Bruton says Wiley energy key in success
Adelaide 36ers coach CJ Bruton has hailed the impact of import power forward Jacob Wiley in his side’s 96-93 win against South East Melbourne Phoenix at the Entertainment Centre on Friday night.
Wiley was everywhere for the home side, scoring 17 points and hauling down 14 rebounds while keeping his side afloat in a disappointing first half.
Bruton said Wiley’s passion, enthusiasm and energy were keys to his side turning around an 18-point deficit at the main break into a three-point success.
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“He is an amazing player and I said at half time to the boys, the big guys, you got no rebounds, you have one and Wiz (Wiley) has eight,” Bruton said post game.
“He was hustling and getting after it and playing desperate, we don’t play 82 games.
“I thought the energy he brings and plays with was something we need consistent, not just from him, but all of our players.
“I want him to continue to be that, he sets the tone, he is a weapon.”
Bruton said the game was a tale of two halves and his side reaped the rewards after following the game plan in the second half.
“Doing what we said we were going to do from the jump,” Bruton said about his half time message.
“We were able to play defense solid, run lanes, get into our actions quick, set great screens, share the ball, get open shots and clearly only giving them one shot was the key.”
The thrilling comeback win puts the 36ers at a 4-7 win-loss record heading into the two-week FIBA break.
“You need to find a way to win at home and be consistent to have a shot at making the playoffs,” Bruton said.
“Clearly, you don’t want to be 18 points down, but you got to make some timely buckets and you got to keep that pressure on, as the game on we did that.”
Adelaide will be back in action on Thursday, November 30 when the 36ers travel to New Zealand for a showdown with the Breakers in Christchurch.