Sunday, January 30, 2011

Yulon testing imports


Yulon started to test several imports this week. The first of three was Nigerian-born Samuel Ekwe, who only had 8 points and 7 rebounds in his first game Friday. Ekwe and Yulon head coach Zhang Xuelei cited jet lag for the subpar performance. But I'm not sure whether Ekwe will get a second chance, since Yulon will be testing two more --Jermaine Dailey (200cm) from University of Illinois-Chicago and Jason McCoy (206cm) from Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Ekwe's profile is listed below:

Samuel Ekwe
Height: 203cm / 6'8''
Position: Center
Born: March 16, 1984
Hometown: Lagos, Nigeria
2008, October: Applied for Philippinean citizenship

San Beda College (Philippines)
2005-2006: San Beda College (Philippines-University League)
2006-2007: San Beda College (Philippines-University League)
2007: Magnolia Spinners (Philippines-PBL), left in May
2007, May: PBL Selection Team (exhibition team) played friendly series vs. Philippines NT
2008, April: Philippnes Selection at the SABA Champions Cup
2011: Santa Barbara Breakers (WCBL)

Saturday, January 29, 2011

TB's winning streak snapped

[Picture: Yang Ching-min, TB]

Jan. 29
BOT 91-83 PY
BOT: Hsu Chih-chang 28+10rb, Chen Shun-hsiang 18p+6rb+5a, Lin Jui-kun 15p, J. Vaudreili 14p+12rb
PY: James Mao 20p+6rb+7a, R. Jennings 16p+13rb, Ke Chi-hao 14p, CHang Yu-lin 14p

TM 73-71 TB
TM: Ouyang Ching-heng 18p, Teng An-cheng 14p, M. Dove 17p, Wu Yong-jen 10p+7rb+6a
TB: Yang Ching-min 22p, Wu Tai-hao 10p+8rb, E. Jones 13p+11rb, Chen Shih-nian 12p

Yulon 80-73 Dacin

Jan. 28
PY 97-74 Yulon
PY: R. Jennings 24p+23rb, James Mao 14p, Chang Yu-lin 13p
Yulon: Chou Shih-yuan 21p, S. Ekwe 8p+7rb, Yang Che-yi 11p

Dacin 93-81 KKL
Dacin: A. Foyle 27p+15rb, Tien Lei 16p+7rb, Hsu Hao-cheng 16p
KKL: Chang Jung-hsuan 20p, S. Hawkins 15p+9rb, Chen Ching-huan 14p

Jan. 26
TB 94-90 BOT
TB: Yang Ching-min 25p, Chen Shih-nian 18p, Wu Tai-hao 12p
BOT: Chen Shun-hsiang 29p, J. Vaudreuil 28p+14rb

Dacin 84-70 TM
Dacin: Tien Lei 27p+10rb, A. Foyle 17p, Hsu Hao-cheng 17p+7rb+4a
TM: Wu Yong-jen 19p, Liu Sheng-yao 16p

1. Taiwan Beer 13-2
2. Pure Youth 10-5
3. Dacin Tigers 8-6
4. Yulon Luxgen 7-8
5. Bank of Taiwan 5-9
6. Taiwan Mobile 4-10
7. Kinmen Kaoliang Liquor 3-10

John Vaudreuil, BOT

Tien Lei, Dacin

Alex Foyle, Dacin

(Photos: ESPN Taiwan)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

SBL Week 5 MVP: Yang Ching-min


Taiwan Beer forward/guard Yang Ching-min won his second weekly MVP of the season when he was named SBL Week 5 MVP Tuesday.

Yang averaged 20.7 points, 6 rebounds and 4.3 assists for the week and was one of the main reasons why TB is leading the seven-team league with 12 wins and one loss.

He received 39 points in the weekly media poll. TB import Emmanuel Jones ranked second in the poll with 14 points.

Yang is averaging 16.1 points, 4.4 boards, 3.1 assists and 1.4 steals for the season.

2010-11 SBL Weekly MVPs:
Week 5: Yang Ching-min (TB)
Week 4: Rashad Jones-Jennings (PY)
Week 3: Rashad Jones-Jennings (PY)
Week 2: Yang Ching-min (TB)
Week 1: Tseng Wen-ting (Yulon)

(Photo: ESPN Taiwan)

Monday, January 24, 2011

SBL stats leader thru Jan. 23

1. S. Hawkins, KKL 19.9
2. R. Jones-Jennings, PY 17.8
3. Chen Ching-huan, KKL 17.7
4. E. Jones, TB 17.4
5. M. Dove, TM 16.9
6. Tien Lei, Dacin 16.4
7. K. Gayden, Dacin 16.2
8. Yang Ching-min, TB 16.1
9. Chen Shun-hsiang, BOT 15.7
10. Chien Chia-hong, PY 15.6

1. R. Jones-Jennings, PY 21.3
2. K. Gayden, Dacin 12.7
3. A. Foyle, Dacin 12.5
4. J. Faulknor, BOT 12.3
5. M. Dove, TM 11.8
6. E. Jones, TB 11.6
7. S. Bailey, KKL 11.0
8. S. Hawkins, KKL 10.9
9. Tseng Wen-ting, Yulon 9.8
10 Wu Chien-lung, Yulon 7.6

1. M. Dove, TM 2.4
2. Chou Shih-yuan, Yulon 2.1
3. S. Bailey, KKL 2.0
4. Lin Jui-kun, BOT 1.8
5. Chen Ching-huan, KKL 1.7

Blocked Shots
1. Tseng Wen-ting, Yulon 3.5
2. M. Dove, TM 2.1
3. S. Bailey, KKL 2.0
3. Tien Lei, Dacin 1.7
4. Wu Tai-hao, TB 1.6

1. Wu Yong-jen, TM 3.6
3. Chen Shih-nian, TB 3.5
3. Tseng Wen-ting, Yulon, 3.3
4. Hsu Hao-cheng, Dacin 3.2
5. S. Hawkins, KKL 3.1

Yulon drops to below .500

[Picture: Yulon's Lu Cheng-ju shoots over TB's Yang Ching-min]

-- Yang Ching-min and Emmanuel Jones scored 23 points in the third quarter and led Taiwan Beer to a 93-78 rout of Yulon and a franchise-record seven-game winning streak. TB's Wu Tai-hao, Wu Min-hsien sat out the game serving the one-game suspension.

-- I couldn't remember the last time Yulon dropped to below .500 this late in the season. Maybe this is the first time. The team did have its legitimate excuse to be this bad because it had lost 60 percent of its starting roster in two years after losing Chen Hsin-an, Lee Hsueh-lin and Tseng Wen-ting to the Chinese league CBA. However, the bad coaching job of the head coach Zhang Xuelei has also contributed a lot to its demise.

-- Local media reported that Yulon, the only SBL team without an import, has finally decided to bring in imports. Jermaine Dailey (200cm) from University of Illinois-Chicago and Jason McCoy (206cm) from Wisconsin-Milwaukee are scheduled to fly in this week for testing.

-- As to why PY import Rashad Jones-Jennings had been wearing his jersey with the last name of WANG, my friend Ben Metcalf, who currently works for Pure Youth as its technical advisor (and scout plus some assistant coach maybe?) said in an email that Jones-Jennings "has Wang on the back of his jersey because Jones-Jennings wouldn't fit. The neighborhood he grew up in was called Wang, so his nickname has always been Wang."

Jan. 23
TB 93-78 Yulon
TB: Yang Ching-min 22p, E. Jones 21p+13rb
Yulon: Lu Cheng-ju 23p, Wu Feng-cheng 15p+7rb

Dacin 76-64 BOT
Dacin: A. Foyle 19p+10rb, Tien Lei 16p
BOT: Chen Shun-hsiang 22p, J. Vaudreuil 17p+6rb

TM 84-78 PY
TM: M. Dove 25p+10rb+6blk, Liu Sheng-yao 18, Su Yi-chieh 12p
PY: James Mao 19, Chien Chia-hung 14p+13rb, Chang Yu-lin 14p

TB 12-1
PY 9-4
Dacin 6-5
Yulon 6-7
BOT 4-8
TM 3-9
KKL 3-9

John Vaudreuil, BOT

Emmanuel Jones, TB

Marecus Dove, TM

(Photos: ESPN Taiwan)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

WSBL: Lan leads Cathay Life to 6-0 start

[Picture: Lan Hao-yu]

Lan Hao-yu scored 15 of her 23 points in the third quarter as Cathay Life beat defending champion Taiyuan Textile for the second time this season with a 81-49 rout on Jan. 22.
Cathay Life is off to a 6-0 start. Lan personally outscored Taiyuan 15-11 in the third period. Lee Wan-ting and Cheng Hui-yun scored 11 each and Chen Yu-chun had 10 points for Cathay Life.

Taiyuan was hurt by the absence of two core players -- Liu Chun-yi and Ma Yi-hung.




(Photo: ESPN Taiwan)

SBL photos of the week

BOT's John Vaudreuil

左-台銀許致強 右-裕隆吳建龍
Hsu Chi-chang, BOT

Chen Shih-nian, TB

Wei Wei, TM

Marcus Dove of TM tries to block this one from KKL's Shawn Hawkins

Rashad Jennings (L) and new Dacin import Alexus Foyle

Wu Feng-cheng, Yulon

Chien Chia-hung (L) of PY goes up against Dacin's Tien Lei

Hsu Chi-chang, BOT

(Photos: ESPN Taiwan)

Suspension and import replacement


Quick summary:

-- Yulon is reportedly to bring in imports for testing after losing starting center Tseng Wen-ting, who did not re-sign with the team. According to media reports, Yulon will bring in two imports next week before making the final decision.

-- Speaking of Tseng, the 204cm center made an appeal to the Chinese basketball authority to look for an opportunity to join the CBA in mid-season. Tseng wanted the league to make an exception for him after the deadline of local player registration passed last November.

-- Dacin sent away Keith Gayden, who averaged 16.2 points and 12.6 rebounds, for unknown reasons and brought in a familiar face Alexus Foyle, who played with Taiwan Mobile last season. Local media reported that Gayden did not blend in well with his teammates despite his stats were outstanding. Foyle averaged 23.2 points and 9.8 boards last year in 22 games.

-- PY point guard Hong Chih-shan made a go-ahead three-pointer with 2.2 seconds left to give PY a 74-71 victory over Dacin on Jan. 21.

-- Hsu Chih-chang scored 10 of his 25 points in the final quarter, including a pair of free-throws with 14.3 seconds to go to boost the lead to four points in BOT's 80-76 win over TM.

-- TB center Wu Tai-hao and PY import Rashad Jennings will be suspended for one game with a NT$10,000 fine each for fighting in the Jan. 22 game. Local media reported that Wu threw an elbow at Jennings before the import retaliated. TB rookie Wu Min-hsien also received a one-game suspension and a fine of NT$10,000 for leaving the bench area during the altercation.

-- Honestly, I don't have a clue why Jennings has been wearing his #24 jersey with the surname of WANG instead of JENNINGS.

Jan. 22
BOT 80-76 TM
BOT: Hsu Chih-chang 25p, Chang Po-sheng 17p, Chen Shun-hsiang 11p
TM: Wu Yong-jen 20p+5a, Liu Sheng-yao 11p

Yulon 85-76 KKL
Yulon: Lu Cheng-ju 25p+10rb, Yang Che-yi 14p+6rb+7a, Wu Chien-lung 15p+12rb
KKL: S. Hawkins 16p+10rb, Chen Ching-huan 22p

TB 83-79 PY
TB: E. Jones 21p+10rb, Yang Ching-min 21p, Chen Shih-nian 13p, Wu Tai-hao 8p
PY: Chien Chia-hung 24p+9rb, R. Jones-Jennings 5p+14rb, James Mao 15p, Ke Chi-hao 12p

Jan. 21
KKL 93-85 TM
KKL: Chen Ching-huan 28p+7rb+7a+4s, Chang Jung-hsuan 28p, S. Hawkins 21p+9rb
TM: M.Dove 18p+8rb, Liu Sheng-yao 17p

PY 74-71 Dacin
PY: R. Jones-Jennings 22p+25rb, Hong Chih-shan 14p, Chien Chia-hung 13p
Dacin: Tien Lei 13p, Lin Yi-hui 24, A. Foyle 8p+15rb

TB 11-1
PY 9-3
Yulon 6-6
Dacin 5-5
BOT 4-7
KKL 3-9
YM 2-9

(Photos:, Apple Daily)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

SBL Week 4 MVP: Rashad Jones-Jennings


Pure Youth import Rashad Jones-Jennings became the first repeat winner of the SBL weekly MVP when he was named Week 4 MVP Tuesday. The American forward averaged 22.7 points, 25.3 rebounds and led PY to a perfect 3-0 week.

Jennings missed by a bucket to become the first SBL player to have five straight 20-20s during a season, but he did not seem to mind, saying that individual statistics came second.

He is averaging 18.7 points and 21.6 rebounds for the season.

Jennings had 36 points in the media poll. TB's Yang Ching-min came second with 16 points.

2010-11 SBL Weekly MVPs:
Week 4: Rashad Jones-Jennings (PY)
Week 3: Rashad Jones-Jennings (PY)
Week 2: Yang Ching-min (TB)
Week 1: Tseng Wen-ting (Yulon)

(Photo: ESPN Taiwan)

Sunday, January 16, 2011

BOT brings in new import

[Picture: John Vaudreuil]

Bank of Taiwan brought in John Vaudreuil Sunday to replace the injured Jason Faulknor as its import, but the new import failed to produce a victory.

Vaudreuil, which was listed by many websites as 6-8 (203cm) but was listed by the SBL as 200cm, had 20 points and 6 rebounds in his debut, a 66-63 loss to KKL.

Vaudreuil's profile is listed below:

John Vaudreuil
Vaudreuil_John_largeDOB: 1985/9/15
Age: 25
Height: 6-8
Weight: 260 lbs
Nationality: USA
College: University of Minnesota-Duluth

2004-2005: Minn.-Duluth (NCAA2,starting five): 23games: 10.3ppg, 3.7rpg
2005-2006: Minn.-Duluth (NCAA2,starting five): 29games: 10.3ppg, 3.6rpg
2006-2007: Minn.-Duluth (NCAA2,starting five): 29games: 13ppg, 3.8rpg
2007-2008: Minn.-Duluth (NCAA2): redshirted
2008-2009: Minn.-Duluth (NCAA2,starting five): 31games: 16.5ppg, 6.9rpg
2010: Goldfield Giants (Australia-SBL, starting five): 26games: 19.7ppg, 2.73apg, 1.5spg, 9.7rpg

KKL 66-63 BOT
KKL: S. Hawkins 16p+9rb, Chen Ching-huan 15p, Kao Tien-lin 12p
BOT: J. Vaudreuil 20p+6rb, Lin Jui-kun 16p, Chen Shun-hsiang 10p

PY 84-75 TM
PY: R. Jones-Jennings 18p+27rb, James Mao 15p, Chien Chia-hung 21p+9rb
TM: M. Dove 22p+13rb

TB 100-71 Dacin
TB: Yang Ching-min 27p, Wu Tai-hao 11p, Wu Min-hsien 11p
Dacin: K. Gayden 30p+23rb, Tien Lei 5p (1-14 FG), Yue Ying-li 10p+8rb, Chen Tse-wei 10p

TB 9-1, PY 8-2, Dacin 5-4, Yulon 5-5, TM 2-7, BOT 2-7, KKL 2-7

Chien Chia-hung's shot swat by TM's Marcus Dove (L)

Wu Tai-hao, TB

Tien Lei, Dacin

Yang Ching-min, TB

(Photos: ESPN Taiwan)

Tseng bids farewell to Yulon, SBL

左-裕隆曾文鼎 右-達欣田壘裕隆曾文鼎

Yulon center Tseng Wen-ting played his last game with the long-time employer Yulon Luxgen Saturday and bid farewell to the SBL before going to China looking to sign with the Shanghai Sharks.

Tseng, 26, finished off his contract with Yulon Jan. 15 after both sides had failed to reach an agreement on the contract extension.

Coincidentally, the national team starting center had his first career triple-double -- 10 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists -- in a 100-72 loss to Dacin Tigers in his last game in Taiwan.

Tseng was in tears in the post-game interview, saying that he had never imagined he would leave Yulon and Taiwan.

SN01_002The Sharks' offer of a three-year, NT$21 million (US$720,000) contract was too good to pass up. Tseng could earn up to NT$10 million (US$345,000) per year plus incentives, according to Apple Daily.

His estimated annual salary with Yulon is around NT$3 million (US$103,500).

During his seven plus seasons in the league, the 204cm center took Yulon to five regular season champions and four titles. He registered 2975 points, 1765 rebounds, 578 assists and 452 blocks in 199 games, averaging 14.9 points, 8.9 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 2.3 blocks per game, in his SBL career.

Tseng was named the regular season MVP last year and won the Finals MVP twice in 2005 and 2006. He led the SBL in blocks in all but one year during 2003-2010 and was a four-time defensive player of the year.

Looks like it's time for him to compete on a higher level.

SN01_001However, it's possible that Tseng will not be allowed to sign with Shanghai this year because the deadline of signing a local player (Well, Taiwan is regarded as a part of Chinese territory. This is a political issue and I'd rather not to go into specifics about it right now) has passed.

Which means Tseng could end up signing with the Sharks next year, if his application is rejected, and being left without a team this season. We will have to wait and see.

Personally, it was sad to see Tseng go. After all, I have been following his career since he was a 16-year-old in high school. But I didn't see any reason to stop him from going to China for better competition and salary after he had almost done everything he could possibly do in the league. He has also proved himself on the international level in the past Asian Championships.

Well, at least Tseng played out his contract with Yulon before leaving. It was what a professional player is supposed to do: honoring your contract.

Chen Hsin-an, who is currently playing for Dongguan, is another case. Chen's attempts of going to China was blocked several times by Yulon as he tried to leave the team with two years left on his contract.

Here's a video by Apple Daily on Tseng:

最後一鼎 淚噴大三元

(Photos: ESPN Taiwan, Apple Daily)

Jones-Jennings has another 20-20

左-許致強 右-詹寧斯
[Picture: Rashad Jones-Jennings]

Jan. 15
PY 88-63 BOT
PY: R. Jennings 24p+24rb, Tsai Wen-cheng 11p
BOT: Chen Shun-hsiang 19p, Hsu Chi-chang 12p

Dacin 100-72 Yulon
Dacin: Tien Lei 26p, Lin Yi-hui 25p+8rb, Chen Tse-wei 12p
Yulon: Tseng Wen-ting 10p+10rb+10a, Lu Cheng-ju 21p, Chou Shih-yuan 17p

TB 82-62 TM
TB: D. Creighton 16p, Wu Tai-hao 12p, Yang Yu-ming 10p
TM: Wei Wei 13p, Liu Sheng-yao 13p, M. Dove 11p+17rb

Jan. 14
Dacin 97-94 KKL
Dacin: K. Gayden 19p+13rb, Tien Lei 31p+7rb, Hsu Hao-cheng 13p+7a, Lin Yi-hui 12p
KKL: S. Hawkins 29p+8rb+8a, Chen Ching-huan 18p+6rb+4a

Yulon 74-71 TM
Yulon: Tseng Wen-ting 26p+10rb, Lu Cheng-ju 20p
TM: Wu Yung-jen 17p+6rb+5a, M. Dove 14p+13rb

TB 8-1
PY 7-2
Dacin 5-3
Yulon 5-5
TM 2-6
BOT 2-6
KKL 1-7

左-張羽霖 右-莊曉文
Chang Yu-lin, PY

左-台啤鄭人維 右-台灣大魏維
TB's Cheng Jen-wei (L) and Wei Wei, TM (R)

左-台啤王建惟 右-台灣大馬可士
Marcus Dove, TM

(Photos: ESPN Taiwan)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Defending champ Song-shan marches into semifinal round

[Picture: Hu Lung-mao, Song-shan HS]

Two-time defending champion Song-shan HS advanced to the semifinal round after defeating Nan-shan HS in the last game of the quarterfinal round to finish No. 1 with a 6-1 record.

Center-forward Hu Lung-mao had 22 points, 12 rebounds, 4 steals and 3 blocks and guard Chien Chao-yi added 12 points in the 65-59 win on Jan. 9.

Song-shan HS is scheduled to meet the No. 4 seed San-min HS in the semifinal, which will be played Feb. 26, while No. 2 seed Nan-shan HS will take on third-seeded Nen-ren HS, which has lost in the HBL finals to Song-shan HS in the last two years, in the other semi match.

Song-shan beat San-min in the quarterfinal round as Hu scored 42 points. The matchup of Hu and San-min center Shih Yen-tsung will be a sight to watch in the semi. Nan-shan beat Nen-ren 79-64 in the round robin quarterfinal.

Men's quarterfinal standing:
1.    Song-shan HS 6-1
2.    Nan-shan HS 5-2
3.    Nen-ren HS 4-3
4.    San-min HS 4-3
5.    Tai-shan HS 4-3
6.    Nan-hu HS 3-4
7.    Hsin-jung HS 2-5
8.    Youth HS 0-7

In the women's group, top seed Hai-shan HS will meet Jin-ou HS in the semifinal while defending champion Tamsui HS, the No. 2 seed, will meet Hu-jian HS in the other match.

Women's quarterfinal standing:
1.    Hai-shan HS 7-0
2.    Tamsui HS 6-1
3.    Hu-jian HS 5-2
4.    Jin-ou HS 4-3
5.    Nan-hu HS 3-4
6.    Taipei First Girls' HS 2-5
7.    Pu Men HS 1-6
8.    An-le HS 0-7

Chien Chao-yi, Song-shan HS

Wang Tai-chieh, Tai-shan HS


Chen Ying-chun, Nen-ren HS

(Photos: HBL)

HBL champions year-by-year

HBL men's champion year-by-year:
Year Champion, Runner-up
2011-12 Nan-shan HS, Nen-jen HS
2010-11 Song-shan HS, Nan-shan HS
2009-10 Song-shan HS, Nen-ren HS
2008-09 Song-shan HS, Nen-ren HS
2007-08 Nan-shan HS, San-min HS
2006-07 Nan-shan HS, Hsin-jung HS
2005-06 Hsin-jung HS, Nan-shan HS
2004-05 Tsai-shin HS, Hsin-jung HS
2003-04 Nan-shan HS, San-min HS
2002-03 Tsai-shin HS, Hsin-jung HS
2001-02 Tasi-shin HS, Kao-yuan HS
2000-01 San-min HS, Tsai-shin HS
1999-00 San-min HS, Song-shan HS
1998-99 Ping-tung HS, Nan-shan HS
1997-98 Tsai-shin HS, Ping-tung HS
1996-97 Ping-tung HS, Nan-shan HS
1995-96 Nan-shan HS, Tsai-shin HS
1994-95 Li-chih HS, Nan-shan HS
1993-94 Li-chih HS, Nan-shan HS
1992-93 Ping-tung HS, Li-chih HS
1991-92 Li-chih HS, Feng-yuan Business HS
1990-91 Nan-shan HS, Oriental HS
1989-90 Ping-tung HS, Nan-shan HS
1988-89 Miaoli HS, Ping-tung HS

HBL women's champion year-by-year:
Year Champion, Runner-up
2011-12 Taipei First Girls' HS, Pu Men HS
2010-11 Hu-jiang HS, Hai-shan HS
2009-10 Tamsui HS, Pu Men HS
2008-09 Pu Men HS, Yang-ming HS
2007-08 Hsi-shan HS, Tamsui HS
2006-07 Hai-shan HS, Tamsui HS
2005-06 Hai-shan HS, Jin-ou HS
2004-05 Tamsui HS, Hsi-shan HS
2003-04 Jin-ou HS, Hai-shan HS
2002-03 Tamsui HS, Hai-shan HS
2001-02 Tamsui HS, Jin-ou HS
2000-01 Jin-ou HS, Tamsui HS
1999-00 Nan-shan HS, Chung-hwa HS
1998-99 Chung-hwa HS, Jin-ou HS
1997-98 Ku-pao HS, Nan-shan HS
1996-97 Jin-ou HS, Ku-pao HS
1995-96 Tamsui HS, Jin-ou HS
1994-95 Tamsui HS, Nan-shan HS
1993-94 Tamsui HS, Jin-ou HS
1992-93 Jin-ou HS, Cheng-kung HS
1991-92 Jin-ou HS, Blessed Imelda's School
1990-91 Chung-hwa HS, Chung-hsing HS
1989-90 Jin-ou HS, Blessed Imelda's School
1988-89 Chung-hsing HS, Chung-hwa HS

Defending champ Taiyuan opens season 2-0

[Picture: Liu Chun-yi, Taiyuan]

Defending champion Taiyuan Textile opened the 2011 WSBL season Jan. 10 with a 79-60 win over expansion team Applause Red Devils and followed with 84-66 win against Fo Guang the next day for a quick two-game winning streak.

Led by a pair of national team forwards -- Liu Chun-yi, who had 34 points and 12 rebounds and Tsai Pi-chen who had 11 and 11 -- Taiyuan had no problem against the Red Devils on opening night.

Former Chunghwa Telecom guard Wen Chi, who signed with Applause in off season, led the Red Devils with 25 points and 4 steals.

However, repeating will not be easy for Taiyuan because perennial Cathay Life returned to the league after a one-year hiatus.

Cathay Life, which had won 17 straight titles in Taiwanese women's league, withdrew from the 2010 WSBL season over what it claimed was a violation by Chunghwa Telecom in signing Chiang Feng-chun, a former Cathay Life star forward who came out of retirement.

Cathay Life beat Taipower 67-55 in its opening game on Jan. 11.

The regular season will be played from Jan. 10-March 30 at Taipei Gymnasium, located in downtown Taipei, and Sinjhuang Stadium in nearby Xinbei City. Top four teams in the regular season advance to the playoffs. No. 3 and No. 4 teams meet in the best-of-three bronze medal series while the top two teams meet in the best-of-three WSBL Finals.

Chien Wei-chuan, Cathay Life

Wen Chi, Applause Red Devils

Lin Chi-wen, Taipower

(Photos: CTBA)

SBL Week 3 MVP: Rashad Jones-Jennings


Pure Youth Construction import Rashad Jones-Jennings, who averaged 23.6 points and 22.3 rebounds last week, was named SBL Week 3 MVP and became the first foreign player to win the weekly honor this season.

The American player received 38 points in the media poll to beat out Taiwan Beer import Emmanuel Jones, who had 15 points, for the award.

"Jennings has helped the team a lot on the defensive end and in the rebounding department, " PY head coach Hsu Chin-tse said, adding that Jenning has been in better physical condition and had no problem to keep up with his quicker teammates.

The former NCAA Division I rebounding champion was quoted as saying that he believed that he would be playing a lot better after his injury is fully recovered.

2010-11 SBL Weekly MVPs:
Week 3: Rashad Jones-Jennings (PY)
Week 2: Yang Ching-min (TB)
Week 1: Tseng Wen-ting (Yulon)

SBL results Jan. 8-12

[Picture: R. Jones-Jennings, PY]

Quick summary:

裕隆曾文'鼎(右二)璞園詹寧斯-- Yulon has been in a slump, having lost three of its last four games. According to head coach Zhang Xuelei, it probably had to do with the unclear status of starting center Tseng Wen-ting, whose contract with Yulon will expire on Jan. 15. Tseng is said to possibly sign with Shanghai Sharks of the Chinese league CBA.

-- On the other hand, newcomer Wu Chien-lung, who played with PY last season, has fit in well with Yulon in the power forward position. Wu is averaging 8.4 points and 8.6 rebounds per game.

-- Pure Youth import Rashad Jones-Jennings has turned in three straight 20-20s in the last three games, reportedly the first player to accomplish the feat in SBL history. (Although I doubt it. Former PY import Jon Sanders was probably the first one to do that? Anyway, I'm not sure.)

Jones, a former NCAA Division I rebounding champ, is averaging 18.1 points and 20.6 boards per game.

-- TSNA news agency reported that BOT import Jason Faulknor sustained a pretty serious back injury in a game against Dacin last week and is currently in rehab. Faulknor probably needs a surgery and a rehabilitation period of six months. He did not play tonight against league leader Taiwan Beer. According to TSNA, Faulknor is signed through the end of March and has expressed his wish to stay in Taiwan for rehab. However, BOT has started to look for replacement.

Jan. 8
Dacin 84-81 TB
Dacin: K. Gayden 20p+12rb, Lin Yi-hui 15p, Tien Lei 10p+7rb+5a, Hsu Hao-cheng 14p
TB: E. Jones 28p+16rb, Yang Ching-min 14p, Cheng Jen-wei 13p

Yulon 79-72 KKL
Yulon: Wu Chien-lung 16p+11rb, Tseng Wen-ting 15p+10rb, Lu Cheng-ju 13p+7rb
KKL: S. Hawkins 17p+10rb, CHang Jung-hsuan 17p, Chen Ching-huan 15p

PY 81-69 BOT
PY: R. Jones-Jennings 27p+24rb, Hong Chih-shan 14p
BOT: Chen Shun-hsiang 15p, J. Faulknor 9p+11rb, Hsu Chi-chang 13p

Jan. 9
TM 82-70 Dacin
TM: Wu Yong-jen 17p+6rb+4a, Su Yi-chieh 16p, Ouyang Ching-heng 14p, M. Dove 12p+14rb
Dacin: Tien Lei 20p+7rb, K. Gayden 12p+11rb

PY 89-53 KKL
PY: R. Jones-Jennings 23p+25rb, Tsai Wen-cheng 15p, Chang Yu-lin 13p
KKL: Chen Ching-huan 15p, S. Hawkins 12p+12rb

TB 77-52 Yulon
TB: E. Jones 17p+12rb, Yang Ching-min 12p
Yulon: Yang Che-yi 9p, Tseng Wen-ting 6p (2-13 FG)

Jan. 12
TB 71-62 BOT
TB: Yang Ching-min 14p, D. Creighton 11p, Yang Yu-ming 11p
BOT: Chen Shun-hsiang 13p, Chen Jun-chieh 14p

PY 85-72 Yulon
PY: R. Jones-Jennings 26p+25rb, Chien Chia-hong 16p, Tsai Wen-cheng 15p
Yulon: Tseng Wen-ting 15p+11rb+5a, Chen Chih-chun 14p, Lu Cheng-ju 14p

TB 7-1
PY 6-2
Yulon 4-4
Dacin 3-3
TM 2-4
BOT 2-5
KKL 1-6

Tien Lei, Dacin

TB forward Cheng Jen-wei

Emmanuel Jones, TB, goes up against BOT forward Chen Yu-chih


James Mao of PY (R)

(Photos: ESPN Taiwan)