A swashbuckling, free flowing Shanghai Sharks overcame the odds and beat the more fancied Guangsha Lions in their first home game of the season and in doing so, erased the bitter memories of the consecutive defeats on the road. Coach Daniel Panaggio will be pleased with what he saw from the sidelines as his team overcame their more illustrious opposition.
The two reasonably high scoring teams both looked to take control of the game as quickly as possible but it was the Sharks, led by Mike Harris, that eventually forged ahead early in the second quarter. With the former Houston Rocket forward pulling the strings on both sides of the court, the Sharks eased into the half time interval 53-40 up, much to the delight of a vocal home crowd.
Shanghai’s onslaught continued after the break as Harris, ably aided by Ryan Kelly, set about the Lions with renewed vigour, and their crisp, accurate shooting helped open up a sizeable lead going into the fourth quarter. Unlike previous games, the Sharks did not waste their hard fought lead and instead patiently added to it as the game ebbed away. Guangsha looked shell shocked and despite scoring 25 points, Chandler found himself withdrawn before the end as the away side acknowledged that the match was beyond them
To a loud roar from their fans, the game ended with the Sharks victorious by a margin of 91-75. Kelly finished with 30 points, Harris underlined his own impressive performance with 18 points and 16 rebounds whilst Peng Fei and Taiwanese forward Tseng Wen-ting also stood out with a hard working, muscular performance. After such a commanding display, the Sharks have made a statement to their CBA rivals and will welcome their next opposition, Jillin Tigers, with the renewed confidence of a team that had finally found some momentum.