Saturday, November 11, 2006

The interesting case of Vita Genomics

Just like I wrote before, Taiwanese basketball never cease surprising us all. The latest case of Vita Genomics -- this year's A-League winner which wanted to get a foot in the SBL so badly -- was a perfect case.

First thing first. Vita Genomics lost all three games so far (I couldn't even find the result of its last game, but it didn't matter anyway) in the "qualification games", which was played from Nov. 6-11, and will not be able to join the SBL next season.

What is the qualification games? It was supposed to be a "relegation games" which have the A-League winner and the 6th- and 7th-place SBL teams to play a double round robin games with the last-placed team in the games demoted to the A-League next year.

However, ETSN and YMY -- the 6th- and 7th-place SBL teams last season -- refused to be demoted ! The very "considering" SBL Committee then decide to make it a qualification games, which means the games will be played to determine whether the A-League winner is qualified to join the SBL or not and no current SBL teams will be demoted.

Vita Genomics lost to YMY twice by the scores of 118-100 and 97-79, and lost to ETSN 99-78 in the series. The results showed the big competition gap between the amateur league and the semi-pro SBL.

Funny thing was that the committee never announced how Vita Genomics can join the league. Will it be able to join if it finshed the seires 4-0? 3-1? 2-2? 1-3? The answer is: nobody knows. Word was that no matter how Vita Genomics performed, it would take a negotiation with current SBL teams to determine the final outcome.

Which makes you wonder: why bother playing all those games if it takes another round of negotiation?

Another funny thing was that the Vita Genomics-ETSN game on Nov.8 was called off by the refs, according to the official FIBA rules, with less than two minutes remaining because there was only one Vita player on the court.

Vita, with many of its core players playing on the same night in the university league, could only dress seven players for the game. Some of Vita players were emergency loans from other A-League teams.

In the second half Vita lost two players for disqualifications and was forced to play the remaining five players. But they couldn't avoid foul trouble. With less than two minutes to go, the game was called off because Vita was left with only one player on the court.

Anyway, it seems to me that the SBL teams simply will not allow Vita enter the league unless it agrees to pay a large amount of admission fee. On the other hand, Vita needs to secure its players (and maybe find a team manager before that...) if it is serious about entering the SBL.