Damion James has been practically carried the weight for the banged up Alaska Aces, but despite his talent, skills and ability to take charge, the team continuously struggled to notch up a win.
In the six games of the elimination round, the Aces have won just two games, putting them in danger of missing the quarterfinal round as they are currently in 10th spot.
“Obviously you guys can see that DJ can play. He only had four practices. You don’t learn much in four practices no matter how smart you are,” Alska coach Alex Compton told media.
The Aces have lost two in a row amidst productive game from James.
An NBA veteran who played for the Atlanta Hawks, the Brooklyn Nets and the San Antonio Spurs, James had 39 points and 11 rebounds in the Aces’ tough 81-83 overtime loss to the Barako Bull Energy.
Against the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, he finished with 28 points and 16 rebounds.
Compton believes the back-to-back losses is more of a collective setback and not because of the import failing to lead his team.
“I think as a group issue. I think there’s a few rebounds there that if you wanted to point those out as a single possession you could say that that has caused us the game, but it’s really a cumulative effect of every possession,” said Compton.
“But anyway yes, not rebounding the ball has been an issue for us but it’s really not one guy. It’s a team issue. Missing a couple of box outs, and the honest truth is when you give up a high field goal percentage there’s less rebounds to get cause the ball’s going through the net so we gotta make the ball start coming off the rim and not going through the net and we’ll have chance to get some more rebounds.”