GARETH Murray returned to former club Glasgow Rocks with the Jets on Sunday and came away empty-handed – and the former Scotland captain is keen to get back on track in the BBL Championship this weekend.
“It was very disappointing to lose after we had a good lead in the third quarter,” he said. “I think it was a 13-point lead we had and it came down to the wire and we just couldn’t get a win.
“It was a bad end to the weekend after we were knocked out of the cup by Sheffield.”
This weekend brings two more away games, at Essex Pirates and MK Lions, but Murray does not believe being away from the enthusiastic Northgate Arena crowd is what affected the Jets.
“It’s not necessarily the away games,” said Murray. “I’m just not sure what’s going on with us right now.
“We need to stick to what we were doing when we were winning games, playing defence, getting out on the break, that’s what we’re working on this week.”
Early in the season, when the Jets were a new group of players with youth and inexperience to overcome, head coach Paul Smith hammered home the importance of building their game from a strong defensive base.
That became a mantra around the training court and the Arena, as the Jets stunned their BBL Championship rivals by stifling scoring opportunities and nicking results.
But recently, particularly since the influence of centre Matt Schneck on rebounds and with the ball was stripped from the team, the Jets have played more open games but without much success as they lost their grip on the top spot.
“We abandoned our principles a little,” said Murray. “When you look the games we’ve been playing are high-scoring and that’s not what we were doing at the beginning.
“We were keeping teams down to 60-70 points, right now it’s around 80-90 so it’s back to defence.”
But if the Jets win both their weekend games, the last two before the Christmas break, will it disrupt their revival?
“It’s hard to say,” said Murray. “It’s good to have a break, you feel fresh for the second half and if we get these two wins we could be sitting second in the league which is still pretty good.”