The Singapore Slingers and Zamboanga Valientes played out a 40-minute back-and-forth thriller,
befitting of the elimination game it was. With the winner advancing to the 2023 ABL playoffs and the
loser done for the 2023 ABL Invitational, the stakes were high and both teams stood up to the challenge.
Zamboanga led by former Miami Heat PG Mario Chalmers and former New York Knicks forward Renaldo
Balkman looked to have the tools to take down the Slingers, but the Slingers on this night would have
Both teams traded blows in the first half with neither being able to break away to a
sizable lead. They could not be separated going into half time locked up 49-49 in a high
scoring first 20 minutes.
The third quarter would be much of the same, each time the Slingers pulled away, Zamboanga fired back
hard. It took a half-court shot buzzer-beater by CJ Gettys to give the Slingers a five-point advantage
going into the final quarter.
From there, it was the Singers that wrestled control of the game, building a 13-point lead before holding
on for a tough 97-87 win and clinching the final spot in the 2023 ABL playoffs. For the Slingers, Kentrell
Barkley had a huge game finishing with a game-high 41 points.
Gettys also had a big impact on the outcome finishing with 21 points, 18 rebounds, and six assists. Xavier
Alexander had another solid performance on both ends of the floor finishing with 10 points, eight
rebounds, and six assists while Slingers local players Delvin Goh and Jackson Mah finished with seven
points, five rebounds and five points, and three rebounds respectively.
Zamboanga was led by Balkman’s 25 points and eight rebounds and Mario Chalmers who finished with
19 points, three rebounds, and eight assists.
For the Slingers, they now advance to the 2023 ABL Playoffs which will be held in Saigon, Vietnam from
the sixth of March. The Slingers likely opponent in their best-of-three semi-final series looks likely to be
the number one seed after the regular season and hosts Saigon Heat.
Hong Kong Eastern will face off against NS Matrix from Malaysia in the other best-of-three semi-final
For more information on the ABL and the 2023 ABL playoffs go to.