TCS CHESTER Jets are the hottest team in the British League - that's the opinion of Nigel Lloyd, head coach of Milton Keynes Lions who host them on Sunday.
Jets are bidding for their eighth successive league and cup victory and Lloyd, whose team faced leaders Sheffield Sharks last night, added: 'Chester are starting to get their act together. They are a team I fear right now because, having just beaten Sheffield and Thames Valley, they look like they are playing their best basketball of the season.'
Lloyd knows that if his team is to triumph in this game, they will have to contain the Jets as a team rather than anyone in particular.
'Their versatility is the key,' he added. 'You can't really stop those guys. If you slow down one of them, or concentrate too hard on one or even two players, another guy shows up.
'I mean, you can never underestimate a player like Billy Singleton in a big basketball game. I think their versatility and the fact they have weapons in every position makes them tough to play against.'
Jets' head coach Paul Smith will take the compliments, but he knows the Lions could give his team problems if they don't start brightly.
'The Lions' style doesn't suit us,' he admitted. 'If we allow them to dictate the tempo, it will be a long night for us. We need the game to be played at our tempo and that means jumping on them from minute one.' Smith had a scare on Sunday when assistant coach James Hamilton limped out of the game against Thames Valley Tigers on Sunday with a twisted ankle and sat out the final quarter.
He hasn't trained so far this week, but Smith is optimistic Hamilton will be ready for Sunday. 'I don't think it's that bad but it's the ankle which James has had problems with in the past. I think he has to make a mental adjustment.'
Guard Mike Nurse also had to have treatment during the game for a dead leg, but he has recovered and definitely plays.
Jets beat Leicester Riders at Loughborough University last Saturday to take control of their group in the BBL Trophy, which they have won for the last three years. Their next game is at Sheffield tomorrow week.