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Phoenix s Phelps says San Miguel just regular team without Fajardo

Phelps, who is making a case for Best Import of the Conference, may have a point considering how bad the Beermen have been playing so far in the 2018 PBA Governors' Cup. ........»»

Category: newsSource: philippinetimes philippinetimesOct 12th, 2018

PBA: Standhardinger to Phelps after big SMB win: 'I hope he s okay'

Two days before Phoenix-San Miguel, Fuel Masters import Eugene Phelps already fired the first shot by calling the Beermen a "regular team" without four-time MVP June Mar Fajardo. Following a big win over NLEX, Phelps mentioned that while the Beermen are a great squad, they're not as imposing without their star center. [Related: PBA: SMB just "regular" sans June Mar says Phelps] Well San Miguel heard that shot and the Beermen responded in kind as both teams finally met Friday at the MOA Arena for the 2018 PBA Governors' Cup. San Miguel pulled away in the fourth quarter against Phoenix and the Beermen ended up with a convincing 117-100 win. Top pick Christian Standhardinger, who led the way for San Miguel with 29 points and 14 rebounds, has fired back. "I hope he doesn't take this too tough because he just lost by [17 points] to a regular team," Standhardinger said, addressing Phelps' earlier statements. "I hope he's okay," he added. To be fair, Phoenix did start well against the Beermen, but a poor second quarter allowed San Miguel to make it a game. Phoenix was only trailing by one, 70-71, late in the third but the Beermen just had too much by the time the final period came. And for those wondering, El Destructor had 37 points and 26 rebounds in the loss to San Miguel. "I hope he doesn't feel too bad about this because he just lost by [17 points] against a regular team," Standhardinger continued. "That can be tough for the mental and the psychology behind the player so shoutout to him, I hope he's fine," he added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 12th, 2018

Phoenix s Phelps says San Miguel just regular team without Fajardo

Phelps, who is making a case for Best Import of the Conference, may have a point considering how bad the Beermen have been playing so far in the 2018 PBA Governors' Cup. ........»»

Category: newsSource:  philippinetimesRelated NewsOct 12th, 2018

Standhardinger, SMB respond to regular team comments with rout of Phoenix

Phoenix import Eugene Phelps' statements toward San Miguel might have struck a chord with the Beermen prior to the two teams' matchup on Friday in the PBA Governors' Cup.........»»

Category: newsSource:  philippinetimesRelated NewsOct 14th, 2018

Phoenix s Phelps dismisses Beermen as a regular team sans Fajardo

Eugene Phelps has got a knack for scoring 50 in the PBA......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsOct 10th, 2018

MAJOR POINT: Has the PBA Solved Its Draft Problem?

Late last week on October 12th, the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) made an announcement that the PBA Board of Governors voted and agreed unanimously that starting 2019, the number 1 overall draft pick can no longer be traded and is exclusively for the worst team in the league to pick who they choose. At first glance, the PBA’s announcement looks like a solution to the draft problem that has gone on for over a decade. If you just read the headline or skimmed through the press release or an article written on the subject maybe you think the PBA has found its solution to the draft problem that caused division in the PBA Board and led to the hiring of a new commissioner after another draft debacle last year. Ever the skeptic, I read more than the headlines. Instead of skimming through the press release and articles, I read the fine print. After my readings and a few discussions with basketball people, do I feel the PBA has found a solution to its draft problem? I’m skeptical. I have questions. But before we get to my questions, lets take a look at how the PBA got itself in a situation where they had to make an actual rule that the worst team in the league CAN’T trade the number one overall pick: 2005: Anthony “Jay” Washington gets drafted number one overall by Air21 Express. Washington gets traded on draft day to the Talk ’N Text Phone Pals. Talk ’N Text was second in wins in the PBA in the three conferences leading up to the 2005 draft. 2008: The Talk ’N Text Phone Pals have picks 2 and 4 in the first round of the draft despite being tied for the most number of wins in the 2006-2007 season. They draft Jared Dillinger and Rob Reyes with those picks. TNT trades Jay Washington to the San Miguel Beermen and acquires the third overall pick, which turns out to be Jayson Castro. 2009: Japeth Aguilar is selected number one overall by the Burger King Whoppers. Aguilar plays one game for the Whoppers, before he is shipped to the Talk N Text Tropang Texters in a three-way trade also involving Barako Bull. Burger King was able to get Barako Bull’s 2010 (previously acquired by Talk ‘N Text) and 2012 first-round picks along with Talk ‘N Text’s 2013 and 2014 first-round picks. 2010: Noy Baclao and Rabeh Al-Hussaini are selected first and second overall by Air21 Express. Midway through their rookie season both Baclao and Al-Hussaini along with Rey Guevarra are traded to Petron Blaze in exchange for Danny Seigle, Dondon Hontiveros, Dorian Peña and Paul Artadi. Baclao and Al-Hussaini help the Petron Blaze win the 2011 PBA Governors’ Cup. Al-Hussaini wins Rookie of the Year. 2012: The Petron Blaze Boosters (from Barako Bull via Air21) select June Mar Fajardo number one overall. 2013: Barangay Ginebra (from Air21) selects Greg Slaughter number one overall. Barako Bull had the fourth, fifth and sixth picks in the first round. Barako Bull decides to trade away all three first round picks. The fifth pick turns out to be Terrence Romeo. 2014: Despite winning the Philippine Cup in a 4-0 sweep, Talk ’N Text lands the second and fourth picks overall and selects Kevin Alas and Matthew Ganuelas-Rosser before the 2014-2015 PBA season begins. Alas & Ganuelas-Rosser help Talk ’N Text win the 2015 Commisioner’s Cup. Kia Sorento with their first pick in franchise history selects Manny Pacquiao 11th overall. 2015: Despite winning the 2015 Commissioner’s Cup, Talk ’N Text has the number one overall pick (from Blackwater). Talk ’N Text selects Moala Tautuaa number one and then two days later trade for the number two overall pick, Troy Rosario (Mahindra). 2016: The “Special” Draft. Gilas players are selected behind closed doors. One Gilas cadet per team, not to be traded for two years. Draft order was never released to the PBA fans/public. 2017: The San Miguel Beerman, despite winning two championships, having the most wins and the best win percentage, select Christian Standhardinger number one overall after a trade from Kia. Losing out on the Standhardinger sweepstakes, TNT blasts Commissioner Narvasa for approving the trade. The PBA divides where seven teams declare they have a “loss of confidence” in Commissioner Narvasa. Five teams support Commissioner Narvasa. After a three-month stalemate, Commissioner Narvasa steps down and the PBA Board appoints a new commissioner, Willie Marcial. As you can see, it is a little more complicated than having the number one overall pick protected from a trade. While the number one overall pick has been traded seven times in the last 13 years, which has to be some kind of record, there have been other issues as well. And that is where my long list of questions begins: -    What’s to stop an already winning team from stacking up multiple first round picks other than the number one overall pick, like in 2008 and 2014? -    This "no trading of the top pick rule" becomes effective in 2019. Why the wait? Why can’t it apply this year? Columbian Dyip has the first pick this season. History says they could likely trade that pick to a championship team. Why do we have to go through this make-believe world another year? -    Hypothetically, how would the PBA handle this situation: Phoenix trades an active player to Rain or Shine for ROS’s 2021 1st round pick. Unfortunately, in 2020, ROS has a variety of injuries and acquires the number one overall pick. What happens then? Who gets the first pick? ROS or Phoenix? -    After the first pick is drafted, when does that player selected first become tradeable? Can it be traded after the draft? If not, for how long? Looking at the draft history of the last 13 years, you have to wonder, what were the objectives of teams like Air21, Barako Bull & Kia? Were those teams in the league to form competitive teams? Were they attempting to build championship teams? Why were those teams trading so many of their top picks? Columbian justified its trading of the number pick last year by saying they were going to play in an “unconventional” way. Their unconventional way has led them to five wins in 31 games so far this season. It has also earned them the number one overall pick for the second year in a row. The PBA Draft is supposed to be fun. It used to be fun. Before 2005, the PBA Draft was a legitimate event. It was something to look forward to. The idea of the draft is still special in theory. It’s a day where dreams come true. Drafted players lives change that day. Many times, the lives of a player's family change forever when their son or husband or father is drafted in the PBA. It's an opportunity for teams who have struggled to get better. It's supposed to give hope to teams drafting high and a challenge to teams drafting low. That is how the draft system is supposed to work. Unfortunately, in the PBA that system has been broke for a long time. I like the idea and the spirit of the draft. However, last year on my podcast, Staying MAJOR, I argued that the PBA should scrap its draft. That made me sad. It made me sad because I feel like the spirit of the PBA Draft has been lost. It's been lost by teams manipulating the system for the improvement of their individual team or their team's objective, but not for the betterment of the league. I’m tired of the PBA Draft getting hijacked every year. And now we have to likely go through it again this year. Even after what happened last year. Not being able to trade the number one pick sounds good. It’s a nice blanket statement. I even think it might be a step in the right direction. But, sometimes when you're bleeding, you need more than a band-aid. Fans aren’t naive. They can figure out what’s going on when year after year the rich get richer and the poor stay poor. Maybe some of my questions will get answered here as the draft approaches? Maybe Columbian Dyip won’t trade their pick again? Maybe that’s just wishful thinking on my part? If there is a silver lining, it is at least the PBA and its Board have acknowledged that there is a problem. At least there was an attempt to fix it. I’d say vetting of new potential franchises, so the PBA doesn’t have members who want to trade their draft picks to already successful teams is the bigger issue, but hopefully this is a start of trying to level the playing field. Wouldn’t it be fun to have teams that haven’t won in a while, keep their picks and build contending teams? Or at least not give them to the already strong teams? Wouldn’t that be fun? Wouldn’t it be fun to celebrate the draft spirit of hope on draft day without trying to figure out how the best teams ended up with the top picks again? The PBA is a professional, competitive, sports league. That’s what it’s supposed to be. The PBA is supposed to be fun too. However, it’s NOT fun or competitive when the top teams keep picking high every year. That’s not real competition to me. So will the PBA’s new rule regarding the number one overall pick change anything? This year, no. Starting next year, maybe. I’d like to be optimistic that there will be change or that this rule will initiate an on-going conversation of how to make the draft better. Unfortunately, we still have a full year of waiting before we find out. Eric Menk played in the PBA from 1999 to 2016. Menk is a four-time PBA champion, three-time PBA Finals MVP and one-time PBA MVP (2005). He will be writing for ABS-CBN Sports weekly. Menk also has his podcast Staying MAJOR as welll as his own YouTube channel ......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 19th, 2018

Phoenix, SMB in key faceoff

  Phoenix Petroleum coach Louie Alas knows that San Miguel Beer is the most dangerous team in the PBA Governors' Cup at the moment.   Not only because the Beermen have a loaded local roster despite the continued absence of reigning four-time MVP June Mar Fajardo, and a talented import in Kevin Murphy.   But it is because of something else.   "They're coming off three straight losses, and that makes me worried," Alas said as his rampaging Fuel Masters tackle the Beermen Friday night at Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay where a twice-to-beat advantage could await Phoenix with a win after the 7 p.m. contest.   "Losing four games in a row hasn't ...Keep on reading: Phoenix, SMB in key faceoff.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsOct 12th, 2018

PBA: Elite shoot for share of first place

Already in their best start in franchise history, the Phoenix Fuel Masters go for more as the 2018 PBA Governors' Cup resumes play Wednesday. Phoenix is currently at 3-1 in the standings and the Fuel Masters are out to keep their fire burning, taking on the Meralco Bolts (1-2) in the main 7:00 p.m. game at the Big Dome. With import Eugene Phelps and Calvin Abueva leading the way, Phoenix looks like its finally ready to contend this conference and a win over Meralco, a finalist in the last two Governors' Cups, should help validate the team's status. Meanwhile, the Bolts look to recover from back-to-back defeats. In the first game at 4:30 p.m., Blackwater looks to share first place with two-time defending champion Ginebra. The Elite are 2-0 following victories vs. TNT and San Miguel. Blackwater will have winless Northport (0-4) on deck.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 18th, 2018

REINFORCEMENTS HAVE ARRIVED

Miss the PBA yet? Don't worry as there's more action coming your way starting Friday at the Ynares Center in Antipolo City. The 2018 PBA Governors' Cup will tip off this weekend and we have prolific imports in town, 12 of them to be exact. Get to know who they are before we start the third and final conference for this season.   Justin Brownlee --- Ginebra By now, Justin Brownlee needs no introduction but here goes anyway for the benefit of those who don't know him for some reason. Brownlee is a three-time PBA champion for the Gin Kings and a one-time Best Import. His first two titles came in the Governors' Cup. The first one was in 2016 when he hit "The Shot" in Game 6. The second one was last year when he led the barangay to a Game 7 win in front of more than 50,000 fans at the Philippine Arena. He's a Ginebra legend.   Allen Durham --- Meralco The reigning two-time Best Import is back for the Bolts and he's looking to complete some unfinished business. Durham has led Meralco to two Governors' Cup Finals in his previous two stints in the PBA but each time, the Bolts lost to Ginebra for the title. Is third time the charm for Allen Durham and Meralco?   AZ Reid --- San Miguel Arizona Reid won two Best Imports back when he was still with Rain or Shine and he won his first Governors' Cup title when he switched over to San Miguel. Now, the high-scoring import is back for the Beermen after a one-year hiatus. He has some business to finish here and at the top of the list is regaining his lost PBA championship.   Eugene Phelps --- Phoenix El Destructor first made a name for himself in the Governors' Cup. The Commissioner's Cup might not be his best cup of tea but when it comes to the season-ending conference, Eugene Phelps has proven before that he's a force to be reckoned with. With an upgraded local lineup and perhaps better durability this time around, El Destructor might just become extra destructive to the oppposition.   Henry Walker --- Blackwater The Elite made their second playoff appearance last year in the Governors' Cup with Henry Walker. As the no. 8 seed, they were a few minutes away from stunning no. 1 Meralco to go to the semis. Mr. Inspiration has provided nothing but positive stuff for Blackwater and with a longer build up, the Elite might be ready to take the next step in the Governors' Cup in order to salvage what has been a lost season.   Mike Harris --- Alaska The Aces are bringing in Mike Harris as reinforcement in the Governors' Cup. Harris has NBA experience with the Houston Rockets and the Utah Jazz. He has tremendous international experience and the PBA is only the latest in his long list of stops. He has a career average of 3.4 points in the NBA, playing a total of 54 games spread across five seasons.   Akeem Wright --- Columbian The Dyip will have 33-year-old Akeem Wright for the Governors' Cup. Wright was undrafted in the 2007 NBA Draft and since then, he's built an international career with stops in the Middle East and Europe.   Romeo Travis --- Magnolia A close buddy of LeBron James, Romeo Travis is back in the PBA. The first time, he played for Alaska and won Best Import but lost in the Finals to San Miguel Beer  back in 2015. Now, Travis will suit up for the Magnolia Hotshots. Travis of course is part of the LeBron's high school team at St. Vincent-St. Mary.   Olu Ashaolu --- NLEX We've seen Olu in the Commissioner's Cup as he played NLEX's last game of the conference as part of the team's prep for the Governors' Cup. Ashaolu played for Lousiana Tech and Oregon and college and went undrafted in the 2012 NBA Draft.   Rashad Woods --- Northport The Batang Pier will go with Rashad Woods for the Governors' Cup. Woods has had memorable stints in Mexico and in the Middle East, where he's known as the "Arab Ace."   J'Nathan Bullock --- Rain or Shine Bullock is back for a second stint with ROS. Last season, Bullock and the Elasto Painters were eliminated in the quarterfinals but not after erasing TNT's twice-to-beat advantage in the playoffs. Bullock will join a ROS team that will be coming off an Asian Games campaign in Indonesia.   Mike Glover --- TNT Glover was Globalport's replacement import for Globalport two years ago but now, he'll start for the KaTropa in the 2018 Governors' Cup. The hulking forward went for 25.6 points and 14.0 rebounds in his first PBA tour.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 16th, 2018

PBA: John Fields downplays spat with Chris Ross: Both people want to win

For the second straight game, Columbian Dyip found themselves on the wrong end of a blowout, falling to defending champions San Miguel, 129-117, Wednesday evening at the Araneta Coliseum. Throughout the game, Columbian import John Fields and San Miguel guard Chris Ross were going at it, jawing at each other, to the point that both got called for Technical Fouls in the second half. Fields finished with a monster 19 point-22 rebound outing, but it was Ross’ team that ended up getting the W. After the game, Fields talked about the little spat with the former PBA Best Player of the Conference, saying that it was just about competition. “Nah, that’s just water under the bridge.” said Fields. “Chris Ross is a good competitor, and I’m a competitor, it just got heated. Both people wanna win. He’s a good player.” As for the loss, Fields credits San Miguel’s defensive adjustment that ultimately took them off their game. The Beermen built a 69-55 lead at the half before Columbian made it more interesting in the third quarter, even taking a three-point lead. San Miguel ultimately ended the third period on a 14-3 run and ran away with the game in the fourth quarter. “They switched up the zone and got us a little bit off our pace, a little bit off our rhythm.” Fields said. “I feel like we were in the game, had a chance to win it up to that spot where we went scoreless in the zone and we just couldn’t solve it. I’m just a little disappointed.” “Nah, it’s just we didn’t execute on offense, I missed shots that I normally make, nothing bugged me, I just gotta play through the physicality and finish better around the rim.” Fields added. The six-foot-nine Fields also experience going against four-time MVP June Mar Fajardo, who dropped a conference-high 37 points to go with 18 boards. “He’s a good player, good inside moves. Nothing bad to say about the guy, a good person.” Fields said. With three games left, the Dyip will need to win out all three of their matches in order to secure a spot in the postseason. “We need to win all three, or two out of these three to get to the playoffs, you know the team, we just gotta push hard. We got a tough one in Ginebra next, that’s gonna be a challenge. We just look forward to the challenge situations and we gotta get back to work in practice.” Before taking on Ginebra, Fields and Columbian will take on Phoenix on Sunday, June 10th at the Araneta Coliseum......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJun 6th, 2018

Arwind ok with making way for Standhardinger and Balkman

San Miguel had no wins to show after the first three games in its title defense in the 2018 PBA Commissioner’s Cup. Losing to Meralco, Rain or Shine, and Alaska, the Beermen found themselves at the bottom of the standings before finally barging into the win column on Wednesday at the Araneta Coliseum at the expense of Phoenix. “Thankful kaming nakaisa kami,” veteran forward Arwind Santos shared. He then continued, “Meron kaming team bonding, as in players lang, kahapon, and napag-usapan namin na 0-3 na kami at kailangan wag na namin i-allow na maging 0-4 pa.” Of course, the fully-loaded defending champions needed more time than usual to get going. As Santos put it, “Yung combination e. Mahirap pang hanapin ni coach Leo yung combination.” Indeed, head coach Leo Austria already had a battle-tested core of Santos, Alex Cabagnot, Marcio Lassiter, Chris Ross, and four-time MVP June Mar Fajardo, but also had to integrate top overall pick Christian Standhardinger and returning reinforcement Renaldo Balkman. The good news for San Miguel is that for each and every game, that scary seven-man lineup is getting closer and closer to fruition. That was very much evident in their matchup against the Fuel Masters where they went on an 17-1 run for a come-from-behind 106-94 win. “Mabuti naman, kahit papaano, napi-pick up na (ni coach Leo) pakonti-konti,” Santos said. Along with that, 36-year-old Santos said that the players themselves are getting closer and closer to fully accepting what has to be done. “Siyempre, dapat nandudun pa rin yung mentality ng player na dapat, sacrifice talaga. Kagaya namin, siyempre, kailangan hindi kami mafu-frustrate na ‘di napapasok,” he shared. The former MVP continued, “Nakakapanibago pa rin, siyempre, kasi sanay akong nilalaro ko, 4, tapos bigla akong mag-3. Pero kailangan ko talaga mag-adjust kasi dalawa talaga ang nasa 4 – si Christian at si Renaldo Balkman.” And if the Beermen continue to sacrifice for the good of the team, Santos has no doubt that they will reach their goal sooner than later. “Mabuti na yung nakaisa na kami kasi ang goal na lang namin ngayon, hindi na top 1 o top 2 e, dun na sa 3, 4, 5, 6 na lang kami,” he said. --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsMay 30th, 2018

Superteams and superpowers: Basketball in 2017

The common theme in basketball as of late is rather simple: build yourself a superteam and see where it goes. 2017 saw a bunch of superteams take the court in all levels. Some panned out and some did not. Nevertheless, we live in a world of superteams. Either your favorite basketball team is one or it's not.   Warriors World For the 2016-2017 NBA Season, the 73-win Golden State Warriors, a superteam in their own right, added former Most Valuable Player Kevin Durant. Oh my goodness. The Dubs then proceeded to decimate the NBA, winning 67 games in the regular season. Golden State was even better in the playoffs, making a serious play for a postseason sweep before finishing with a 16-1 record and a second title in three seasons.   Seriously, it's a Warriors World that we live in Golden State's success has prompted other teams to try and create their own superteam. Houston snatched Chris Paul away from the Los Angeles Clippers and now the Rockets have a potent backcourt combo that also feature MVP contender James Harden. Oklahoma City completed two incredible trades that made Paul George and Carmelo Anthony members of the Thunder. Oh, OKC also has MVP winner Russell Westbrook running point. The Timberwolves also have something going on in Minnesota as Jimmy Butler joined Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins for a young and intriguing Big 3. The Eastern Conference landscape changed when Cleveland traded Kyrie Irving to Boston. The Celtics previously signed Gordon Hayward and all of a sudden, the winningest NBA franchise is in position to take over the East now and the forseeable future. Speaking of Cleveland, LeBron James is still with the Cavs and they've added Dwyane Wade of all people to join an aging but still scary superteam. The King started this whole superteam craze. Golden State just happened to perfect. We all live in a Warriors World.   Feer the Beer Over in the PBA, the Philippines' premier superteam is still pretty effective despite its stars each playing almost 40 minutes per game. A year removed from the "Beeracle Run," San Miguel made history by being only the second team to capture the Perpetual Trophy following three straight Philippine Cup titles. Then the Beermen, with the top-3 MVP candidates in June Mar Fajardo, Alex Cabagnot, and Chris Ross, plus Arwind Santos and Marcio Lassiter, ended the franchise's 16-year championship drought in the Commissioner's Cup. With the help of import Charles Rhodes of course. San Miguel had legitimate chances to win the Grand Slam of course, but the team ultimately fell short in the Governors' Cup. However, the Beermen did add 6'8" Fil-German Christian Standhardinger to the fold. Superteam.   Return of the Kings It was the perfect set up. Meralco earned the number 1 seed and was rolling all the way to the Finals. Meanwhile, the Gink Kings had to go through yet another emotional and heated series against rival TNT in the semifinals in order to have a chance to properly defend their title. The series before that? The Gin Kings had to end San Miguel's Grand Slam dreams. In the 2017 Governors' Cup Finals, Meralco was in perfect position to take The Rematch and allow the birth of a new PBA rivalry. After seven games, none of that happened and Ginebra won back-to-back titles by virtue of their quote unquote superteam. Greg Slaughter, Japeth Aguilar, Joe Devance, Justin Brownlee, LA Tenorio, Sol Mercado, and Scottie Thompson. How is that not a superteam? The Kangkong jokes sure died a slow death.   Systematic Mayhem Even in college hoops, superteams are the way to go. However, in the amatuers, you just have to recruit your way into building one. La Salle has perfected this method and the Green Archers are certainly the biggest --- and loudest and most aggressive ---- recruiters. The Taft superteam featuring Ben Mbala and co. got the Green Archers to two UAAP Finals and one championship. Only one championship because another superteam, quietly built in Katipunan with surgical, perhaps even robotic, precision, beat them this year. That's right, Big Bad Blue is once again on top of the UAAP as the Ateneo Blue Eagles scored a sensational, near-sweep of UAAP Season 80. Coach Tab Baldwin has a collection of incredible players that may not look like it on first glance but they do certainly qualify for superteam status. Dom't believe it? Maybe you will after they complete a five-peat. It could happen.   Sweep In the other collegiate league, two superteams dominated the NCAA for two separate periods in one season. First, Lyceum, the surprise superteam, made history by completing an 18-game sweep of the elimination round. However, the Pirates ran into the league's decade-old superteam in San Beda and the Red Lions ended up sweeping the Finals for yet another title. Most of the major characters from both squads will return for a new season and if a San Beda-Lyceum rematch does not happen, well, that's just disappointing isn't it?   OVERTIME 2017 also saw the rise and fall and rise of the Gilas Pilipinas program. Well sort of. The Philippines got off to a great star this year by absolutely dominating the SEABA Championships. Then, disaster struck in the 2017 FIBA Asia Cup when Gilas was embarassed by an old foe in South Korea. To end the year, the Philippine national team recovered, albeit in an ugly fashion, to take an early lead in the 2019 World Cup Asian Qualifiers. Gilas is more than capable of forming a Pinoy superteam that could compete, and even beat, the best of Asia. Let's hope we get that in 2018. Finally, 2017 also saw the Civil War PBA edition. It wasn't funny and it wasn't good. Fortunately, it seems that bright and peacuful days are ahead of our beloved league. Let's hope that's the case and let's just leave the bad memories behind this year. Time to move on and forget about that stuff. There are basketball games to be played.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 28th, 2017

Alas takes blame for Phoenix loss to SMB

Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.net New Phoenix coach Louie Alas took responsibility for his team's 96-104 defeat to San Miguel on Sunday to open the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup. "It's my fault. We knew the ball will go to June Mar (Fajardo), but we still doubled him," he said. With no one to match against the four-time PBA MVP, the Fuel Masters desperately tried to double the behemoth, a move that spaced the floor perfectly for the Beermen and opened their shooters as Marcio Lassiter and Alex Cabagnot punished them from distance late. "From there, the lead got bigger and bigger. I just told my players that next time, I'll be sharper. You can't make mistakes on those situ...Keep on reading: Alas takes blame for Phoenix loss to SMB.....»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsDec 17th, 2017

Iikutin natin ‘yan (lahat ng teams) -- PBA veteran Daquis

Volleyball star Rachel Anne Daquis should also be labelled as a ‘veteran’ of the PBA. Yes, the Cignal spiker has been a ‘regular’ fixture during the opening rites of the country’s pro basketball league. The 30-year old former Far Eastern University volleybelle was tapped for the third time as a PBA team muse, this time by the NLEX Road Warriors during the kick-off of the league’s 43rd season on Sunday at the Araneta Coliseum. Though she’s been with different teams in GlobalPort, San Miguel and NLEX or walking the hardwood in venues like the Philippine Arena, MOA Arena and the Big Dome, all those stints have one thing in common. “Masakit pa rin sa paa, ang sakit na ng paa ko!” said the stunner, who was joined during the parade by another three-time PBA muse in actress Rhian Ramos who was with Phoenix. For Daquis each stint proved to be a challenge. “Mas mataas ang heels ko ngayon, six inches na. Mas gusto ko pa rin volleyball shoes,” she said. “Noong una three inches, naging four inches, tapos naging six, ‘yun ang pagkakaiba ng tatlong ‘yun,” added Daquis, who jested that she’ll try to make a full round of the 12 PBA squads, “Iikutin natin ‘yan (lahat ng teams), ‘di joke lang, joke lang.” Asked why teams love to get her service as muse, Daquis said she honestly has no idea why. “Hindi ko alam, ba’t ako ang magsasabi nu’n, nakakahiya,” she said laughing.     --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @fromtheriles.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsDec 17th, 2017

Looking for an edge: Teams trying to turn data into wins

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press Data is pored over by coaches and staff of the Orlando Magic on a regular basis. They’ll dissect how far a player runs during practice, how quickly that player accelerates and decelerates, how his performance changes as the workout goes along, biometric measurements like his heartbeat or when his workload is particularly heavy. The charts and graphs are detailed and precise. But how it’ll help the Magic win, that’s still an unknown. Wearable technology — chips worn during practice to collect information that analysts churn into reports — has been around the NBA for the past several seasons. It’s not permitted on game nights, and anything specific about processes the 30 teams are using falls into the category of closely guarded secrets. And when it comes to coaches deciding what play to call in the final seconds with a game on the line, it doesn’t seem to have an impact quite yet. “It’s all very beneficial stuff,” Magic coach Steve Clifford said. “But I can only digest X amount of information. And it has to be the right amount of information.” That’s one of the challenges that NBA teams are facing in this information age. Everyone knows analytics can help in countless ways. But the question remains simple: How? “You’ve got to take it and use it as best you can,” said New Orleans coach Alvin Gentry, who said he resisted using some data that he was presented several years ago when he coached in Phoenix — and wound up taking that Suns team to the Western Conference finals. “But at the end of the day, I think the instincts that you have as a coach become just as important, really.” There are some consistencies in what’s being collected. Regardless of what hardware a team is using, everything basically tracks the same things: distance of movement, speed of movement, acceleration and deceleration, workload and heart rate. Teams work on their own, largely without NBA oversight except for some rules laid out in the Collective Bargaining Agreement. It’s already been a boost in how teams monitor a player’s recovery from injury or surgery. But some also have wondered if the data collection is too invasive, or could be used against a player — something that isn’t supposed to happen under league rule. “It seems inherently geared to advantage the team,” University of Illinois law professor Michael LeRoy said in comments posted to his blog last year. “When it’s not linked to performance and not actually linked to injury, just correlation ... it’s hard to see where that data can be used to the advantage of a player.” The NBA has put together a list of what brands (like Catapult and STATSports) and types of products that teams can use, much in the same way it approves knee braces and other accessories. Teams aren’t mandated to share the data they’re collecting from the wearables with the league, although that may change once devices are permitted to be used during games. “Data collected through wearable devices has the potential to have a number of applications to improve player health — but it’s not a silver bullet,” said Dr. John DiFiori, the NBA’s medical director. “Information from wearables can add more detail on each player’s loading, which, together with a team’s overall toolkit, can help develop more individualized injury prevention programs, and assist teams in promoting safe return to play following an injury.” There could be benefits to standardizing the data, but that seems a long way off — especially since teams are still figuring out how to best go forward individually. The league and the NBA Players Association are working on finalizing a validation program will be in place to ensure that devices are measuring what the manufacturers say they’re measuring, and that they do so accurately. Atlanta rookie Kevin Huerter said in his short time as a pro, he’s learned a ton about his body that he didn’t even know because of what he’s gleaned off what his team has collected. “At this level, they worry and care so much more about your body,” Huerter said. “The technology monitors how tough practices are and how tough you’re pushing yourself. It’s a longer season, everybody knows that. So I think a lot of it is making sure guys stay healthy and listening when guys are hurting a little bit one day.” It might extend careers, help with injury management, maybe develop ways to avoid injuries. But whether this data will ever be sharpened to the point of helping a team figure out how to overcome a five-point deficit with 28.2 seconds remaining, that’s anyone’s guess. “Where the league is going, you’re looking for every edge,” Clifford said. “But as a coach, what you can’t do is you can’t stop watching the film. The data, talking to people, the numbers, all that, it’s all good information. But to have the clarity I think you need to make the right decisions, you better have watched enough film because that’s where you can see why, why, why it’s happening.”.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 14th, 2018

PBA: Murphy on Calvin incident: 'I didn t choke him'

The end of the San Miguel-Phoenix game Friday was marred by a scuffle. Things started when San Miguel import Kevin Murphy and Phoenix forward Calvin Abueva got entangled on a Fuel Masters possession. As both players crashed to the floor, it appeared that Murphy put Abueva on a headlock, prompting a near bench-clearing affair to try and separate the two. Murphy says he didn't choke Calvin, though he did get a flagrant foul penalty 1 for it. "I mean, it was really just trying to hold him up. It just so happened that my arm was around his neck," Murphy said. "But I didn't choke him, I was just holding him. He just kept pushing me back. So, I mean, I'm not a dirty player, you know what I mean, so it is what it is," he added. It was a physical game throughout and Murphy says he's fine with the bumps that come in a regular game. However, the high-scoring San Miguel import has no business with dirty plays. "I expected it to be physical but my thing is if you play physical, that's cool, but don't do cheap shots," he said. "I'm okay with playing physical, playing hard to compete but my thing is, if you hit me with cheap shots the whole game and the ref just letting it go and stuff like that. I mean, I can play through that but it don't mean that I like it so that's how it was," Murphy added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 12th, 2018

PBA: Phoenix coach Alas questions Murphy penalty after fight

Coach Louie Alas minced no words on the skirmish involving his player Calvin Abueva and San Miguel import Kevin Murphy at the Mall of Asia Arena Friday evening. Alas' team, the Phoenix Fuel Masters, were down by 17, 105-88, with more than four minutes left in the game, when Abueva and Murphy got entangled on the baseline before chaos ensued. WE'VE GOT A FIGHT! Kevin Murphy with the head lock on Calvin Abueva then chaos ensues. #PBA2018 • @abscbnsports pic.twitter.com/2krPTqaK6P — Philip Martin Matel (@philipptionary) October 12, 2018 More fireworks were unleashed when both camps spewed out unmentionables at halfcourt. Then some more action. Flagrant 1 on Murphy Techs on Doug Kramer Paolo Bugia (PHX team manager) Coach Louie Alas#PBA2018 • @abscbnsports pic.twitter.com/py6z8SaiXR — Philip Martin Matel (@philipptionary) October 12, 2018 In the end, Murphy was slapped with a Flagrant 1, while Kelly Nabong assessed a personal foul for pushing. Meanwhile, Alas, Doug Kramer, Phoenix team manager Paolo Bugia were penalized with technical fouls for entering the playing court.  The veteran coach was simply not happy with the call, and insisted that the opposing import should have been booted for a Flagrant 2. "Talagang sakin F2 yun, pare. That's a choke. I dont know kung ano yung pinanood nila. Lahat nga nagtetext sakin, thats a choke, lahat, sinakal talaga. Pero ganun talaga e. Siguro kung samin nangyari yun baka itatawag nila -- kung di import gumawa itatawag nila. Pero that's not right," an irritated Alas said after the game. Alas also shared that he had a war of words with San Miguel governor Robert Non as the opposing team official allegedly cussed the enigmatic Phoenix forward during another skirmish at halfcourt.  The mentor also took a jab at Beermen assistant Biboy Ravanes for his role in the brawl. "Tapos si Biboy, medyo... siguro wala ng kontrata yun para ano, siya na lang daw. Sabi ko sige, okay lang sakin, anytime." Regarding on how the now 6-3 Fuel Masters prepared the game against the struggling, 3-4 Beermen, the tactician shared that maturity was a major factor in their loss against the more seasoned opponents, noting that his wards weren't relaxed in the game-deciding run to end the third. "Akala ko nga third quarter okay na eh dahil maganda yung adjustment na ginawa namin. In just a span of three minutes, lumamang kami ng two points diba."  "But still, wala kaming -- and I'm still looking for it -- yung talagang may magcocontrol pag may emosyon yung laban, na "okay ibigay niyo sakin yung bola, relax, and just play."  __   Follow this writer on Twitter, @philipptionary. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 12th, 2018

No surprise, the West title still runs through the Warriors

By Tim Reynolds, Associated Press Golden State coach Steve Kerr is a happy man these days. He’s got a new contract. He’s got his son Nick, who was helping out in San Antonio, working in the Warriors’ video room now. He’s leading a team that has won three of the last four NBA championships and is the overwhelming favorite to win it again this season. Staying happy will be the challenge for Kerr and the Warriors this season, when Western Conference rivals resume their attempts to take down the champs. “Our place in the history of the league is pretty secure,” Kerr said. “I don’t think our guys should feel a ton of pressure. I think they should feel the importance of trying to do it again, because this may be the last time we have this current iteration of the Warriors, just given all the free agents and the money crunch and everything else.” LeBron James took his talents to Los Angeles, signing with the Lakers and moving out of the East for the first time in his career. Houston had the NBA’s best regular-season record a year ago and has reigning MVP James Harden. Utah has a budding superstar in Donovan Mitchell, and certainly got the league’s attention with its playoff run last season. But in the West, until further notice, it’s still the Warriors and then everybody else. “It’s a marathon,” Warriors guard Stephen Curry said. “There’s a lot of time between now and April and May and June, but if we go about it the right way to start the season, it can feed on itself in terms of the expectation we have night in, night out.” A look at the West, in predicted order of finish: PLAYOFF BOUND 1. GOLDEN STATE — Warriors aiming for their third consecutive NBA championship, something only the Lakers, Celtics and Bulls franchises have done. 2. UTAH — Donovan Mitchell is a legitimate star, coach Quin Snyder has been underrated for far too long, and the Jazz went 29-6 to finish last season. 3. HOUSTON — The Rockets have the MVP in James Harden, a leader in Chris Paul and added Carmelo Anthony, but expecting another 67-15 season is a lot. 4. L.A. LAKERS — LeBron James is still the best player in the game and shows no signs of slowing down, so doubting his chances seems less than brilliant. 5. OKLAHOMA CITY — This is a sign of how loaded the West remains: The Thunder are really good, and that won’t assure them home-court for Round 1. 6. DENVER — Losing Game 82 last season to Minnesota and missing the playoffs because of that outcome should serve as a massive motivator for Denver. 7. NEW ORLEANS — DeMarcus Cousins is gone, Rajon Rondo is gone, but Anthony Davis is still there and that should be enough for a Pelicans playoff run. 8. SAN ANTONIO — Dejounte Murray’s ACL tear is a disaster, but any team with LaMarcus Aldridge, DeMar DeRozan and Gregg Popovich still has a lot. IN THE MIX 9. PORTLAND — The West’s No. 3 seed last season, the Blazers were only three games ahead of No. 9 and will face a serious battle in a very loaded West. 10. DALLAS — Luka Doncic is NBA-ready, DeAndre Jordan will make the Mavs better and Dirk Nowitzki deserves to see his franchise trending up again. 11. L.A. CLIPPERS — A possible transitional year for the Clippers, who should be major players in free agency next summer and could add a lottery pick. FACING LONG ODDS 12. MINNESOTA — The Jimmy Butler debacle shows that some big changes in direction are probably going to happen in Minnesota, and sooner than later. 13. PHOENIX — Devin Booker got his max deal and the Suns got No. 1 pick Deandre Ayton, but firing GM Ryan McDonough so close to the season was odd. 14. MEMPHIS — Mike Conley and Marc Gasol are savvy vets, but they are going to need a lot of help if Memphis is going to seriously improve this season. 15. SACRAMENTO — Kings had a league-high 44 games last season where they didn’t score 100 points, and a very young team might not change that much. WHAT TO KNOW L.A. BRON: If he has even an average-for-him season, new Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James will rise to No. 4 on the NBA’s all-time scoring list this season. He’s currently No. 7, with No. 6 Dirk Nowitzki, No. 5 Wilt Chamberlain and No. 4 Michael Jordan well within reach. Add 2,000 or so points to James’ total of 31,038, and only No. 3 Kobe Bryant, No. 2 Karl Malone and No. 1 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar — all former Lakers — would still be ahead of him. STEPH RISING: Speaking of rising up career charts, Golden State’s Stephen Curry could easily be No. 3 on the all-time list for 3-pointers made by the end of this season. Curry has 2,129 3s in 625 career games, a rate of 3.4 made per game. The six players ahead of him — Ray Allen, Reggie Miller, Jason Terry, Kyle Korver, Jamal Crawford and Paul Pierce — averaged 1.8 made 3s per game. BIG NUMBERS: The only players in the last 30 seasons to average 30 points and eight assists were Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook in 2016-17 and Houston’s James Harden last season. Probably not coincidentally, Westbrook and Harden won MVP awards for those seasons. There are seven active players with at least one MVP award in the NBA right now, and all seven play in the West. GREAT COACHES: San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich enters the season with 1,197 wins, fifth-most in NBA history — 13 behind Pat Riley and 24 behind Jerry Sloan. Meanwhile, Golden State’s Steve Kerr comes into the year with the highest winning percentages during both the regular season (265-63, .808) and the postseason (63-20, .759) in NBA history. Here’s how far ahead Kerr is on the NBA’s all-time regular season winning percentage list: If the Warriors go 24-58 this season, which seems less than likely, he would still be above Phil Jackson for the No. 1 spot. VERSUS EAST: The West beat the East for the ninth consecutive season in head-to-head matchups, winning nearly 53 percent of the cross-conference matchups in the regular season (and 100 percent of them in the NBA Finals). Over the last nine seasons, West teams have beaten East teams nearly 57 percent of the time......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 11th, 2018

PBA: So what s wrong with San Miguel?

So what's wrong with San Miguel? Aside from missing reigning four-time MVP June Mar Fajardo of course. After losing to Alaska Saturday, their third straight defeat, the Beermen are now 2-4 in the 2018 PBA Governors' Cup. This is despite having a super scorer in import Kevin Murphy and top pick Christian Standhardinger leading all locals in points and rebounds. So what's wrong with the Beermen anyway? Aside from missing MVP June Mar Fajardo of course. "Honestly our losses are winnable games. They're just really high scoring," guard Marcio Lassiter said. "It's fun for the fans. Definitely fun for the fans. But I don't think we're gonna D'Antoni every team where the goal is to score more than your opponent, but we gotta put a benchmark at a certain point like hey we gotta give up less than 25 in a quarter or something. We gotta figure it out on defense," he added. Currently in 8th place, the goal now for San Miguel is to somehow figure out how to make the playoffs. But the Beermen are not exactly in an unfamiliar territory here. Just last conference, they started 0-3 and still made the Finals as a no. 6 seed. For the Governors' Cup, San Miguel just has to tweak some things to get the ball rolling again. It starts on defense. "We have to really come together and we have to solve something with our team. We know we're capable of doing it but we have to know that these upcoming games are really make or break for our playoffs -- just to get in the playoffs. Now we're talking about seeding. We know what we have to do," Lassiter said. "You know, obviously, a hundred and twenty-plus points, you're not gonna win. So I think if we can cut that number down, we can definitely get some games," he added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 9th, 2018

PBA: Compton to injured June Mar: 'Next year ka na lang [bumalik]'

ANTIPOLO CITY, Rizal --- Beating San Miguel is always nice but beating San Miguel with June Mar Fajardo is better. Head coach Alex Compton and his Alaska Aces beat the Beermen Saturday sans Fajardo, and he knows that's not up to par compared to beating San Miguel with the Kraken. Still, anytime you beat SMB is a big deal, and Compton knows that too. "Everybody is fighting for that twice-to-beat and this is huge against clearly the dominant team in the past three years," Compton said after the 128-119 win over the Beermen that put Alaska to 5-1 for the conference, tied for second place. "And I know June Mar is not there, that helps us. When you don't have to play against the dominant force in the league, it ups your chances, so that changes everything," he added. Fajardo, the league's reigning four-time MVP and favorite to win a fifth this year, has yet to suit up in the Governors' Cup. June Mar is dealing with a shin injury. While Fajardo is expected to rejoin the Beermen soon, barring setbacks in his recovery, Compton has a suggestion for the San Miguel's prized center. "I know June Mar is a really good guy, I hope he gets better. Ang payo ko lang sa kanya, pahinga ka muna. Sobrang halaga ka sa national team, may future ka. Baka next year ka na lang [bumalik]," the Alaska coach said, jokingly of course. "No, I'm sure he'll be back soon and back to MVP form," he added. Compton sure knows just how dominant Fajardo can be for the Beermen. After all, San Miguel's latest dynasty in the June Mar era was built by beating the Aces numerous times in the Finals. So everytime he's out, it helps the rest of the PBA balance things out a bit, and that includes the Aces. "I think June Mar is so dominant, even if he didn't play this conference he should still win MVP. I mean, he's just incredible," Compton said. "So it helps us that he's not there but I do hope he gets better soon," he added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 6th, 2018

PBA: Paul Lee redeems self with strong effort vs. ROS

After struggling for only eight points in his Magnolia return last week, Paul Lee made sure to bounce back Wednesday for the Hotshots. Lee fired a game-high 22 points in the win against Rain or Shine in the 2018 PBA Governors' Cup, leading the Hotshots to a wire-to-wire win and a 3-1 start to the season-ending joust. On top of his 22 points, Lee also dished out seven assists and had four steals. "I just played my game. I just focused for this game kasi I had a bad game so very important to redeem myself. And of course, very important for the whole team," Lee said. "Masama lang gising last time," he added of his 8-point effort in the loss to leage-leading Phoenix. With the victory, the Hotshots are keeping their position near the top of the standings. The win was also a nice boost heading into their next game against San Miguel. "Very important kasi ito yung mga team na dapat namin i-panalo," Lee said. "Kasi kakailanganan namin to end of the eliminations. Sa San Miguel 50-50 na kami dun," he added.   --- Follow this writer on Twitter, @paullintag8.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsSep 26th, 2018