Chinese Basketball Association: Xinjiang Flying Tigers Rout Defending Champs Sichuan Blue Whales, 108-86
Last season's semi-finalists Xinjiang Flying Tigers routed the defending champions Sichuan Blue Whales, 108-86, at the Sichuan Provincial Stadium in a round 33 match of the 2016-2017 Chinese Basketball Association season on Wednesday.
Filipino-American center Andray Blatche led head coach Li Qiuping's squad with a double-double of 23 points and 12 rebounds with eight steals, four assists, and two shot blocks in an impressive all-around performance coming off the bench.
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Starting point guard Darius Adams had 22 points, eight boards, and five assists while his backcourt partner Yu Changdong added 12 points eight rebounds, and three assists.
NBA draftee Zhou Qi contributed 11 points, two rebounds, and three blocked shots but only played 16 minutes after he was ejected in the second quarter of the match for elbowing Sichuan center and last year's Finals MVP Hamed Haddadi.
Xinjiang began the game with a 14-4 run with the Blue Whales only scoring 6 points in the first seven minutes. The champs then went on an 11-4 rally to trim the lead to five points at the end of the opening period, 25-20, as per Xinhuanet.
The Flying Tigers went on a 16-6 attack to begin the second period then closed it with another 16-2 run to build a huge 27-point advantage at the half, 64-37.
It was during the quarter when Zhou, the Houston Rockets' second-round pick last summer, got entangled with Haddadi in a rebound battle inside the paint. He ended up elbowing the former Memphis Grizzlies player which resulted in his ejection after a video replay, China.org reported.
Sichuan tried to fight back in the third quarter as they outscored the Flying Tigers 30-24 during the period, but Xinjiang took control of the fourth quarter, finishing the match with a 13-2 run, to come away with the lopsided victory.
Haddadi finished with a monstrous double-double of 24 points and 19 rebounds while teammate Liu Wei backed him up with 20 points, four boards, and four assists. Sichuan's other import, former NBA standout Josh Smith, did not play.