Overcoming a double-digit deficit in the first half, the Taiwan Mobile Leopards rallied from behind to edge past Kinmen Liquor 94-92 at the Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium in Tianmu yesterday afternoon to open their 2012-2013 campaign with a big win.
Wu Dai-hao made his much-anticipated return to Taiwan in a Leopard uniform a hit, scoring a team-high 21 points to help the Leopards avoid being upset by the Distillers.
The former Taiwan Beer power-forward, who spent a season in China’s Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) last year, wowed his new team with several outstanding plays inside the paint on the day. His inside presence, along with former Dacin Tiger center Noel Felix, is sure to cause some problems for opposing teams this season.
Thanks to the outside-shooting of Lin Guan-luen and the inside moves of Shan Wei-fan netting 20 first-half points, the Distillers took a surprising 46-37 lead at the half. However, the Leopards came back strong with a valiant second half to steal the victory.
Trailing by two with time running out, Kinmen Liquor had one final chance to win the game when Hsu Cheng-wei was fouled on an apparent three-point attempt that would have granted the Kinmen Liquor forward three free-throw shots.
However, the officiating crew insisted that the infraction by the Leopards was a non-shooting foul, denying the Distillers an opportunity to turn the game around.
‧ Bank of Taiwan 74, Luxgens 86
‧ Tigers 74, Taiwan Beer 75