2021/22 NBL: Stats Wrap – Taipans vs Bullets

ROUND 13 of the National Basketball League (NBL)’s 2021/22 season kicked off on Thursday night, with the Brisbane Bullets heading north to take on the Cairns Taipans at the Cairns Convention Centre. The clash between the two Queensland-based sides had some intrigue heading in, with the Bullets in decent form of late, while the Taipans had struggled in their last few outings. However, the home side was able to deliver in this clash, getting off to a blistering start in the first term to take a commanding lead, which they held for the remainder of the match. The Bullets fought bravely to chip away at the margin, but the heroics of star Taipan Scott Machado sealed the win for Cairns in front of their home crowd.

In this article, we take a look at some of the key statistical categories for the match, and how they may have influenced the final result.

Team Stats:

Cairns TaipansBrisbane Bullets
28/64 (43%)FG24/68 (35%)
17/34 (50%)2P17/42 (40%)
11/30 (36%)3P3 Point Field Goals7/26 (26%)
6/14 (42%)FT14/21 (66%)

As expected in a tight result such as this, the key stats were quite even by the time the buzzer sounded to end the final term. The clear bit of success for the Taipans was their shooting from the field, an area they clearly outperformed their opponents in. From two-point territory, the home side made half of their attempts from the field, largely due to the work inside the paint from big man Stephen Zimmerman, who was putting his opponents in spin cycles before creating enough separation to sink the easy bucket.

The Taipans were also deadly from behind the arc at stages, making 11 of their 30 attempts in this area, while the Bullets could only make seven for the match. A large number of these came from the efforts of forward Bul Kuol, who nailed four of his six shots from downtown. He chimed in for some big buckets down the stretch, capitalising on the space given by his opponents.

The Bullets did have some areas of success, but they were by narrow margins. While neither team was excellent from the free throw line, Brisbane was the more accurate side in the end, making two-thirds of their attempts from the charity stripe. They also emerged victorious in the rebounding battle by one solitary board, but this was still an impressive effort given they shot a lower percentage from the field.

Top Points Scorers:

Scott Machado (17)Jason Cadee (15)
Bul Kuol (15)Lamar Patterson (12)
Tahjere McCall (12)Nathan Sobey (11)

While there were no dominant performers in the points category, there were none better than veteran Machado, who led all-comers with his 17 points. As mentioned above, a number of his buckets came in crunch time, which displayed his calming presence within the side. He had some good help from the sharpshooting Kuol, who will be looking to build on this eye-catching effort from behind the arc, while McCall was his usual slippery self with ball in hand. Cadee was excellent at controlling his side’s tempo and knowing what to do when he had the ball, finishing with 15 points and eight assists, while Patterson and Sobey were also creative at scoring the ball.

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