|Philippine Cup||8||6||4th||Lost to Mixers 2-1 in the best-of-3 quarterfinals|
|Commissioner’s Cup||9||0||1st||Defeated Barangay in the quarterfinals (had twice-to-beat advantage)Defeated Painters 3-0 in the semifinals|
Lost to the Mixers 3-1 in the finals
|Governor’s Cup||7||2||1st||Defeated Energy in the quarterfinals (had twice-to-beat advantage)Lost to the Mixers 3-2 in the semifinals|
|2013-14 Team Leaders|
|RPG||Ranidel de Ocampo||6.57|
Players Lost: Jai Reyes (Free agent), Nonoy Baclao (trade), Nino Canaleta (trade)
Players Added: Matthew Ganuelas-Rosser (trade aka magic), Kevin Alas (trade aka magic) and Jay Washington (trade)
2014 Projected Depth Chart
|C||Kelly Williams||Jay Washington||Rob Reyes|
|F||Ranidel de Ocampo||Harvey Carey||Danny Seigle|
|F||Larry Fonacier||Elmer Espiritu||Aaron Aban|
|G||Ryan Reyes||Matt Rosser|
|G||Jayson Castro||Jimmy Alapag||Kevin Alas|
The Bandwagon Wire Says
The Tropang Texters, ever since the fall of the Realtors a few years back, has been a staple in the PBA playoffs for each conference every year. They used to be a symbol of consistency and discipline under the guidance of National Team head coach Chot Reyes. However, with the focus turned to the amazing run the men’s basketball national team had over the last couple of years, in which the majority of roster of the Tropang Texters are a part of, the franchise would only have two deep playoff runs in that period.
Two years off, the average age of the top 6 players in this team is 31.66 years old. In the cycle of a basketball franchise, there is a time where the owner says, we have to rebuild for this franchise to have a future (this is something that we actually think that Boss MVP would say).
So what does the Tropang Texters management do? Instead of trading away the stars that brought them to glory, they magically acquired, arguably, two of the top 4 picks in the draft! This is what we call a Slow Burn Rebuild.
Kevin Alas and Matt Ganuelas-Rosser
Kevin Alas and Matthew Rosser, prior to entering the PBA draft, were members of the men’s basketball national team cadet program. They competed overseas, including dominating the Southeast Asian Games basketball tournament for two straight years. During the PBA Developmental League season, both played together in a stacked NLEX Road Warriors team (that team was technically a hybrid of the Cadet Pool-Red Cubs-Blue Eagles).
Kevin Alas is a sharp-shooting combo guard. Ever since his grade school days, playing in the PAYA league, the kid has been hyped as one of the smartest players to enter the hard court. His court IQ is said to be years beyond his age. In college, Alas led the Letran Knights to the finals but would eventually succumb to the San Beda Red Lions. With an option to go into a 5th year in college or enter the pros, Alas decided to leave college and focus on the National Team program (just like JVee Casio, Chris Tiu, and Mark Barroca a few years back).
Matthew Ganuelas-Rosser was brought into the country as, supposedly, to be part of the national team program (just like Chris Lutz and Marcio Lassiter). For two years, Rosser played in the D-League and represented the country in the SEA Games and the Jones Cup. Watching Rosser play is like watching a young Gabe Norwood. He is an excellent perimeter defender and a good ball handler.
Alas and Rosser in someway magically ended up being on an MVP team. The Tropang Texters are fortunate to land these two, as they, together with Jason Castro, can be the faces of the franchise for years to come. Kevin Alas, moreover, is blessed to have the soon-to-be retiring Jimmy Alapag as his mentor.
The Tropang Texters is a team filled with specialists. If we re-do the depth chart and plug-in the specialization of each player, here is how the depth chart would look like.
|C||Athletic Big||Stretch Five||Energy Guy|
|F||Stretch Four||Tenacious Rebounder||Slasher|
|F||3 and D||Corner Specialist||Perimeter Defender|
|G||Lockdown Defender||Point Forward|
|G||Acrobat Finisher||Microwave||Combo Guard|
The shot chart for this team would be crazy (watch-out for it in a future edition of Gil Lopez’s SDL). The national team boys are back and well rested. In addition, the team was able to land a gifted big man in Jay Washington. This team looks scary on paper.
The only problem we see here is whether Coach Jong Uichico could provide the right system and minute distribution for such a line-up. But with the wealth of championship experience Coach Uichico has, we think he could handle this team just like how Coach Reyes and Coach Black did before him.
2014-15 Philippine Cup Prediction
The only problem the Tropang Texters would have will be against the SMC teams. The Beermen, the Barangay, and the Hotshots all have tenacious rebounders and excellent rim protectors in their line-ups. Nonetheless, the Tropang Texters have excellent perimeter players to set-off their post deficiencies. If all goes well we at the wire predict that…
Our prediction: 1st place end of elimination round, Finals
2014-15 PBA Philippine Cup Primers
Rival coaches agree: Ramil de Jesus should coach National Team
Tyrus Hill, Kurt Lojera transfer to La Salle
Lady Eagles survive Golden Tigresses to clinch Final Four spot
Ateneo taking costly UP loss in stride
Kevin Belingon demolishes Andrew Leone, stakes claim as top contender
Giorgio Petrosyan, Nong-o Gaiyanghadao shine in Super Series debut
Honorio Banario frustrates Adrian Pang, stays unbeaten at lightweight
Clinical Gina Iniong outpoints Jenny Huang for bounce back win
Tiger Spikers squeeze into Final Four, outlast Soaring Falcons
Bryan Bagunas, Bulldogs end four-year curse against Blue Eagles
Tamaraws stamp twice-to-beat ticket, eliminate Green Spikers
Lady Falcons outmuscle Golden Tigresses in Season 80 finale
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