NBL1 & National Cup recap: 16/17 December - live streams, stats and more

Essex Rebels will finish 2023 top of D1M, and there are four semi-finalists now confirmed for this year's NBL National Cup.

It was an action-packed weekend to close the year, with six league games and four exciting Cup ties as teams now head into December's mid-season break.

We take a look back at all of the weekend's action below, with links to live stats and live streams at the bottom of the page.

Nottingham Hoods (6-5) 100-106 Hemel Storm (7-3)

Nottingham and Hemel played out a high-scoring clash on Saturday, with Storm eventually taking the spoils 106-100.

Twice the visitors threatened to run away with the tie, leading by 13 in the first quarter and 19 in the third, though both times Nottingham fought back.

The score would pull to within two points at 97-95 Hemel with 2:44 remaining but that was as close as things would get as five points from Hakeem Sylla helped push the reigning champs to the win.

Sylla was at his ruthlessly-efficient best, draining 14/16 from the floor to close with a game-high 32 points plus 11 rebounds. Seth Swalve added a 26-point, 12-assist double-double that included five triples, whilst Brayden Inger (19pts, 8ast) also dropped five buckets from beyond the arc.

Johde Campbell countered for the Hoods with a stunning 29 point, 15 assist effort alongside Landon Taliaferro's 30 points.

The win pushes Hemel into the top four and a pair of wins off leaders Essex, and Nottingham finish the year in fifth and two points behind Storm.


Elsewhere this weekend

Bradford Dragons (4-7) ensured that bottom side Barking Abbey (0-10) end 2023 winless, claiming a 96-81 road victory behind 27 points from Justin Williams and a 15-point, 13-rebound double-double from Rihards Sulcs.

Essex Rebels (9-1) finished their year on a high but only just, having been made to work by London Elite (2-8) 70-66.

Both teams owned the lead in a back-and-forth final frame before the Rebels came out on top thanks to Connor Nelson's 20 points and a 19-point, 11-rebound outing from Victor Olarerin.

Derby Trailblazers (8-2) go into the mid-season break hot on the heels of Essex following a comfortable 101-83 W against Thames Valley Cavaliers (2-9).

Corey Johnson enjoyed a team-high 22 points for DTB that included six triples, countering a 25 point outing from TVC's AJ Roberts.

Reading Rockets (7-2) had no problem seeing off Worthing Thunder (3-6), with a 87-63 final score on the South Coast.

Leading for the majority of the game, Reading's lead hit the 30 point mark at the end of the third to all but call an end to the contest as five different Rockets scored 12 points or more.

The D1M's 2023 slate ended with a home defeat for City of Birmingham Rockets (4-5) as they dropped a close one 86-82 against Newcastle University (6-2).

Orlan Jackman's 11-point, 11-rebound, seven-assist evening was a solid contribution for the Rockets, but it wouldn't be enough against Justin Hopkins (28pts, 10reb) and Logan Rooney (24pts).

National Cup

The final four in the NBL National Cup is now confirmed following a quartet of games yesterday.

D1M leaders Essex Rebels needed two periods of OT to see off a persistent Barking Abbey, eventually coming through 97-88.

Moziah Danchie's (27pts, 7reb) three-pointer on the buzzer forced the game into extra frames, though it was Trey Chapman (27pts, 10reb) and the Rebels who would have the last laugh.

Derby Trailblazers are also safely through, navigating the challenge of Newcastle University 106-88, thanks in part to big outings from Malcolm Smith (32pts, 7reb) and Sam Masten (22pts, 13ast).

D2 outfit Milton Keynes are one step away from the final after they beat D1's Worthing Thunder 94-89, erasing a six point deficit heading into the final frame for a famous win.

Zaire Taylor suited up for Worthing to drop a game-high 24 points, but Jordan Spencer (17pts, 15ast) and Dante Langley (23pts, 8reb) were on hand to steal Worthing's thunder.

Reading Rockets also joined the semi-final party as they ended the run of Thames Valley Cavaliers following a 90-78 victory.

The road W was fueled by a 21 point, 10 rebound double-double from Christian Alexander and a stunning 35 point outing from Lewis Champion, who nailed seven threes in the contest.

The semi-finals on 7 January 2024 will see Derby play host to Milton Keynes, and Essex Rebels travel to Reading Rockets.

This weekend's results:

Saturday 16 December - D1M

6:15pm - Barking Abbey 81-96 Bradford Dragons - LIVE STATS

6:30pm - Essex Rebels 70-66 London Elite - LIVE STATS

7pm - Nottingham Hoods 100-106 Hemel Storm - LIVE STATS/LIVE STREAM

7:30pm - Derby Trailblazers 101-83 Thames Valley Cavaliers - LIVE STATS

7:30pm - Worthing Thunder 63-87 Reading Rockets - LIVE STATS

7:30pm - City of Birmingham Rockets 82-86 Newcastle University - LIVE STATS

Sunday 17 December - NBL National Cup

2:30pm - Barking Abbey 88-97 Essex Rebels (After 2OT) - LIVE STATS

5pm - Worthing Thunder 89-94 Milton Keynes Breakers - LIVE STATS

5:30pm - Derby Trailblazers 106-88 Newcastle University - LIVE STATS

6pm - Thames Valley Cavaliers 78-90 Reading Rockets - LIVE STATS


Main image credit - Joanne Charles