Lebanese Basketball League- Preview: Byblos vs Riyadi
02 Feb.2017- Byblos host Riyadi on Friday as they hope to continue their fine streak and hold on to the 2nd spot and even put pressure on Homenetmen’s lead.
Byblos have been playing beautiful basketball, sharing the ball well and getting everybody involved. They are the team that commits the least TOs in this league. This underlines the fact that Rodrigue Akl and Jay Youngblood have been dealing well with the ball in their hands. With Wael Arakji and Ken Brown, Riyadi have the perfect front line to isolate both of Byblos’ ball handlers. By isolating them, you suffocate the team and manage to put them out of focus.
The SF position will have the greatest attention, with Branko Cvetkovic taking on Clay Tucker. Both great shooters, tremendous range and quick release, they can make it rain. Branko will have a bit of an advantage as he has Jean Abdel Nour coming on to help him. Jean is known for his hustle and energy, as he is one of the best defenders this game has even seen. He can definitely be Tucker’s nightmare. Talking about rain, you can always depend on Amir Saoud to pour it from down town.
Down low, Ebi, Kanaan and Abi Kheres will find their mission a bit difficult. Alade Aminu has showed his true worth during the tournament in Dubai, alongside Ali Haidar they made on dangerous duo. Haidar is the key as he is faster and more athletic than Kanaan and Abi Kheres, and can easily spread the defense with his outside shot, leaving Aminu one on one with his man down low. Byblos’ problems are not yet over. They have to worry about Ismael Ahmad coming off the bench as he can easily turn the game around as he managed time and time before.
With Riyadi’s shocking loss in the final of Dubai, Byblos might find it to be the right time to pounce on a wounded champion to take them off their throne.