Alternate History Sports

You are not logged in. Would you like to login or register?

5/05/2020 3:15 pm  #61


Re: Silverian Basketball Assocation

Steelman wrote:

Man, I don't check in for a bit and come back to see my Rowdies have won a championship! 

Not sure if I mentioned this before, but I love the name Happies. Super unique in sports! The new league logo looks sharp and is an improvement.

A small critique, I'd add extra spacing between your paragraphs as walls of text are hard to read even though I do enjoy your write-ups. 

Keep up the good work!

Yes congrats to you and all the fans down in Hamstead!

I got to thinking of the name Happy Islands and I knew I had to name them that, especially with the lack of smaller islands surrounding Silveria, although the land they share with Manakakwa (the country), Avon, Niveau, and Pacifico, is an island itself.

Glad you like like the new SBA logo, the last one was way too hard to see. Thanks for the critique I'll remember that going forward.

There's something to note also, Manakakwa is a country, river, and the island as a whole. The country is the mainly Pacific Islander nation located south central of Silveria. The river is the one which Bangor lies on that separates the former British (to the west) colonies from the former French and Spanish (to the east) colonies. And, the entire island encompassing these nations is also referred to as Manakakwa. I know it's confusing, but it comes from years of discrimination of the native Pacific Islanders.
 

 

5/05/2020 4:57 pm  #62


Re: Silverian Basketball Assocation

1971 First Half East Division

Bangor Farmers 18-8
Expected to have a bit of a resurgent season, the Farmers have lived up to the hype, that is except C Adam Lowe. While a new core 4 seems to be developing (PG Santos Garza, SG Dom Byrd, PF Cary Joseph, C Cristo Ventura), Lowe under-performed yet again in a first half of the season that almost saw him benched for the first time since he's been a member of the team. There've been many questions about the possibility of Lowe's retiring this offseason. The Riverlands native has also indicated interest to retire with SF Eugene Shaw, so there's a chance he re-signs. In other news, the Farmers brought their scythes to the fight, cutting the competition with a ruthless guard duo and a ruthless frontcourt. It's looking like Joseph made a great decision in signing a 1-year "prove it" contract. He looks to be at the least a top 5 option in this free agent class. Garza, Shaw, Joseph, and Ventura are to be considered for the All Star team. Byrd will not be considered due to a minor injury late before the All Star break. This continues the trend of this happening to pretty important and talented players, and I'd be surprised if the SBA doesn't change the rule in the offseason.

Rivers End Rowdies 16-10
I think most Rowdies fans were pretty satisfied with this start. It wasn't perfect, but the defending champs played pretty well. Team legend Edgar Carroll retired in the offseason and I think there was some fear that they may miss him, not to mention the more serious problem of an aging team. Despite these overlying concerns, the Rowdies continued their pattern of good play. You know the routine for Rivers End at this point, PF Ira Diaz is their clear leader. PG Del Davis and SG Gregoire Fabien were about average by their standards. It was SF Johnny Hume who disappointed the most. All three are 32 and over though so, there's a little concern regarding the longevity of their wings. C Pete Murphy continued to be one of the league's best defensive bigs, adding a little hook shot into his game which has boosted his scoring numbers a little from 11.7 to 14.3. The preseason major injury of backup SF Rickey Waters didn't do much, but cause a little controversy. However, the bigger injury news came with Fabien, who also suffered a major injury, but late in the first half of the season. Of course this will rule him ineligible for the All Star game, but more importantly will likely keep him out the rest of the year. Davis, Diaz, and Murphy are to be considered for the All Star game.

Sherborne Whalers 13-13
The Whalers were bound to struggle a little with PG Bobby Ellis. We've all seen what SG Brent McCormick can do at the 1, and he does shine there sometimes, but he's also a turnover machine. Thankfully, despite the weak roster around them, McCormick and even more so at this point SF Clarence Ward played well. McCormick was about as good as you could expect him to be averaging over 5 assists a game and about 2 turnovers a game. Ward, a top 5 defender in the SBA, continued to lock down opposing top players. He even added a 15-foot jumpshot to his game that signified his rise past Bangor's Eugene Shaw at SF. SF Sylvester Carr and PF Harvey Lynch struggled mightily down low, and a lot of the bigger teams could just man handle them, but at least they weren't as bad as Carr and backup C Jeff Davenport. There's going to be a lot interest for this team in getting a respectable big man. Sources have linked them to C Tony Peters (Stars) and C Javi Blanco (Happies), who both have contracts expiring at the end of this season. Only McCormick and Ward will be considered for the All Star game.

Haydon Hounds 13-13
Another team with possibly hard-to-meet expectations, that has met to those expectations just about as much as you could hope for. They still don't quite look like a contender, but much improved, yes. They even made it through a bit of a rough patch when PG Noah Foster was out. But, of course this team was led by the young, but uber-talented SG Rufus Simon and the recently signed older, but also quite talented C Kenneth Tate. If Tate can stay productive for a couple more years, at 31, the Hounds could really be something. No one looked really bad on this team. PF Allen Davies looked a little out of place amongst the starting lineup, but still played okay. Even backup SF Isaac Ross, coming off a major injury last year, got better throughout the first half's games. Even the defense was decent in Haydon, which was not expected going into the year. Foster, Simon, Lachance, and Tate are to be considered for the All Star game.

Wells Phoenix 8-18
Wow. Who knew a change in PG would make this much difference for the Phoenix. SG Johnny Jackson struggled mightily at the 1, running into the usual problems with a shoot-first PG. Backup PG and 6th man, Cesar Manfredonia, played pretty well in Jackson's stead, but he still lacked in terms of competing against the SBA's best PG's. Manfredonia later went on to come down with a minor injury, but should return after the All Star break. That was pretty much the story of this team, which is quite similar to the Happies. The narrative is certainly transforming into, "You need a star to win in this league." I don't think that's something we quite saw in Silveria before the foundation of the SBA, so that could be a good sign for basketball in the country. But, Wells had a lot of games they would've had a better chance in last year, particularly with Stratford and Haydon. PF Emanuel Fields finally is starting to look like his old self before a major injury in his time with Sherborne, and with C Rick Howell up front, they're the main thing the Phoenix have going right now. SF Gerri Vinci and PF Larry Hester struggled to play with each other in one of the league's biggest starting lineups. Fields and Howell are to be considered for the All Star game.

SBA Announcement
The 1971 SBA All Star Game is to take place in Hamstead, Rivers End, home of the Rowdies. Instead of like the three prior years, the league wants to align the All Star teams by division. This may be a disadvantage for individual players in the East, as some deserving players may miss the cut, but it also indicates the East team may be a bit better.

Last edited by jxhnhvhn (5/05/2020 5:00 pm)

     Thread Starter
 

5/05/2020 10:44 pm  #63


Re: Silverian Basketball Assocation

1971 SBA All Star Game
https://i.ibb.co/NVs1P4j/1971-SBA-All-Star-Game.png

Final: East 98-86
MVP: Ira Diaz

East Starters
PG Santos Garza (Bangor) 2 starts, 3 appearances
SG Dom Byrd (Bangor) 4,4
SF Clarence Ward (Sherborne) 4,4
PF Ira Diaz (Rivers End) 4,4
C Kenneth Tate (Haydon) 2,4
East Bench
PG Brent McCormick (Sherborne) 3,4
SG Rufus Simon (Haydon) 1,3
SF Eugene Shaw (Bangor) 3,4
PF Cary Joseph (Bangor) 0,4
C Pete Murphy (Rivers End) 0,3

West Starters
PG Chuck McLaughlin (O'Connor) 1,2
SG Sal Banks (Trent) 1,2
SF Grant Goodwin (O'Connor) 1,1
PF Grant McCoy (Stratford) 2,4
C Randal Franklin (Stratford) 4,4
West Bench
PG Ciaran Levy (Trent) 0,1
SG Brian Morris (O'Connor) 0,2
SF Bob Bass (Stratford) 0,3
PF Geoff Owens (Trent) 0,4
C Shane Conway (Silver Point) 0,1

Biggest Snubs
1. C Cristo Ventura (Bangor)
2. PG Del Davis (Rivers End)
3. C Rick Howell (Wells)
4. SF Stefane Lachance (Haydon)
5. C Javi Blanco (St. Patrick)

And just for fun, inspired by AFunkyDiabetic (NBA YouTuber), a role-player All Star team. I went ahead and defined role player as those who are not top 3 players on their own team nor others who made the All Star game.
Starters
PG Noah Foster (Haydon)
SG Gregoire Fabien (Rivers End)
SF Jan Holt (Stratford)
PF Dario Hurst (Rivers End)
C Cristo Ventura (Bangor)
Bench
PG Neil Harlow (Stratford)
SG Tomas Carlson (Sherborne)
SF Fred Love (Trent)
PF Sheldon Underwood (Trent)
​C Sidney Wade (O'Connor)
 

Last edited by jxhnhvhn (5/05/2020 10:46 pm)

     Thread Starter
 

5/06/2020 5:13 pm  #64


Re: Silverian Basketball Assocation

1971 SBA Trade Deadline

Stratford receives: PG Carroll Murphy
Silver Point receives: PG Olaf Frye

Two rivalries led the way at the trade deadline with Silver Point fans still feeling especially salty at Grant McCoy’s exit. And, It’s clear Murphy is the better player in this deal, what the Captains are getting him is more about their future. The Stars get a solid scorer off the bench, not to mention a former Star himself. Murphy is rated the #10 PG in the SBA and in his age 30 season with only the remaining 1971 season left on his contract. It was rumored the Captains originally asked for Stratford SG Doug Averill (#13 SG 23 YO) in return, but gave in when the Stars refused.
Olaf Frye definitely isn’t going to do much for the Captains now as the #17 PG in the SBA. But, the hope is that the 26-year-old can be a solid backup or step into the starting lineup if needed. Essentially Silver Point did this to get younger, also Frye is on a 2-year contract.

Rivers End gets: PG Cesar Manfredonia
Wells gets: SF Bernie Zhu

While continuing to profess their hate for each other, the Rowdies and the Phoenix managed to complete a trade. Wells sent Manfredonia to be a very solid backup for Del Davis. Manfredonia has shown to be one of the SBA’s best bench players this year. However, even as the #12 PG, the 29-year-old only has a 1-year contract. Again we’re seeing a trade between a contending team and a team stockpiling young talent. Zhu, the league’s first Chinese-Silverian, stays in Rivers End which traditionally has had one of the highest percentages of Chinese and Asian as a whole due to its Oil and Railroading industries. The marketing potential almost makes this trade worth the risk as Zhu is only the #21 SF. But, he is 22-years-old with 3 years left including the 1971 season.


Sherborne gets: C Javi Blanco, PF Ari O’Neil
St. Patrick gets: PG Bobby Ellis, SF Sylvester Carr, PF Harvey Lynch

And finally, the only trade that could truly be called a blockbuster. Recently appointed SBAPA PPR Bobby Ellis (#4 PG, 27 YO, 1 YL) was traded mainly in return for Javi Blanco. There were some concerns Ellis wouldn’t return to form after his major injury this year. There were some rumors the Whalers were trying to blackball him. In the end, it ended somewhere in between, with Brent McCormick’s decent play at PG allowing for the move. The Whalers were desperate for a big man and they got one of the league’s best in #6 C 29-year-old Blanco, albeit on a 1-year deal. The Happies wanted to add some more veterans, so they received Carr and Lynch. #14 SF 35-year old Carr (2 YL) will likely come off the bench, as a sort of defensive specialist, while #12 PF 29-year old Lynch (2 YL) will likely take over one of the starting big spots. Lastly, #17 PF 24-year old Ari O’Neil (1 YL), is probably only looking at garbage minutes. He could turn into something, but we’ll have to see.

Last edited by jxhnhvhn (5/06/2020 5:15 pm)

     Thread Starter
 

5/09/2020 4:13 pm  #65


Re: Silverian Basketball Assocation

1971 Second Half West Division

Trent Engineers 19-7 (33-19)
Just as many thought the Stars might take over the division with their savvy move in getting backup PG and new 6th man Carroll Murphy. The Engineers surged in the second half, once again behind the might of what seems like a fully recovered Sal Banks. Probably Trent's second best player, Geoff Owens, played a lot better after the All Star break. The problem was that he had been struggling on defense against bigger guys, on the wing defense had been his strong suit. In the end, it seemed that experiment may have been a little too far ahead of its time. Owens was moved back to starting SF, moving SF Fred Love to 6th man, and PF Sheldon Underwood back into the starting lineup. Not much went wrong for the Engineers at all this time around. PG Ciaran Levy continued at a fringe All Star level, and even though C Alonzo Doyle had suffered a minor injury right before the All Star break, he was back to form before the end of the regular season. The bench looked a lot better too, once again led by the scoring of Love and SG Leon Mack. The Engineers seem to be getting really good at the right time, finally figuring out a lineup that can put them in contention again. The Stars will be a difficult match up in the West Division championship though. I could see this series going the distance, but most at least expect it to go 6. Trent is out matched down low, and it could be the straw that breaks the camels back. At least now that Owens will be out on the wing again, he should be able to lock down Stars SF Bob Bass. Bass is also a good defender however, and he will likely take Trent SG Sal Banks most of the series. We're in for a good one. 

Stratford Stars 18-8 (31-21)
Pretty similar route to the West Division championship for the Stars, they started playing pretty mediocre, but have seemed to put it all together at the right time. Among the many comparisons in these top two seasons are the lack of injuries. It's no coincidence only SF Bob Bass has missed more than 3 games this year, not to mention at the very beginning of the season. Since, Bass has proven his ability as one of the best defensive wings in the SBA, and as a good secondary scorer. You'd have to think the Stars will want to keep him for the foreseeable future, but the 26-year-old American's price could get exorbitant this offseason. Obviously, the key influencer to this team's success is its play down low. I think most would agree PF Grant McCoy and C Randal Franklin are the best big man duo in the SBA. The only pairs even close are Bangor's Cary Joseph and Lowe/Ventura and Rivers End's Ira Diaz and Pete Murphy. Stars SF Jan Holt was probably the only one you could pick out as not quite living up to expectations in the second half of the season, but the 23-year-old is probably only the 4th scoring option for the Stars at this point. In other words, he'd probably be more effective if he were able to take more shots. That's also probably the only thing you could blame first year head coach Neils Van Der Vennen for. PG has mostly been shared between Neil Harlow and Carroll Murphy, with Murphy's sometimes surprising play earning him a couple starts. Backup C Tony Peters and SG Doug Averill have also looked pretty good in relief. If I had to say, I'd probably say the Stars have the advantage against the Engineers, due to size and talent level at that size, but especially with Trent having home-court advantage, you never know. 

O'Connor Chiefs 11-15 (26-26)
Coming off a shocking season last year, making the playoffs in their first SBA season, the Chiefs weren't expected to have the firepower to make it back in the stronger 1971 version of the West Division. While they did end 5 games back of the playoffs, they managed to hit .500 and above the Captains. In the second half, there was much more of a competition for 1st and 3rd, than all 4 of these teams competing for playoff spots like in the first half. With three score-first guards in the back court, PG Chuck McLaughlin, SG Brian Morris, and SG Grant Goodwin, things seemed to either be really going or really clogged. Again, backup PG Kent Reeves proved to be invaluable as the Chiefs started to figure out their ball-sharing problem right before the end of the regular season. It looks like McLaughlin has been willing to take on a bit more of a passing role. Another problem that prevented O'Connor from holding first place was the PF position. John-Lee Coles, already the weakest link in the starting lineup, suffered a major injury in the preseason. With the back court killing it in the first half, it wasn't as noticeable. Several players spent time their after his injury, including SF Norman Peck and SF Harvey Griffiths, both whose secondary position is SG, indicative of their time getting bullied by big men down low. PF Randal Lennon provided more consistent defense, but had no business starting in the SBA. Head coach and last year's coach of the year, Blair Darwin, was praised yet again for his ability to improvise, so don't expect the team to move on from him anytime soon. While none of their key players are to be free agents, probably three of their role players are. Starting with the recovering John-Lee Coles (American-31), not to mention Norman Peck (Silverian-27) and Kent Reeves (Silverian-36). If the Chiefs choose not to re-sign Coles, they'll definitely need another quality big or two. I'd be surprised if they didn't re-sign Peck because he offers good bench scoring and little concern elsewhere. Reeves is another big decision for this team, he's been super influential in helping the Chiefs develop, but he's pretty old and may even choose to retire. He hasn't been linked to any coaching positions thus far, but that's also a possibility.

Silver Point Captains 10-16 (22-30)
Probably the most popular team in Silveria prior to the SBA, and probably the most disappointing in the SBA since its inception. Not too much different happened for the Captains in the second half, it seemed the other teams just got better and they failed to do so yet again. I think management is starting to see where the direction of this team is headed, and their trying to get younger. That could put them at risk of losing their only really valuable piece this offseason, in PG Jordy Jensen. Let's make this clear, when Grant McCoy left Silver Point, it wasn't because Jensen, he and Jensen are very close and haven't ruled out reunification in the future. But, it doesn't look right in Stratford right now for that to happen. Bob Bass is and should be their priority. As for Jensen, there's probably a couple of other SBA options, mainly being Sherborne and Haydon. C Shane Conway is another middle-aged player on this team, and the Captains could try to move him in the offseason. PF Saul Rodriguez looks to be their centerpiece of the future. Head coach Bradford Duncan was fired after 4 years with the team. They should look to bring in someone more equipped to develop young talent. PG Olaf Frye coming in from Stratford didn't change much in terms of the sheer amount of PG's on the Captains, but did clear up the starting lineup a bit. The team will likely make between Frye or another backup PG in Ed O'Mooney soon. O'Mooney suffered a minor injury in the second half which may factor into the decision, depending on how soon it's made. Other free agents to be on the Captains include SG Nathan Lloyd (American-27), backup PF Hugo Ortega (Pacifico-33), and backup SG Courtney Simon (Silverian-32). I'm not too certain on what the Captains will do with Lloyd, he's somewhat young somewhat middle-aged, but he's a decent scorer and could provide some stability for this team undergoing what looks like it will continue to be a lot of change. Ortega has been with the Captains since the start of the SBA in 1968, he's a respected player in the Silver Point and SBA communities, he'll likely go the traditional route of Pacifico players returning home before retiring or he could out-right retire, either way he shouldn't be on the Captains next year. Same goes for Simon, with Simon's options likely being the WBA, EBA, or retirement. Owner Aubrey Sherman has also told fans the team may move away from its classic blue-and-yellow secondary uniforms, toward a more modern blue-and-blue or even yellow-and-yellow combination. The Captains are also considering a change to the SBA's oldest logo.

St. Patrick Happies 7-19 (15-37)
Even with PG Bobby Ellis' return from major injury, the Happies could just not get it going. In sending Javi Blanco and Ari O'Neil away to Sherborne, the Happies suffered from a similar problem to the Whalers, front court depth. Overall, St. Patrick seemed to be stuck in the mud in the second half. Ellis was productive at times, but was in the midst of recovery, so didn't quite play up to his previous level. He also had to play the role as the focal point of the team and was frequently shut down by opposing teams. Trade partner SF Sylvester Carr admitted that he was disappointed to be coming off the bench for the first time in almost 10 years, but was okay in his role. The Happies lack of fire power was the most noticeable deficiency. Their young core of SG Tommie Fowler, SG Ed Harrington, and PF Darrell Crawford, got a lot of minutes, but were pretty inefficient all around. PG Marlon Young was also disappointed with his move to the bench. With Ellis and Young being so close in age, the Happies will likely choose to move on from one or the other or both in the offseason. Backup SG Jeff Newman saw a lot less minutes, moving from 6th to 8th man, but suffered a minor injury late in the year. First-year SF Eddie Janowski also suffered a minor injury early in the second half. With the direction of the Happies kind of being up in the air, and coming off two 15-37 seasons in a row, they went ahead and let coach Hayden Briggs go. Similar to the Captains they'll look to hire someone with youth development skills as a priority. The biggest piece they may lose this offseason is Bobby Ellis (Silverian-27), who is to be a free agent and likely wasn't very happy to move to the abysmal Happies. Other free agents include Jeff Newman (American-32) and PG Claude Webb (Silverian-24). Most likely Newman will leave too, with his reduced role and lack of team success. Webb should be retained, especially if the Happies lose Ellis. Owner Wally O'Leary has said the Happies will keep trying to update their uniforms for merchandising purposes, but has said another change would likely need to wait 1 or 2 more years.

     Thread Starter
 

5/10/2020 1:00 am  #66


Re: Silverian Basketball Assocation

1971 Second Half East Division

Bangor Farmers 14-12 (32-20)
After being held out of All Star game due to a minor injury, SG Dom Byrd came back with a vengeance. Proving himself a clear top 10, possibly top 5 player in the SBA. Unfortunately for the Farmers, the rest of the team was kind of hoe hum and Trent, Stratford, and Sherborne outplayed them in the second half. While pretty undeniably the best PG in the league, Santos Garza didn't seem quite himself converting the highest turnover rate in his career, which still managed to be middle of the pack amongst other PG's. SF Eugene Shaw and especially C Adam Lowe are probably getting a little too much attention in terms of shots if this team wants to win an SBA championship. I think it's finally the right time to get backup C Cristo Ventura into the starting lineup, but coach Bryan Harris has been resistant thus far. It'll be interesting to see, in the case that the Farmers don't win the 1971 championship, if the fans will begin to jeer the defensive liabilities of Lowe at 35. If they do win the championship, we could even see Adam Lowe retire in glory. The Farmers did need Lowe when Ventura suffered a minor injury late in the regular season. There are concerns Ventura could miss a maximum of two games in the series vs. Sherborne. Backup SG Toby Dunn was injured pretty close, but a few games earlier than Ventura, and the two injuries overlapped for a period of time, leaving the bench pretty weak. Dunn is expected to be ready to play all games in the playoffs. One player I forgot to mention, I think this kind of goes for the SBA as a whole, PF Cary Joseph, just keeps doing Cary Joseph things. None of it really looks very impressive, but a smooth touch and solid defense is hard to argue with. This team is still stacked, and you wouldn't be crazy to think they could make it 3 in 4 years. Regardless of who their first opponent was going to be this year, I think they're still the most well-rounded team in the East, although Stratford at times looks like it may take that place in terms of the SBA. So, that's what I'm predicting here. Against the Whalers, I'll take Bangor in 5 or 6.

Sherborne Whalers 16-10 (29-23)
Even though they may have the disadvantage on paper against the Farmers, the Whalers did just enough to get past Rowdies and secure a playoff spot. The teams wound up finishing with the same record, Whalers won 13 Rowdies won 16 in the first half, and vice versa in the second. The SBA talked about changing the rules regarding ties to possibly having tiebreaking games instead of using head-to-head and most recent win, but the talks with SBAPA never really went much further than that. This time Sherborne had won 5 of 8 games with the Rowdies. Again the defending champs end their run without making it to the playoffs, and it's hard to blame them. If this continues to happen a new rule could be much more plausible. After getting who looked to be "their guy" before the trade deadline, in C Javi Blanco, the limping frontcourt played noticeably better, but had an very apparent weak spot. C Jeff Davenport was initially slated to start at the 4 alongside Blanco, but PF Ari O'Neil had to step in for Davenport more than you'd like. SG turned full time PG, Brent McCormick, continued his stellar play, especially after SG Tomas Carlson was moved back to his 6th man role around the middle of the second half. SF Terrance Burris while arguably a little bit worse overall than Carlson, fit the starting lineup much better with his defensive, rebounding, and passing skills. Carlson just needed too many shots. On the bright side, the move has worked great and Carlson has been a 6th man for awhile now, so you don't have to worry about his feeling any disrespect from the move. Clarence Ward was one of the league's best defenders once again, his not needing to always have the ball on offense helped too, as McCormick and Blanco can certainly dominate the ball. Don't get me wrong they are coming into this fight with some pretty good momentum, and they are better matched up against Bangor now than they were earlier this season, but just don't quite trust them to get very far.

Rivers End Rowdies 13-13 (29-23)
Year 2 of 4 team SBA playoffs and a curse has already developed. The defending champions, specifically those from the East Division, both bowed out to another of this big three that has been in place in the East Division since the SBA's inception. You have to think the Rowdies will lobby for a change to the no-tiebreaker rule. They continued to play decently throughout the season, but could never really get past that. The change in record I don't think signified too much change in how well of the players were playing, with it more so being correlated to once again other teams playing well at the right time and the major injury to SG Gregoire Fabien. Fabien was able to a pretty consistent player across the board. But, I don't know if I expect him back next year and the Rowdies certainly missed him in the second half. PF Ira Diaz and C Pete Murphy, even backup PF Dario Hurst dominated other teams. It's mainly on the wings where the struggled, often were undersized or not quick enough because they had to play somebody out of position in the starting lineup. It was either that or bring in a Jeff Davenport/Ari O'Neil type player, just shouldn't be starting in the SBA. In the end, I guess the Whalers got the last laugh in that debate. PG Del Davis and SF Johnny Hume were both showing some aging signs in their productions as 33-year-old's. Let's put it this way, any team not making the playoffs is going to have uncertainty, but the Rowdies have a pretty old core. There's a world where Fabien (French-32) and Hume (Silverian-33) both decide to leave the team. Even if neither of them are world-beaters, it could be hard for the Rowdies to put more talent than that on the wings, especially if they aren't trying to spend money. The oil wells used to provide money to burn, but there are concerns among some that they may be exhaust the supply in the next 5 years, optimistically around 10. Don't get wrong Rivers End and Wells are still bathing in oil-greased franklins, but the tycoons are starting to look at corporate diversification here. Either way, I don't know if the Rowdies are quite prepared to challenge for another SBA championship. If they can get younger on the fly, Carlton Bates should stay, but the event we see a small rebuild he could prefer to coach a contender.

Haydon Hounds 11-15 (24-28)
Haydon's in a really weird spot right now. It's the kind of split in philosophy when your two best players are 11 years apart. There have been rumors they want to make a move for that third guy that can really propel them to a championship. It's probably closely contested between PG Noah Foster and SF Stefane Lachance right now, but they continue to not quite break the top 3 in the division. SG Rufus Simon did have a minor injury, which scared most diehards, but wasn't too serious. Backup PG Davey O'Gallagher was also injured, but didn't affect too much. While many consider Foster to be up in consideration with Lachance, he did not quite live up to his play in the first half. As is true with many of the SBA's PG problems right now, I think he's just a little too ball dominant for a team where he's the 3rd or 4th best player. Simon even faded into the background for awhile and you know the Silverian prodigy is not going to be happy about that. C Kenneth Tate was his typical reliable self, but at 31 the Hounds need to work quick if they want Tate on the championship roster. Foster (Silverian-29), Simon (Silverian-20), PF Allen Davies (Silverian-25), and SF Isaac Ross (Australian-31) are to be free agents this offseason. If the Hounds want to find a third All Star, they may find it at PG or PF. In either case, you'd want to re-sign the guy at the other position. Simon is almost a lock at this point, there were some concerns he might international just because of his pure talent as a 20-year-old, but his recent woes will probably see him wait. Ross is an interesting case, you've got a guy who's previously shown to be a quality role player not quite back up to strength from a major injury. If anything sign him to a short and cheap deal, see if there's something left in the tank. Otherwise, the Aussie may be headed home. There's no reason to think coach Len Hess' job is at risk right now, but as this experiment to be aggressive continues, expectations will rise.  

Wells Phoenix 11-15 (19-33)
Having a Chinese-Silverian player, is a pretty big deal right now publicity wise. Although immigration from East Asia has slowed in recent years, with more immigrants coming from Southeast Asia nowadays, Chinese people still make up the largest minority in Silveria. One place Chinese people have immigrated to in higher concentrations has been the Rivers End corridor, featuring its eastern cities of Bristol, Hamstead, Wells, and Carlisle. SF Bernie Zhu unfortunately has yet to see the court much, but there's hope the 22-year-old will be a productive player soon. In other news, the Phoenix played a little bit more like you'd expect than in the first half. PF Emanuel Fields and C Rick Howell continue to look like the centerpieces going forward. The bench depth wasn't great with Cesar Manfredonia's minutes not really being able to be replaced by Bernie Zhu, but SF Gerri Vinci and PF Larry Hester looked more like themself as Wells was able to out muscle some teams with their size. It's not going to make much of a difference in a league led by star players though. This offseason Vinci and backup SG Reggie Thorne are to be free agents. The Phoenix could decide Vinci, the 33-year-old Italian, is slowing down maybe too expensive and let him walk. Thorne (American-29) has been a non-factor on this team and it's almost certain he won't be re-signed. With little to lose this offseason, maybe the Phoenix try to go out and land a big piece, but like we mentioned with Rivers End, it's tough to measure where these oil-owned teams are at financially. Glen Massey will remain coach for now, but another year like this and management could lose faith.

     Thread Starter
 

5/11/2020 9:56 pm  #67


Re: Silverian Basketball Assocation

1971 SBA West Division Championship

Trent Engineers Roster
Starters: 1 Ciaran Levy, 2 Sal Banks, 3 Geoff Owens, 4 Sheldon Underwood, 5 Alonzo Doyle
Bench: 6 SF Fred Love, 7 SG Leon Mack, 8 C Milton Massey, 9 SG Robin Serrano

Stratford Stars Roster
Starters: 1 Neil Harlow, 2 SF Bob Bass, 3 Jan Holt, 4 Grant McCoy, 5 Randal Franklin
Bench: 6 PG Carroll Murphy, 7 C Tony Peters, 8 SG Doug Averill, 9 PF Martin Noguera

Game 1 @ Trent (Stars win 95-90)
It's been pretty impressive where Sal Banks has taken the Engineers considering he's their only top 10 player. Geoff Owens is solid too, but not consistent enough for consideration. Banks may dominate the Engineers offense, but their defense continues to be one of the best in the league. Although both teams were once considered offensive-minded, Ervin Fowler's Engineers teams have gotten a lot better on defense, and while it does help the Stars that they brought in a star player in McCoy, he and Holt are kind of a weak spot on defense for Stratford. Game 1 played out in the opposite direction however. Grant McCoy and Randal Franklin bullied Sheldon Underwood and Alonzo Doyle down low. Even on the bench, Tony Peters fared quite well against Milton Massey. The Engineers couldn't keep up with such high percentage shots. Instead, the relied mostly to play through Banks, and occasionally Ciaran Levy. Levy had a pretty good night regardless of the loss because Bob Bass was limited Banks' shots a little more than Trent would like. On a lower scoring night, you might give the MVP to the best defensive player in Bass, but when you put up 95 in 40 minutes, it's got to go to Grant McCoy.

Game 2 @ Trent (Engineers win 86-81)
Acknowledging their inability to keep up with the more efficient Stars offense, the Engineers slowed down the game. Once upon a time an Ervin Fowler offense would've never been playing slow, but Fowler has repeatedly shown his own ability to adapt. Game 2 saw another somewhat unlikely hero for Trent in Geoff Owens. As Banks continued to be putting up 2/3 of his usual production, Owens found holes in the Stars defense, often trying to attack Jan Holt or Grant McCoy, or both at the same time. The strategy worked as Owens broke his career record for foul shots in a game. With Levy and Banks still pretty productive, more defensive players such as Owens and Doyle were also able to help significantly on that side of the floor. Sheldon Underwood has been their main disappointee, as he looked like the solution to their starting lineup late in the regular season. Late in both games 6th man Fred Love has taken his spot, and with that inability to keep up with the Stars shooting-wise we could see the Engineers' second best scorer in Love join the starting lineup at some point during this series. On the other side, Bob Bass and Randal Franklin continued their solid play, but without much help. This game really gave credence to the fans that don't think Grant McCoy is a top 5 player. The MVP of this game was definitely Geoff Owens as he was the only one who shined on both sides of the court. 

Game 3 @ Stratford (Engineers win 83-82)
With the ability to win without going back to Trent in sight, the Stars seemed more hungry in this game. It was ugly, and it was controversial. After bench guard Doug Averill came down with a knee injury entering a crowded Engineers paint, the fans in Stratford were not happy. Their chants became a little bit more angry than you'd like if you're the SBA. It carried over to the court too, with Geoff Owens, Alonzo Doyle, and Randal Franklin receiving technical's during a scuffle. It seemed that after a few years where this rivalry didn't really matter, old sentiments were beginning to come up. Although the game was bit more contested than the last, it still resulted in the Engineers largely controlling the game on the defensive end. Sal Banks has really yet to play as the otherworldly talent he can sometimes be. Yet again Geoff Owens led the way, with the right size to attack the Stars defense, not to mention having Banks play next to you, often attracting the best defender, and that Owens is maybe a top 5 defender in the SBA. Ciaran Levy has shown himself to certainly be a bit more valuable than Neil Harlow. Grant McCoy continued to disappoint in Game 3. With the injury to Averill, the Stars were left with only 8 members on their team. The SBA rule is that a team must have 8-12 members as of now, and players cannot be signed during the season. It's been rumored the SBAPA will propose an agreement to make rosters have at least 10 players. Even more likely to pass is an agreement allowing players to be signed during the season, with incentive for owners and players. There was some concern the the latter rule would increase the likelihood of injured players being able to be released in the future, but at least for now they'd coexist. The MVP of the game was awarded to Geoff Owens for a second time. 

Game 4 @ Stratford (Stars Win (93-81)
The key factor in Game 4 was the play of Randal Franklin. His matchup with Alonzo Doyle had been relatively even in the prior game considering the talent differential. However, Doyle's weakness came in playing on the perimeter. Another factor is the relative lopsidedness of this game was the replacement of Sheldon Underwood with Fred Love in the starting lineup. The Stars attacked this by routinely having each of their big men setting screens for each other. This would primarily attempt to get the smaller defender Geoff Owens on Franklin. It also put Doyle on Grant McCoy, McCoy's ability to shoot from mid-range really opened this action up. Most of the time the switch would work, with Doyle often playing McCoy closely and forcing the ball to Franklin who routinely dominated Owens and Underwood (due to his sub-par defensive skills). Due to this dynamic, the Engineers had quite a time keeping up and it became the only double-digit win so far. With the series being tied up, concerns have begun to rise among Engineers' fans about Sal Banks ability to perform in playoff games. Even more so is the question of what to do at PF. Not having Underwood on the court may make them too small, but Underwood himself isn't that effective otherwise at 34. Randal Franklin was the MVP of the game.

Game 5 @ Stratford (Stars Win 92-88)
Game 5 saw another starting lineup with Fred Love and Geoff Owens. The Stars response was to continues their two big man action. It seemed Owens learned how to stop it somewhat, with the play still frequently working, but not quite as well. The trick was for Owens to sag off McCoy allowing Alonzo Doyle to get back on defense against Randal Franklin. Generally this would mean Sal Banks also sagging a bit off Bob Bass, infamously a far from perfect shooter. This balance between sagging off and staying close was key to contain two guys not known for shooting, but capable, in essence preventing Franklin from getting many touches. Love was a great second scoring option in the starting lineup, but it was clear the Engineers needed to have Love or Sal Banks on the court if they hoped to keep up. With the success of their defensive strategy against McCoy and Franklin, Trent hopes they can move Underwood back in and still be as effective. While contained, Grant McCoy was still able to lead the way in scoring, which may be a step in the right direction if they want to slow the offense, but it wasn't enough as the Stars still had just enough. McCoy subsequently was MVP of Game 5. 

Game 6 @ Trent (Engineers Win 85-81)
With Underwood back in the starting lineup, the Engineers didn't have to worry about size disadvantage quite so much. Banks would still help to avoid McCoy taking too many good shots, but it worked even more effectively as Owens would routinely help Underwood if he ended up matched up against Franklin as well. This reduced the effectiveness of the big man action even more. The result was a pretty slow game, just the way the Engineers want it in this series. You could even say Sal Banks had finally shown to be the best player in his relentless play against Bass and McCoy. Not only that, but he was clearly the focal point of the offense when he was out there more so now, he and Love have typically played better apart with more freedom to be the guy. Maybe predictably if you've been reading the rest of this Game 6 summary, Bob Bass and Randal Franklin who had seemed to be playing well all series both didn't play to their potential. Bass was surprisingly exposed a little on the defensive end and Franklin could not get a good look down low. MVP goes to Sal Banks.

Game 7 @ Trent (Stars Win 88-87)
You'd have to think this game is at least in the conversation for best SBA games yet. The Engineers had the momentum in a home game, but as previously mentioned the Stars had the advantage on paper. This resulted in an almost even split in terms of who SBA fans thought would win. Game 7 played out just like that split would indicate. It was neck and neck from start to end. Even though Alonzo Doyle is a pretty good defending C, the Stars pounded it into Randal Franklin. The surprise came in that it seemed their main goal wasn't to attack Doyle, but count on that help Owens was giving Doyle and more Underwood in the prior game. If Stratford showed the switching action enough, they hoped Owens would begin to help a lot even if Doyle was down low against Franklin. It worked and allowed Jan Holt several open shots. After halftime that whole closed up a bit, in turn McCoy was given control of the offense. When he received the ball, Bob Bass was to cut forcing Sal Banks to make a decision. It did result in a couple steals for the Engineers, but largely McCoy made the right decision and scorched the defense. He tallied 22 and 6 at the games end, one of the best passing performances we've seen from a big man in the SBA to date. On the other hand, Banks had another so-so game, playing productively, but not quite enough to get the job done. If you asked the Engineers if they'd be okay with Bob Bass taking the series defining shot I think they would've been okay with it prior to Game 7. He just isn't the offensive threat of McCoy or Franklin. Bass hit a tough shot over Banks with 15 seconds left pushing the lead to 4. In response Banks unloaded a cold blooded 3 from a hand-off with Ciaran Levy. The inbound was in quickly and another quick pass saw Bob Bass run out the remaining 3 seconds. Levy and Banks crashed to floor realizing their hard to blame mistake. MVP of the game would go Grant McCoy with his also being seen as the MVP of the series. The Stars will be headed to the SBA championship hoping the Whalers get by the Farmers, this would allow a similar mismatch to the Engineers.

     Thread Starter
 

5/19/2020 2:30 pm  #68


Re: Silverian Basketball Assocation

East Division Championship

Bangor Farmers Roster
Starters: 1 Santos Garza, 2 Dom Byrd, 3 Eugene Shaw, 4 Cary Joseph, 5 Adam Lowe
Bench: 6 C Cristo Ventura, 7 SG Toby Dunn, 8 PF John Hall, 9 SF Pierce Cochran, 10 SF Malcolm Nichols

Sherborne Whalers Roster
Starters: 1 SG Brent McCormick, 2 SF Clarence Ward, 3 Terrence Burris, 4 C Jeff Davenport, 5 Javi Blanco
Bench: 6 SG Tomas Carlson, 7 PF Ari O’Neil, 8 C Ozzie Brant

Game 1 @ Bangor W 84-83 (Farmers 1-0)
Even with the addition of Javi Blanco, the Whalers still struggled to keep up w the Farmers trio of big men in Cary Joseph, Adam Lowe, and Cristo Ventura. Blanco’s help came from Jeff Davenport who was largely ineffective. Brent McCormick and Clarence Ward, Sherborne’s two best players, both played pretty well and having Terrance Burris out there helped with limiting the production of the Bangor backcourt. But, they came up just short as  their lacking frontcourt, especially on defense, cost them. Cary Joseph’s moment to shine was capitalized on as he led by containing Blanco’s offensive skill set and although he may be the Farmers 5th option on offense, he let the Whalers know Davenport was not a sufficient defender against All Star level competition.

Game 2 @ Bangor L 87-100 (Tied 1-1)
Game 2 saw a lineup change for the Whalers. Instead of having converted C Jeff Davenport starting at the 4, recently acquired Ari O’Neil would join his trade partner Javi Blanco in the starting lineup. It worked a little better with O’Neil being able to better keep up with Cary Joseph’s quickness. This is the game where I think we finally objectively see that Clarence Ward has risen to become the best SF in the SBA, over the likes of Bangor’s Eugene Shaw. Shaw is a legend, but there’s no denying Ward is shutting him down in this series. McCormick, and a little bit more surprisingly Ward, dominated the game offensively. Both found themselves matched up against top tier players at their position, but the Farmers have certainly begun emphasizing offense more than defense. That can be a huge problem when it plays to an opponents strengths. McCormick can score toe-to-toe with anyone is the SBA. Clarence Ward was the best player, though with his patented defensive prowess, and consistent ability to get to the hoop. Adam Lowe has been trending in the wrong direction for the Farmers all year, and he has yet to make much of an impact, rumors swirl of a move to the bench and his impending free agency that may result in retirement.

Game 3 @ Sherborne W 95-86 (Whalers 2-1)
The Whalers continued their momentum with McCormick and Ward leading the way. One difference from Game 2 was their strategy on Adam Lowe. Instead of gaurding Lowe closely within the standard 15 feet, they chose to sag off him unless he got to the paint. Lowe, a decent jump shooter for a big man, was content to routinely take those 10-15 foot jumpers. The first quarter saw him score his series high for a quarter with 9 points. However, it became clear in the 2nd he could not keep up that pace. He wasn’t so much bad as he was mediocre. It was in the second half where the Whalers strategy came into greater effect. With a higher usage rate than normal, Lowe began getting bodied on defense regardless of the offensive opponent. A combination of Javi Blanco and an overachieving Ari O’Neil spelled a pretty shocking advantage for the Whalers down low. Due to Lowe’s struggles late, Cristo Ventura took over his crunch time minutes playing okay, but not quite getting into a rhythm. Dom Byrd has probably been the best for the Farmers offensively speaking so far. However, Cary Joseph has impressed most, which plays perfectly into his plan to get a long term contract this offseason. It’s close, but Blanco’s very evident impact put him over the top as the game’s best player.

Game 4 @ Sherborne L 83-89 (Tied 2-2)
Bangor made the controversial decision to continue starting Adam Lowe who had been exposed in Game 3. Lowe started off playing pretty well once again, before stagnating into halftime. This saw Cristo Ventura play the entirety of the 3rd quarter, giving Lowe much needed rest. It resulted in a much more effective 4th quarter Lowe, although you could still argue Ventura might’ve be better in those minutes. Cary Joseph anchored the defense in the game, often cheating off his man to help Lowe/Ventura down low and Eugene Shaw on the wing. This kept both Javi Blanco and Clarence Ward from being very effective. Ari O’Neil showed his inexperience, with this game showing he’s not quite up to the talent level of the other starters on either team. Jeff Davenport wasn’t much better and Sherborne even went as far as to not play either big man in crunch time, favoring Tomas Carlson. Santos Garza was probably the best all-around player for the Farmers, limiting Brent McCormick and setting the defensive tone with 4 steals. He also managed to step up offensively while Dom Byrd didn’t quite play to expectations.

Game 5 @ Sherborne L 94-95 (Farmers 3-2)
Game 5 was close from start to finish. The most notable narrative continued to be with Bangor’s aging stars Eugene Shaw and Adam Lowe. Both have seen their fair share of struggles in the East Division Championship thus far, especially Lowe. Shaw’s decline, however small, puts him as probably the 3rd scoring option for the team. It’s weird this series is one of the first instances where we see perimeter focused teams having a lot of success. Terrance Burris did a good job not giving Shaw much room to breathe. While Dom Byrd continued to be controlled by the the defensive mastery of Clarence Ward, Santos Garza did a good job scoring against the not as defensively talented Brent McCormick. A pretty high-scoring duel played it’s way into the Farmers hands. It was close between Garza and another good game from Cary Joseph, but Garza ultimately proved to be the MVP as he hit a clutch 15-footer to seal the game.

Game 6 @ Bangor L 91-100 (Tied 3-3)
Up 3-2, all the Farmers needed to do was win 1 of 2 home games. That rather simple plan got off to pretty rough start, as the Whalers made the radical decision to play only 1 real big man for most of the game. This allowed the Whalers to tie their series high for points at 100. Clarence Ward, while undersized at the 4 played some pretty effective defense against Cary Joseph. This change necessitated some concessions to Dom Byrd, now defended by Terrance Burris, and Eugene Shaw, defended by the defensively lackluster Tomas Carlson. Fortunately, with some highly disciplined rotations from Ward they were able to minimize the effect of those shortcomings. Eugene Shaw continued to disappoint shooting 4/11 from the field. Ward was widely considered Game 6’s best player for his continued role as a dominant defensive presence.

Game 7 @ Bangor L 96-99 (Whalers 4-3)
Who would’ve thought Tomas Carlson would start before Cristo Ventura. But, with a live or die Game 7, the Farmers finally made the move to start Ventura. Hopefully this would sure up their defense against the quick Sherborne frontcourt of Clarence Ward and Javi Blanco. Unfortunately for the Farmers, this didn’t quite solve their problems. Behind a transcendent performance from Brent McCormick the Whalers torched the Bangor defense, almost tallying 100 yet again. For their part, the Farmers were able to keep up pretty well, but the game continued to call into question the legitimacy of the Farmers as a title contender. Yes, they are very talented, but do they have the it factor to get over the top again. After, a few very solid games Santos Garza was exposed for overplaying McCormick, time and time again failing to recognize pump fakes. McCormick was named MVP of Game 7, but it was Clarence Ward who repeatedly proved to be the key to the Whalers Success.

Offseason Preview (Bangor Farmers and Trent Engineers)
The Farmers have a league-high 6 free agents this offseason. Among those are Santos Garza, Cary Joseph, Adam Lowe, Toby Dunn, Pierce Cochran, and Malcolm Nichols. Bangor would love to re-sign both Garza and Joseph, but with Byrd and Shaw already weighing heavy on the books it’s likely they choose one or the other. Although Garza has more potential to leave the SBA, you’d have to think his pivotal role at PG may see him stay around. Many fans have speculated on Adam Lowe’s retirement, thinking it may come at the end of the season. But, after Game 7 Lowe continued the spectacle saying he hadn’t made his mind up yet. As far as the bench goes you’d have to think the Farmers will at least try to keep Dunn, Cochran, and Nichols. If anything the may lose one of them, but prices aren’t too high for these guys. As for the Engineers, PG Ciaran Levy, SF Fred Love, SF Geoff Owens, PF Sheldon Underwood, and SG Robin Serrano are set to be free agents. Underwood has already announced his intentions to retire from basketball. The 34-year-old Silverian, played the majority of his career in his home country. With Levy, Love, and Owens all being free agents, Trent is in a familiar place for SBA teams. Are they willing to cough up the money to keep all 3 and risk financial freedom in the future. Owens is likely their primary target, being the youngest and most talented of the group. Serrano has not played a whole lot for the Engineers, it’s players like Serrano who make you wonder if Silverian basketball needs to start allowing loans. Because the contending Engineers can’t risk putting a player they’re unsure of out on the court right now.

SBA Championship Preview (Stratford Stars v. Sherborne Whalers)
On paper you’d have to think the Stars have the advantage in this series. We knew when Grant McCoy left the Captains for the Stars that his frontcourt duo with Randal Franklin could be lethal. And, although Clarence Ward surprised us a little and had some success playing at the 4, I wouldn’t expect that to be a long-term solution, especially against McCoy. Ari O’Neil and Jeff Davenport would be their other options, but both have shown opposing weaknesses, O’Neil with offense and Davenport with defense. While Sherborne decided to go pretty small in the East, the Stars remain one of the the SBA’s biggest teams. The victor could be contingent on who forces the other to play to their style.

     Thread Starter
 

Board footera