Nobody said these are ordinary times in Japan. That sentiment also describes Sunday’s bj-league action.
Of the day’s six games, five were blowouts. Only one game was decided by less than 15 points.
In that down-to-the-wire contest, the Rizing Fukuoka defeated the host Shimane Susanoo Magic 77-73 to complete a series sweep and extend their winning streak to six games.
Two-time scoring champion Michael Parker, who’s in position to win his third, had, for him, a standard 27-point outing. Nile Murry added 11 points and four assists, while Brazilian big man Thiago Cordeiro and Akitomo Takeno each scored 10 points. Masahiro Kano chipped in with eight points, while Jun Nakanishi dished out four assists as the Rizing improved to 27-17 under second-year coach Tadaharu Ogawa.
Fukuoka outscored Shimane 22-8 in the second quarter to put its stamp on the game in Masuda, Fukuoka Prefecture.
The Magic (20-24) trailed by 13 points with 4:18 left in the fourth quarter, but their late comeback fell short.
For Shimane, Will Caudle scored 21 points and hauled in 13 rebounds and Reggie Golson had 21 points and 11 rebounds, while Takumi Ishizaki scored 16 points. Tatushiro Yokoo added eight points.
After a 13-point effort on Saturday, Susanoo Magic rookie Edward Yamamoto was 0-for-1 from the field and scored zero points in the series finale.
Golden Kings 102, Evessa 73
In Naha, Ryukyu scored in triple digits for the fourth straight contest and picked up its fifth victory in a row.
Jeff Newton paced the Golden Kings (29-15) with 23 points and 14 rebounds, while Carlos Dixon added 16 points, seven rebounds and seven assists and Naoto Kosuge had a 15-point performance. Anthony McHenry added 13 points and eight boards, Yasufumi Takushi scored 12 points and David Palmer had 10.
The Golden Kings led 51-33 at halftime, and the Evessa never recovered.
Billy Knight scored a team-best 19 points for Osaka (27-17) and Lynn Washington had a double-double (16 points, 11 rebounds). Evessa center Wayne Marshall scored 12 points.
Lakestars 113, HeatDevils 80
In Beppu, Oita Prefecture, Masashi Joho matched his season-high scoring output, putting 25 points on the board and making 10 of 12 shots, including 5 of 7 3-pointers, as Shiga completed a series sweep.
Yu Okada and Gary Hamilton each scored 20 points and Mikey Marshall had 19 for the Lakestars (26-18).
Hamilton’s impact went well beyond scoring, as evidenced by his jaw-dropping rebounding (28 boards) and five assists. Marshall, meanwhile, added 12 rebounds and nine assists. Lamar Rice had a nine-point, six-rebound afternoon and Shinya Ogawa made an impact in the rout, contributing seven points and five assists.
The HeatDevils (16-28), a playoff contender before a foreign player exodus and head coach L.J. Hepp’s dismissal after the March 11 natural disasters and Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant crisis, lost their seventh straight game.
Oita’s Kimitake Sato scored 28 points, Matt Lottich added 21 points and nine assists and Damian Johnson scored 11.
Phoenix 87, Grouses 53
In Toyama, Hamamatsu Higashimikawa overwhelmed the hosts in the rematch and won the two-game series by a combined 47 points.
Sharpshooter Wayne Arnold led the Phoenix (37-5) with 20 points, followed by Ray Nixon’s 18, Jeffrey Parmer’s 16 and Shingo Okada’s 13. Dzaflo Larkai finished with 11 points and seven boards; Parmer raked in eight boards.
The Grouses (12-28) trailed 42-13 entering the third quarter.
Toyama’s Jerrell Smith had team-high totals in points (18) and rebounds (12). Soshi Yasuda scored 12 points and Takeshi Mito had 10.
Happinets 100, Albirex BB 81
In Yuzawa, Akita Prefecture, the Northern Happinets’ one-two punch of Will Graves and Sek Henry guided the hosts to a runaway victory.
Graves had 41 points, 20 rebounds and five assists, and Henry ended his work day with 23 points and 10 assists in the books as Akita improved to 15-29.
Antonio Burks scored 10 points, while Dokun Akingbade (eight points, nine rebounds) and Yuuki Kitamuki (seven points) made solid contributions for the expansion Happinets.
Julius Ashby led Niigata (19-19) with 18 points and 10 rebounds, Shuhei Komatsu scored 17 points and Hirotaka Kondo had a 13-point game. Naoto Takushi had 12 points and Yuichi Ikeda finished with 11 for the Albirex.
Five Arrows 100, Suns 85
In Miyakonojo, Miyazaki Prefecture, balanced scoring sparked Takamatsu as it recorded a series split.
Satoshi Takada put 23 points on the board for the Five Arrows (10-32), Hiroyuki Kikuchi added a season-best 21, including 9-for-10 at the charity stripe and four 3s and Shuichi Takeda had 20 points. Masaaki Suzuki’s solid all-around game — 17 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists — aided Takamatsu’s cause.
For Miyazaki (13-31), Masashi Takahashi had a team-high 28 points, Brandon Cole scored 20 and Takuro Ito had 11. Taishiro Shimizu handed out eight assists.