Player’s Log 221120142103
Categories to cover: Personal thoughts, teammates, teams we’ve been up against and player interactions
It’s been 11 games into the season, and with 7 / 8 wins and 4 / 3 losses, the team’s overall records aren’t bad, and I’m glad that I’ve managed to contribute to the team, spreading the ball around where I can.
There’s still much to learn however, and with our most recent game with the Edmonton Totems, I realize how great a gap it is that we have to fill, and I feel that that pressure falls onto me specifically.
During our games, things I took note of against the teams we’ve faced will be as follows. Due to my own position played however, I will have a bias towards Guards, Point Guards specifically.
Our first game started as a loss on home court, but it allowed me to observe how teams played in the actual season itself.
The pace was quicker than that of the pre-season, everything felt much more serious in general.
It’s not that different when compared to the games played between the different military representative teams of different nations, but the scale at which attention is given to the players is a different story altogether.
Even the Draft Candidate Combine was not at this scale, but I guess that was to be expected.
Victor and Shadow really showed what they can do in this game, Shadow’s shooting prowess is something on a scale I’ve not yet seen before, and Vic’s really quick with his paws with those steals.
That said, the LVG PG, Li Ho Fook, is also a very fast one, with very good ball control. His movements remind me much of a person who has learnt and is able to incorporate different styles of Wushu footwork into his basketball game. If that is allowed in the FBA, I will slowly adapt both Wing Chun and Silat footworks wherever I can into my game too.
Their bigfur, Barnaby Jazz, is huge though, and surprisingly quick on his feet as well. Very aggressive for those rebounds, and he ended the game with a DD2. With him, Mr.Li and Mr Kikovic, size, power and speed were on the side of the Wildcards, with our side leaning heavily on both Shadow and CPT,Cheval.
Due to how consistent they were and how all over the place we were, we lost the game by a single possession at home court.
As for fellow rookies, Sebastian is also proving his worth on the court much better than I had during the game, despite our different roles. He did well during the game.
2nd official game of the season and another home court game.
From what I’ve gathered, HWI is a team that is presently being reformed, with a lot of new blood on the team, with about half of the whole team being formed of Rookies and Sophomores. This is almost the opposite of our team, which mainly consist of experienced players (that has it’s own problems however), so it was a game of experience VS, what they say, the power of youth.
Skeeter showed how much of a well rounded player he is in this game, and how dangerous of an attacker he could be.
HWI played far more aggressively than we did, starting of with a decent lead over us, but we managed to pace ourselves better in this game, and took things more calmly and managed to bring the flow of control back to our side of things for most of the rest of the game.
Overall, the first 3 quarters were very close, but we managed to pull through on the final quarter.
I’m glad to have made a contribution to the team as well within the limited time I was given, getting the ball to move. Speaking of movement, Mr.Norwich is a difficult one to get through. He’s a balanced player in terms of strength and speed and is a strong defensive player. Offensively, the power of his dunks cannot be denied.
Much respect goes to Mr.Masalia and Mr.Warren, both of them really know how to get the ball moving between the HWI players, and Aurora really knows how to shoot. Their combination makes her hard to shut down. The physical strength Mr.Barrett has is also undeniable, he’s a difficult one to stop when he starts to drive towards our hoop. Special note goes to Tanya, who managed to steal the ball out of my paws.
Overall, I’m glad that Aurora, Julian and Tanya are doing well. Have to admit that I have extremely limited to no interactions with the other rookies however.
Another home game, this time a visit from the strongest regular season team of the last season, the Winnipeg Voyageurs.
Right off the bat, we started off with a more aggressive approach to things, Vic and Skeeter showing an incredible amount of chemistry moving the ball around, scrambling the WPG defense using both passes and speed, creating a huge gap between both our teams right on the first go… But this resulted in reduced performance in the next 3 quarters where the flow of control fell mostly towards WPG’s side, with our first string of players losing steam and the WPG side of things balancing their game out between their strong players.
It was a back and forth struggle between both our teams, and all we did was mostly play defensively with WPG, narrowly defeating them towards the end by a single possession.
While Ms.Wilds was their primary PG, I enjoyed seeing how Mr.Timmids moved the ball about. He’s fast with those paws of his, swiping the ball off of Plushpaws’ paws… Which surprised me to say the least. His movements remind me of a boxer… was enamored by that... and I’d love for an opportunity of a pickup 1-1 basketball with him one day.
Am also glad that Kevin is also proving his worth, considering how nervous he was about not getting picked during draft night. When he goes for that rebound, his weight makes him virtually unstoppable by virtually anyone in our team shorter than him, since none of us are in the same weight class.
Just a thought… Mr.Stryker not only has a cool sounding name… He also reminds me of a certain military superior of mine.
Our first away game of the season
This wasn’t one of our better games, admittedly.
The Thrust had such control over the flow of the game, they just took it easy on us on the whole final quarter, with a whole 13 point lead at the start of the final quarter. All they needed to do was exhaust us and play ball keep away to win the game then.
Mr.Kellendyne and Ms.Walters both shared the PG position for this game, and both lead by example on how to get the ball moving about in my opinion. Fellow Rookie, Benjamin Durby also did well for the amount oftime he was on the court.
We were also very reliant on CPT.Cheval too, and he was exhausted by the end of the game.
Skeeter once again showed how much of a versatile player he is.
The game in itself was quite a learning experience for me, watching both sides play from the sidelines. This was one of the most organized I’ve seen our team been back then (save for Terrell playing exceptionally aggressively for some reason), but the Thrust were the better team that day.
This next game with the Typhoons was back at our home court. It is also the first game I started as the team PG.
The game was mostly a back and forth one, both our teams pretty evenly matched. For all 4 quarters, neither of our teams had anything more than a single possession, and both our teams kept the ball moving, be it through individual strong attacks, or good ball movement, making it an exciting match to watch overall.
Defensively, the typhoons were the stronger team overall, but Vic, Skeeter, Shadow and myself were able to keep the ball moving between everyone more consistently overall, so we emerged with a 3 point victory at the end of it.
Mr.Korber reminds me much of Skeeter though, their playstyles are extremely well rounded, and 2 of his alley-oops were quite a sight to behold - The whole stadium roared watching him do them.
Ren played well during his time on the court too, moving the ball with good amounts of misdirection, and his height, weight and strength gives him an advantage towards rebounds compared to myself. He’s quick with that steal off of my paws too - Something I had to make up for later.
I really need to work on my steals, need Vic’s help and advice for that.
Oh, nearly forgot… Somehow, I ended up as the PotG for this game and ended with a DD2, on my debut as a PG! o3o
That felt kind of different, but not unpleasant. That said, I’d prefer if the attention wasn’t directed at me, would let me function better as a team enabler.
This game was an away one over in Alaska - It was cold… I wonder how Kak.Cliff handles the weather here. Plush loved the weather though.
While we started off with a 1 possession lead, the Arctics left us in the dust after the 2nd quarter by a significant margin. It was an uphill battle after that, and things looked grim until the final quarter, which got everyone’s hearts pounding - Our points were tied.
During the last few seconds of the game, the Arctics were leading an attack towards our basket, but they slipped and I ended up with the steal. It was a desperate race towards their hoop, and I made the pass to Kamakani for an alley-oop, throwing off the defense with Kamakani’s dunk ending the game.
It was such a close call.
Also, I’m glad to see that Valentine is doing decently well in Alaska. He’s a lot… fluffier than I remember… Given his limited time on the court though, he did really well - Nearly 20% of the points made by the Arctics that day was thanks to him.
Outside of the game itself, it was Veteran’s day, or Hari Pahlawan as Kak.Cliff and I call is (it translates to ‘Heroes’ Day’). Kak.Cliff and myself lit up a lot of lanterns for those who have fallen, and we hope that the lanterns will bring some warmth and light for the souls of those of have passed.
Oh! Before the lighting of the lanterns, I went out of the hotel dressed in a penguin snuggie, in response to Brad Pullman calling me ‘Oddity Penguin’. I still wonder though, we are under the same agent and had dinner together too… Is my name that hard to pronounce?
This was a home game, Alphas visiting.
To be honest, this had been the game that I had been looking forward to for a long time.
Almost 4 years ago, during the Military World Games in 2011, the ASEAN Spec Ops basketball team lost to Team USA’s basketball team. That team was led by none other than SGT.Rene Lacoste.
I wanted to be able to face off against him early in the league, so my own emotions won’t get the better of me late in the league itself, so I requested to be able to start this game… That ended up with coach suspecting me of things I did not have in mind, but with some explanation and Vic’s support, things worked out towards the end.
The game in itself though… didn’t work out too well. We did okay in the first half, managing to hold our defense and gaining a 2 possession lead over the Alphas, but they managed to shave that to a 1 pt. lead for us by the end of the 3rd quarter, and beat us by a painful 1 pt. lead at the end of it all.
While we managed to keep the ball moving and play consistently well this game, it wasn’t good enough, and both Mr.Knutten and Mr.Umaechi’s presence and aggression were hard to not recognize. While our team was balanced, them being fed the ball ended up being as our undoing.
That said, I was glad to have been able to play with SGT.Lacoste once more.
Oh, also, note to self, this day marked my second DD2… Was playing with more motivation in a way, because SGT.Lacoste was there.
This was another home game, with the previous season’s champion visiting.
To be honest, I was nervous about this game, but managed to keep calm enough and complemented Vic covering the position of PG for the whole game. I was taking more towards Vic’s game this time round, and applied his tutelage of ball steals as best I could this time round.
Maybe I was focusing too much on that? My overall performance slipped a little in this game, but we still managed to keep a good ball movement going on the court.
Special mention goes to Mr.Exen. I cannot, for the life of me, make out what he is saying, but he showed incredible performance on the floor. Like Skeeter, he’s an all rounder, but he focuses less on ball movement overall, and is a deadly shooter and a shockingly good rebounder given his height and weight class. He’s shorter than Skeeter is, but 7 rebounds for a PG!?!? Wow.
Overall, it doesn’t look as if their team is gelled very well, I can sense a lot of conflicting ideals from the players themselves, so they didn’t have as good as a ball movement as a team should have.
We managed to pull a healthy lead during the first half of our game, but the Moonshiners managed to lessen the gap of the lead we made during the later half of the game. Despite that however, I’m glad we managed to pull through with a healthy lead and a win at the end of it.
In the pre-season, they beat us 115-113, but we pulled a 103-83 this time round.
Next game we had was another home game, with the Voodoo visiting us.
We had a rocky start in the first half, the Voodoo taking charge of the first quarter, so we had quite a bit of work for us in the 2nd quarter, but we pulled it off and made it a tie. The 2nd half was a different story however, and we managed to pull of a healthy lead in both the 3rd and 4th quarters.
Being mainly on the bench this game allowed me to observe the game that the Voodoo have - The low AST values of Mr.Calloway and Ms.Lancaster is very misleading, the team is very capable of keeping the ball moving, and they’re very capable of making use of the Gap-Kick-Swing strategy to scramble our defenses to score, poking holes in our defense.
The common strategy was Calloway -> Lancaster -> Evans -> Warren, Lancaster -> Calloway -> Evans -> Warren, Lancaster -> Evans -> Lancaster/Warren, Calloway -> Evans -> Lancaster/Warren.
In essence, the reason why Lee Evans ended up with so many Assists was because he was essentially working as a Pass Guard - A role I’m very familiar with.
That said, their own defense was quite lacking, something we made use of as well with our own playbook, and we finished the game with a 10 point lead.
For personal reasons, I wish that we would face the Voodoo again soon, partially because Warren is a good friend I wish to spend time with, and another being that the team was not at the best of their ability, with both Mr.Bobby Heron and Mr.Swinton suffering from severe injuries.
Speaking of which, it seems to me that the Voodoo are very reliant on Warren, I just hope they’re not taxing him too much… The risk of burnout is very real.
Something I really appreciate that Coach Foster is doing - He’s distributing playing times for all of the Spectrums pretty evenly… Even though I do hope that Plush gets more floortime.
This game was an away game, and from the reports I’ve gone over on my own, I was more on edge, mainly because of the high violent crime rates in the area, causing me to worry more about everyone’s safety… given my background. Was wishing I was first sent ahead to scout the area… But maybe I worry too much?
Talking about the game though, it was very reminiscent of the game we had with the Voodoo in a way, but we had control of the flow of the game right from the get go and all the way through till the 3rd quarter.
Our team seems to have found it’s pace - We’ve managed to pace ourselves and play a game of healthy passes and team-based strategy. I’ve managed to pace myself better this time round and applied what Vic taught me about steals too, managing to grab the ball away from the Pride twice during the near 15 minutes I’ve spent during the game itself.
Speaking of the Pride - Ms.Valencia Zeraus isn’t dubbed as ‘The Queen’ just for show. She’s very fast, and she can keep that speed up for extended periods of time as well. She’s a competent passer too. Be it on the court or from the bench, her passes were not easy to follow… Something I can learn to integrate into my own plays as well.
That said, I’m glad to see Adam doing well. He’s a fellow viverrid, there aren’t a lot of us in the league, just Michelle Sundos from LVG, Adam himself from NWK, and Crosby and myself from the Spectrums. Amongst all of us viverrids though, Adam’s skillset is probably the most well rounded, and in my personal opinion, he’s enjoyable to watch on the court - a competent player in all accounts, and one that’s making a difference on the Pride, being their 5th overall strongest player according to stat reports.
If both of us last till then, I look forward to the both of us being able to spend time around Huntington Beach and the areas surrounding it. It’s his place of birth, and I feel a certain guilt having been picked by the Spectrums… It’s as if I robbed him of a place in a team he deserves to be in in my opinion… He was someone everyone expected the Spectrums to pick, and I sort of came out of nowhere.
This game had been a fierce one, and an eye-opener.
The Totems left us in the dust, opening with a huge lead in the first quarter, which we had to work very hard to make up for, beating them in the Q2 with the same number of points they led us with. Q3 was a tie, and they ended the final quarter with a single possession lead… If only I had made the extra assist or shot...
Despite our loss, I realised the scope of the responsibility placed onto my shoulders.
I may not have spent a lot of time in this game, but it was enough to tell, be it from the bench or on the court - Amongst all the other PGs I’ve faced, Mr.Hirvonen is on an entire different level. His basketball IQ is higher than most, if not all, that we have faced before, but what makes him different is how unselfish he is, with a combination of skill and athleticism.
He’s got an excellent balance between dexterity, speed, skill, and offensive and defensive capabilities, his sense of timing is very well near perfect in my opinion, and his attitude, unlike so many of the veterans and the rookies this year, is that of genuine humility.
He’s also capable of coordinating ball movement between teammates on a level unlike all I’ve faced before.
Little wonder why he was awarded with the Rookie of the Year status in 2012, and was the Captain of the Spectrums before the responsibility fell onto CPT.Cheval’s shoulders.
His attitude serves someone like Crosby well from what I can see, and it is understandable as to why Crosby, given his personality, would be very infatuated with him.
To be honest, this is both inspiring and frightening - With him leaving the Spectrums for the 2014-2015 season, I can’t help but feel that I was brought in as a stand-in for him. There’s room for me to grow, but whether I can reach where he stands at the moment in both attitude and skill is something I worry about.
- Victor Vos:
Vic makes for a good mentor, but there are at times that I do wish to see him around in the training center more often.
At present, he’s spending a lot of time between and after practice recording his new album.
While I do understand preparing one’s self for post basketball career while using the fame one has during the basketball career itself, I really wish he’d be around more often.
- L.V McDyess:
Shadow is very strong contender for being one of the best shooters in the league as far as my experience (which isn’t a lot, considering I’m a rookie and we’re only 11 games into the season) tells me.
He’s also one of the nicest, most humble players I’ve met, quite laid back as well, but super intense while on the court, and he’s someone I look up to when trying to get a number of advice too, especially when there is a necessity to improve my shooting skills, which are sorely lacking at this point.
- Ain Ianizzi:
Ain is one of our defensive anchors and a very skilled player… but with little sense of self preservation.
While there’s a fine line between being brave and being reckless, I’d say Ain is a bit of both.
While I have heard about his tendencies of getting himself injured, I wasn’t expecting him to get injured so early during the season.
Hoping steps would be taken to prevent that from happening, his skillset as one of our defensive anchors would be very much needed into the later part of the season, where everyone will start playing much more aggressively I imagine.
- Karl Gruber:
Panzer is one of our most senior member of the team, and while he’s not the fastest of us, his skills in the paint be it on offense or defense, and his tendency to successfully obtain a defensive rebound is something anyone has to recognize.
He’s given both Plush and me more than just a handful of advice on how to get around defenses, and I’ve managed to put a few of his advice into practice.
His experience is valuable, and in order to both improve myself and everyone in the team, I wish to learn more from him.
- Lance Cheval:
Captain Lance is another very senior member of ours.
While the outside world has a lot of negative stigma around CPT.Lance, given his history (seriously, I wish people would learn to let go), his experience and maturity outside of the court is valuable in keeping the team together.
CPT.Lance may not run the ball on the court, but he acts as the team’s mental core, shouldering the team’s mentality through thick and thin and keeping all of our morale in check during the games.
That said, I have my fair share of worries… Not to talk down on Rudy, but we have a lack of strong Centers in our team, so we’re heavily relying on CPT.Cheval to cover that role, with Crosby and Caesar standing in for him where need be
However, given their heights, quick as they are, our team has a distinct height disadvantage than most, considering some Power Forwards for other teams already rise beyond CPT.Cheval’s height.
- Scott Parsons:
Skeeter is a pretty laid back and chill guy, and is a very talented all rounder. He’s a very tall player for the role of a PG at 1.96m or 6’5”, and also another one of my mentor figures in the team.
He’s the one I spend most time with in the training center right now, with him teaching me a few points about making defensive rebounds.
He’s also very familiar with the layout around the area, having been born in the city of Costa Mesa, the city that neighbours Santa Ana, Huntington Beach and Tustin (where I stay now), so he’s shown a few of us some places in what little free time we have not spent in the training center.
I really appreciate having Skeeter around. While most of the team ranged from relatively to very serious, he brings about some relaxed atmosphere while Crosby brings about the laughs.
Skeeter is also a very capable player on the court, being a healthy mix of a SF, SG and PG combined, being able to fulfill any of the roles given his size, speed and power.
- Zack Plushpaw:
Plush is a skilled shooter and dribbler with the speed and endurance to complement those skillsets.
Like Skeeter, he’s able to cover both the PG and SG positions, and he’s very cool on the court even when things get tough.
His training regimen discipline is admirable. Very often he’s my go-to gym partner, and we go for runs together quite often, sometimes joining Caesar over at Huntington Beach every morning.
I enjoy having Zack around. Despite his cool on court demeanor and relatively serious attitude, there’s a lot of positivity that emanates from him, and he has this tendency to hug after victories.
He gives a good hug, I admit
Personally though, I can’t help but feel that Zack is somewhat underutilized.
- Crosby Sutters:
I’m not sure what to say at this point for Crosby, because I feel that while Luukas leaving had an impact on the team, it impacted Crosby the most, and I can only imagine how much it hurt.
As far as I have seen, Crosby has been one of the hardest workers in the team, trying to make sure he gets more play time, and I’m glad that I’ve been able to help him with his ball control drills.
It’s only appropriate that he was the one who has gone out of his way to make me feel welcome in the team.
- Daius Aurelias:
Caesar is a common morning run partner of mine, and one of the first teammates to have shown me several places where I can stock up on supplies. His tastes are more towards the upper class though n.n;
While I’ve heard stories of him being a selfish player, I don’t really see that as the case.
He’s skilled over at the post, and has both the strength and grace for post-play strategies, which results in us Guards feeding him.
As a person, he comes across as a poetic, romantic type, but from what little I’ve seen, and from what I’ve been told, he keeps falling in love with the wrong people.
I certainly hope he ends up with the right person,rather than one who’s attached to him for his money.
- Rudy Pimona:
Rudy is the tallest member of our team, and along with Anthony, overall physically the strongest amongst the 15 of us.
Rudy’s strength lies in the paint, and while he’s decent on the defensive side of things, he doesn’t have a lot of offensive variety in general.
He is quite athletic for his size though, so improvements on the offensive side of things would make him a dangerous player.
Shadow, Skeeter and Zack are assisting both him and I with our shooting.
I don’t know how much we can do within a season, but we need Rudy up and running to complement CPT.Cheval.
- Kamakani Iona:
Kamakani is a swingfur with very well rounded capabilities.
Amongst the team, he’s probably one of the more aggressive players, and has relatively impressive dexterity with the speed to back it up. Kamakani’s fast to the point where his reflexes and dexterity is pretty much on par with Vic, but with a greater tendency to go for the defensive rebound than any of the pure Guards in the team, as expected of his role.
At times, like Zack, I can’t help but feel that he’s underutilized too… But if nothing else, he makes for a really solid, versatile backup to the Guards and SFs in the team’s first string.
- Terrell Vora:
Terrell is a very tall, well rounded player able to cover both the Small and Power Forward positions, and despite his history and reputation as a rough player from the Howlers, he acts otherwise as far as I can see.
One thing I need to pick up from him is his ability for ‘pressure defense’ - he has a knack for that, but what he needs to be careful of is that it tends to get him into technical foul problems should his mark be able to agitate him enough.
- Urayak Monogoyak:
Ura is another one of my running mates, and one that usually accompanies me to run over long distances over the Huntington Beach area over longer periods of time.
Things about him that amuse me is his boisterous nature and overall positivity in general, though he tends to be somewhat aggressive and serious.
He’s a defensively strong player, but tends to get into foul troubles sometimes.
Did I mention that he can really eat?
- Anthony Rios:
Churro is amongst one of our senior members of the team.
He’s pretty laid back in general, but I think that he always seems to have a lot on his mind.
Humble and easy to work with, he has the drive to work hard, but from what I can tell, he’s worried that his age is catching on with him.
He’s a very capable, all-rounded player with speed on his side, and I’m more than willing to work on his passes with him, which in general is his weakness, while he works with me on my jumps.
Life here in in SoCal (Southern California) has been good thus far, I’ve been working myself to keep myself in the same physical condition as I have in the military, while mixing more basketball into it and improving my skills.
I’m glad to mostly get along with the rest of the Spectrums, there’s much I can learn from everyone, especially Scott and Victor. Zack and I tend to work on our shooting under McDyess’ guidance, and Plush likes to hug people a lot it seems. He gives nice hugs, I have to admit
Oh! We also have a new Assistant Coach to help Coach Foster too!
On a more personal note, I feel guilty in some ways for having what seems to have rightfully been Adam Tevela’s place here, since he was born and raised in the place I go to run every morning. He would have gotten along great with Skeeter I would imagine.
Most recently however, I’m starting to feel the pressure of the burden placed onto my shoulders. Luukas having left the Spectrums left a huge gap for Vic, Skeeter and myself to fill.
It is both scary, and inspiring as well, and I look forward to use what I’ve learnt so far into the game with Texas tomorrow, and beyond
- Aditya Anggun
General chit-chat all the teams in the West. Rumors, idle banter, trash-talk.
Make sure to read the Rules of 'Roleplay'
Make sure to read the Rules of 'Roleplay'
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