Sam Dekker game winner seals back-to-back Playoff titles for London -

Sam Dekker game winner seals back-to-back Playoff titles for London

London Lions BBL Playoff Champions 2024

Sam Dekker knocked down a game-winning three with 9.1 seconds remaining and the London Lions edged Cheshire Phoenix, 88-85, to win back-to-back Playoff titles on Sunday at the O2 Arena.

Having trailed by as many as 18, Phoenix refused to go down without a fight, tying it up on a tough Laquincy Rideau drive with 31 seconds remaining to set up a thrilling finish.

Matt Morgan dribbled out the clock before driving and kicking to Dekker in the corner who swished the triple to give the Lions the lead, sealing his MVP trophy in the process.

Two last gasp attempts by Cheshire came up short, and London took the victory.

Dekker finished with a a 17-point, 10-rebound, 4-assist outing for the MVP honours, as Lions avenged their Trophy loss to Cheshire from January.

“We just understand that it’s really hard to win when everyone’s coming at you. Everyone just says, that the Lions are gonna win,” Dekker said after the game.

“But when you have the expectation to win, sometimes you feel that pressure at times. And to be able to get up every day and respond to that call is not easy.”

Matt Morgan, British Basketball League MVP, added 16 points for the Lions.

Aaryn Rai led Cheshire with a game-high 21 points, while Laquincy Rideau stuffed the stat sheet as he tallied 18 points, 12 rebounds, eight assists and six steals.

Box score.

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