THE most important game of the Cheshire Jets’ season so far takes place tomorrow evening as they travel to face MK Lions looking to secure the vital head-to-head record over their BBL Championship rivals.
The Jets currently hold a 2-1 win record over Mersey Tigers and are 1-1 with the Lions with both teams below the Northgate Arena side in the league.
Of the teams outside the BBL Championship play-offs, only the Durham Wildcats have a 2-1 head-to-head advantage over the Jets, but they are not realistic contenders for the post-season.
Head-to-heads are vital as, with teams playing each other three times, if they finish level on points the head-to-head decides who takes the higher league position.
If the Jets beat the Lions, they will have a huge advantage in their quest to retain the final play-off place.
And forward Bill Cole, fully recovered from an ankle injury, is confident they will achieve their goal after a strong display more than a week ago at Leicester Riders.
“I thought we went into the Leicester game with something to prove,” he said.
“They beat us bad at home once and we didn’t play great the second time but this time we really came out and played well with a bit of a chip on our shoulder.
“I don’t know if we got a little winded at the end or they threw some different defences at us that took us out of our game but for three quarters we played as well as we have all season.
“We’re going against someone tomorrow who’s battling us for the last play-off spot.
“We’ve been looking forward to this game for a whole month now so we know what we have to do and it’s in our own hands.”
The Jets also face Glasgow Rocks at the Northgate Arena on Sunday (5.30pm) and head coach John Lavery believes the extended break over Easter – the Jets played Leicester last Wednesday – has played into his side’s hands.
“The break has been really good,” he said. “Other teams it might not have helped them but we’ve got a really short rotation so it’s done us the world of good.
“We’ve got four guys in the top five for average minutes in the BBL so it gives them a rest.”