A quick turnaround from their 107-97 loss at home to the Wildcats gives Hawks' coach Jacob Jackomas little time to adjust any issues before their match against Cairns, but that does not mean he is unaware of the glaring issue hindering the side.
For the sixth time this season, the Hawks conceded over 100 points and the Hawks coach knows that scoring 97 points at home - as they did against Perth - should be going a long way to securing a victory.
But it was not the case despite the best efforts from co-captains Sam Froling and Tyler Harvey. Too many fouls cost the side in the end and despite dominating the third quarter, they fell short of victory once more to sit bottom of the ladder with a 2-16 record.
The Hawks were down by 17 points at half time against Perth but managed to level the scores in the last quarter. But ultimately, the side were too open defensively and they were punished by a Corey Webster masterclass in the game's final flurry.
As they turn their attention to the Taipans, Jackomas said his main focus would be on shoring up the defence as he said it would be their best hope of getting a victory in their first match of 2023.
"There is something going on with us right now," he said.
"Bryce [Cotton] had more foul shots than our whole team. We need to make adjustments on that point. Just looking at the score alone [against Perth] we need to do something defensively right now.
"We put enough scoreboard pressure on Perth to be able to set up our defence but we need to figure out what went wrong [before match against Cairns]. We thought we could get a victory today [by] scoring 97 points and we should get a victory."
In a blow to the Hawks, star import Peyton Siva will be facing a race against time to be fit for the match against the Taipans after leaving the court in the second quarter following an off-the-ball collision with TaShawn Thomas.
"It didn't look good at all," Jackomas admitted.
"But we've been in this situation before. We usually rise when the chips are down that way. But we need some luck and maybe he thinks it's really bad and it's not as bad as he first thought. But he wasn't confident [when it happened]," he said.
The Hawks will be looking to start 2023 off well with a victory over the Taipans. The last time the sides played, overtime was needed to decide the winner, with Cairns getting the chocolates 102-101 on that occasion.
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