Sydney Kings have tough task against Cairns Taipans

THE NBL has had more publicity and exposure internationally this week than ever before, thanks to Sydney import Josh Childress's wild foul last weekend.

Hopefully the spin-off will be more interest in the competition.

But for the Kings, it means heading north to Cairns to play the hottest team in the league without their American star and former NBA player, who copped a one-match ban and $7500 fine for flattening Perth's Jesse Wagstaff (pictured) with a raised forearm.

Townsville may have won the pre-season Blitz tournament, but has a 2-2 win-loss record after three rounds, while Cairns has raced out of the blocks to be clear pacesetters with an impressive 5-0 run.

Hitting the road against an in-form team such as Cairns, with its fanatical home crowd, will not be easy for the Kings who are likely to struggle offensively against a Taipans offence which has clicked early.

Defending champion Perth has bounced back after a surprise first-round loss to the New Zealand Breakers at home, beating Wollongong and Sydney on the back of outstanding defensive efforts.

The Wildcats will be out to extend their winning streak to three when they travel to Wollongong to take on the Hawks tonight.

Round four draw (home teams first): Fri: Breakers v Crocs, Hawks v Wildcats; Sat: Taipans v Kings; Sun: 36ers v Breakers, Melbourne v Hawks, Crocs v Wildcats.

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