Saturday, December 08, 2007

07-08 SBL Preview: dmedia Genies

Ouyang Jin-hen (Source: ESPN Taiwan)

-- Last season: 15-15, 5th in regular season.

-- Key additions: Jonathan Sanders (Taiwan Mobile), Lin Kwan-lun (TB), Wu Jui-jin (TB), Chou Tse-hwa (Pure Youth), Yang Cheng-lun (rookie), Lin Yi-fu (rookie), Lee Jun-wei (rookie)

-- Key subtractions: Wu Dai-hao (TB), Yang Yu-min (Dacin), Hsu Tse-shin (Taiwan Mobile), Liao Wei-chen, Delvin Thomas

-- Key changes: ETSN sold the team to Segway Technology due to a financial crisis of its parent company. Segway Tech then placed the team under its affiliation company named dmedia. Former head coach Chiu Da-tsun signed with Dacin after the ownership change. Finally, veteran Wu Jian-kuo was hired to coach this young team.

-- Analysis:

Dmedia is another team which has experienced enormous perosnnel and management changes. The team's top inside and outside scoring option last season -- NT center Wu Dai-hao and scorer Yang Yu-min -- both left.

This is an extremely young team that more than half of the players were born after 1984. And they have a veteran coach Wu Jian-kuo who hasn't coached for a long time. It will be interesting to see how this group of "young and old" works together as the season moves along.

The key man will be 6-7 Jonathan Sanders, who finished second in last year's MVP voting and led Videoland to a dramatic regular season turnaround and a playoff berth. Sanders is a wing man in the U.S., but he is able to play all five positions in the SBL. And he will be asked to do so because this team will go as far as Sanders takes it.

Sanders, the only import player in the league, will mostly does his work in the paint both offensively and defensively. He can also pull down a rebound and goes coast to coast against smaller defenders.

Complementing Sanders will be Ouyang Jin-hen, Shin Jin-jan and Huang Bao-tse. Ouyang is a combo guard who hasn't lived up to his reputation since high school, but he is quick enough to do some damage and also has some perimeter game. Shin knows how to find ways to score and is often the primary defender on opponents' best scorers. Huang is an experienced point guard who knows how to direct an offense.

It will be good for the team if center Hong Ying-che improves his consistency and put his best effort into every minute, since he's the only legitimate center on the team other than Sanders.

Wu Jia-long is another experienced player who can help this team with his streaky shooting either starting or coming off the bench.

There are a couple players worth a watch though. Dmedia managed to sign the best point guards in two consecutive high school classes -- Chou Tse-hwa and Yang Cheng-lun. It'll be interesting to see how Wu Jian-kuo works these two kids into the rotation and develops their skills.

For now, however, Lin Kwan-lun will be the designated starting point guard. It sounds weird to me because, as far as I can remember, Lin has never handled the position throughout his entire career, including the high school days. Moreover, he had a reputation as someone who always looks for his own shot first.

Dmedia did play well in the exhibition games, showing great speed and tenacity with Sanders operating on both ends of the floor. But the regular season will be a different story. It will be a big big surprise if the Genies somehow challenge the final playoff seed.

-- Roster:
1 Huang Ju-dao F 1982.9.4 195
7 Ouyang Jin-hen G 1979.10.28 191
12 Cheng Jen-wei F 1987.4.6 194
14 Shin Jin-jan F/G 1979.9.12 190
18 Chang Min-che F 1984.6.20 190
22 Wu Jui-jin F 1981.1.21 195
27 Hsiao Yuan-chan F 1984.11.3 195
95 Chen Jin-hwan G 1986.2.3 190
13 Lee Jun-wei C 1988.10.17 199
21 Hong Ying-che C 1986.1.6 198
32 Jonathan Sanders F/C 1981.9.23 200
6 Huang Bao-tse G 1976.9.18 181
9 Chou Tse-hwa G 1987.10.4 183
10 Wang Nan-kuei G 1983.5.21 180
15 Lin Yi-fu G 1988.12.22 186
17 Yang Cheng-lun G 1989.1.18 177
24 Lin Kwan-lun G 1984.1.23 187
98 Wu Jia-long G 1979.3.23 185