Bullets coach Andrej Lemanis says match-winner Vic Law is like the “Holy Grail” of NBL imports after he guided the Bullets to a 90-87 victory over Sydney at Nissan Arena on Tuesday.
The athletic forward was nothing short of outstanding in Brisbane’s first win of the 2021 season with 27 points, nine rebounds, five blocked shots and two assists to go with Nathan Sobey’s critical haul of 26 points, seven assists and six rebounds for the home side.
Law – who played for Orlando Magic in the NBA last year – dragged Brisbane back into the contest after Sydney’s lightning fast start, and he was the money man again in the fourth term when Sobey was also a pivotal figure for the Bullets.
Sydney lost star swingman Didi Louzada with an ankle injury in the third quarter when Brisbane stretched their buffer to 12 points before the Kings surged home only to be thwarted by the considerable one-two punch of Law and Sobey.
Lemanis said his import – who hit 11 shots from 15 attempts from the field – was delivering in spades at both ends of the court.
“We always knew Vic is a great player and it was always going to take him a little time to find his feet. It was great to see him shoot at such a great percentage tonight. He took good shots and he took his time,’’ he said.
“One of the most pleasing things is that he plays defence, he cares about defence, he rebounds, he wants big assignments, and he is a good teammate.
“So that’s really the Holy Grail, right? To get good players who are also good teammates. It gives you a chance to be good as a team.’’
Lemanis said Brisbane showed more poise and had better shot selection than their opening two losses of the season against Brian Goorjian’s Hawks, while the “points in the paint” tally of 50-34 was crucial, with 21-year-old Kiwi seven-footer Tyrell Harrison producing 11 points and 11 rebounds in a breakout performance for the Bullets.
Brisbane will host Cairns in the “Sunshine Stoush” on Saturday night, while the Kings will continue their marathon road trip against Adelaide on Saturday.
Kings head coach Adam Forde said scans will reveal whether or not Louzada will be fit for the injury-hit Sydney who need to make a number of adjustments regardless of who suits up.
“We are struggling to be able to defend the rim at the moment, some real deficiencies in how we match up. We’ve really got to do a better job,’’ he said.
“We definitely had our chances, that’s what we’ll focus on … we had our glimpses of brilliance and we had moments where that were just outright terrible.’’
Import Jarell Martin had 26 points, 11 rebounds and two assists to lead Sydney, while Casper Ware had 15 points from five of 14 from the field.