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Fast Facts: GF Game Two Edition

All time games played: 52 New Zealand Breakers won 25 Perth Wildcats won 27

In New Zealand total played 27 New Zealand Breakers won 19 Perth Wildcats won 8

At North Shore Events Centre total played 15 New Zealand Breakers won 11 Perth Wildcats won 4

KEY POINTS FROM GAME ONE, PERTH ARENA The Wildcats have the opportunity to win a historic seventh NBL Championship with a win over the Breakers on Friday night in Auckland. Perth have never lost a Grand Final series after winning Game One, and New Zealand have never had to win a Grand Final series after losing Game One. The last team to win Game One of a Grand Final series but lose a three-game series was the Melbourne Tigers in 1996 – 20 years ago. The Tigers won Game One by 11 points, but lost Games Two and Three to the South East Melbourne Magic. In that instance, travel was not a factor as both teams shared the same home court - Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne. Perth have lost just one playoff series in the past 23 years after winning Game One, and that was the 2011 semi-final series against New Zealand. Perth won Game One at North Shore by 23 points, but lost the next two games (at home by four and back in Auckland by 16.) History is not on the Wildcat’s side as far as Game Two goes in Auckland. The Wildcats have not won a Grand Final game away from home since they won Game One in Melbourne against the Titans in 2000. They have lost six Grand Final road games since, in Sydney, Wollongong, Adelaide and three times in Auckland. The Breakers are undefeated at home in Grand Final games with six-from-six victories either at North Shore or at Vector. The Wildcats won their historic first Championship in Brisbane in Game Three in 1990 but all of their next five Championships were won at home in Perth. 1991, 1995 and 2000 saw celebrations at Perth Entertainment Centre, 2010 was a victory at Challenge Stadium and most recently was 2014 over the Adelaide 36ers at Perth Arena. Perth have struggled on the road generally this season and have not won away from Perth since 17 December, with a 73-70 win in Cairns. Their current five-game losing streak is their longest since they were defeated seven straight times in December 2003. New Zealand have won nine of their last ten games at North Shore Events Centre with five wins from six games this year, with their only loss being against Adelaide by six points in Round 14. The Breakers have not lost at home since January 17 when they went down in double overtime to the Illawarra Hawks. They have won their past four games against Perth in Auckland. Damian Martin was the first Wildcats player since Ricky Grace in 2003 to grab ten rebounds and have five assists in a Grand Final game. It was the first time this season that Martin had led Perth in rebounding in a game and his ten boards was a personal season-high. Nathan Jawai became the first indigenous Australian to led his team in scoring in a Grand Final game (15-points) but there was a downside. It was also the first game in his 61-game career where he failed to get any rebounds. After combining for 110 points against the Hawks in the semi-finals, Jermaine Beal and Casey Prather scored a combined 2-from-13 field goals against the Breakers. 11 points from Prather equaled his lowest score in any game at Perth Arena this year and he has been called for four fouls in his past four games. Beal’s 1-from-7 field goals was his worst in 13 career games against the Breakers. The Wildcats had 35 free-throw attempts (a new season-high) to just 20 for New Zealand. When Perth get to the line seven or more times than their opponent this year, they are 12 wins and no losses. The Breakers were called for 27 fouls in Game One, which was just one short of their season-high.
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