Friday , Jul , 14 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

EBC Day Fifteen: Hot 97 vs. Pelle Pelle Posse

Once again, Hot 97 get off to a sluggish start, and for the first few minutes of the contest they seem happy to watch the Pelle Pelle Posse with the rest of us. Toby, however, decides he’s seen enough with his team trailing 11-4, going on a personal run that ends with a vicious reverse slam in traffic that draws his team within four points. Pelle Pelle’s “The Humble One” maintains the gap, though, drawing consecutive fouls before stepping back to hit the first three of the evening.

His team feeds off of the extra space afforded by The Humble One’s double coverage, attacking the rack to jump ahead to 26-15 with five minutes left in the half. Hot 97’s “Problem” makes the game his own personal showcase at this point, drawing four fouls in as many plays to put a quick seven points on the board. While The Humble One stretches the lead back out to seven with a monstrous putback jam, the half ends with the momentum very much in Hot 97’s favour as Toby spikes home an enormous right-hander over two defenders, then receives the ball ahead of the pack after a steal seconds before the buzzer to throw down a double-clutch reverse that makes the score 34-33 at the break.

EBC Day Fifteen: Hot 97 vs. Pelle Pelle Posse

The Humble One kicks off the second stanza with a bang, knocking down a triple and a long two before Hot 97 manage even to hoist a shot that draws iron. Despite their poor start to the period, they mount a rally after a timeout that brings it back to a one-shot game with twelve minutes on the clock. That’s about the last we see in the way of sustained scoring for a while, though, with neither team having much luck at finding the bucket for the remainder, scoring only eleven points apiece in as many minutes.
The game looks to be in the Posse’s hands in the final moments after The Humble One hits two plus the tax to help his team to a 65-63 lead. A costly foul gives Hot 97 another chance at life with twenty-five ticks remaining, and they make the most of it by hitting both charity shots. Turnovers both ways leave the score tied at the regulation buzzer, meaning that we have our first overtime encounter of the 2006 EBC season.

While Problem swats Pelle Pelle’s first shot of the extra period into the stands, little else goes their way for the next minute as The Humble One hits identical turnaround jumpers on the baseline to create a four-point cushion. A pair of turnovers by Hot 97 allow PPP to put even more distance between them and their opponents, and with 2:25 to go, Pelle Pelle are ahead 75-69. Although they fail to put the final nail in the coffin by bricking five free throws in the last two minutes, they redeem themselves with key defensive stops in the final seconds that helps them escape with a 78-74 win.