Two of the most-well storied clubs in British Basketball, the London Lions and The Leicester Riders, will face off in tomorrow's BBL Playoff Finals matchup.
The London Lions are coming off a fixture packed season, which included a stint in the FIBA Europe Cup, one of Europe's top caliber competitions. That aspect of their season didn't go to plan, but still saw some success as they went undefeated in the matches leading up to the group stages where they would unfortunately be knocked out however still able to further establish themselves and British Basketball on the European map. Their talented roster which includes the likes of Isaiah Reese, Dirk Williams, Justin Robinson and more were able to secure the 3rd seed during the BBL regular season which by their standard and in comparison recent years, may not have been what they were expecting. Irrespective of that, because of their talent, they have been a very difficult team to come up against and having not won one yet, will be playing with an edge as they look to secure their first ever BBL Playoff title.
For the Riders, it was another dominant regular season. With only 2 losses through 27 games. Rob Paternostro's side were able to add another trophy to the Riders cabinet, one which is already filled with silverware from years past. We're talking about 6 Regular Season Titles, 5 Playoff titles, 3 Cup Titles and 3 Trophy titles, a resumé which many may say is worthy of being named one of the best British Basketball Clubs in the league's entire history. Their roster is also filled with incredible depth and talent, with the likes of the BBL MVP, Geno Crandall, this year's Best British Basketball Player in Patrick Whelan, Conner Washington, Marc Loving and more. Geno's convinced that the Leicester Riders haven't even played their best basketball, despite having such a dominant year.
"It is crazy to say this because we’ve had such a dominant year where everybody has had their moments and played really well, but I don’t think we’ve seen the best of this team yet," said Geno in an interview with the BBL. "If we are able to capture everybody’s best energy and performances for Sunday, knowing that it is the last chance we’re going to have for a while to play together – or at all, for some of us – then it is going to be a challenge for any team that we would face to stop us."
A win tomorrow will give them their sixth playoff title, their first since the 2018-2019 season.
The game will tip-off at 16:15PM, following on from the BBL Dunk Contest.