I think most of the articles coming out for tomorrow’s game is all about putting pressure on the team to win. Well, I think nobody from the green side wants to end the men’s basketball season tomorrow, right? So I guess this amount of pressure is just normal.
So just for a change of theme, I thought of centering this article for me seeing the Green Archers giving their best effort possible on the court. Best effort in the sense that I want to see the team go hard on every play, hustle on every possession, getting physical to grab those rebounds, willing to trade faces with FEU players just to get the lose ball, and fight like their lives are at stake in the process.
Regardless of the outcome tomorrow, for as long as I see the team fighting, I do not have any problems with it.
If we can take away something from NU’s win last Saturday, it was all predicated on playing good defense. NU limited FEU to just 37% shooting from the field last Saturday. Mike Tolomia may have had a good shooting game with a 9/14 shooting clip on the field, but Mac Belo and Roger Pogoy had a combined 6/25 shooting clip from the field mainly because their shots were challenged most of the time.
NU also committed only 9 turnovers on that game which shows that if you play good defense and take good care of the basketball, you will have a good chance beating a strong FEU squad. Just like what I have mentioned in the UP game, I still like the Green Archers’ chances if they can run the break as much as they can once they get the defense rebound.
They have shown this on the win against UP last week and it gave them a much-needed win. Hopefully, tomorrow, the Green Archers will also have that sense of urgency and mindset to run as much as they can and score easy baskets than allowing FEU’s defense to set up. As we all know, FEU has the length and athleticism to disrupt those passing lanes and play tough defense, too. So, it will not be easy if the Green Archers will settle on half court sets in getting their points.
It will be important for Coach Juno’s wards tomorrow to get easy baskets off the defense. I am confident that the Green Archers can do this because simply they have the talent and quickness to do so. I also want to see everyone ganging up for the rebound to allow the team to run on the break.
Thomas Torres had 12 rebounds in the last game against UP and it will be important for him and for the other guards to battle out on the boards tomorrow so that the Green Archers can push the ball for transition baskets.
A lot of switching was made by NU last Saturday on defense and one important thing was that they stayed in front of their man which did not allow that much ball movement on FEU’s offense. As a result, FEU was reduced to a one-on-one team which negated the effect of their dribble-drive offense. This will prove to be a key factor if the Green Archers would want to be in shape defensively and get a crucial win tomorrow.
On offense, once again, I will not say that much. Just do not turn the ball over and allow FEU to get easy transition baskets. The offensive flow will always involve Jeron, Andrei, and Prince getting touches and get something out of it. For as long as the transition defense is there, I do not care if we miss baskets since for most of the season, the offense seems to be constant.
It is on the defensive end that the intensity really has to go multiple levels higher in tomorrow’s game. I believe that the team has what it takes to win the game. We all know that the talent is there. The coaching staff for sure has done their homework. What is left is the kind of effort that will be displayed in tomorrow’s game.
Everyone will see the points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocks that will occur tomorrow but the movement, motion, and all the action that has to be done in order to get the best open shot, the best chance to get that lose ball, the best option to go to once the initial offensive set has been picked out by your opponent, the best decision to take to disrupt a passing lane and the best angle and position to block an opponent’s attempt are things that will matter tomorrow.
It is the desire to bring out that perfect effort to get that win which will matter the most in tomorrow’s game. The things that you will not see in the stat sheet will be the most valuable things to treasure in tomorrow’s game. For some reason, I feel it deep inside that we shall see that perfect effort tomorrow.