Sydney Kings primed to bounce back against New Zealand Breakers

Sydney veteran Daniel Kickert has played down the club’s rivalry with 2020 Grand Final conqueror Perth as his side gears up to bounce back against New Zealand Thursday.

On the heels of the Kings’ 113-106 loss to the Wildcats — during which a number of spotfires broke out between players — Kickert said he expects the same intensity for every game his side plays.

“We want guys to come with a certain level of intensity and it doesn’t matter who we’re playing,” Kickert said.

“As far as we’re concerned, every other team is every other team — at least that’s how I approach these games.

“I think that level of intensity should be there for every single game.”

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The action was red-hot between the Kings and Wildcats. Picture: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images

The injury-riddled Kings will look to bounce back off just one day break against a New Zealand side that is coming to grips with the very real possibility that it might not play a single game in front of its home fans this season.

“It’s as tough for us as it is for anyone else,” he said.

“It’s just a matter of flipping that dial and focusing on the next game, digest this one, get better where we can and just recover and prepare.

“We’ve had an interrupted season … so we’re used to this

“It’s about just us showing that resilience and just being prepared.

“There is no excuses, everyone’s in the same situation as we are, so it shouldn’t be tough at all, especially after a loss.”

Dejan Vasiljevic has been a revelation for the Kings. Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images

While he’s not making excuses, there are some mitigating circumstances for the Kings, who have exceeded expectations so far in 2021.

Even before the injuries, few pundits were tipping the Kings to make the playoffs. And, when the likes of Xavier Cooks, Angus Glover and then star import Jarell Martin went down, most thought they would be cannon-fodder.

But a combination of young guns — led by the exquisite Dejan Vasiljevic — wiley veterans and role players performing out of their skin have helped them keep the teams around them honest while they wait for their injured keys to rejoin the fold.

Originally published as‘No excuses’: Kings vow to bounce back after Wildcats fail

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