Fri, Apr 09, 2010 - Page 19 News List

SBL: Dacin Tigers’ Tien Lei honored as SBL Player of the Week

By Paul Huang  /  CONTIBUTING REPORTER

Tien Lei’s valuable performances, which helped salvage a 1-1 record for the Dacin Tigers in a pair of tough matches against worthy opponents last weekend, earned him Super Basketball League’s (SBL) Player of the Week honor for this week.

The three-time league MVP out of National Taiwan Normal University — who netted a season-high 28 points in a loss against the Yulon Luxgens on Saturday before topping that with 37 points in a big win over Kinmen Liquor on Sunday — has finally shaken off some nagging injuries to live up to his potential.

“I am really happy about winning it [the Player of the Week honor] and I hope to build on that,” Tien said after learning of his selection for the weekly award.

FITNESS KEY

His regained fitness will be the key to the Tigers’ quest for their second title now that they have qualified for a berth in postseason play with a league-best 18-6 record.

Tien and the rest of the Tiger pack will have their hands full this weekend with three tough battles, starting with tonight’s match against Taiwan Beer at the Taipei County Gymnasium in Sinjhuang before taking on Pure Youth Construction tomorrow and Sunday’s weekend finale versus the Luxgens.

BIG TEST

It will be a big test for the Tigers since all three of their opponents for the weekend are likely to make it into the four-team postseason with the Builders having won four straight and the Brew Crew taking three of their last four.

Keeping the turnovers down and securing the defensive glass will be crucial for skipper Chiou Da-tsong as his team cannot afford to play sloppily against any of their opponents this weekend or give up any easy put-back baskets.

TONIGHT’S ACTION

In addition to the Tigers’ game against Taiwan Beer at 8pm, Kinmen Liquor will launch into the weekend’s play by taking on Bank of Taiwan at 6pm in what should be a relatively straightforward encounter for the Distillers.

With a chance to play in the postseason on the line, the Distillers will surely try to establish their dominance early with top-scoring US import Shawn “the Hawk” Hawkins swarming the basket while fellow forward Cheng “QQ” Ren-wei looks to connect from behind the three-point line with his long-range attack.

Nothing would please Bank of Taiwan head coach Lai Liang-chung more than an upset victory against the Distillers, since the Bankers have not managed a win against Kinmen Liquor in any of their four regular-season games thus far.

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