Sunday, January 25, 2015

#UAAP77Jrs January 24, 2015 Roundup: Eaglets Secure Top Seed with 12-0 Record!

The Ateneo Blue Eaglets reaffirmed their dominance in the UAAP Season 77 Juniors Basketball Tournament, beating the UPIS Junior Fightin Maroons and consequently cementing their status as the league’s top-seeded team heading into the next round of competition.

The race for the Final Four got even more interesting after the results of this pask weekend's #UAAP77Jrs action.

The  Ateneo de Manila HS Blue Eaglets had little trouble disposing of the overmatched Junior Fighting Maroons, 83-66. Coach Allan Gregorio’s Diliman-based wards actually kept the game close in the first ten minutes, trailing by just one point, 18-19, heading into the second canto. Coach Joe Silva’s Eaglets, however, rose to the occasion, scoring 32 markers in the second period to break the game open, 51-33, at the halftime break. The Loyola five was on cruise control from then on, copping its twelfth victory in as may tries. Ateneo had the edge on the boards, 61-46, to compensate for their 20 turnovers, while also knocking down 47% of their threes. The terrific trio of Mike Nieto, Matt Nieto, and Jolo Mendoza combined for 7 of those treys, while Gian Mamuyac and Marc Salandanan each dropped one trifecta. Big Mike paced the victors with a 21-point, 13 rebounds double-double, while twin brother Matt added 16 points and 9 boards. Mamuyac, a Grade 11 standout, registered 10 markers in just 19 minutes of play. So dominant were the Eaglets that coach Silva could afford to field in 15 of his 16 players. On the other end, the Junior Maroons saw Javi Gomez de Liano, himself a product of the Ateneo Grade School, and Allane Barles combine to score 22 points. UPIS sank to 1-11 in the standings.
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Saturday, January 24, 2015

adidas unveils J Wall 1 All-Star edition and DC Blue Colorways

John Wall has just been voted in as a starter in the All-Star Game, has his team paced to the conference’s second best record and continues to make highlight reels on a nightly basis.

J Wall 1 All Star Edition
adidas unveiled the J Wall 1 NYC All-Star edition shoe that Washington Wizards point guard John Wall will wear in his second consecutive NBA All-Star Game appearance and first-ever starting nod.

First time All-Star starter John Wall will be rocking these in NYC!
The versatile point guard’s impressive play, improved defense and league leading 10 assists per game has helped lead Washington to the Eastern Conference’s second best record. 
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On 2014’s Top Teams, Kobe x MJ, Tab Baldwin, and a lot of NBA Basketball!

These past few weeks, I’ve been privileged enough to guest a few times on ABS-CBN Sports + Action’s The Score (hosted by TJ Manotoc) to talk (mostly) about some of the latest and biggest developments in basketball.

Here are a some of these guestings (from most recent to most dated):
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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

#UAAP77Jrs January 21, 2015 Roundup: Eaglets Climb to 11-0!

The second round of the UAAP Season 77 Juniors Basketball Tournament heated up yesterday at the Blue Eagle Gym, with leaders Ateneo and NU continuing to roll and erstwhile title contender FEU-FERN getting waylaid by the Adamson Baby Falcons.

The Eaglets moved up to 11-0 even as the Baby Falcons caught a big fish by beating FEU-FERN.

The big winners were the Ateneo de Manila HS Blue Eagles, who beat the UST Tiger Cubs, 84-66, to register their eleventh win in a row. Twin brothers Mike and Matt Nieto continued to spearhead the Loyola quintet’s offensive, combining for 38 points on 15/22 FG shooting. Big Mike shot a perfect 9/9 from 2-point range while also grabbing 16 rebounds, while Matt added 7 assists and 2 steals. Grade 11 super guard Jolo Mendoza also played well, hitting 3 triples on his way to 15 markers. As a team, Ateneo shot 40% from rainbow territory, with Gian Mamuyac and Marc Salandanan each netting 2 treys. This was a tight game in the first half as Ateneo led 37-31 at the break, but coach Joe Silva’s wards had a breakthrough third period, outgunning their San Marcelino-based foes, 26-12, to blow the game open. This Saturday, the Eaglets next take on the skidding UPIS Junior Maroons, who lost to the NU Bullpups yesterday, 81-55.
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#PBA2015 Philippine Cup Finals Roundup: January 21, 2015

It was the San Miguel Beermen’s turn to rally in the endgame, roaring back from a 6-point deficit in the final 4 minutes of Game 7 in the 2014-2015 PBA Philippine Cup Finals, to win their first All-Filipino crown since 2001.

Game recap (adapted from InterAKTV):

Box Scores.
The powerhouse San Miguel Beermen, led by their MVP duo of June Mar Fajardo and Arwind Santos, won their 1st championship in an All-Filipino conference in 14 years after defeating Alaska, 80-78, in a thrilling Game Seven of the PBA Philippine Cup finals on Wednesday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum.

June Mar Fajardo finally bags his first PBA title.
(image by Nuki Sabio/PBA)

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Ready for Launch: The D Lillard 1

NBA All-Star point guard debuts first signature shoe at exclusive “Dame Love the Fans” event

Damian Lillard got his.

PORTLAND, Ore. – Damian Lillard has earned a reputation for being one of the hardest working, confident and clutch players in the NBA. From the courts in Oakland, California, where he grew up, to being overlooked in high school and college, to becoming an NBA Rookie of the Year and All-Star for the Portland Trail Blazers, Lillard has surpassed expectations in every stage of his career. Today, Damian Lillard and adidas unveil the D Lillard 1 – the first in a line of signature products designed for the point guard, which will be available on February 6.
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What does it mean to be a Superstar?

The adidas Originals Superstar shoe is one of my all-time faves. If I could get myself every colorway, I would. It’s that awesome. That timeless. That iconic. I think when my kids grow up, it’ll still be hip and stylish. I expect it to be re-issued and re-thought in perpetuity.

That’s why I’m pretty excited that adidas is brewing something special for one of its flagship products. If 2014 was the year of the #ZXFlux, I expect 2015 to be the year of the #Superstar.

Here’s the latest press release from adidas about the Superstar:

#Timeless #OriginalSuperstar
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Monday, January 19, 2015

Asian Basketball Journal - January 19, 2015

Here in the Philippines there really is no site (or person) really dedicated to the Asian hoops scene, which is why this series exists. Through this series of Asian Basketball Journals, I hope to address just that void. I believe that Asian basketball is such a vibrant source of stories, and I think this should be shared with hoop nuts here in the Philippines and beyond.

Like in previous posts, I won’t be going into a lot of detail. I’ll use mostly images and then just add captions to each one that will, hopefully, capture the essence of the latest developments in Asian hoops.

It was a super busy week in Asian hoops!
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Sunday, January 18, 2015

#PBA2015 Philippine Cup Finals Roundup: January 18, 2015

The San Miguel Beermen failed to close out the Alaska Aces in Game 6 of the 2014-2015 PBA Philippine Cup Finals, paving the way for a seventh and deciding contest this coming Wednesday.

Game recap (adapted from InterAKTV):

Box Scores.
The gutsy Alaska Aces came up big in a potential elimination game, defeating San Miguel, 87-76, on Sunday at the SMART-Araneta Coliseum to force a do-or-die Game Seven duel for the PBA Philippine Cup championship.

Sonny Thoss was huge in Game 6 as the Aces forced a do-or-die Game 7.
(image by Nuki Sabio/PBA)
The Aces, so used to adversity in these playoffs, came back from a 14-point first half deficit and needed to weather a 10-0 San Miguel run in the fourth period, but they came out on top to tie the series at three games apiece.
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Saturday, January 17, 2015

#PBA2015 Philippine Cup Finals: Will it end in Game 6?

The San Miguel Beermen finally won back-to-back games in the Philippine Cup Finals after keeping the Alaska Aces at bay in Game 5. Now SMB cam smell the title and glory is finally within reach. Will their deep roster, powered by their MVP combo of June Mar Fajardo and Arwind Santos, be able to end it in Game 6, or will they choke once again and allow the Aces to force Game 7?

SMB's frontcourt pairing of June Mar Fajardo and Arwind Santos were mosterrific in Game 5, but can they continue to hurdle The Beast and his Aces in Game 6?
The Alaska Aces recovered well from their loss in Game 4 by sticking it to San Miguel in Game 5. It was a see-saw game that had 17 lead changes and 11 ties, with Alaska putting up a lead as big as 7 points, but the Beermen just proved tougher in the end. The Aces have it in them to come back in this series — they have proven it many times this conference — but with only one loss separating them from elimination and a rejuvenated San Miguel five closing in on the title, Game 6 will be the biggest test of them all. How will coach Alex Compton and his wards respond to such a Herculean challenge?
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