Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Yunnan sign Taiwanese veteran Hsiung Jen-jen

Videoland veteran forward Hsiung jen-jen will pay his second visit to Chinese pro pleague CBA. Yunnan signs Hsiung to a one-year contract with salary undisclosed. Hsiung played in China in 2000-01 when Sina Lions left Taiwan to play in the Chinese League. He will play for VL again once the CBA season is over in March next year, hoping to help VL in the SBL postseason.

Taiwan NT starts training camp again

Taiwan NT opened yet another training camp on Sunday for the upcoming East Asian Games in Macao. It will train in Taipei before leaving for South Korea for a 5-game training tour. After that, the team will be back in Taiwan and train in Chiayi, a southern city, before the East Asian Games. Taiwan NT will play five games vs. KBL teams in Korea from October 1st to October 9th.

Talk n' Text sweeps Taiwan tour 3-0

Philippines' Talk n' Text Phone Pals sweeps Taiwan friendly tour with a perfect 3-0 record as philipino favorite Asi Taulava and Damian Cantrell obvious the brightest stars in the tour. TNT won two games by more than 30 and beat SBL champion Yulon by eight.

Dacin, Videoland and Yulon were all hurt by the absence of current NT players, who are entering another training camp for the preparation of East Asian Games after finishing 9th-place in the Asian Championship earlier this month. The absence of top players resulted in lopsided games which drew little fanfare, averaging only a couple hundreds per game.

Game 1: TNT 118-75 Dacin (A. Taulava 21p+14rb, D. Cantrell 23p+14rb ; Lin Yi-huei 27p, Chen Tse-wei 14p+6rb, Lin Hwan-chao 11p+7rb, Su Yi-chieh 10p+7a)

Game 2: TNT 120-90 VL (D. Cantrell 20p+9rb, A. Washington 17p+8rb ; Hu Yu-wei 18p, Hong Chi-chao 15p)

Game 3: TNT 96-88 Yulon (A. Taulava 23p+11rb ; Wu Chih-wei 21p+5rb+4s+3a, Chiu Chi-yi 29p)

Friday, September 23, 2005

Taiwan NT adds Wu Chih-wei as replacement

Taiwan NT added veteran center Wu Chih-wei to strengthen its frontline for the East Asian Games after the departure of Wu Dai-hao, who enrolled in U.S. BYU-Hawaii and will start his playing career in North America.

Players who missed the Asian Championship -- Chen Hsin-an, Ho Sho-jen, Lin Chi-jay and Chang Chih-feng -- are expected to sit out the East Asian Games, which will be held in Macao in October, as well.

Monday, September 19, 2005

SBL to apply relegation rules, releases provisional season format

Team officials of seven SBL (Super Basketball League) teams gathered for the first committee meeting for the 2005-06 season and came up with a couple conclusions. For the first time the league will install relegation rules. Also the provisional season format was announced.
Starting from the end of 2005-06 season, the sixth-place and seventh-place SBL teams will have to play in a double round robin relegation series with the A-League champion. Last-placed team of the series will be downgraded to (or stay in) the A-League. For now, SBL will stay a 7-team league and will not look for expansion.
The committee decided the 2005-06 season format as follows:
December 1, 2005 - December 4, 2005: Exhibition games.
December 10, 2005 - May 14, 2006: Regular season (Each team faces its opponents five times and plays a total of 30 games).
February 4: All-Star Game
May 19, 2006 - May 25, 2006: First Round (Best-of-Five)
May 27, 2006 - June 11, 2006: Finals (Best-of-Seven)
Other important announcement:
-- No import players and Chinese players are allowed to play. All SBL players are required to have Taiwanese IDs.
-- Starting from 2005-06 season, college freshmen can't play in the SBL and the UBA at the same time. A college freshman will play either for his club team or his college team.
-- Any team that boycotts the game or refuses to take the court under protest has to play a 600,000 NTD fine.
-- TV reply will not be used to change calls.
-- Any team that withdraws from the league in mid-season is not allowed to re-enter SBL or play in any CTBA-sanctioned competition in two years.
-- ESPN Taiwan, Videoland and ETSN will share broadcasting right in the 2005-06 season.

Sina will stay in SBL

Sina Lions announced it will stay in the SBL and keep current roster intact, but the team will look for sponsors and is possible to change its team name once sponsors are secured.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Philippines basketball sets foot on Taiwan

Philippines basketball players will be seen a lot in Taiwan before the end of the year. PBA announced it will schedule an regular season oversea game in Taipei on December 14th, the second oversea game in PBA history. PBA's Talk N Text Phone Pal also will visit Taipei for a three-game friendly series.

"Taiwan-Philippines Goodwill Games", hosted by CTBA and sponsored by Dynamic-Sky Multimedia Corp., Philippine Airlines and Elite Express, will feature Talk N Text to take on three Taiwanese SBL teams -- Yulon, Videoland and Dacin -- from September 23-25. All games will be played at TPEC Gym and televised by Videoland Sports TV.


9/23 19:00 Talk N Text vs. Dacin Construction
9/24 15:00 Talk N Text vs. Videoland Hunters
9/25 15:00 Talk N Text vs. Yulon Dinos

PBA will kick off its 31st season (Fiesta Conference) with eight provincial games in provincial venue outside Manila and one oversea game in Taipei. Defending Fiesta Conference champion Talk N Text will meet San Miguel in Taipei.

The first oversea game in PBA history took place last year, when Talk N Text met Shell in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Taiwan beat Kazakhstan for ninth palce in Asian Championship

Yang Yu-min had 20 points and Chen Chih-chun 14 as Taiwan rallied from a 16-point deficit to beat Kazakhstan and finished for ninth place in the 2005 Asian Championship. Taiwan failed to reach the goal of returning to the top six, although they played hard in every game.
Taiwan had a 5-2 record in the championship. It lost to China and Iran in the preliminary and was bumped out of the quarterfinal once again. While a ninth-place finish is better than 11th-place in 2003, no one will call it an improvement because the expectation is still high for the basketball-loving country.
Kazakhstan almost made every open three versus Taiwan's zone defense in the first 15 minutes and led 30-14 midway thru the second quarter. Sub Yang Che-yi have 9 points, including two timely threes, in the third to help Taiwan take the lead and entered the final quarter leading 57-53.
Behind starting point guard Andrei Shpeht, Kazakhstan recharged and took the lead 63-61. Taiwan head coach Lee Yun-kwang quickly put Tsun Wen-din, who had four fouls, back in and regained the momentum.
Yang Che-yi had 11 points, including 9 in the third quarter. Wu Dai-hao had 10 points. Lee Chi-yi Had 7 points.
Shpeht led Kazakhstan with 16 points. V. Rosnovski had 14 points. Like Taiwan, Kazakhstan came close of making the final eight before losing to Japan by two in the deciding preliminary game.
With most of its players born after 1980, Kazakhstan will be a team to watch in Asia's "second division" in the coming years after head coach Aleksei Erupkin and assistant Vitali Strebkov, both former NT players, taking over the new NT coaching staff. And keep an eye on Anton Ponomarev, a 17-year-old kid at 209cm who has a world of potential.

Defending high school champion Tsaishin shut down its basketball program

Tsaishin high school announced it will shut down its prominent basketball program after 15 years in the HBL(High School Basketball League). In 15 years, the private school won 4 titles, two runner-ups, two third-place and one fourth-place finish.
Current Taiwan NT players Tsun Wen-din and Wu Dai-hao and current SBL players like Ha Hsiao-yuan, O-Yang Jin-hen, Che Shi-jay, Zuo Tsun-kai, Lin Che-li, Lu Cheng-ju all graduated from Tsaishin HS.
Tsaishin won HBL champion in 2004-05 season, which means it won't have a chance to defend its title. It's a sad decision for a school which established its basketball identity and empire.
Most Tsaishin players are expected to transfer to other schools. Head coach Hsu Jin-che is also expected to look for coaching opportunities.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Taiwan beat Malaysia 109-71, will go for ninth vs. Kazakhstan

Taiwan NT again demonstrated its firepower in an easy 109-71 victory over Malaysia today and will meet Kazakhstan Friday in the ninth-place game of 2005 Asian Championship.

Taiwan took advantage of Malaysia's weaker defense and shot 17 for 37 from three-point territory. Wu Dai-hao led the team with 18 points. Tsun Wen-din had 16 points. Chou Shih-yuan and Wang Chih-chun scored 14 apiece while Lee Chi-yi had 13. Yang Yu-min collected 10 points.

Taiwan NT beat Kazakhstan in the Jones Cup tournament in July.

Asian Championship - Taiwan eyes ninth-place after beating India

Yang Yu-ming had 28 points, including 14 in the third quarter that shifted the momentum of the game, as Taiwan NT beat India 106-90 in the second game of 9-16 classifications of the 2005 FIBA Men's Asian Championship.
Taiwan is expected to beat Malaysia today and fight for ninth-place with Kazakhstan or Kuwait.
Yang Yu-ming's four three-pointers in the third quarter led Taiwan to the come-from-behind victory. Tsun Wen-din scored 26 points while Chou Shih-yuan had 17 points. Tien Lei sat out his second straight game after a mild ankle sprain in the game vs. Iran. He is expected to miss today's game also.
Sozhasingarayer Robinson led India, which surprisingly led Taiwan 50-46 at halftime, with 26 points.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

An easy win over Indonesia

Coming off a heartbreaking loss to Iran, Taiwan NT exploded all its energy on the Indonesians. With Tien Lei sitting out the game due to mild ankle sprain, Taiwan NT still routed Indonesia 109-88 in the 9-16 classification game.
Tsun Wen-din led the team with 16 points. Wu Dai-hao, who sat out the entire Iran game for unknown reason, scored 15 points. Taiwan made 16 three-pointers and had seven players scoring in double-figure.
Taiwan will meet India today.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Taiwan dealt another blow, lost to Iran 65-57

Taiwan suffered another heartbreaking loss last night when they lost to Iran 65-57 in the last and most important preoiminary game. With the loss, Taiwan failed to make the quarterfinal in the Asian Championship and fell short of the goal of finishing in the top six.
Knowing it's a do-or-die game, Taiwan NT was out of sync in the last seven minutes and watched Iran pull the score away although it trailed by only two points at halftime.
Both teams presented abnormal rotation for the game. Iran's Jaber Rouzbahani sat out the whole game, and Taiwan didn't play Wu Dai-hao at all. Iran's wing players, not its Twin Tower, became the accidental heroes for the game as Iman Zandi scored 15 points and Pouya Tajik had 11.
Tien Lei led Taiwan with 17 points, including three three-pointers. Tsun Wen-din had 11 and Yang Yu-ming had 10. Taiwan will have to play in 9th-16th place classification games.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Asian Championship Day 2 - Taiwan lost to China, 76-58

Taiwan lost to China 76-58 in the second preliminary game last night and is now looking at its most important game in the Asian Championship, when it faces Iran on Sunday.
Wu Dai-hao had team-high 10 points. Chen Chih-chun had 9 points. Tien Lei had 8 points and Tsun Wen-din 7. Yao Ming scored 15 points in 24 minutes for the winner, followed by Zhu Fanyu's 12 and Liu Wei's 11 points.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Asian Championship Day 1: All players score as Taiwan routs Uzbekistan, 111-71

Led by Tien Lei's 22 points, all players scored as Taiwan NT routed Uzbekistan 111-71 in its opening game in the 2005 Asian Championship.

Taiwan tool advantage of its quickness, installing full-court press from time to time to disrupt Uzbekistan's tempo. Following a rusty first quarter, Taiwan gradually pulled away. Tien Lei made four three-pointers in the second half to increase Taiwan's largest lead to 43 points.

Starting point guard Chen Chih-chun had 15 points while starting SG Yang Yu-ming had 12. Wu Dai-hao and Yang Chin-ming scored 11 respectively. Chou Shih-yuan collected 10 points, followed by Lee Hseuh-lin and yang Che-yi, both had 7 points.

Aleksandr Kozlov paced Uzbekistan with 22 points.

Other games:

China 76-61 Iran (32-35)
Qatar 74-62 Japan (41-29)
India 106-87 Hong Kong
Kazakhstan 89-62 Indonesia
Lebanon vs. Jordan N/A

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Sina announces two options for team future

Sina Lions, which said it's pulling out of the SBL on August 18th, announced yesterday it has two options regarding team's future. Either it keeps the team intact and stays in the SBL or it will sell the team to anyone interested. It reiterates that Sina will not close business or drop back to Division-II (A-League).

Meanwhile, Jutai Technology, who's expected to win the A-League title this week, plans to submit the application to CTBA and enter the SBL. It's possible Sina, Bank of Taiwan -- SBL's worst teams last season, and Sina will play a relegation round to decide who's up and who's down.

Monday, September 05, 2005

Taiwan NT leaves for Doha looking for redemption

Is Taiwanese basketball only good enough for the 11th place in Asia? At least it was in 2003 Asian Championship. But a lot of people don't believe it and obviously Taiwan NT doesn't buy it. Two years after the worst finish in Asian Championship history, Taiwan NT left for Doha, Qatar yesterday looking for that sweet redmption, although it's without four wing players -- including its top player Chen Hsin-an.

Losing Chen Hsin-an(Ranked 3rd in SBL scoring last season), Lin Chi-jay(SBL scoring leader last season), Chang Chi-feng(11th in scoring) and Ho Sho-jen(8th in scoring) definitely hurts. But head coach Lee Yun-kwang, taking over the team after a two-year hiatus, is determined to lead Taiwan back to Asian basketball powers. He sets top six as the goal for this team.

The first step to make it back to Asia elite will be making the quarterfinals. It will not be easy for Taiwan as it's in the same preliminary bracket with China, Iran and Uzbekistan. Some people call it the Death Group. China will definitely win the group. That leaves one spot for the remaining three teams.

To win the last seed, Taiwan has to beat Iran, which is a tough task since Iran features three big men -- 223cm Jaber Rouzbahani, 216cm Hamad Hadadi and 209cm Mohammed Shahsavand. Coach Lee knows how hard it is but wouldn't give up before even playing its opponent. He also knows Taiwan has to protect its defensive rebounds, limit Iran's interior attack and look for every fastbreak opportunity.

It's almost the most important game for Taiwan NT in the championship. If it loses it, the best finish for them will be the eighth place.

Tsun Wen-din and Wu Dai-hao will be the key players in the championship. Tsun, who won SBL Finals MVP, and Wu, who enrolled in BYU-Hawaii last week, have to protect the paint, hit the glass and avoid foul trouble to play extended minutes. In other words, Tsun and Wu have to anchor Taiwan's defense, which is the key factor for this team to be successful after losing so many talented offensive players.

On offense, Taiwan will rely heavily on its outside shot once again. Two-time SBL regular season MVP Tien Lei will have to step up and be the leader, playing inside and out. As the best passing big man on the team, Tsun Wen-din will also play an important role. And Taiwanese guards will have to hit their open shots. Chou Shih-yuan and Yang Yu-ming will shoulder major pressure at the perimeter.

**Taiwan NT 12-man Roster for 2005 Asian Championship

(Position, Name, Height, Age, Team)
PG Chen Chih-chun 180 77 28 Yulon
PG Lee Hsueh-lin 175 75 21 Yulon
PG Wang Chih-chun 180 75 23 Dacin
PG Chen Shih-nian 180 76 21 Taiwan Beer
SG Chou Shih-yuan 190 80 22 Yulon
SG Yang Yu-min 180 73 26 ETSN
SF Yang Che-yi 193 85 27 Videoland
SF Yang Chin-min 188 81 21 Bank of Taiwan
PF Lee Chi-yi 198 88 27 Videoland
PF Tien Lei 202 88 22 Dacin
C Wu Dai-hao 202 100 20 ETSN
C Tsun Wen-din 202 90 21 Yulon

Head coach: Lee Yun-kwang(Yulon)
Assistants: Chou Hai-jung(VL), Shiu Tsun-chih(Yulon), Dong-fan Che-ter(Yulon)