It was a forty-minute struggle for the UE Red Warriors.

Even the third quarter UE run was not enough to propel the Red Warriors to the comeback win they seem to love doing. The Mammie-less squad was in complete disarray both on offense and defense. The Sumang injury scare coupled with Olivares’ fouling out, all the turnovers resulted to UE’s loss which detrimentally affects their chances of a Final Four spot.

By the Numbers

Four Factors
Team Pace Rating eFG TOV% ORB% FTR
UE 78.0 93.6 44.0% 16.1% 39.1% 20.9%
NU 78.0 103.8 50.0% 18.6% 38.5% 32.8%
Game Flow
The impact of playing without Mammie (primary rebounder) and Casajeros (good defender) can be seen in the Warriors' game-long struggle.

The impact of playing without Mammie (primary rebounder) and Casajeros (good defender) can be seen in the Warriors’ game-long struggle.

Individual Offensive Ratings

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Review: Keys of the Game

1. Floor Spacing and Ball Movement

They were in complete disarray.

Everyone was agitated and hoisted up bad shot after bad shot – threes with 20+ seconds left in the shot clock, suicide drives when there are open players on the corners, etc. Ball movement was limited to inbound passes and the occasional assist/pass.

2. Throw Parks off his game
Parks cannot be contained. (Photo Credit: KC Cruz, GMA News)

Parks cannot be contained. (Photo Credit: KC Cruz, GMA News)

Parks is peaking in this second round and the Red Warriors could not contain him the same way they did in their Round 1 meeting. Sending Noble and Javier to defend him did not yield any fruit since Parks was definitely faster and has the body build to soldier through the UE defense.

3. Sumang + ______

Offensively, Sumang shots weren’t falling in (20% FG) and he’s having a bad day from the charity stripe with 57.1 percent. He struggled for the entire game coupled with the knee injury scare, he only produced 10 points, half of his usual 19~20-point production.

Ralf Olivares, without all the unnecessary fouls, had a good game. If only he could be more patient in creating his shots, he could really be a good scoring option for the Red Warriors. In Filipino terms, he’s too gigil when handling the ball causing him to drive recklessly, pull up for a bad jumper and all those cheap fouls we saw in this game. As of writing, the Commissioner slapped a two-game suspension on him which, in my honest opinion, is something he deserved for the way he acted in this game. This is something the Red Warriors does not need right now.

One player who I think is not getting enough credit is JM Noble. He has a solid post game and the way he’s always calm and composed really helped him get his 16 points in 14 attempts (and one free throw). He doesn’t rush into his shots and finds a way to craft a solid move for a higher percentage shot.

Bullet Points

  • The Red Warriors lost this game in so many different levels. As I’ve said, this lineup was a throwback to their Season 75 lineup which lacked the inside presence and shot creators other than Roi Sumang and Gene Belleza (occasionaly, at least).
  • The team had no Mammie, no Casajeros and well, a struggling Roi Sumang. If it wasn’t for JM Noble’s post moves and composure and Olivares’ shot creation, this would’ve been a complete blow-out.
  • I will dare say that Ralf Olivares rightfully deserved the two-game suspension. Playing collegiate basketball has a lot of differences as compared with professional basketball. Here, the idea of sportmanship is strongly upheld since that is the very reason why UAAP exists in the first place. This means that “sneaky” retaliation, cheap fouls, badmouthing, etc. are all frowned upon. Stepping on a player, elbowing and banging your body even when you’re ALREADY fouled out, that’s just something that the league cannot condone.

Final Thoughts

It will be a tough road for the Red Warriors. Their last few games are the De La Salle Green Archers, Ateneo Blue Eagles, Adamson Soaring Falcons and the UP Fighting Maroons. They still have a 14.6 percent chance of surely being a Final Four contender and a 42.8 percent chance of landing at the fourth place (possibly tied with other teams). With Mammie  and Olivares out in their next match-up, how will the Red Warriors secure a win against the heated Green Archers?