Tuesday, July 28, 2009

FIBA Asia to tackle nationality issues?


Posted on 27 July 2009

FIBA Asia secretary general Dato Yeoh Choo Hock has reportedly taken notice of the efforts by some countries in the region to recruit foreign players and pass them off as nationals.

China’s Sohu.com reported that Dato Yeoh had made it clear that only one foreign player could be naturalized and play in the FIBA Asia Men’s Championship which begins in Tianjin, China on August 6.

The FIBA Asia secretary general was quoted as saying “the rule is clear. There can only be one player who changes his nationality to play for a new country and we will carefully examine every player on the rosters to make sure the rule is properly implemented.”

There were reports that a number of Asian countries have tried to recruit players and have them change their nationalities so they could play in the Asian Championship.

The issue broke wide open at the Jones Cup in Chinese-Taipei when Iran’s head coach Veselin Matic claimed in a post game press conference that Qatar, Lebanon and Jordan benefited from allegedly “naturalizing American imports.”

Matic stressed that Iranian players were all native players and that the Asian Championship “is a tournament that belongs to Asian players.”

He went on to charge that some countries have been naturalizing American imports “to make their team stronger. The championship looks like a pro game right now.”

While Matic mentioned Lebanon, Jordan and Qatar he said the Qataris are the worst and hardly have a local player on the roster.

Jordan’s coach, the fiery Mario Palma was visibly angry over Matic’s allegations and said the Iranian coach should focus on how to make Iran a better team instead of making false accusations on the import issue. He also claimed that not all Iranian players are native.

www.insidesports.ph, Standard Today and Viva Sports did some research and also obtained information from a Lebanese citizen who confirmed that NBA player Jackson Vroman had been naturalized but that Matthew “Matt” Wayne Freije, a 6’10, 240 pound forward from Vanderbilt University who was drafted by the Miami Heat in the 2nd round of the 2004 NBA draft was being passed off as a Lebanese when he reportedly an American. Freije scored a tournament high 39 points and pulled down 11 rebounds against South Korea on Saturday and proved a major asset to the team.

Also being paraded as a Lebanese was University of Kentucky’s Antwain Barbour, a flashy 6’5” guard/forward who represented the USA National Team at the World University Games of 2001 in China.

Barbour, nicknamed “Teardrop” was a CBA All Star in 2005 and won the CBA Championship in 2006. He is regarded as a pure slasher who gets to the basket with ease.

Iran has 7’2” Hamed Haddadi who plays for the Memphis Grizzlies in the NBA made a big impression in the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games when he emerged as the top rebounder and shot blocker and was the lone Olympian to average a double-double with 16.6 points and 11.2 rebounds a game. However, there’s no question that Haddadi is an Iranian.

Also in the line-up is Iranian-American Benny Koochoie who was called up to join the national team by coach Matic. Koochoie has just ended his first season with California State Stanislaus in the US NCAA Division II and averaged 13.1 points, 4.2 assists and 2.1 steals per game.

Benny is the son of Robert and Nini Koochoie and was born in Teheran on February 19, 1986. He has dual citizenship and is a 6’2” point guard.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Jones Cup Men Final Day - Iran wins 2009 Jones Cup title

Iran narrowly won the 2009 Jones Cup tournament title in a unprecedented and bizarre four-way tie.

First of all, sincere apology to one of the readers who left comment on a previous post. The Jones Cup did use total points to determine the final winner.

A total of four teams tied at the first place with 14 points, including three that finished 6-2 -- Iran, Lebanon and Taiwan -- and Jordan, who only got 14 points despite finishing 7-1. Jordan received no points after boycotting the Iran game.

(Note: The winning team gets two points while the losing team gets one point)

As a result, Jordan failed to win its third straight Jones Cup title and finished as runner-up. Lebanon placed third as it beat Taiwan, who ranked 4th.

Final placing:
1. Iran 6-2
2. Jordan 7-1
3. Lebanon 6-2
4. Taiwan 6-2
5. Korea 5-3
6. Philippines 2-6
7. Taiwan 2nd NT 2-6
8. Kazakhstan 1-7
9. Japan 1-7

Iran 85-60 Philippines

The game was delayed for more than a hour because of the clock problem, but that didn't stop Iran from humiliating Philippines. Iran routed Philippines by 25 points, 85-60, and finished the 2009 Jones Cup with 6 wins and 2 losses while Philippines going 2-6.

Hamed Hadadi, who was sidelined yesterday due to a bad stomach, had 19 points and 12 rebounds as Iran dominated with its height advantage and led by as many as a whopping 34 points.

"We didn't have answers against Iran's height advantage and our three-point shots did not fall. That was why we didn't have a chance, " said Philippines head coach Yeng Guiao.

Hadadi said he still doesn't feel well today but he's made up his mind to play in the final game. "I have sat out too many games here. If I don't play, this Taiwan trip would be meaningless for me, " he said.

Taiwan 81-74 Korea

Cheered by the home crowd, Taiwan quickly jumped in front since the opening tip and took a 20-16 lead in the end of the first quarter. Taiwan led by six at the half.

Lin Chih-chieh made three 3-pointers in the third quarter to increase Taiwan's lead to double-digit while Korean starting center Kim Joo-sung was plagued by foul trouble.

With a seemingly comfortable lead, Taiwan became careless as they committed too many turnovers in the final quarter and gave Korea a chance. Lee Kyu-sup made two free-throws with 4:44 to play and cut the deficit to four, 67-63.

Lin Chih-chieh's fourth 3-pointer in the second half was the wake-up call, igniting a game-clinching 9-0 run which included a two-handed dunk by Tseng Wen-ting and made the score out of reach, 76-63, with two minutes left.

Chang Chih-feng led Taiwan with 21 points. Tseng Wen-ting and Lin Chih-chieh scored 17 apiece while Tien Lei had a double-double of 12 points and 13 rebounds.

Taiwan outrebounded Korea 35-25 and that proved to be the key. "We grabbed more rebounds on both ends of the court and kept pounding inside on offense. Those were the main reasons why we won today, " said head coach Chung Kwang-suk.

Korea was not at its full strength in the game as forward Kim Min-soo still suffered from illness and played less than 10 minutes.

In other games, Taiwan 2nd NT beat Japan 97-91. Japan used only five players in the game after losing some players to bad stomachs and others on injuries.

Jordan beat Kazakhstan 96-77. Zaid Abbas led Jordan with 23 points. Alexandr Tyutyunik had 26 points for Kazakhstan.

(Photos: Jones Cup official website)

Taiwan NT roster for Asian Championship announced

CTBA announced the final roster for Tianjin Asian Championship Sunday as Chang Tsung-hsien, who played well for Taiwan 2nd NT in the Jones Cup, and Su Yi-chieh the surprise nominees.

Taiwan head coach Chung Kwang-suk said he looked to strengthen inside players in the final adjustment, and Chang played well enough in the Jones Cup to earn his nomination.

Taiwan NT will take two days off after the Jones Cup and start the final phase training camp in Beitou. They are scheduled to arrive in Tianjin, China on August 4 for the Asian Championship, which opens on August 6.

Final Taiwan NT roster for 2009 Asian Championship

Po., Name, Ht., Age
G Lee Hsueh-lin, Yulon, 175cm, 25
G Su Yi-chieh, Dacin, 181cm, 22
G Yang Ching-min, TB, 188cm, 25
G Chang Chih-feng, Dacin, 183cm, 28
G Chang Tsung-hsien, BYU-Hawaii, 190cm, 21
F Lin Chih-chieh, TB, 192cm, 27
F Chen Tse-wei, Dacin, 200cm, 24
F Tien Lei, Dacin, 202cm, 26
F Yang Che-yi, Yulon, 193cm, 31
F Wu Chien-lung, Pure Youth, 193cm, 20
C Tseng Wen-ting, Yulon, 202cm, 25
C Wu Tai-hao, TB, 202cm, 24

Head coach: Chung Kwang-suk
Assistants: Chou Jun-san, Hsu Ching-tse

Video: Lebanon vs. Korea, Taiwan vs. Iran

Lebanon vs. Korea Q1

Watch Lebanon vs. Korea 1st Qtr in Sports  |  View More Free Videos Online at Veoh.com

Lebanon vs. Korea Q2

Watch Lebanon vs. Korea 2nd Qtr in Sports  |  View More Free Videos Online at Veoh.com

Taiwan vs. Iran Q3

Watch Taiwan vs. Iran 3rd Qtr in Sports  |  View More Free Videos Online at Veoh.com

Taiwan vs. Iran Q4

Watch Taiwan vs. Iran 4th Qtr in Sports  |  View More Free Videos Online at Veoh.com

Jones Cup Day 8 photos

(Photos: Yahoo Taiwan Sports, CNA)

20090725000105M Wu Tai-hao

09072517tsna Tseng Wen-ting

581953426 Tseng Wen-ting

4054101236 Jet Chang, Taiwan 2nd NT

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Jones Cup Men Day 8 - Freiji shines; Jordan favored to win it all

Lebanon 97-79 Korea

Matt Freiji had a tournament-high 39 points and 11 rebounds as Lebanon routed Korea 97-79 in a somewhat meaningless game.

Freiji made 14 of 20 shots, including 6-of-8 from three-point land. His performance and the vision of a Freiji-Faris-Feghali-Khatib frontline will boost Lebanon's confidence in the upcoming Asian Championship so much stronger.

I'm saying this game is somewhat meaningless is because many players sat out the game, including Korea's Kim Min-soo, Lee Dong-jun and Lebanon's Brian Feghali. They were all reported having bad stomachs.

I think these teams are playing tricks and being conservative in the Jones Cup because the Asian Championship in Tianjin is the real deal.

Taiwan 80-76 Iran

Taiwan: Tseng Wen-ting 23p, Wu Tai-hao 10p+7rb, Yang Chin-min 13p
Iran: Nikkah Bahrami 25p(5-9 3PT)

Jordan 93-58
Philippines 94-90 Taiwan 2nd


Standing breakdown

Jordan 6-1
Iran 5-2
Korea 5-2
Taiwan 5-2
Lebanon 6-2
Philippines 2-5
Japan 1-6
Taiwan 2nd 1-6
Kazakhstan 1-6

Let's take a look at the standing now and break it down. The remaining games tomorrow are Jordan vs. Kazakhstan, Taiwan 2nd NT vs. Japan, Taiwan vs. Korea and Iran vs. Philippines.

Under normal circumstances, Jordan should have no problem beating Kazakhstan, which means it will win its third straight Jones Cup title with a 7-1 record while other teams have two losses at least.

If Jordan loses and Iran beat Philippines, things will be much complicated. Jordan will be tied at 6-2 with Iran, Lebanon and either Korea or Taiwan in a four-way tie.

The first tiebreaker will be the won-loss record of the matches between tying teams.

Situation 1: Jordan, Iran, Lebanon, Korea
Jordan 2-1
Iran 2-1
Korea 1-2
Lebanon 1-2

In this case, Iran will be the champion because it defeated Jordan.

Situation 2: Jordan, Iran, Lebanon, Taiwan
Jordan 2-1
Iran 2-1
Lebanon 1-2
Taiwan 1-2

In this case, Iran will still be the champion.

Which means if Jordan loses tomorrow, Iran will win the 2009 Jones Cup title.

(Post note: Many thanks to Martin Dunham who corrected my mistake)

Jones Cup Men Day 8 - Taiwan upset Asian champ Iran

Tseng Wen-ting had a dunk, a block and two free-throws in the final minute as Taiwan upset defending Asian champion Iran 80-76 in the Jones Cup Saturday night.

Without starting center Hamed Hadadi, who was reported sitting out the game due to illness, Iran engaged in a dogfight with the home team. The score was tied 38-38 at the half and 76 all with 1:05 to go.

Tseng Wen-ting faked a give-and-go before driving in for a left baseline tomahawk dunk  to put Taiwan ahead by two. In the following possessions, Tseng blocked Iran's shot in the paint and was fouled on the offensive end.

He sank a pair of free-throws to put Taiwan ahead by four and Iran quickly called timeout with 8.5 seconds to go.

However, Iran didn't even have a chance for the final shot. The inbound pass was stolen by Taiwanese guard Chang Chih-feng.

Tseng had 23 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists and two blocks in the game. Taiwan and Iran are now both 5-2.

This is definitely an inspiring win for Taiwan. But remember that Hadadi did not play and Jones Cup was used by participating teams as a tune-up tournament before the big prize -- the Asian Championship in Tianjin.

So, it's just a good win and that's it. Taiwanese fans should not get carried away because what happens in Tianjin is definitely another story.

Jones Cup Men Day 8 - Philippines secures second win

Jordan 93-58 Japan
Three Japanese players were reported having food poisoning and two were injured, leaving Japan with only seven players suiting up for the game.

Worse yet, it lost Ryota Sakurai to waist injury before halftime. Japan had to finish the game with six players. Yusuke Okada led Japan with 24 points, making 8 of 13 from three.

Jordan won the game easily, leading by as many as 40 points in the third quarter. Rasheim Wright had 22 points in 20 minutes.

Philippines 94-90 Taiwan 2nd NT
Willie Miller scored 9 of his team-high 22 points in the final period as Philippines held on for a 94-90 victory over Taiwan 2nd NT. Philippines scored its second win in the tournament.

Trailing 91-82 with three minutes left, Taiwan 2nd NT ignited a 7-0 run before Philippines answered with a 9-2 attack to secure the win.

Jet Chang led Taiwan with 24 points and 10 rebounds and Lin Chieh-min had 17. Miller paced Philippines with 22 points and three steals. Arwind Santos had 16.

Iran vs. Lebanon full game video

Watch Iran vs. Lebanon 1st Qtr in Sports  |  View More Free Videos Online at Veoh.com

For the remaining quarters please visit http://www.veoh.com/group/2009-jones-cup

Jones Cup Men Day 7 - Iran beat Lebanon to win Asian C'ship rematch

Iran 81-70 Lebanon


Iran rallied in the final 10 minutes behind Nikkah Bahrami's red-hot shooting to beat Lebanon 81-70 Friday in a rematch of the 2007 Asian Championship final and the most anticipated game of the day.

Bahrami had 29 points, including five 3-pointers, and 8 rebounds in the game. He had 13 points in the game-deciding 18-6 run in the 4th quarter.

The game is full of championship atmosphere not only because this is the rematch of the 2007 Asian Championship final but also because of the presence of three current/former NBA players -- Iran's Hamed Hadadi and Lebanon's Jackson Vroman and Matt Freiji, who did not join the team until today.

The dual of Hadadi and Vroman ended early with Hadadi and Vroman both fouling out. All three played well though. Hadadi had 8 points, 5 boards and four blocks while Vroman had 23 points. Freiji also chipped in 12 points in limited playing time.

Lebanon controlled the tempo early to jump in front, leading by as many as 11 in the first half. It still led by nine, 54-45, in the end of the 3rd quarter.

However, Iran made its outside shots at the time when it mattered most. Four consecutive threes changed the momentum of the game as Iran took the lead, 60-59, with 7 minutes left in the game.

All of a sudden, Lebanon looked lost on the court in the final five minutes, missing shots time and time again. Bahrami made his 5th three in the game with about one minute left to give Iran a comfortable 73-68 lead.

Lebanon was still in the game before Rony Fahed was whistled for a traveling violation with 45 seconds left. All they could do after the fatal turnover was fouling Iranians.

Taiwan 85-78 Kazakhstan


Reigning SBL Most Valuable Player Chang Chih-feng scored 18 of his game-high 28 points in the second half as Taiwan rallied in the final quarter and beat Kazakhstan 85-78, snapping its two-game losing streak and taking its record back to 4-2.

The game was tied at 37 all at the half. After a see-sawing first three quarters, Taiwan finally put the game away with a late 9-2 run to boost a six-point lead to a 13-point advantage. Chang had 14 points in the final period.

To counter Kazakhstan's height, Taiwan sent a pair of 6-8 centers on the court at the same time and they did not disappoint. Tseng Wen-ting and Wu Tai-hao each had 13 points with Tseng also dishing out 7 assists.

Lin Chih-chieh also scored 13 points for Taiwan. Taiwan's 19 turnovers was the main reason why they didn't shake off the 8-man Kazakhstan until the final quarter.

Alexandr Tyutyunik made all three 3PT attempts and had 15 points in the first half. Kazakhstan is now 1-6 and ranks last in the tournament.

(Photos: Jones Cup official website)

Friday, July 24, 2009

Jones Cup Men Day 7 results

Jordan 76-69 Taiwan 2nd NT
Korea 84-81 Japan
Iran 81-70 Lebanon
Taiwan 85-78 Kazakhstan

Jones Cup game highlight

Philippines vs. Lebanon


Lebanon vs. Iran highlight - 1st half


Philippines vs. Korea highlight


Jordan boycotts game for unfair call



It started from the post game press conference on July 22nd. Iranian head coach Veselin Matic told reporters that Qatar, Lebanon and Jordan benefitted from "naturalizing American imports."

"The Asian Championship is a tournament that belongs to Asian players. But some countries have been naturalizing American imports to make their team stronger. The championship looks more like a pro game right now. Among them are Lebanon, Jordan and Qatar, " local media quoted Matic, who added that Qatar is the worse case that it barely has any local player on roster.

Iranian players are all native players, Matic said.

Asked by media about the issue, Jordan head coach Mario Palma was visibly angry. He said that Matic should focus on how to make Iran a better team instead of making false accusation on the import issue. Not all Iranian players are native, he said.

Then came the Iran-Jordan game last night.

Less than three minutes entering the game, 7-2 Iranian center Hamed Hadadi elbowed Zaid Abbas after pulling down a rebound. Abbas swung back and walked away. Hadadi charged forward, choking and pushing Abbas.

Jordanian guard Osama Daghles ran onto the court and punched Hadadai before a bench-clearing confrontation.

Taiwanese referee Chen Chuan-jen ruled that Hadadi and Abbas would be ejected as well as all players who left the bench area, which would have left both team with four players each.

However, Korean referee Kim Young-woo insisted that it was only an unsportsmanlike foul and overruled Chen. Kim decided that it would be four technical fouls for Hadadi, Abbas and bench of both teams.

The call pissed off Mario Palma, who told Kim that if Hadadi stayed in the game, Jordan would not resume play. Kim rejected the request and Palma ordered his player leave the court in a boycott.

The official score of the game was Iran 20, Jordan zero.


Note: Oh, I almost forgot. Kobe Bryant was in Taipei for a NIKE tour last night. Pics:



(Photos: Apple Daily, Liberty Times, CNA)

Jones Cup Men Day 6 - Lebanon beat Taiwan on Jackson's 35

Lebanon opened the game with a 10-0 run before Taiwan closed in to tie it at 19 all in the end of the first quarter. Led by Jackson Vroman, Lebanon went ahead and led by as many as 17 in the first half.

Vroman tallied 35 points, including 21 from freethrows, and 17 rebounds. Taiwan could not stop Vroman and sent him to the freethrow line 27 times. Brian Feghali had 18 and 8.

Taiwan center Tseng Wen-ting returned from injury. Tseng had 14 and 7.

Taiwan cut the deficit down to eight in the second half but that was the best they could do. Head coach Chung Kwang-suk said Taiwan actually played some good zone defense in the game.

"We would have had a chance if our three-point shots were dropping, " he said. Taiwan was 6-of-25 from three in the game.

Key three-pointers helped Korea overcome tough-fighting Philippines 83-80.

Kang Byung-hyun led Korea with 16 points. Arwind Santos was Philippines' top scorer with 12 points.

Kazakhstan opened the game 7-0 and launched another 13-0 run. Japan didn't make a basket until the last two minutes. Surprisingly, it only trailed by six in the end of the first quarter and even tied the score at 20 all.

Alexandr Tyutyunik's timely outside shots paced Kazakhstan to a 41-32 halftime lead and was never threatened thereafter.





(Photos: Jones Cup official website)

Iran-Jordan brawl news clip

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Jones Cup Men Day 6 results

Kazakhstan 75-70 Japan

Iran 20-0 Jordan (The game turned into a brawl. Jordan boycotted the game as Iran won 20-0. More details later.)

Local media reported that Jordan head coach Mario Palma blasted Iran head coach Veselin Matic for his remarks about foreign-born players. Matic said that Jordan and Lebanon both had a lot of foreign players on the rosters. Palma countered that, except for naturalized Rasheim Wright, all Jordan players have Jordanian parents.

Korea 83-80 Philippines

Lebanon 91-78 Taiwan

Jones Cup Men Day 5 - Jordan remains undefeated

-- Lebanon 95-83 Philippines


Philippines shot themselves by tons of turnovers. And Lebanon's inside strength was too much for Philippines to overcome as Brian Feghali and Jackson Vroman led Lebanon to a 95-83 victory Wednesday.

Lebanon stormed out of the gate with a 30-19 first period and dominated the Philippines from the first minute. The best Philippines could do was cutting the deficit down to four before Lebanon pulling the game away again.

Taking advantage of its powerful frontline, Lebanon had 32 free-throw attempts over Philippines' 15. Philippines committed a whopping 27 turnovers in comparisons to Lebanon's 12.

Feghali led Lebanon with 29 points and 10 rebounds and Jackson Vroman had 24 points, 7 boards, 4 assists and 5 steals.

Jayjay Helterbrand led Philippines, which registered only one win in five games, with 12 points.

"We actually lost to ourselves by committing too many turnovers and fouls, " said Philippines head coach Yeng Guiao.

-- Taiwan 2nd NT 82-69 Kazakhstan


Taiwan 2nd NT won the battle of the winless teams, beating Kazakhstan 82-69 behind Jet Chang's 28 points and 7 rebounds for its first win in the tournament.

Taiwan 2nd and Kazakhstan were both 0-4 before Wednesday.

Jet Chang, who has been disappointing so far, had his best game in the tournament, making 10 of 17 shots. Lu Cheng-ju had 14 points and was 4-for-4 from three.

Vsevolod Fedelkin led Kazakhstan, which was down to eight players, with 25 points. Kazakhstan players were tired in the final quarter and were not able to keep up with Taiwanese, Fedelkin said.

-- Jordan 83-67 Korea


Jordan outscored Korea 21-8 in the deciding third quarter and cruised to a 83-67 win to become the sole undefeated team in the nine-team tournament.

Rasheim Wright led Jordan with 21 points. Zaid Abbas contributed 15 points and 10 rebounds. Osama Daghles had 6 assists and three steals.

Korea was out of synch in the game, committing 16 turnovers and missing 20 of 27 three-point shots.

Jordan head coach Mario Palma praised Jordanian players for their execution and accomplishing the mission: stopping Koreans' transition offense and perimeter shooting.

-- Iran 82-70 Japan


Iran had a stunning 11-0 run in the opening 3:30 and Hamed Hadadi took over the second half en route to a 12-point victory over Japan, which is now 1-3.

Despite trailing for most of the game, Japan tied the score at 39 all in the 3rd period. 7-2 center Hadadi then went to work, scoring all his 18 points in the second half. Nikkah Bahrami had 19 points for the winner.

Jordan 4-0
Lebanon 4-1
Korea 3-1
Taiwan 3-1
Iran 3-1
Japan 1-3
Philippines 1-4
Taiwan 2nd 1-4
Kazakhstan 0-5

(Photos: Jones Cup official website)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Jones Cup Men Day 5 results


Iran 82-70 Japan
Jordan 83-67 Korea
Taiwan 2nd 82-69 Kazakhstan
Lebanon 95-83 Philippines

(Photo: Jones Cup official website)

Jones Cup Men Day 4 - Taiwan humiliated by Jordan


Taiwan was humiliated by Jordan 111-64 and suffered its first loss in the tournament. The halftime score was an unbelivable 61-28 and Jordan outrebounded Taiwan 60-15 in the game.

Anyway, this game was a total disgrace for Taiwan.

Japan 87-85 Philippines

Down by as many as 18 points, Japan never gave up and Philippines paid the price for their carelessness. Japan rallied in the final quarter and upset the Philippines 87-85.

Philippines led 27-12 after the first quarter. Japan cut the deficit to four at the half and kept bouncing back, finally taking the lead in the 4th period.

Philippines trailed by two after Jared Dillinger's three. Jayjay Helterbrand's three-point attempt was blocked in the last play.

Lebanon 77-73 Kazakhstan


Unhappy with the officiating, Lebanon and Kazakhstan both threatened to boycott the game with 15.8 seconds to go in the first half. After a negotiation, finally they brought the players out of the locker room.

Lebanon beat Kazakhstan 77-73 in a chaotic game. Lebanon boosted its record to 3-1 as Kazakhstan remained winless.

Jackson Vroman, who didn't join the team until Tuesday, had 24 points, 8 rebounds and three blocks in 40 minutes.

Dmitriy Gavrilov led Kazakhstan with 22 points and 10 rebounds.

Iran 88-79 Taiwan 2nd NT
Hamed Hadadi had 29 points and 21 rebounds and Nikkah Bahrami had 32 as Iran beat Taiwan 2nd NT 88-79. Hadadi joined the team after finishing the Vegas Summer League with the Memphis Grizzlies.

Korea 3-0
Jordan 3-0
Taiwan 3-1
Lebanon 3-1
Iran 2-1
Japan 1-2
Philippines 1-3
Kazakhstan 0-4
Taiwan 2nd 0-4

(Photos: Jones Cup official website)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Jones Cup Men Day 4 results



Lebanon 77-73 Kazakhstan
Japan 87-85 Philippines
Iran 88-79 Taiwan 2nd
Jordan 111-64 Taiwan

(Photo: Jones Cup official website)

Taipei Times: Taiwan hold off late Philippines rally


Taipei Times: Taiwan hold off late Philippines rally

By Paul Huang
Tuesday, Jul 21, 2009, Page 19

Taiwan Team A pulled off a thrilling 86-77 win over the Philippines at the Taipei County Sinjhuang Gymnasium on Sunday night to remain unbeaten at 2-0 in Jones Cup action.

Even though the final score might suggest a relatively easy win for the hosts, and though they led by as much as 16 points in the first half and started the second half 53-38, the Filipinos opened the second half with a ferocious 20-6 run.

The game quickly turned into a seesaw battle for the better part of the second half.

It was not until consecutive threes by Taiwan's Yang Jing-min and Tien Lei, with under four minutes remaining in the game, broke a tie at 72 to put the home team ahead for good.

South Korea 101, Taiwan Team B 93

Taiwan Team B lost to South Korea 101-93 loss earlier on Sunday to remain winless at 0-2.

Despite the score, it was a moral victory for the young home squad, which converted on 14 of 34 three-point attempts to rattle a South Korean lineup of mostly seasoned professional players in the Korean Basketball League.

(Photo: Taipei Times)

Jones Cup Men Day 3 - Korea, Jordan record upset wins

Korea 76-69 Iran

Korea recorded its first win against Iran in recent years with a 76-69 win and became the first team to reach 3-0 in the 2009 Jones Cup Monday.

Korea closed out the first half with a 13-0 run for a 35-28 halftime lead. It kept up its pressure defense on Iranian shooter Nikkah Bahrami in the second half to keep Iran at bay.

Iran committed 17 turnovers. That was seven more than Koreans and definitely hurt them.

Mahdi Kamrany had a team-high 24 points for Iran.

Korea is not that much better than Iran, Iran head coach Veselin Matic said. "However, Korea controlled the tempo tonight. That's what we didn't do."

Kim Min-soo and Yang Dong-geun each scored 15 points as Korea placed four players in double-digit scoring.

Jordan 73-63 Lebanon
Jordan sent a message to Lebanon, its opponent in the same prelim group in the upcoming Asian Championship: don't underestimate Jordan in Tianjin next month. With a convincing 73-63 victory, Jordan proved it's a team to reckon with.

Lebanon held a four point lead at the half as Fadi Khatib and Brian Feghali combined for 22 points. Jordan hit the offensive glass hard in the second half, outscoring Lebanon 25-13 in the 3rd period and changed the momentum of the game.

Zaid Abbas led Jordan with 17 points while Osama Daghles had 12 points.

"Lebanon is a very strong team, " Daghles said. "We won this one, but that does not mean we are better than Lebanon. We still have a tough battle to fight in Tianjin."

"We want to play our best in every game. Let there be no doubt. We're looking for a three-peat in the Jones Cup, " said Jordan head coach Mario Palma. Jordan has won Jones Cup in 2007 and 2008.

Feghali, who has been playing extremely well in the tournament, chipped in 19 points for Lebanon.

There's good news for Lebanon though. Local media reported that Matt Freije and Jackson Vroman will join Lebanon tomorrow.

Philippines 85-67 Kazakhstan

Philippines walked out of the shadow and beat short-handed Kazakhstan 85-67 for its first win in the Jones Cup after two consecutive losses.

In his pre-game speech, head coach Yeng Guiao reminded his players not to disappoint thousands of fans back in the Philippines

Philippines showed its desire to win this game with a 22-12 opening quarter, including 11 straight, and never let go.

206cm center Japeth Aguilar was one of the key men, scoring five straight as Philippines held a seven-point advantage at halftime.

Aguilar didn't stop there, dominating inside and going out on the fastbreak in the third quarter as Philippines withheld Kazakhstan's rally.

Gabe Norwood had seven points in a 13-2 run in the third quarter as Philippines took a 14-point advantage to the final period.

Jayjay Helterbrand was definitely man of the night though. The PBA MVP entered the game despite a sore leg and scored 7 points in 16 minutes. Hundreds of oversea Filipino workers chanted "MVP, MVP."

"We need to represent ourselves like a national team from now on. This is not a pick-up game whatsoever, " Helterbrand said.

Dmitriy Gavrilov led Kazakhstan with 23 points and 12 rebounds.

Taiwan 87-74 Taiwan 2nd NT
Lin Chih-chieh had 22 points, making 4-of-5 three-pointers, as Taiwan beat Taiwan 2nd NT 87-74 for its third straight wins and stayed undefeated.

Chang Chih-feng had 19 points for the winner, including 8-for-8 from the foul line. Wu Tai-hao and Yang Chin-min each scored 11 points.

Taiwan 2nd NT was led by Hong Chih-shan's 18 points. Jet Chang, who was dubbed as the second coming of Chen Hsin-an by many, was again mediocre. Chang had 11 points but shot 1-for-7 from three.

Taiwan 2nd NT surprised the senior NT by leading as many as 14 points in the first half and 7 points at halftime. It has become a norm for them by playing a super first half before collapsing in the second. But it's the lesson a young team like this has to learn.

Taiwan NT finally went to business in the second half. Wu Tai-hao, Lin Chih-chieh and Yang Chin-min dominated inside and out and quickly turned the game around.

(Photos: Jones Cup official website)

Monday, July 20, 2009

Jones Cup Day 3 results


Jordan 73-63 Lebanon
Key stats: Jordan had a 25-13 3rd quarter. Z. Abbas led Jordan with 17 points. Osama Daghles had 12. Brian Feghali had 19 for Lebanon.

Philippines 85-67 Kazakhstan
Key stats: Philippines led 22-12 after first quarter. Willie Miller scored a team-high 13 points. Dmitriy Gavrilov led Kazakhstan with 23 and 12.

Korea 76-69 Iran
Key stats: Iran committed 17 turnovers, seven more than Korea.

Taiwan 87-74 Taiwan 2nd

Korea 3-0
Taiwan 3-0
Jordan 2-0
Lebanon 2-1
Iran 1-1
Philippines 1-2
Japan 0-2
Kazakhstan 0-3
Taiwan 2nd 0-3

(Photo: Jones Cup official website)

Korea vs. Taiwan 2nd NT highlight

Jones Cup Men - Taiwan overcomes tough Philippines


A 14-2 game-closing run helped Taiwan overcome a tough Philippine team Sunday night as the home boys defeated its southern neighbours 86-77 and stayed undefeated.

Taiwan shot the lights out in the first half by making 11 three-pointers for a 53-38 halftime lead. But it nearly wasted its 19-point advantage after Philippines rallied in the second half.

Philippines closed the gap with a 12-0 run in the third quarter which made the score 65-62. Taiwan panicked while Philippines kept on pushing. A dunk by Japeth Aguilar even put Philippines in front 68-66 with 6:47 left.

The score was tied at 72 after Kerby Raymundo's freethrows with 3:30 to go. The tension finally awakened the home team. Tien Lei, Lee Fong-yong and Yang Chin-min made consecutive jumpers in a 14-2 run that put the game away.

"I didn't expect it, " Taiwan head coach Chung Kwang-suk spoke about the hot-shooting in the first half. "However, we always had a messy second half."

"We had a chance to win after being down by 19, " said Philippines head coach Joseller Guiao. Guiao also said the officiating was quite different from the PBA as Philippines was whistled for traveling a number of times.

Philippines outrebounded Taiwan 45-30.

Korea had three 20-point scorers in a 101-93 win over Taiwan second NT. Lee Kyu-sup had 23, Kim Min-soo had 22 and Kim Joo-sung had 20 points, 8 rebounds and 7 blocks.

Tsai Chun-min, who led Taiwan 2nd NT with 22 points and 20 boards, had 12 points in the first half as Taiwan 2nd NT surprised everyone with a 54-49 halftime lead.

Korea quickly regrouped in the second half and took the lead back although Taiwan 2nd stayed close.

Lu Cheng-ju had 15 points and Jet Chang had 14 for Taiwan 2nd.

China sends advance scout Goorjian to Jones Cup

Former Australia NT head coach Brian Goorjian, who currently works as a technical advisor for China NT, was spotted courtside scouting Asian teams for the preparation of the upcoming Asian Championship in Tianjin, China.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Jones Cup Day 2 results




Iran 79-56 Kazakhstan
Iran led 39-23 at the half, making 8 three-pointers in the first half. Nikkhah Bahrami had a game-high 29 points, making six three-pointers. Dmitriy Gavrilov led Kazakhstan with 18 points and 10 boards.

Lebanon 90-81 Japan
Fadi El Khatib
had 33 points and Brian Feghali 22 as Lebanon rallied in the final quarter for a 90-81 win over Japan.

Japan controlled the game in the second and third quarter on hot shooting of Kosuke Kanamaru and Takehiko Orimo, who made consecutive threes to break the game open. Kanamaru had 17.

Lebanon took advantage of Japan's seven turnovers in the final quarter. With El Khatib leading the way, Lebanon finally found its momentum back in the final five minutes.

Korea 101-93 Taiwan 2nd NT
Taiwan 86-77 Philippines

Korea 2-0
Lebanon 2-0
Taiwan 2-0
Jordan 1-0
Iran 1-0
Japan 0-2
Philippines 0-2
Kazakhstan 0-2
Taiwan 2nd 0-2

(Photo: Jones Cup official website)

Jones Cup Day 1 - Taiwan, Korea earned hard-fought wins


Tien Lei displayed his best form in more than a year, scoring 21 points and pulling down 8 rebounds, and led Taiwan to a 77-74 win over long-time rival Japan in the opening game of the 2009 William Jones Cup tournament.

Korea survived a scare in a 75-73 win over short-handed Kazakhstan, which was down to nine players after losing three to injury prior to the tournament.

In front of cheering and chanting Filipino crowds who are mostly oversea workers currently working in Taiwan, Jordan showed why they're the defending champions in a 90-59 massacre of the Philippines. Lebanon also showed no mercy in the 93-61 rout of Taiwan 2nd NT as star forward Fadi Khatib scored 32 points in less than three periods.

Taiwan 77-74 Japan
Tien Lei walked out of the injury shadow that has been hampering him for over two years Saturday night, shooting 5-of-9 from three and displaying mobility that has been lost after his stress facture injury.

Tien looked very comfortable and explosive in the game. He was everywhere. He scored, rebounded and helped out on defense, which is a good news to Taiwan NT.

Taiwan took advantage of Japan's fatigue. Japan NT, which played in the NBA summer league, did not arrive in Taipei until early Saturday.

Powered by Tien Lei, Taiwan jumped in front early in the game and led by seven at the half. Another run increased Taiwan's lead to 19 in mid-3rd quarter.

Japan twice cut the deficit down to one point in the final quarter before Yang Chin-min rose to the occassion, scoring three crucial buckets on a jumper and two fastbreak layups.

Yang had 17 points and Chang Chih-feng had 11 point. Japan was led by Shunsuke Ito's 13 and 7.

Korea 75-73 Kazakhstan
Korea used a 24-17 third quarter to tame short-handed Kazakhstan, who was down to nine players after losing Anton Ponomarev, Yegor Biryulin and Alexandr Zhigulin to injury.

Kim Min-soo paced Korea with 18 points. Alexandr Tyutyunik and Vsevolod Fadeikin each scored 19 for Kazakhstan.

Lebanon 93-61 Taiwan 2nd NT
Inexperienced Taiwan 2nd NT had no answer to Fadi Khatib, who scored 10 straight points late in the first quarter as Lebanon pulled away the score early, leading by 31-17 after the opening quarter and never looked back.

Khatib had 21 points in the first half and 32 in the game. Rony Fahed also contributed 14 points.

Lu Cheng-ju led Taiwan 2nd NT with 13 points. Jet Chang had 11 points.

Jordan 90-59 Philippines
Zaid Alkhas had 21 points and 8 rebounds as Jordan dominated a much-anticipated game throughout, routing Philippines 90-59 in front of cheering Filipino fans.

Philippines was able to keep up with Jordan in the first quarter by trailing only two. The second quarter was another story. Everything went wrong for the Philippines in the period, during which they shot 1 for 15 and scored only four points.

Jordan led 42-19 at the half. Alkhas shot 6-of-9 from three.


Jet Chang, Taiwan 2nd.


Lebanon vs. Taiwan 2nd NT.


Zaid Alkhas, Jordan.


Kim Min-soo, Korea.


Jet Chang, Taiwan 2nd.


Yang Chin-min, Taiwan.

(Photos: CNA, Jones Cup official website)

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Opening day videos

Due to Youtube's 10-minute length limit, I can only upload a couple of game highlights to my Youtube channel.

Feel free to watch the video at my Youtube channel here.

Opening day TV captures

Korea vs. Kazakhstan game.





Finally, the always passionate Filipino fans. The stadium looks like Manila's homecourt.