Ho Chi Minh City Wings extended their win streak at the VBA Premier Bubble Games - Brought to you by NovaWorld Phan Thiet to four games, following a resounding victory over Cantho Catfish in Game 14.
The Wings started off the season with a 102-65 massacre over Nha Trang Dolphins.
While the win was overwhelming, many fans argued that the absence of Dolphins stars Phu Hoang and Thanh Dat offered the Wings an easy road to victory.
Those doubts were dispelled when the Wings put up a strong performance against last year’s league runners-up, Thang Long Warriors, with a 96-88 overtime triumph.
|Ho Chi Minh City Wings’ player Jeremy Smith in Game 9 against Thang Long Warriors at the VBA Premier Bubble Games - Brought to you by NovaWorld Phan Thiet. Photo: Vietnam Professional Basketball League|
Four-game win streak
Ho Chi Minh City Wings went into Game 14 against Cantho Catfish as the underdogs, given that the Catfish have made it to the VBA finals each of the last three years.
Both teams spent the first half of the game trading baskets before Cantho began to pull away with a 68-63 lead in the third quarter.
The Catfish managed to hold onto their lead until the last six seconds when the Wings’ Jeremy Smith moved the ball down the court to teammate Vincent Nguyen, who managed to pull off a game-winning three-point shot with just two seconds left, ending the game 88-87.
Smith’s 42 points, 15 catches, and six assists earned him the MVP title.
|Ho Chi Minh City Wings’ player Vo Huy Hoan (left) drives through Nha Trang Dolphins’ defense in the opening game of the VBA Premier Bubble Games - Brought to you by NovaWorld Phan Thiet. Photo: Vietnam Professional Basketball League|
A team ‘makeover’
The Wings’ performance in the 2020 VBA season was less than remarkable – the Ho Chi Minh City-based team won just three of their 12 games and failed to qualify for the semifinals.
This season, the Wings have shown a completely different look, with veteran player Vincent Nguyen managing the team’s defense and foreign players Makinde London and Jeremy Smith getting the ball into the hoop.
Vo Huy Hoan, Mladenovik Chi Anh, and Tran Van Trung have all stepped up, helping carry the team to victory throughout the season.