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Thread: In Need of the Wizard of Oz

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  1. #1

    In Need of the Wizard of Oz

    For many seasons, in intermittent periods, the Falcons have been considered title contenders. Many times, a good number of pundits would have penciled them to make the Finals.

    But what is it with this team that they just can't win the big games?

    There are many posts, here and in other forums, that have made fun of the Falcons losing when it mattered most. Actually, nobody fears this team. Respect is there. But wanting not to play this team in a do-or-die game?

    I'm sure every UAAP team wants to play them in a do-or-die game. For most likely, the Falcons' title hopes will die with THAT game.

    I don't think it has to do with the players. There have been at least 4 batches of players since their last championship that this team was thought to be a serious title contender. Coach? They had many coaches.

    But still they just can't win.

    For UAAP Season 74, this current line-up may not have a player that can be called a star or one that just attracts deserving attention and write ups from legit press and pseudo press or bloggers. But no one can deny Coach Leo Austria has a solid 10 man-rotation that has the skills to win its first UAAP title since the time of the Calma.

    But after that Fil-Oil/July 10, 2011 semis loss to San Beda, I seriously doubt this line-up has any chance of winning IT this UAAP Season 74.

    Okay, that defeat to San Beda was just a pre-season game. Yes, I agree. The wins and losses at pre-season don't matter when the actual season starts. But pre-season games are played to build on something. The Falcons, based on their games in the most competitive pre-season event, are the same. They haven't built anything new or showed anything new. Pre-season events are indicative of something. Indications are, this Falcons team is the same as that of seasons past.

    They controlled that game against SBC and they have the players and the coach to close it out. But as I feared, while watching, blocking out what I was expecting, they just can't make the plays and they just missed the shots at end-game. Plays they have executed numerous times earlier and even in previous games. Shots they have converted earlier in the game and in other games.

    Pressure?

    All teams, all players, all coaches on both sides feels the same pressure. They are in the same court, contesting the same ball in THAT same game. But the Falcons just can't win THAT game.

    To be a champion is all about character. Some would say, it is all about heart. Well, if it is about heart, then this Falcon team may well as be the Tin Man.

    This team needs to find the Wizard of Oz. This team has the brains, for they sure know what to do on court. It has the courage to face the odds and make good account of themselves. But heart... it just falters when THAT win is most needed.

    Someone please give this team direction to the Yellow Brick Road.

    I don't know what the character of their community is. But maybe to understand this team, we have to look beyond the team. We have to understand the community as well. How much pride do they have? Do they care about winning IT? Or, every time their season ends, they just shrug it off and preach and wax philosophical about the more important things in life.



    We had a head start in this game. At one time we had a glorious 3rd place finish in the World Championship and was the undisputed power in Asia. But the world has learned how to play it. They may not be as good as us,but they have enough smarts to make use of their height. That is enough to beat us.

  2. #2

    Re: In Need of the Wizard of Oz

    ^ When you say "community", do you mean the school community in general or the inner circle that handles/financially supports the basketball team? If it's the former, then from my limited observation of the Adamson community's character, I don't think they're lacking in pride for their basketball team. Also, that thing about shrugging it off and waxing philosophical after a losing season applies to every other strong contender that somehow didn't make it to the top, so I don't think that figures into the reasons why Adamson just can't nail that championship.

    I think it's a combination of a lot of factors - none of which I can prove scientifically, I must note.

    First, the winless Trillo years affected Adamson psychologically worse than most of us here might have thought. While it has been largely dismissed as a forgettable historical anecdote, it might be that those two seasons are right up there in the team's collective consciousness. A coach who has some skill in psychology can harness that and turn it into a force that would drive a team all the way to the championship. In any other case, it just gives the team an excuse to underachieve. (i.e. winning more than 50% of all matches in a season is a lot better than, say, winning none at all for two seasons.)

    Second, going back to the "inner circle" I was talking about earlier, it might be that they simply can't compete with the better-organized programs of the other schools. For one thing, there's a lack of continuity under a capable coach. In the case of Ateneo, it took a few years before Norman was able to transform Ateneo into a Three-peat champion team. Of course, you can say that a better example is DLSU under Franz Pumaren, who was retained by the school for the most part even when he started to lose championship games. In this regard, the most counter-productive thing that Adamson can do right now is to replace Leo Austria.

    I'd say that the wizard Adamson is looking for is a sports psychologist - for the players. And probably another wizard who has some skill in managing the basketball program long-term. (Whoever is their wizard of recruitment is doing a good enough job and should also not be replaced.)

  3. #3

    Re: In Need of the Wizard of Oz

    ^ Di ka naman galit kay Trillo nyan, ha? ;D

    In the timeline of the Falcons' futility, those years under Trillo surely brought the Falcons' into a deeper rut. But they were already in a rut prior to that.

    But as you said, none pertaining to this futility-- the whys and hows -- can be pinpointed or proven scientifically.

    As to my use of the term "community", I am referring the the school, the students and alumni. It's either masyado silang mabait or just simply indifferent not to express any emotions or opinions that would reflect anger, dissatisfaction or simply being fed up.All expressed in a manner that will fire the emotions in the team.

    Baka naman tuwing matatalo ay inaalo pa sila.

    Pero para nga itong cycle, inevitably, babalik tayo sa tanong na whys and hows and still no clear answer.

    Sa akin, walang issue sa mga tao bumubuo ng team at sa mga nasa likod nito. You have aptly complemented the people who brought talented kids to the team. For many periods of time, there was no stability in the coaching staff. But that seems to have been addressed with Austria.

    Pero ganon pa rin sa mga do-or-die--- they die!

    If in a less pressured environment, they can't hurdle that hump, what more in the competition that matters most to them - the UAAP?

    Miron ako, I just want a good game each time I go the venues. Napapailing lang ako tuwing natatalo ang Adamson sa life and death matches.

    Magbago sana...
    We had a head start in this game. At one time we had a glorious 3rd place finish in the World Championship and was the undisputed power in Asia. But the world has learned how to play it. They may not be as good as us,but they have enough smarts to make use of their height. That is enough to beat us.

  4. #4

    Re: In Need of the Wizard of Oz

    ^ Yeah, I get what you feel about the Falcons. A specific example: you of course know about the unbroken winning streak of Ateneo against Adamson in the UAAP. Psychologically speaking, it should be Ateneo that should be pressured to prolong that streak. But for some reason, parang mas pressured pa ang Adamson during those twice-a-season matches.

    Di naman ako galit kay Trillo. ;D It's just that I'm also seeing the effect to a lesser extent in UP. If I remember right, they also had a winless season before the most recent one.

  5. #5

    Re: In Need of the Wizard of Oz

    Ka Oca, maybe its just plain bad luck, ginagahasa ng malas 'ika nga.

    In the 2006 Final 4 they very nearly extended Ateneo to a do-or-die second game since Ateneo had the twice-beat advantage. Ken Bono, the MVP that season, quiteliterally carried the Falcons on his own and they were two or three lucky bounces from extending that Final 4, maybe even eventually beating Ateneo.

    Looking at Bono, or even the likes of Kenneth Duremdes, Apollo Lim, Melvin Mamaclay, Mark Abadia, Chad Alonzo, Patrick Cabahug, and this current class of Falcons, I don't think anyone can accuse these guys of having little or no heart. In last season's Final 4 and the PCCL Finals they went up against Ateneo.

    Ateneo is the UAAP grand slam champion, and beating such a team requires not just a perfect game on the part of the opposition but practically all the stars and planets aligning just right on the right day. I think the same could be said of your grand slam San Beda team that had Sam Ekwe and Pong Escobal.

    The Utah Jazz never won an NBA Title under Jerry Sloan, surely the last thing we can accuse Karl Malone, Jeff Hornacek and John Stockton of is having no heart. Sadyang minalas lang silang lahat at nag-Finals sila nung rurok ng husay naman nung Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen at Phil Jackson.
    FRIENDS LANG KAMI

  6. #6

    Re: In Need of the Wizard of Oz

    Quote Originally Posted by Joescoundrel
    Ka Oca, maybe its just plain bad luck, ginagahasa ng malas 'ika nga.

    In the 2006 Final 4 they very nearly extended Ateneo to a do-or-die second game since Ateneo had the twice-beat advantage. Ken Bono, the MVP that season, quiteliterally carried the Falcons on his own and they were two or three lucky bounces from extending that Final 4, maybe even eventually beating Ateneo.

    Looking at Bono, or even the likes of Kenneth Duremdes, Apollo Lim, Melvin Mamaclay, Mark Abadia, Chad Alonzo, Patrick Cabahug, and this current class of Falcons, I don't think anyone can accuse these guys of having little or no heart. In last season's Final 4 and the PCCL Finals they went up against Ateneo.

    Ateneo is the UAAP grand slam champion, and beating such a team requires not just a perfect game on the part of the opposition but practically all the stars and planets aligning just right on the right day. I think the same could be said of your grand slam San Beda team that had Sam Ekwe and Pong Escobal.

    The Utah Jazz never won an NBA Title under Jerry Sloan, surely the last thing we can accuse Karl Malone, Jeff Hornacek and John Stockton of is having no heart. Sadyang minalas lang silang lahat at nag-Finals sila nung rurok ng husay naman nung Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen at Phil Jackson.
    Lintek para na bang taga-SBC ang dating ko? Red Cubs fan lang ako, pakialam ko sa Red Lions!

    Now on your post. Kung kamalasan lang yan, I hope it ends soon.

    Itong line-up na ito ay hinog-hinog na. Yung rotation ni Coach Leo, bawat player ay may 3 to 5 years experience na sa UAAP. Napakalaking advantage niyan. If the Falcons can't win it this 2011, they'll be in a rebuilding mode next season and the years of futility will continue.

    We had a head start in this game. At one time we had a glorious 3rd place finish in the World Championship and was the undisputed power in Asia. But the world has learned how to play it. They may not be as good as us,but they have enough smarts to make use of their height. That is enough to beat us.

  7. #7

    Re: In Need of the Wizard of Oz

    ^ Sori Ka Oca, kaya nga maraming namamatay sa maling akala... :-X

    As for Adamson you're absolutely right. I think they will lose both Alvarez and Canada, as well as Colina and Manyara next year. That means only Nuyles and Camson will remain of their solid core. I'm not sure about the likes of Cabrera, Lozada, Etrone, et al.
    FRIENDS LANG KAMI

  8. #8

    Re: In Need of the Wizard of Oz

    Ang problema ko sa team next year ay ang "void" sa point guard. E di masyado ginagamit si Monteclaro. Etrone pwede pero SG laro. Yung mga bigs madaling palitan yan. May Brondial at may "backup" import naman ata silang big man.

    What is really surprises me of this team is this. Di sila naglalabas ng MALAKING PERA (e.g. NU or the other established schools), hindi blue chip mga recruits nila, mga "unknown" mga recruits nila pero they have been a force in the past years? Ano sikreto?

    Ang opinion ko yung choice nila ng recruits, tall, long and athletic players who could play two to three positions. E.g. siguro sina Nuyles, Camson, Cabrera, and Lozada (to some extent si Petillos). By the way, yan yung dating recruitment style ng UST at FEU dati.

    Baka kaya nila this year pero they need to defeat Ateneo which in the first game shows they can. The question is the continuity of the system for the years to come.
    "The end justifies the means"-from Machiavelli? Nope.  :D

  9. #9

    Re: In Need of the Wizard of Oz

    I am with Joe here. tough luck had a lot to do with it. Palitan mo ba naman si Trillo ng MAlas :D

    Next year they will have Marty Pearce to back up, or even play ahead of Monteclaro. At the froncourt, the transferee from UE will provide muscle while without being a blackhole on offense. Plus the aforementioned import. Playing in Team B for year should give them the necessary time to get familiarize with coach Leo's system while improving their skills. Coach Leo and his staff did a good job with their succession planning. Shouldn't be too steep a decline next year.

  10. #10
    Adamson Falcons fire coach Duremdes

    Jasmine W. Payo

    @inquirerdotnet

    Philippine Daily Inquirer

    10:04 PM | Sunday, May 31st, 2015

    Adamson sacked Kenneth Duremdes as head coach Sunday in the wake of a pitiful run by the Falcons in the UAAP men’s basketball tournament last season.

    Duremdes struggled in his first year with the rookie-laden Falcons, who finished dead-last in the UAAP with a 1-13 win-loss record.

    Adamson team manager Gilbert Cruz confirmed the development, but said the school will make a formal announcement soon and that there are no candidates yet for the vacant coaching post.

    Adamson’s woeful run in the last UAAP season was marked by a record low of total point production of 25 in a game. The Falcons shot no more than eight points per quarter in a game against National University last July on 16-percent shooting. The Bulldogs shot 62.

    Duremdes, a PBA Most Valuable Player awardee, starred for the Falcons in the UAAP in the early 1990s and even led the team to the Finals twice.
    FRIENDS LANG KAMI


 
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