Category Archives: Breakers by Numbers

Abercrombie one shot away from significant milestone

Tom Abbo

Tom Abercrombie is just 2 points shy of becoming the first Breakers player to break the 3,500 points mark to further extend his all-time leading scorer record for the club.

In addition Abercrombie will play his 69thconsecutive NBL game passing his personal previous best unbroken run of 68 games. Abbo last missed a game in January 2017 when he was forced to miss seven games with a broken hand.

He sits 15thon the Breakers all-time list of consecutive games played, a list headed by Mika Vukona’s unbroken161 game run (2010-15).

Other Sky Sport Breakers numbers:

v Cairns Taipans at Spark Arena last Thursday.

Brandon Ashley produced the second Breakers double-double of the season pulling down 11 rebounds to go with 14 points.

RJ Hampton, playing in just his fifth professional game, scored a season high 18 points.

Corey Webster moved up to 6th on the Breakers all-time assists list with a career high 8 assists followed by 6 dimes in the game against Perth Wildcats on Sunday.

All-Time Breakers Assists

901 Paul Henare

834 Cedric Jackson

655 Mika Vukona

635 Dillon Boucher

466 CJ Bruton

385 Corey Webster

374 Kirk Penney

374 Tom Abercrombie

v Perth Wildcats in Invercargill last Sunday.

Brandon Ashley scored 21 points, his best points haul to date in his short Breakers career.

Corey Webster became the first Breakers player to score 100 points this season – 113 points at 18.8ppg.

Upcoming

Glen Rice Jnr, an injury replacement for Scotty Hopson, will become Breaker #115 if as expected he debuts against Melbourne United.

RJ edges LaMelo and Abercrombie nearing another milestone

RJ Hampton

The official attendancefor the Sky Sport Breakers opening home game against Illawarra Hawks last week at Spark Arena on Sunday was 8,338 – the 6thhighest crowd all-time for the Breakers and the third largest ever for a regular season fixture.

The reaction of the crowd during the game showed that many were there to see future NBA players LaMelo Ball and RJ Hampton in action.

So who won the first round of that matchup between the two? Being biased I give Hampton the verdict but only just.

I had both players in my fantasy team with Ball scoring 32 points and RJ 37 points emphasizing how close the contest was.

Fortunately we get to see them go head to head on three more occasions this season with the next round back at Spark Arena on November 30th.

The largest crowd the Breakers have ever attracted was 9,238 for Game 3 of the 2012 Grand Final series against Perth Wildcats. The biggest regular season crowd was 9,157 on February 1st2013, when the Breakers won a 10th straight game defeating Perth 98-81 with Corey Webster scoring 14 points to back up Cedric Jackson’s 22 points.

Largest Regular season crowds:

9,157 v Perth Wildcats, 1.2.2013

8,500 v Adelaide 36’ers, 28.2.2013

8,338 v Illawarra Hawks, 24.10.19

7,979 v Sydney Kings, 27.1.2012

7,947 v Cairns Taipans, 21.3.2014

7,597 v Perth Wildcats, 13.12.2013

7,494 v Sydney Kings, 20.10.2019

 

v Illawarra Hawks at Spark Arena

Scotty Hopson produced the first Breakers double-double of the season pulling down 10 rebounds to go with 17 points.

Development Player Terry Li, afforded a couple of minutes of action, became Breaker #114 and the first Chinese national to play for the club.

Ethan Rusbatch played his first game for the Breakers since January 2017 – he made three brief appearances in the 2016-17 season (when a Development player). Nice to see the Tall Black guard knock down a pair of threes.

Corey Webste moved up to 7th on the Breakers all-time assists list with a dozen dimes over the two games against Illawarra and Melbourne. He replaces Tom Abercrombie at No 7 and has 6thplaced Kirk Penney in his sights.

All-Time Breakers Assists List

901 Paul Henare

834 Cedric Jackson

655 Mika Vukona

635 Dillon Boucher

466 CJ Bruton

374 Kirk Penney

371 Corey Webster

369 Tom Abercrombie

 

Upcoming

Tom Abercrombie is 17 points shy of becoming the first Breakers player to break the 3,500 points mark. The club’s all-time leading scorer could well pass that milestone during the upcoming round with games against Cairns and Perth set down for Thursday and Sunday.

Sky Sport Breakers record crowd plus more

 

Breakers Crowd

The official attendance for the Sky Sport Breakers opening home game against Sydney Kings at Spark Arena on Sunday was 7,497 – the 12thhighest crowd all-time for the Breakers and the largest ever for an opening game of the season.

The crowd for the Illawarra Hawks clash on Thursday is forecast to be even bigger. If it passes the 8,000 mark, which is looking likely, it will be only the eighth occasion a Breakers home crowd has exceeded that number and just the third time during the regular season.

The largest crowd the Breakers have ever attracted was 9,238 for Game 3 of the 2012 Grand Final series against Perth Wildcats. The biggest regular season crowd was 9,157 on February 1st 2013, when the Breakers won a 10thstraight game defeating Perth 98-81 with Corey Webster scoring 14 points to back up Cedric Jackson’s 22 points.

Breakers largest regular season crowds:

9,157 v Perth Wildcats, 1.2.2013

8,500 v Adelaide 36’ers, 28.2.2013

7,979 v Sydney Kings, 27.1.2012

7,947 v Cairns Taipans, 21.3.2014

7,597 v Perth Wildcats, 13.12.2013

7,494 v Sydney Kings, 20.10.2019

 

Opening Games of the season.

Scottie Hopson’s 27 points in the opening game in Sydney ranks fourth equal with the most points scored by a Breaker in their debut game for the club.

Most points scored on debut for the Breakers:

34 Carlos Powell, September ‘06

31 Brian Wethers, September ‘06

29 Ben Melmeth, October ‘03

27 Shawn Redhage, September ‘04

27 Scottie Hopson, October ‘19

25 Marcus Timmins, December ‘05

23 Kirk Penney, October ‘07

Most points scored in opening two games for the Breakers:

56 Brian Wethers, September ‘06

54 Carlos Powel, September ‘06

46 Kirk Penney, October ‘07

45 Ben Melmeth, October ‘03

40 Scottie Hopson, October ‘19

 

Corey Websterplayed game number 200 for the Breakers in the home encounter with Sydney on Sunday.

He became just the sixth player to reach the double century mark for the club after Mika Vukona (354), Tom Abercrombie (304), Paul Henare (250), Alex Pledger (238) and Dillon Boucher (220).

Breakers debutants most since 2003

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Jarrad Weeks

The SKYCITY Breakers look set to give debuts to five players in the Australian NBL season opener against Brisbane tonight. Barring injury Shawn Long, Majok Majok, Armani Moore, Patrick Richard and Jarrad Weeks will all take the floor tonight.

If all five players debut it will be the most first time appearances for the club in a single game since the inaugural fixture against Adelaide 36ers in October 2003.

Tom Abercrombie has accumulated 3,211 points and needs 16 points to pass Kirk Penney (3,226) points to become the Breakers all-time leading scorer.

In addition Abercrombie (1,285 rebounds) requires 8 rebounds to pass Alex Pledger (1,292 rebounds) and become the Breakers all-time second highest rebounder behind Mika Vukona.

Abercrombie has played 275 NBL games – the sixth highest number of games played by active players in the NBL.

Corey Webster (1794 points) needs 7 points to pass Aaron Olson (1800 points) and become the Breakers 5th highest scorer all-time.

Kevin Braswell becomes the sixth Breakers head coach following in the footsteps of Jeff Green, Frank Arsego, Andrej Lemanis, Dean Vickerman, and Paul Henare.

Like Henare he also played for the club making 41 appearances as a player.

Kirk Penney memories and numbers

 

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Numbers don’t tell the full story of what Kirk Penney has contributed to the SKYCITY Breakers but they do help illustrate what a massive contribution he has made to the success of the club and the many memories he has provided.

Penney made his debut for the Breakers on October 4th, 2007 at NSEC scoring 23 points against West Sydney Razorbacks – Oscar Forman and Mika Vukona played for Breakers that day although Paul Henare missed the game, bringing to an end a run of 130 consecutive games.

Penney scored 23 points that day, the beginning of quite a sequence of scoring in his first season with the club. In 31 games he passed the twenty points mark in all but four games as the Breakers made the play-offs for the first time. He finished that season with 749 points at 24.2ppg.

The following season he soon waltzed past the 1,000 points mark for the club – tallied in just 41 games. Just 15 players have reached that milestone for the North Shore club and he passed that number in ten games fewer than the second quickest – Mike Chappel.

The Breakers went a game deeper into the play-offs that year but fell in the semi-final to a star studded Melbourne Tigers. Penney’s output was almost identical to season one amassing 747 points in exactly the same number of games.

Season 2009-2010 was the one that got away. The team won the last six games on the bounce but missed the play-offs by a whisker with a team that felt they could have gone all the way to a title. It was also the beginning of the 40-minute game era that naturally impacted on the number of points scored by teams and individuals. It didn’t affect Penney greatly as he still averaged 23 points an outing.

At the back end of that season he scored a career high 49 points against Adelaide which still stand as the second highest individual score by a Breakers player, just behind 50 points from Carlos Powell against Melbourne Tigers in 2006.

2010-2011 was a season to savour, a season when Penney helped bring the first of four NBL Championships to the club. Penney’s numbers were down slightly with 581 points at a still healthy 20 points an outing. However in the play-offs he produced a memorable performance to help take the Breakers to their first Grand Final.

You may remember that in game one of the semi-final series the Breakers suffered a serious bout of stage fright and were stuffed 101-78 by Perth Wildcats at NSEC. To make matters worse Mika Vukona hobbled out of the game with a serious leg injury.

Three days later, in Perth, Penney and the Breakers caused an upset by defeating the Wildcats 93-89. The performance was memorable on two counts. Firstly Vukona not only defied the medics and played but he also garnered a game high 10 rebounds. Secondly Penney reeled off a match- winning 38 points – a couple of his corner three jump shots still live in the memory.

The Breakers took care of business in game three back on the North Shore and went on to claim their first title with a two games to one victory against Cairns.

Following a five-year break Penney returned to the Breakers last season and although they fell one win short of another play-offs appearance he still led the team in scoring. Playing in all 28 games, he scored in double figures 25 times finishing with 486 points at 17.4ppg.

Having missed the last five games with a calf injury Penney’s place as the Breakers all-time leading points scorer has been overtaken by Tom Abercrombie – but only just.

Penney has scored 3,200 points at 20.3ppg with Abercrombie just four points ahead. (3,204 points at 11.7ppg).

Other Penney numbers at the Breakers:

Has made the most 3 point shots for the club (483)

Has scored 30 points or more in a single game on 30 occasions.

158 appearances

641 rebounds

369 assists

125 steals

 

Alex Pledger logs 200th game for Breakers

 

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On Friday night in Cairns Alex Pledger will turn out for the 200th time in a Breakers uniform. He will become just the fifth Breaker to reach that mark behind Mika Vukona (315), Paul Henare (250), Tom Abercrombie (241) and Dillon Boucher (220).

Pledger says it is quite ironic that he plays his 200th game against the Taipans, “My 100th and 150th games were both against the Taipans, and it’s a bit of a strange coincidence that the 200th is against them as well.”

Now in his eighth season with the club – he debuted as a development player against Melbourne Tigers in October 2009 – Pledger has played on all four SKYCITY Breakers championship winning teams.

He missed the second half of the 2013-2014 season due to injury but either side of that he has been remarkably resilient missing just 5 of the Breakers 178 games in that time.

“I didn’t think I would get to this in the last couple of years but I’m pretty proud to get to that number and the body is feeling pretty good at the moment so hopefully I can go on and get a few more,” said Pledger.

He was the NBL’s leading shot blocker in 2012/13 (46 at 1.5bpg) and rebounder (227 at 7.3rpg). He also had his most productive scoring season, notching 331 points at 10.7 per outing.

This season he leads the NBL in field goal shooting percentages – 64.8% (75/116), is third on the shot blocking list (26 at 1.4pg) and 7th in rebounding (121 at 6.7pg).

Breakers head coach Paul Henare believes there is plenty more to come from his centre.

“He is only 29 and and big guys come into their prime in their late twenties early thirties so I think we will see further improvements in Alex’s game over the coming seasons.”

Pledger by Numbers

2009 – 2017 New Zealand Breakers

Appearances 199 – 5th all-time

Blocks 218 – First all-time

Rebounds 1,080 – 3rd all-time

Points 1,509 – 8th all-time

Double doubles 16 – 4th all-time

Wins 136 – 3rd all-time

Double delight for Alex Pledger

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It has been a while coming but Breakers centre Alex Pledger is beginning to show the dominant form he displayed three or four seasons ago.

In season 2012/13 Pledger was a colossus as he averaged 10.7 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.5 rebounds per game playing a large part in the Breakers completing their third straight NBL championship win.

His numbers were equally good (10.0ppg, 7.4rpg and 1.6 blocks per game) in early 2013/14 but unfortunately his season came to an abrupt end 13 games into that disappointing campaign as injury sidelined the 2.16m defensive anchor.

Pledger has spent the last two seasons carrying various niggling injuries and his numbers have suffered accordingly averaging 6 points, 4.7 rebounds and 1.3 blocks across 61 games.

The big man looked in great touch at the weekend, securing a brace of double doubles as the Breakers completed a tough weekend with a brace of W’s.

In Melbourne on Friday Pledger led all scorers with 20 points and snared 10 rebounds as United were beaten in overtime 98-92.

Less than 48 hours later he produced a balanced twelve rebounds and twelve points performance. He also came up with three blocks in addition to influencing the shots (or lack of them) taken by key Brisbane big men Bairstow and Kickert who were a combined 2 from 17.

Executing back to back double doubles for just the fourth time in his NBL career Pledger passed a couple of notable milestones over the weekend.

In Melbourne he took his total career rebound count to exactly 1,000 becoming just the third Breaker to record 1,000 rebounds for club after Vukona (2,054) and Abercrombie (1,061).

Then on Sunday at Vector Arena, with those three swats, he became the first Breaker to record 200 career blocked shots.

188 games into his Breakers career perhaps the best is yet to come from Alex Pledger.

Vukona closes in on 300th Breakers appearance

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Mika Vukona will become the first SKYCITY Breakers player to appear in 300 games for the club when he takes the floor against Sydney Kings at North Shore Events Centre on Thursday night.

In his usual unassuming fashion, come Thursday, he will be on the court before the game announcer has reached the second syllable of his name. There will be no pausing or hand waving to acknowledge the applause – it will be game time and that means business for the club’s talisman.

However he did take time out after team training on Monday to reflect on the milestone and his 12 seasons with the Breakers.

“I’m in a good place. The organization has enabled me to get to the 300 games and it’s been an enjoyable time. When you are in a good environment, a good family situation, you always want to be there. There are times when it’s hard but it is just awesome to come back here. I guess winning makes a massive difference. When you win championships you just want to come back and keep getting more.”

Vukona has a particular attachment to a number of the people he began his journey with. “Dillon (Boucher), Pauli (Henare), Paul Blackwell, the Blackwell family. All those guys have influenced everything that I have done in those 300 games, its pretty massive,” he said.

He remembers his first game fondly, “It was the first game the Breakers ever played, I was a development player and I had the opportunity to come on in garbage time and it was awesome. The first time to come on as a young player and the house was rocking, it was good.”

For the record Vukona, just 21 at the time, scored a couple of points as the Breakers won that inaugural game 111-110 against Adelaide 36ers.

When quizzed on his favourite moment(s) with the club it’s the first championship with the Breakers that comes readily to mind.

“The 2011 championship. Going through the things that we had to get over, the trip to Perth, coming back, we had injuries that we had been going through. We had an amazing time that whole year and to cap it off with Pauli being able to walk away after winning the championship was awesome.”

The 34 year old acknowledges he has to refine his game, as he gets older, “I’m just maturing a little bit better”, he quipped.

“I have to make adjustments because if I don’t you get left behind and with the league going up another couple of levels you have to do that. And even in trainings here the guys are getting younger and it is something that I have had to learn. But it also a thing keeps me going even more. It is another challenge, it is something that excites me and it is something that I want to keep driving for and keep proving myself. The day that I can’t and my body says no will be the time to walk away,” he added.

Fortunately for Breakers fans that time is likely to be some way away, “I’m looking forward to many more appearances,” the 5 times NBL champion declared.

Perhaps not what opposition players want to hear.

Below are the Mika numbers for the Breakers but unfortunately there are no records kept of the loose balls garnered, box outs completed, defensive deflections produced and athletic rebounds he had no right to secure.

299 – Most Games Played

161 -Most consecutive games played (2010-2015)

171 – Most Wins by a Breakers player

2,034 – Most rebounds

36 Double doubles – 2nd all time for Breakers

2239 Points – 3rd a/t

213 steals – 3rd a/t

550 assists – 4th a/t

91 blocks – 4th a/t

Milestones galore against the Kings

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Plenty to smile about for Corey Webster this week

As the SKYCITY Breakers head into the New Years Eve clash with the Cairns Taipans it is worth reflecting on the collective and individual efforts during the 400th NBL game played by the club against Sydney last Sunday.

The season high 90% (19/21) effort at the free throw line is worth celebrating given the woes from the charity stripe in earlier games. It helped that Corey Webster was at the line a lot – 10 visits and nothing but net.

Talking of the ‘Microwave’ his 38 points was his 3rd 30+ haul of the season and 12th 20+ total in his last 20 games stretching back to the tail end of last season.

The 93-83 victory was Webster’s 100th in a Breakers singlet – 100 from 141games at 71% success rate. He becomes the 7th Breaker to register 100 wins.

Alex Pledger had a career high 6 blocks and stretched his Breakers all time shot blocking number to 176. The ‘Chief’ also made 6/6 from the foul line.

With 7 rebounds Tom Abercrombie moved to 2nd on the Breakers all time leading rebound list. Likely he will have to play until he is 40 to have any hope of overhauling Mika who has 1901 and still counting.

Breakers Top 5 Rebounders all time:

1,901 Vukona

947 Abercrombie

941 Boucher

935 Pepper

875 Pledger

Back to the 400 games and if broken down into the four one hundred game blocks it illustrates the growth, continuity and sustained excellence the club has enjoyed.

First 100 games, Won 31 Lost 69 – 3 coaches, no play-off seasons.

Games 101 – 200 Won 48 Lost 52, 1 coach, 2 play-off seasons.

Games 201 – 300 Won 71 Lost 29, 1 coach, 2 play-off seasons, 2 championships.

Games 301 – 400 Won 66 Lost 34, 2 coaches, 2 play-off seasons, 2 championships.

Finally, thinking of popping down to your local TAB to back the Breakers on Thursday night, think again. Their all time December 31st record is not too flash – Played 7 Won 1 Lost 6.

Have a good New Year.

Breakers numbers ahead of Melbourne clash

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Prior to the 86-74 win in Sydney on Thursday night the four consecutive away defeats suffered by the Breakers to commence the season had been the first occasion this has occurred since 2009 when the opening five road games were lost.

Against the Kings Tom Abercrombie recorded a second successive double double – 11 points and 15 rebounds.

The 15 rebounds were a career high tally.

The in form Abercrombie also passed 900 rebounds, fourth all time for the Breakers, behind Vukona (1,848), (Boucher (941) and Pepper (935).

 Cedric Jackson dished his 700th assist for the Breakers becoming just the second player after Paul Henare (902) to reach this mark. He now has 706 assists in 107 games at a mighty impressive 6.6apg.

Corey Webster with 17 points became the 12th Breakers player to pass 1200 points for the club.

A resurgent Alex Pledger’s 3 blocked shots took him one ahead of Tom Abercrombie on the Breakers all time shot blocking list. Pledger has 163 blocks to his name and Abercrombie 162.

Last week v Perth Wildcats

 The fifth consecutive home win is the first time the club have remained unbeaten in the opening five home games of a season.

Cedric Jackson with 4 steals became just the second Breakers player after Dillon Boucher (289) to record 250 steals.