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London Lions and Newcastle Eagles host BBL play-off final showdown |  Basketball News


Rahmon Fletcher leads the Newcastle Eagles to victory over BBL champion Leicester Riders, while DeAndre Liggins inspires the London Lions to a return to the second leg against the Plymouth Raiders.

Last updated: 05/13/21 22:28 pm

DeAndre Liggins goes up to the basket against the Raiders. Image: BBL

The London Lions and Newcastle Eagles will lead the roost in the 2020-21 play-offs finals as their BBL and WBBL teams face off in this weekend’s season final.

Newcastle delivered an incredible performance to beat Leicester Riders 88-69 in their second leg, before London reversed a 12-point lead by the Plymouth Raiders in the first leg in a superb comeback to win 100-80 on the night and organize a repeat of this season’s BBL Cup final.

The Lions blew up the blocks in the opening period of the second game of the night, and the Raiders’ 12-point lead from the first leg quickly turned into a two-point aggregate advantage for London as Justin Robinson led. forward with 17 points in the game. quarter opening.

Plymouth stopped the Lions’ momentum in the second period as they kept their opponents to just 12 points and ended a nice final at the half with a monster jam from Ashley Hamilton, who would have considered himself unhappy to have missed the Molten BBL team. of the year earlier this week.

London was further hampered in the third period as they lost Robinson to injury and Orlando Parker fouled in the game, but inspired MVP contender DeAndre Liggins came out shooting to lead the charge for the BBL Trophy champions.

Their lead had been reduced to just one point on the night halfway through the third, before Liggins, who scored 23 points, a team-high, froze a late flurry with a three-point dagger with a bit more one minute to play.

Rickey McGill, who played the 80 minutes in an exciting tie, led all scorers with 25 points as he capped an impressive season with another galvanizing performance, but it was the Lions who booked their spot in the end-of-season showdown on Saturday.

The action of the evening had started with the BBL champions facing the BBL Cup winners, after an exhilarating first leg that saw a late push from the Eagles bring them less than a point behind the Riders in aggregate.

Newcastle started the stronger of the two teams and, led by Evan Maxwell’s eight points in the first quarter, took a nine point lead before the second. The Riders hit their stride in the second period and a late 6-0 inning reduced the lead to just one point the night before halftime.

The Eagles then came to life in the second half to wow the champions and, led by their own MVP contender Rahmon Fletcher, kept the Riders to just 12 points in the third quarter. Holding an imposing lead heading into the final period, the Eagles refused to take their foot off the gas at both ends of the pitch and scored their place in what will sure be an exciting season decider.

Fletcher led all scorers with 27 points in an outstanding individual display that also saw him rack up 10 assists, while Darien Nelson-Henry led the Riders with a double-double of his own with 13 points and 11 rebounds.

The BBL and WBBL play-off finals will take place at Leicester’s Morningside Arena on Sunday 16 May, again live on Sky Sports.

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