Basketball: Giants quell the Storm to reach play-off

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The Independent Online
They pumped up the volume at the Moorways Leisure Centre on Saturday night. But the noisier the music and the rowdier the crowd, the calmer Manchester Giants became as they subdued Derby Storm 92-86 in the Budweiser League to clinch their place in the play-off quarter-finals.

Within the main drama of the destination of this season's league title, a minor mystery is how a team with Giants' talent has not been challenging Sheffield Sharks, Chester Jets, the Leopards and the champions, London Towers, for the crown.

Giants' 82-46 win over Towers last month will probably remain the most remarkable result of the season.

Injuries and a "revolving door" early-season policy with American imports is part of the answer. In Saturday's first half, failure to defend the three-point shot was another factor as Derby's Tim Lascelles hit six. After the break he was ensnared by the calmest player on the floor, 22- year-old, 6ft 6in Panji Grainger, and failed to score again.