Coach Joey Wright accepts his Adelaide side have to be at their best to beat Melbourne.The Adelaide 36ers need to play the “almost perfect” game to defeat Melbourne United in their NBL championship decider, according to coach Joey Wright.
Following a week of self-imposed media silence, the Sixers coach spoke at length about the opportunity to win Adelaide’s fifth NBL crown at the end of Thursday’s open training session.
Wright had remained tight-lipped with the media after being fined $5000 for post-game comments he made about the league after game one in Melbourne.
“We’ve got to play almost the perfect game,” Wright said about what was required to win the deciding game of the best-of-five grand final series in enemy territory on Saturday.
“Not perfect in making shots or making the right decisions on the court but perfect in our attitude and our approach to it.
“If we do that, we will give ourselves the opportunity.”
For Adelaide to claim the title from the minor premiers in front of a sold-out crowd at Hisense Arena, Wright knows his side need to curb the influence of United’s marquee men Casper Ware, Chris Goulding and Casey Prather.
“Over the four games, it’s either Ware stepping up, it’s either Goulding stepping up or it’s either Prather stepping up,” he said.
“The rest of them play their roles magnificently off of those three so we need to slow those guys up.
“We haven’t slowed all three of them up yet and if we’re going to win it, we’ve got to do that.”
The three-time NBL coach of the year declared it would mean a lot for him to win this year’s title with Adelaide, having steered the Brisbane Bullets to championship success in 2007.
“This group have been working since day one, all out, to put it all together and it’s a really good group,” he said.
“You’d like to reward them for the values and character that they’ve shown this entire year.”
Wright also understands the extra importance for Adelaide to claim a tough series win over their fierce interstate rival.
“I know even before I got here, the South n-Victorian rivalry thing is pretty big,” he said.
“It’s probably a pretty big rivalry but I think we’ve done a lot to help it so that’s great.”