Despite suffering a close defeat at home to London Lions on Saturday night in the BBL Championship, Rob Paternostro’s Leicester Riders now switch their attentions to Cheshire Phoenix in the BBL Trophy this evening.
After winning the first piece of silverware on offer last weekend at the NIA in Birmingham, the chance to progress on the journey to the Emirates Arena in March for the Trophy starts at the Northgate Arena, where Paternostro holds the Phoenix faithful in high esteem.
“It’s a club we look forward to seeing; so many fantastic volunteers and fans. In the last few weeks with the chanegs they have made; they seem to have the best balance all season.
It has been a season full of change so far for Cheshire, but with John Lavery settled with the squad he now has, what does Paternostro think of the team his Riders will face on Sunday night?
“They had talent from the start, but the moves made, I think they fit better together than they have. When you look at them and the three explosive players they have in Middleton, Coleman and Moses – they are offensively very talented.
“Teams change through the season, but we will prepare for them and their players and adapt, if and when, we have to.
The loss on Saturday will have put a slight dent in their Championship campaign, but Paternostro feels that the fixture schedule, and the table, is not consistent to how it feels on a day-to-day basis: “In the league we feel good after our start, when you look at the table, sometimes it’s misleading through games played. We’re not focused on where we are in the league, just how well we play.
“When the games come thick and fast – the line between Trophy and Championship becomes blurred. I think over the last few years, we’ve played the same way – whatever competition we play in, we play to the best of our ability.”