Round 1 of UAAP Season 76 has been concluded and the two-week break is now over. UAAP fan base is now back to cheering their mother team after being united in rooting Gilas Pilipinas for the FIBA Asia 2013.
A two-week break from a competitive basketball has its pros and cons in a team. For instance, it allows the wounded team to recuperate but it can also mess up the rhythm, timing and focus of a team. Also, a break can hamper the momentum of those team that are peaking. How will this break affect UAAP Teams?
We shall witness in the coming weeks. And perhaps the HumbleBola team can gather some data of each team’s activities during the break and factor this in in analysing their Round 2 performances. As for the UST Growling Tigers, coach Pido Jarencio has been quoted into saying that they will spend the long break resting. Will the teams, like UST, who opted to take the break lightly reenergize themselves or will they find themselves off-beat and rusty?
The first week of Round 2 might just be the best time to observe the repercussion of this 2-week break. Come Thursday (August 15) afternoon, UE Red Warriors will try to pick up where they left off at the end of the first round, wherein they ended up on a high note by finally having a 3-game winning streak, and attempt to score a revenge with UST Growling Tigers. Interestingly, España troops has been beating Sampaloc-based cagers for the past three years. How would the Tigers keep their mastery over the Warriors with their captain, Jeric Teng, still having his therapy as of August 13? Add to that, UE will have the services of their import Charlie Mammie, who was serving a one game suspension when the Warriors face the Tigers in the first round.
Keys to the Game
At the Rim Domination
After battling with seven other opponents in the UAAP, each team now have an idea on how they fare in the league. Statistics gathered after 28 games showed that UST and UE (another team that can be labelled as this is NU) are highly dependent on attacking the rim (+60% of their output are earned near the rim). They do this in different ways like slashing towards the basket on half court sets, posting up, and/or getting fouled while pounding inside. With this being said, I cannot emphasized more than enough how at the rim domination would play a major role in ruling the outcome of this game.
There are two factors that I could think of in order to dominate the paint, these are rebounds and at the rim attacks that can either result to points in the paint or free throw attempts. In terms of rebounding, the Warriors has been in control by leading all the teams in Total Rebounds (TREB). The only cause of concern for the Warriors in rebounding department is that even though they are the stat leader in TREB they cannot seems to control their Defensive Rebounds (DReb). If UE Warriors were able to rule the rebounding department they get half of the job done for at the rim domination.
|Teams||OREB||DREB||TREB||FTM||Ave. FTR||Ave. ATR%|
UST and UE numbers after Round 1
For the case of attacking the rim and forcing a free throw attempt, Tigers present a more impressive numbers than the Warriors as depicted in their free throw rating (FTR) and at the rim (ATR) percentage.
This means that UST cagers are more active in attacking and scoring inside the paint which is good news for the Tigers. But, looking at the stat that in their previous encounter their numbers are not that impressive specially in the rebounding department. We have to consider that Charles Mammie didn’t suit up for this game so UE’s rebounding machine was not in and still the Tigers struggle to control the rebound. Mammie’s presence will definitely create a lot of headache to Pido Jarencio.
UST and UE numbers in their Round 1 encounter
UST has been one of the best defensive teams by far in the league. They have been successful in limiting their opponents to sub-70 point production and these has been one of the reasons why the Tigers were able to keep its top 4 slot after the first round. The Tigers were able to do this by employing a scrappy defense by their back court and the intimidating presence of their very good shot blockers. With the presence of Mammie and the MVP like performance of Roi Sumang UST will be needing their defensive prowess at full strength for them to continue their domination against the UE Warriors.
As corrected by Nico Baguio an ideal scoring distribution should be ATR>3PT>MID, I thought it should be ATR>MID>3PT based on the premise that MID has a higher percentage of conversion. But I was proven wrong and this is evident in the recently concluded FIBA Asia. Three point shooting is a huge factor in one’s team, former senator Freddie Webb even mentioned that in an international basketball game, as much as possible you limit your mid range attempt. Instead of a mid range jumpers better yet go for the 3PT shot. And guess what? UST has been dwelling in the cellar in term of 3PT shooting. The Tigers were only able to tally an average 3PT% of 23.9 a number that is way below than the norm in the league, which is at 27.4. With Sumang’s 3PT shooting skills UE’s 3PT% is just about the same as the league’s average, 27.7. If UST wants to retain their inclusion in the top 4 they definitely have to double their efforts in improving their 3PT%.
With Jeric Teng’s return still in question, UST is pretty much in trouble. Based on the data that were presented in this article the odds does not favour the Tigers. Moreover, with the numbers that they’ve put up during their round 1 encounter, the Warriors were able to keep in step with the Tigers and they did it without their behemoth import. As much as I want to predict a UST win, numbers doesn’t back me here so I am seeing a loss for the Tigers. Though, I am still hoping for some intangibles to take place, like Jarencio’s motivating skill, still remember the three Ps? Pride, Puso, and Palaban huh! This might just fuel the Tigers to escape with a win. Let’s see if really the numbers don’t lie.