Hawks pip 36ers with Jett buzzer-beater

A stunning last-second basket from Illawarra's crowd villain Jordair Jett has helped the Hawks to a gripping 87-86 NBL victory over Adelaide.

The strong-bodied Jett (16 points, six rebounds), drove hard, split two defenders and flipped in the winner on the buzzer, which was given the green light after the referees checked the video footage.

He had copped boos all match for his role in an altercation with the 36ers' Harry Froling when the Hawks last visited.

The Sixers led by seven points with less than two minutes to play but were undermined by a couple of misses, Todd Blanchfield's two and three, Nathan Sobey's double-dribble violation and Jett's last-ditch heroics.

Sobey (24 points) was the standout for the 36ers who skipped to a 20-6 advantage early before going to sleep mid-quarter and allowing the Hawks to pounce.

Illawarra outscored the home side 20-5 for the term and led 26-25 at quarter-time before Adelaide assumed control thanks to unsung Adam Doyle.

The reserve guard had nine points for the quarter including back-to-back three-pointers, three assists and took a charge from Hawks import Cedric Jackson to steer the 36ers to a 54-48 halftime buffer.

Illawarra continued to reduce the deficit, slicing the margin to one point before a 10-0 run late in the third stanza gave the Sixers a 74-67 three-quarter time cushion.

Adelaide looked home with their late seven-point buffer but Jett had other ideas, as the Hawks surged to their third-straight win in nail-biting style.

"Sometimes you need luck and tonight was our lucky night - it's as simple as that," said Illawarra coach Rob Beveridge.

"They came out and I thought 'geez, we're in trouble here, they're going to smash us by 40' so it's a sensational win."

Adelaide coach Joey Wright felt his team's hard work was undone by a self-inflicted combination of missed free throws and turnovers.

"It's disappointing. Not just because it was Illawarra and they had the same record as us but we had the opportunity to win that game," he said.

"(We had) too many turnovers (20 to the Hawks' 15) and missed free throws ... 18 from 32 from the line is not like us."