind in the final stanza.
William Lee – Manchester Giants
Amazingly William Lee, another Manchester forward, continues a run of having featured in every All-Star 5 so far this season as he had a do-it-all performance in the Sky Sports win over Cheshire Phoenix at the National Basketball Performance Centre. Lee scored 19 points, knocking down 3-7 (42%) in the team’s three-point barrage, with seven rebounds, three assists, three blocks and three steals. Like Green he also made some statement plays, although they mostly came at the defensive end as the league’s leader in blocked shots.
Sa’eed Nelson – B. Braun Sheffield Sharks
A gritty, defensive contest at the Cheshire Oaks Arena on Sunday needed one player to stand above the rest and grab the victory, and Sa’eed Nelson was the man to do that for Sharks as they got their first win of the season on the road at the Phoenix. The dynamic American guard shot 8-13 (61%) from the floor on his was to 21 points, with seven rebounds and two assists, and was the only Sheffield player to score in double-figures in the game. Sharks won the fourth period 19-7 to settle a close contest, Nelson scoring six points in the last ten minutes.
David Cohn – Newcastle Eagles
Newcastle also got their first win of the campaign on Sunday, progressing to the quarter finals of the BBL Cup after a nail-biting 77-75 road win at Plymouth City Patriots, with new point guard David Cohn pulling the strings and making big plays throughout. The graduate of William & Mary, who joined recently from a professional season in Germany, finished the game with 21 points on 5-8 (62%) three-point shooting, while handing out five assists; and that included eight points and three assists in the middle of the third period as Eagles overturned a deficit.
Off the bench: Larry Austin (Cheshire Phoenix), Elvisi Dusha (Plymouth City Patriots), Javion Hamlet (Newcastle Eagles), Marc Loving (Leicester Riders), David Sloan (Caledonia Gladiators), Derryck Thornton (Leicester Riders), Tomislav Zubcic (London Lions).