Game Preview: Erie BayHawks (1-0) at Fort Wayne Mad Ants (0-1)

Saturday, November 28, 2009

My apologies for originally writing that this game was being played tonight. It is, in fact, being played tomorrow (Sunday). I was working off the original BayHawks pocket calendar (photo here), which shows the game date incorrectly. Unfortunately, that means we have to wait an extra day before the BayHawks are back in action again. But that doesn't mean we can't start looking ahead to tomorrow's rematch of the opener.

Game 2 Preview: Erie BayHawks (1-0) at Fort Wayne Mad Ants (0-1)

Erie passed its first road test of the season last night. In game two Sunday night, they get to face the same opponent, but that doesn't mean the same result will come easily. Having now beaten Fort Wayne twice in eight days (counting the preseason game), the BayHawks need to avoid complacency in a game that figures to play out differently. The Mad Ants surely do not want to start the year 0-2 at home, and it's hard to imagine they'll shoot so poorly (35.7 percent) on consecutive nights.

Erie coming in: After winning a high scoring affair in the preseason, the grind-it-out defensive battle last night should have Erie feeling confident that they can handle whatever the Mad Ants throw at them. They'll need to guard against overconfidence setting in early in the season as Fort Wayne is still adjusting on the fly to the NBA call-up of Chris Hunter.

Fort Wayne coming in: They cannot be happy with last night's offensive production. Everyone who saw the box score questioned how Rob Kurz could play 33 minutes without attempting a shot. Look for Kurz to be more involved in thegame plan and look for the Mad Ants to re-establish the long range attack that worked for them for much of the preseason game against Erie a week ago.

BayHawks keys to success:

  1. Limit turnovers.
    The one black eye on last night's box score for the BayHawks was turnovers. Erie had 22 turnovers to go with just 18 assists. More importantly, the bulk of turnovers came from the guys who are going to have the ball in their hands the most this season. Cedric Jackson had 7 and Donell Taylor and Jackie Manuel had 6 turnovers apiece. That's not going to cut it for the BayHawks to be successful over the course of the season.

  2. Get big production from the bigs.
    Fort Wayne is thin up front and Sonderleiter had to play 41 minutes last night. Pound the ball inside to Bryant, Aminu, Gunter, and company. Sonderleiter had 5 fouls last night. If Erie can get him in foul trouble, that will really open up the paint for the BayHawks frontline to score at ease.

  3. Heat up the Microwave.
    Ivan Harris has a tendency to be a streaky shooter, but when he's hot, he's automatic (hence the nickname). As they did much of last year, the BayHawks have him playing the 4, though he shoots more like a small forward. If he can space the floor with his shooting, it'll open up the inside even more for Erie.
The game tips at 5 p.m. Sunday. Watch the action live on NBA FutureCast or listen locally on the radio on WFNN 1330 AM.


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About this blog/blogger

Blog Talk BayHawk is an unofficial Erie BayHawks blog covering the NBA D-League. It features opinions and information about the NBADL and the Erie BayHawks. Blog Talk BayHawk is written from a basketball fan’s perspective to fill In the gaps left by professional journalists’ coverage of BayHawks basketball and the Erie professional basketball scene.

Matt Hubert is a 25-year-old writer and basketball fanatic born and raised in Erie, Pa. He graduated from Mercyhurst College in 2007 with a bachelor's degree in English and a dual concentration in writing and creative writing. Matt's not wavering from his stance as a lifelong Los Angeles Lakers fan, but he will cover the BayHawks' NBA affiliates in Cleveland and Toronto when it makes sense to do so throughout the year.

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