The Sheffield Sharks have only appeared in the Trophy Final twice, in 1995 (when they lost to the Thames Valley Tigers) and 1998 (when they beat the London Towers). The Leicester Riders have also made it to two previous finals, the first in 1992, when they lost to the Kingston Kings, and then again in 2006 when they lost to the Newcastle Eagles.
When the Sharks and Riders have met previously this season this year, the Riders have taken the win on all 4 occasions. The Riders are having a pretty good season all round, having won the BBL Cup vs the Newcastle Eagles back in January, and they have won 20 of the 22 games that they have played in the BBL Championship, putting them at the top of the BBL table coming into this weekend. The Sharks, on the other hand, are currently 8th in the Championship having only won 9 games, and lost 14.
Andrew Bridge, of the Sheffield Sharks, will come into the game today, and be the only person to have ever played in 8 BBL Trophy Finals.
Riders starting 5, Jay Cousinard, Andrew Sullivan, Zaire Taylor, Pavol Losonsky and Anthony Rowe.
Sharks starters, Andrew Bridge, Demetrius Jemison, Olu Babalola, Michael Tuck and BJ Holmes.
The Sharks take the tip-off, and are quickly up 7 - 4 after some nice buckets by Tuck and Holmes, and a strong drive by Babalola. A couple of early turnovers by the Riders have given the Sharks an early advantage.
Barry Lamble subs on for the Riders and hits a 3, giving the the Riders a bit of a boost, going ahead of the Sharks by a single point, but BJ Holmes is on first for the Sharks and hits a couple of 3 pointers to give the Sharks the lead once again.
No. 10, BJ Holmes, on Fire for the Sharks
The Riders shake up the roster a bit, but BJ Holmes hits another 3 to give himself 11 points, to be the first player into double figures and to put the Sharks up16 - 15. After a couple of quick offences at either end, Andrew Bridge also drops a 3 for the sharks, taking the score to 21 - 17, with 1:34 left on the clock in the 1st quarter.
A block by Andrew Sullivan on BJ Holmes, is quickly followed by another Riders turnover. Sharks inbound the ball, it's knocked out by Zaire Taylor of the Riders, Bridge puts it back in for the Sharks. Babalola loses it to Andrew Sullivan, but the Sharks turn it over again, before Jorge Calvo commits a foul to send Babalola to the line for 2.
Babalola makes both free-throws and the Sharks are up 23 - 19, with 0:45 left in the 1st quarter.
The quarter finishes 23 - 21 after a half court air ball from Andrew Sullivan.
The Riders get the ball for the second quarter and Sullivan gets a nice 1-2 with Yorick Williams to level the scores at 23 a piece. Turnovers are really hitting the Riders in this game though.
Nothing dropping for the Riders, and Williams trips Babalola, then Nick Lewis scores after the inbound to take the score to 29 - 23 to the Sharks.
The three doesn't drop for the Riders, and BJ Holmes takes it hard to the basket at the other end to take his tally to 13 points. Sullivan is then fouled at the other end, gets the and 1 and hits the free throw.
Sullivan doing his best to lead his Riders
After a quick time out, BJ Holmes is at it again, with a fade away jumper to beat the shot clock. Sharks are up 35 - 26.
Zaire Taylor is the leading scorer for the Riders in the BBL Trophy competition this year, averaging 17.0 ppg, but so far he's only put up 2 points, and there's 2:23 left on the clock in the 2nd.
Sharks call time out with the score line at 37 - 29 in their favour.
Andrew Bridge is fouled after the time out, and drops both of his free throws, stretching the lead to 10 points.
Good defence from the Riders lets them pull that back to 6 points following a massive put back dunk from Cousinard and a 2 from Taylor. Taylor then drops a 3 pointer as well to bring the Riders back within 3 points. Score 39 - 36 to the sharks. The Riders take a time out with 0:25 seconds left in the half.
Sullivan gets another block as Nike Lewis takes it to the basket, but the Riders fail to convert on the other end.
It's 39 - 36 to the Sharks at half time.
BBL HARLEM SHAKE at HALF TIME!!! Video upload later :)
Sharks get the ball for the start of the second half, but good defence from the Riders causes a shot clock violation. Riders aren't having as much luck on offence, and the Sharks go up 46 to 38 after a nice move to the basket by Mike Tuck.
Cousinard misses two free throws, which sums up the Riders game right now. They put a full court press on the Sharks, which works and the Sharks turn it over. Cousinard takes it to the basket to bring the Riders back within 4 points, 48 - 44.
Nick Lewis puts a 3 up, over Zaire Taylor, for the Sharks, before trash talking with Taylor.
Time out at 51 - 44 to the Sharks.
Cousinard for the Riders, and Holmes for the Sharks are top scorers so far, with 15 each. 5:05 left in the 3rd.
Cousinard then comes back and drops a 3 to take him to 18 points, and the Riders to within 2 points. Anthony Rowe then scores a nice layup to level the score at 51 a piece.
BJ Holmes stays on fire, putting up a 3 from the corner, and another Riders turn over gives the Sharks a fast break, and a dunk from Babalola. A couple of pull ups from the Riders' Cousinard come down short, and it's Sharks ball again. 2 minutes on the clock, and 3 points separate the teams.
Babalola backs into the post, his shot doesn't go, but Tuck is there for the rebound and put back, to take the Sharks to 58 points. Another miss for the Riders at the other end gives BJ Holmes another chance at some points for downtown. He now has 21 points and Sharks are back up 61 - 53.
BJ Holmes is 5/6 from behind the arc, with his only miss coming as he heaved the ball up from near half court as time was expiring earlier on in the game.
At the end of the 3rd quarter, the Sheffield Sharks lead 61 - 53.
Here we go in the deciding quarter of the BBl Trophy Final 2013. So far it looks like the Sharks should take this, but in basketball, you never know!
Riders ball, and it doesn't go for Sullivan. The Sharks get the rebound and take it down the other end, but they end up committing another shot clock violation.
The Riders are failing to convert any turnovers that they do force on the Sharks, which is making this a tough game for them. All credit to the Sharks though for some awesome play today.
Babalola hooks it in over Sullivan, and again the Sharks are back up to a 10 point lead at 63 - 53.
The Riders take a time out to talk things over.
Riders have the ball with just over 6 minutes left to go. Zaire Taylor knocks down a 3, then the Riders put on a tough press and the Sharks turn it over. Again, the Riders make nothing of it.
Back down at the other end, Andrew Sullivan fouls Jemison, who goes to the line for 2. He misses the first. Misses the second, but the Sharks get the offensive rebound, and Jemison dunks for 2 points.
Riders offence, and Mike Tuck is called for an un-sportsman like foul. The Riders take another time out before they will get two shots and possession. Score is 67 - 60 to the Sharks, 4:26 left.
Cousinard sinks one free throw for the Riders, and scores another 2 points on the possession. 4 points separates the teams.
Sullivan pulls down the rebound from a Sharks miss, and the Riders looks to make this offence count. A 3 from Taylor puts the Riders within 1.
Zaire Taylor now has 17 points, which is his ppg average for this BBl Trophy campaign.
BJ Holmes is fouled at the other end, and his makes both free throws to put the Sharks up by 3 points.
Taylor is called for the offensive foul, and the Sharks come back with the ball. Babalola pulls up but it doesn't drop. Then Jemison with a big block down at the other end ensure that the Riders aren't getting any easy points tonight.
There's only a couple of minutes left in the game, and the Sharks are up 69 - 66. Time out called.
Leicester hold the record for scoring the least amount of points in a BBL Trophy Final, having only scored 50 points against the Newcastle Eagles in 2006. At least they've got past that this year.
Riders inbound the ball. Calvo drops a 3 and we have a tied ball game!!
BJ Holmes tries his luck for 3 at the other end, but it doesn't drop. After a scramble for the ball, Sullivan pushes it out of bounds on the base line. Bridge to inbound for the Sharks. 55 seconds of play left.
Sharks turn it over, and Riders bring the ball down. Cousinard goes for 3, and misses. 30 seconds left.
Cousinard drives, and turns it over. BJ Holmes drives down the other end, and the foul is called on Cousinard. BJ Holmes at the line for two shots, with 0:08 on the game clock.
Holmes hits the first. Sharks up 70 - 69.
Riders call a time out with 0:08 seconds on the game clock. They've got time for one shot attempt.
Riders get ready to inbound the ball in the front court. Sullivan drives and tries a floater - he floats the basketball over the backboard. Sharks ball!! 0:04 on the game clock. 71 - 69 to the Sharks.
Babalola inbounds the ball to Andrew Bridge, and he steps out of bounds to turn the ball over to the Riders. 3 seconds left.
The Sharks do enough to prevent the Riders making anything of it, and the Sheffield Sharks are the 2013 BBL Trophy Winners!
BJ Holmes gets MVP, having had 25 points, which led all scorers, including 5 3-pointers.