Monday 23rd Jan
LYIT @ Down Tropics
One of the most intriguing match ups of the week and very tough to call. Tropics have lost perhaps the leagues most talented player, Dejaun Flowers, and had trouble fulfilling a fixture with North Star in week 11. LYIT have lifted themselves out of trouble with two wins to start 2012, a double OT win at home to the Cavs and a one point victory over the Tigers in Andytown. LYIT have championship experience and no doubt it was this experience that helped them make sure they picked up two vital W’s that could so easily have been losses.
The Tropics have a shallow but talented squad and it’s very worrying that it is unconfirmed if Mike Calo will be available. It is expected that LYIT will be without Seamus Hickey for the game and they travelled with only 7 players to Tigers last week. IF the Tropics have a full squad then home court advantage could see them squeak out a close win.
Line: Tropics -2.5
Wednesday 25th Jan
Queens Hornets @ UU Elks
A top of the table clash with Queens currently at the summit with Elks close behind with two games in hand and a higher winning percentage. Elks have won their last four games by a huge average margin of 28 points while Queens have struggled since the break losing away to North Star and the Kilkeel Knights. When these sides met earlier in the season Elks won by 31 points in the PEC and it will take something special for Queens to turn it around and get a win in JTown. Elks have to be favourite for this match up but it will be a lot closer than the first meeting between the sides.
Line: UU Elks -8.5
Wednesday 25th Jan
Dungannon Cavs @ Belfast Star
The latest word is that this game has been postponed due to the broken backboard in St Mals. Any update on this let us know!
Saturday 28th Jan
Kilkeel Knights @ North Star
Another intriguing match up that is very hard to call. The Knights are on a roll with four wins on the bounce and sitting in second place in the table but North Star are undefeated at home and have some impressive victories in Bishops field including a 22 point victory over Queens a week ago and an impressive performance and win over the Ulster Elks. A lot will depend on how the (ridiculously) long journey from Kilkeel to Derry affects the Knights and how North Star can cope with the Knights height advantage inside. Another close game where home court advantage could make the difference.
Line: North Star -1.5
Sunday 29th Jan
Andytown Tigers @ Ballymena Blackstone
There is no doubt about it, this is the most important game of the week! Both sides have been struggling for form although the Tigers have shown that they could be on the verge of a change of fortune as they have had two agonising losses to begin 2012. (Losing by 4 points away to tropics and a single point at home to LYIT.) Ballymena can never be underestimated, especially in St Pats, as they have a talented squad and their poor form has been a shock to the league this year. Andytown beat Blackstone by 10 earlier in the season but once again home advantage could make all the difference in this game. It’s almost too close to call and is a “pickem” game but we give Blackstone the slight advantage due to playing at home. (Especially in January – sub-zero temperatures expected in St Pats!)
Line: Blackstone -0.5