Bryce Cotton of the Perth Wildcats.
Bryce Cotton of the Perth Wildcats. Mark Metcalfe

Former NBA star has Wildcats firing

BASKETBALL: Perth will hit the Brisbane Bullets tonight in red-hot form after the Wildcats' six-point triumph over the Kings in Sydney on Saturday.

As close to full strength as they have been all season, the Wildcats now have American import Bryce Cotton and inspirational captain Damian Martin at their disposal.

Against the Kings, point guard Cotton downed 26 points - the most for a Wildcat on debut - while Martin was solid defensively on his return from injury.

Cotton was a one-time member of the Utah Jazz side also featuring Australians Joe Ingles and Dante Exum, before short stints with fellow NBA outfits the Phoenix Suns and Memphis Grizzlies.

"We're starting to get healthy again,” Wildcats coach Trevor Gleeson said after the game.

"Bringing Bryce in gave us that extra spark with the ball and he can get to the rack and shoot it, and it was good having Damo back in there.

"It was the first time he's played in two months and you don't know how rusty you are. You bring Damo back and Bryce in and you don't know how it will affect the team, and it was good tonight.

"It's marvellous how better we get defensively when Damo's playing. It's the effect he has on the team and on the opposition.”

Centre Jameel McKay, who scored career-high 19 points to go with eight rebounds and four blocks in the win in Sydney, will also prove a handful for the Bullets at home.

Brisbane, which hasn't played since New Year's Eve, will be led by Jermaine Beal and Tom Jervis, who each spent three years in Perth and were members of the Wildcats' 2014 and 2016 championship-winning teams.

Bullets v Wildcats, tonight 6.30pm (AEST)

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