By Sam Perley
- #3 Hornets Venom GT (11-5) vs. #15 Heat Check Gaming (8-8)
- Saturday, July 17, 2021 at 6 PM EDT (best-of-three)
- NBA 2K League Twitch and YouTube Channels
- Last time out: Hornets Venom GT won 73-68, on June 3, 2021
Hornets Venom GT Sweeps Nets GC, Advances to THE TURN Semifinals
Charlotte kicked off another night of action in THE TURN by outscoring #6 Nets GC, 46-38, in the second half of Game 1 to take the opener 82-74. The team then fell behind by 14 points in the third quarter of Game 2 before rallying to enter the fourth trailing by just four. A 16-5 run to open the final frame blew the game wide open for Hornets Venom GT as it waltzed its way to a series-sweep-inducing 82-72 victory.
What a 4th-quarter performance last night 👏🏽
— Hornets Venom GT (@HornetsVenomGT) July 17, 2021
Guard Justin “Sherm” Sherman (24.0 points and 12.0 assists) and center Peter “PeteBeBallin” Malin (20.5 points on 83.3% shooting and 9.0 rebounds) paved the way for the victors, who advanced to their first-ever Final Four in an NBA 2K League tournament. The squad had reached the Quarterfinals on two other previous occasions, each of which ended in opposing sweeps; THE TURN in 2020 (lost to Jazz Gaming) and 2020 2KL Playoffs (lost to Raptors Uprising GC).
Heat Check Gaming Continues Cinderella Run with Upset of Kings Guard Gaming
Miami knocked off #18 Mavs Gaming, 2-1, in THE TURN’s opening round on Wednesday night before springing back-to-back three-game upsets over #2 Pacers Gaming and #7 Kings Guard Gaming to reach the Final Four. A well-balanced scoring attack as keyed one of the more unlikely runs in THE TURN’s history with three players – guard Sten “SAV” Valge-Saar, guard Brian “Killeyy” Diaz and center Juan “Hotshot” Gonzalez all averaging at least 18.0 points during this stretch.
— NBA 2K League (@NBA2KLeague) July 17, 2021
Opposing Player to Watch: Brian “Killeyy” Diaz
After going unretained by Gen.G in the offseason and then undrafted, Killeyy served a short stint with Pistons GT earlier in the year before latching on with Heat Check Gaming. The persistence has paid off though as Miami’s season has seemingly turned around following Killeyy’s arrival (7-1 with him in the starting lineup). In nine appearances in THE TURN, the two-guard is averaging 18.1 points on 57.4% shooting, while also having connected on 40-of-71 three-point attempts (56.3%).