NBL1 + BBL Trophy Preview: Week 17 (19-21 February 2021) - live streams, stats and more

There are three days of action for NBL fans in Week 17 as the BBL Trophy once again joins the schedule, providing a total of eight games to enjoy.

Team Solent Kestrels are the only remaining NBL side in the Trophy and they head to Surrey this evening looking for a place in the semi-final against either Worcester or Plymouth.

Five NBL games on Saturday are tipped off by Worthing's trip to Bradford, and two games take place on Sunday as Reading travel to Oaklands and Nottingham host Essex.

We take a look at all Week 17's games below, with links to live stats and live streams at the bottom of the page.

Thames Valley Cavaliers (7-1) v Derby Trailblazers (8-1)

It's second hosts third on Saturday evening as the Cavs and Trailblazers face off in what should be highly competitive affair.

Two well-matched sides on paper, both TVC and Derby have plenty of quality on their respective rosters.

Thames Valley's Hakeem Sylla is having a stellar season and his performances last weekend against Nottingham and Essex earned him an NBL Team of the Week call. Hardly a surprise for a player that has enjoyed 30+ efficiency on four occasions and six double-doubles this season already.

Sylla's battle on the glass against Derby's Oliver Stanley is sure to make for compelling viewing, as will the contest between Americans Taylor Johnson and Malcolm Smith.

With both these sides shooting north of 47% from the floor this season and scoring more than 90ppg, expect plenty of offence tomorrow in what could be a high-scoring thriller.

Trailblazers Head Coach Matt Shaw said: “Thames Valley look like a really good team this year. We’ve got to see them play a few times and they’re definitely a step up from where they were last season and considering they finished runners up last time around, we know it’s going to be really tough down there.

“They’ve got some really good guards and they’ve added a couple of new players, one at the guard spot and a couple in the forward area, so I think it’s going to be a really difficult challenge but it’s also going to be really exciting.

“Most of the times we’ve played Thames Valley, they’ve been really good, fun games and last year’s overtime contest was great to watch.

“Hopefully, if we do what we know we’re capable of, we should have a really good chance of extending our winning run in the league.”


Elsewhere this weekend

Saturday's remaining action begins with Bradford Dragons (5-3) hosting Worthing Thunder (3-7).

Some may have expected to see Worthing in freefall following the departure of Cam Hildreth, but the South coast side have come together well to beat Loughborough and take Hemel to OT in recent weeks.

3-2 in their last five, Bradford enjoyed a single point victory over Loughborough last time out and will look to use that 80-79 win to provide some momentum going forward.

Loughborough Riders (3-8) could easily be much higher up the table had they not lost four games this season by three points or less.

A visit from Hemel Storm (7-2) and forward Greg Poleon won't be easy, but Coach Jarram's side still have plenty of quality at their disposal even if results haven't been going their way.

It's been four games without a win for BA London Lions (2-4), they'll be hard pressed to avoid making it five in a row on Saturday afternoon as they face Team Solent Kestrels (8-0).

Coach Guymon's side clocked up their 50th straight win in NBL competitions last weekend, an incredible streak for any team, and the Kestrels have shown no sign of letting up in recent weeks.

Essex Rebels (2-5) embark on a sizable road trip tomorrow as they head up the country to face Team Newcastle University (7-3).

The Rebels will be hoping the near 600-mile round trip isn't in vain, though they'll need to stop Ronald Blain (fifth for PPG with 22.9) if they're going to get the W.

The Rebels also make a stop in the Midlands to face Nottingham Hoods (2-7) on Sunday afternoon, a contest between 11th and 12th as things stand.

Nottingham's Victor Olarerin (23.7ppg) has been a standout this season, his contest with the likes of Blain and David Moya will be worth watching.

Sunday's only other game sees Reading Rockets (3-4) head to Oaklands Wolves (2-7) for a 3:30pm tip.

The Rockets sport a top-five offence (89.6ppg), powered by American guard O'Showen Williams. The Wolves will need to find a way to slow that production tomorrow as they look to bounce back from last weekend's 119-58 humbling by Solent.

Reading's O'Showen Williams averages 20.6ppg this season (Todd Lindley)

BBL Trophy

Surrey Scorchers v Team Solent Kestrels

The Kestrels continue to fly the flag for the NBL in this season's BBL Trophy as the only side left in the draw.

Surrey relied on the heroics of former NBL star Cam Hildreth to bounce Thames Valley out of the competition in round one, coming through 101-100 in what was a fantastic matchup.

Since that win, the Scorchers have played just once more, a narrow 77-75 league defeat by Worcester, as the team remain one from bottom of the BBL standings.

Solent were able to progress to round two after defeating a familiar face in the shape of fellow-NBL side Derby, winning that one 101-73.

Despite the BBL to NBL difference in play here, some may say that the Kestrels should be seen as favourites for this one. It's worth remembering that Solent knocked off London Lions and Bristol Flyers in last season's Trophy, before pushing Newcastle to OT in the final.

This season's Solent team may be even more impressive that a year ago, a troubling sign for an off-form Surrey side.

This weekend's fixtures:

Friday 19 February

6pm - Surrey Scorchers v Team Solent Kestrels - LIVE STATS/WATCH VIA BBL PLAYER

Saturday 20 February

2pm - Bradford Dragons v Worthing Thunder - LIVE STATS
2:30pm - Loughborough Riders v Hemel Storm - LIVE STATS/LIVE STREAM
4pm - Team Newcastle University v Essex Rebels - LIVE STATS/LIVE STREAM LOCATION
4pm - BA London Lions v Team Solent Kestrels - LIVE STATS
6:30pm - Thames Valley Cavaliers v Derby Trailblazers - LIVE STATS/LIVE STREAM

Sunday 21 February

3:30pm - Oaklands Wolves v Reading Rockets - LIVE STATS
5pm - Nottingham Hoods v Essex Rebels - LIVE STATS/LIVE STREAM LOCATION

Main image credit - Lauren Newham