The Brisbane Bullets will head into 2019 on a high after a 100-74 demolition of the Illawarra Hawks.
After a 75-68 defeat to Sydney on Saturday, Brisbane dominated the home team in Wollongong, leading at every change and stretching the margin to 30 heading into the final quarter.
Their aggressive defence troubled the Hawks from start to finish, restricting them to their worst shooting performance (32 percent) of the season.
American import Lamar Patterson (18 points, six rebounds, four assists) was superb for the Bullets, while Cam Gliddon (15 points) and Mika Vukona (14 points, 11 rebounds) also played key roles, as Brisbane boosted their record to 9-8 to grab a share of fourth spot with the Adelaide 36ers.
"We need to get better at defence and hang our hat on it, and our pride needs to influence our defence," Brisbane coach Andrej Lemanis said.
"Tonight we showed that it's certainly progressing. Our urgency and intent has picked up, and to hold that team to 32 per cent shooting reflects that mindset.
"We didn't play badly against Sydney, and we're understanding better how we need to play defence together, and our chemistry and confidence in our defence is growing."
The writing was on the wall early, with the Bullets holding the Hawks to dismal 26 percent shooting in the first period for a 23-16 quarter-time lead.
Brisbane clamped down even harder at the defensive end, building a commanding 40-22 lead midway through the second period.
Patterson paced his side with 11 first-half points, while the visitors hit eight of 14 three-point shots on the way to a 51-30 half-time lead.
Things only got worse for the Hawks in the second half as the Bullets took a 70-40 lead into the fourth period and answered every challenge down the stretch.
"We're really letting ourselves down," Hawks coach Rob Beveridge said.
"That was a clinical performance by Brisbane. They sacrificed for each other and they're committed to each other.
"They're a playoff team and we're not."
"I can't get this team to gel. We're too selfish and guys are playing for themselves. It's the most inconsistent team I've ever coached."
Illawarra slipped to 7-10 for the season and are fighting an uphill battle to stay in finals contention.
The Hawks face a must-win game at home against Sydney on January 5.
Brisbane meet the last-placed Cairns Taipans in Cairns on January 3 and titleholders Melbourne United on January 6 in what will be their fourth game in nine days.