Thoughts On Jones Cup, Japan v. Phils. 2012

Game just over. Here’s some thoughts.

I like that Jason Webb is covering this. – I mentioned in the past how I enjoyed Webb’s analysis. He is on the ball pardon the pun, and is one of the few announcers whom I feel I actually learn from when he breaks down the game, particularly I noticed in pointing out defensive setups. I feel though that he reigns himself in too often even when it’s obvious he’s gritting his teeth in frustration over, say, a frustrating turnover by our team or a horrible call by a ref. There was a game I heard him reacting strongly over a bad call once, only to stop mid sentence and keep quiet for a full 5 seconds. If that wasn’t keeping to a script of saying only nice things about the PBA I don’t know what is.

While I imagine those are his instructions when calling the PBA, maybe he can let loose a little more now that he’s covering Jones Cup and International events. The FIBA refs are known for spectacularly controversial calls that come out from nowhere, and it feels good when an announcer lets loose his emotions in synch with what the rest of us are thinking instead of politely accepting them.

Jeff Chan is impressive. – Has this guy adopted a new workout or diet? ‘Cause he sure isn’t the Jeff Chan I know from FEU to his first few years in the PBA. I need to look our for this guy more.

Clearly, we’re lucky Phils won – The Japanese basketball team isn’t known as a powerhouse. They do not seem to have a decent point guard and they also don’t seem to have a lot of experience which showed when they made crucial mistakes when the heat was on. Their only strengths seemed to be height and great shooting. Even their pick and rolls seemed slow, and their big men weren’t very mobile.

We on the other hand, are fielding some of our top professional players + one NBA level center. Almost all older, far more experienced and yes, individually more skilled than they are.

Why then as in the pic above, were we scoring as low as 10 pts. against 24 in the 2nd and scoring less in 2 out of 4 quarters? And also, not noticeable in the pic, we were almost regularly outrebounded, and many times we were taking shots with hands in our faces and forced to take difficult, guarded shots?

Obviously, if Coach Chot prefers that we play that NBA style then that’s all there is to it. – There seemed to be no set plays, no picks, no helping out a guy lose his defender to get a clear shot. If he has that much belief in our team’s individual skills then that’s cool.

However, we at least have to play defense. We did so in the last quarter to amazing results, limiting Japan to only 13 points while scoring 30 ourselves. That is an amazing feat that can be repeated throughout the game, not just in the final quarter. If we played defense we get more possessions. More defensive rebounds results in a faster pace that we prefer. More offensive rebounds gives us flat out more chances to score.

Other than that 4th quarter burst however, we were in the process of succumbing to a mid – tier team with no PG that wasn’t even playing very well. That is an unacceptable result we just barely avoided, and the team has to get better almost overnight if it hopes to get further along.