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Big3 Basketball Playoff Preview: NBA Stars Return to Seattle

Big3 Basketball Playoffs

Big3 Basketball is heading to the Key Arena in Seattle, WA for the first round of the Big3 playoffs. All eight teams will be playing as four teams are in the playoff, and four teams in consolation games. Seattle is a city rich with basketball history and is the perfect place to host the playoffs. Since losing their NBA franchise in 2008, this will be the first time since then that fans will see former NBA stars in action. Going to Seattle will be like a homecoming to a few guys. Reggie Evans played there from 2002-2006.  Rashard Lewis played in Seattle from 1998-2007. Lewis was drafted out of high school by the Sonics. He made a great name for himself while in Seattle and was a fan favorite.

Speaking of fan favorites, 3 Headed Monsters coach, Gary Payton will once again be on the court in the Key Arena. Payton played thirteen seasons for the Sonics and needs no introduction to the fans in Seattle. The nine-time NBA all-star will have the crowd fired up when he makes his return to the Emerald City. Last week, the games were good, but expect the games to be more exciting this week.

Big3 Basketball Consolation Games

(7) Killer 3’s vs. (8) Ball Hogs 

The Killer 3’s had an outside chance to make the playoffs, but came up short against Trilogy last week. This team is better than their record though. Stephen Jackson is a scoring machine while Reggie Evans is a terror on the boards. Jackson averaged just shy of 21 points per game in the regular season. Evans averaged 10.8 rebounds per game and will give the Killer 3’s many second chances. The Ball Hogs played spoiler last week against 3’s Company. Josh Childress finally came out of his shell and had a career day. Xavier Silas led the team in the upset last week scoring 20 points. Derrick Byars leads the team in scoring and will need to contribute significantly to keep the game close. The Ball Hogs may have found their groove, but the Killer 3’s are still the favorite.

(5) Tri-State vs. (6) 3’s Company

This will be a battle of Philly icons as “Dr. J” Julius Erving goes up against Allen Iverson. Andre Owens is an all-around player and is the one to watch for 3’s Company. Owens was fifth in the league in scoring and second in rebounds. He’s the major threat for Iverson’s team. Mike Sweeney is another solid rebounder and Al Thornton is a steady role player. DerMarr Johnson has been in a slump, but is capable of hitting from the outside. Johnson also tied for the most blocks in Big3 Basketball this season so expect some solid defense on his part. Mike James leads the way for Tri-State. James averaged 13.6 ppg this season and nailed 14 3-pointers in eight games. Bonzi Wells is the Big3 steal king and plays tight defense. Wells will also score in double-digits. Dominic McGuire and Lee Nailon are good inside the paint. Tri-State came on strong towards the end of the season and look for them to pull out a win on Sunday.

Big3 Basketball Playoffs (1st Round)

(2) 3 Headed Monsters vs. (3) Power

If there is such a thing as home-court advantage in Big3 Basketball, the 3 Headed Monsters have it. The crowd is going to erupt when Rashard Lewis and Gary Payton are introduced. Lewis is the Big3 scoring champion and has been dominant all season. He averaged 21 ppg and is also a good rebounder. Lewis is hitting 58 percent of his shots and will be the threat that Power has to try to contain. Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf is a great complement to Lewis.  Abdul-Rauf is averaging 13.3 ppg and hits shots when they hurt opponents the most. Kwame Brown is a great defender underneath. He plays physical and makes the most of his offensive possessions. While Power has struggled is of late, they still have a one-two punch in DeShawn Stevenson and Cuttino Mobley. Mobley averages 18.6 ppg while Stevenson averages 15.8 ppg. Stevenson is also the best outside shooter in the Big3, hitting 32 3-pointers so far this season. Jerome Williams will challenge Brown underneath the basket and should be a little overpowering. If Power finds their rhythm, this game is going to be very close. Probably the best game of the day.

(1) Trilogy vs. (4) Ghost Ballers

So far this season, no one has been able to match Trilogy’s execution on the court. That’s why they’re undefeated. With three of the most consistent players in the Big3, it’s obvious they are hard to beat. Rashad McCants was the first overall draft pick and is living up to that by averaging 18.2 ppg. McCants is also averaging 56 percent from the field. Al Harrington will get a lot of rebounds and has been solid on offense and defense. James White is a good ball handler and always finds the open man. The Ghost Ballers will rely on Mike Bibby to control the offense. Bibby leads the Big3 with 30 assists, but needs to score consistently. Ricky Davis and Ivan Johnson are a great duo when they’re hot. Both finished in the top-ten in scoring. The key there is when they get hot. The secret behind Trilogy’s success is playing solid defense and take away easy shots for opponents. Look for more of the same from the unbeaten team.

Seattle will be the last chance to see all eight teams play. The first two games will be fun to watch as those teams are playing for pride. Look for the intensity in the playoff games be at a high level because this is it. The two winners will play for the Big3 Basketball championship. The margin of error is extremely slim. Watch as all four teams bring their best this week. Doors open at the Key Arena Sunday at 1pm and the first game will tip-off at 2pm. You can watch all the action on FS1 Monday evening.

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