Monday, January 17, 2011

Mailbag Mondays: 01/17/11

Q: word was out that olsen racela will (supposedly) take over the U-18 SBP team. any news about him being a part of the admu coaching staff officially? because if that is so, then i smell an MVP orchestration here of bringing in young hopefuls to the Blue Squad
- - Basketballphenome

CHF: Word that Racela would be tapped to take over the U-18 SBP team can probably be best traced to this article on GMA News, but it's hardly been formalized. Racela's current focus is to win one more championship, then retire, and then perhaps consider taking up coaching.

As to Racela being linked to an assistant coaching spot at ADMU, his name was in fact circulated after Jamike Jarin ended his stint as Blue Eaglets coach, but again, nothing concrete.

The U-18 gig has been essentially an "eat all you can buffet" for the coaches who have taken it recently (Franz Pumaren, Eric Altamirano), allowing them to poach recruit after recruit, so it's a reasonable assumption, but given the fact that Ateneo is currently the three-time reigning champ of the UAAP, it's hard to see what more effect having a former Atenean head the program can have. To put it another way, Pumaren needed it to replenish his roster thanks to the PEP test suspension year and Altamirano needed it because of NU's reputation as a doormat team. The Eagles are far away from such situations.

Q: wala na si Paul Lee sa UE noh? 
- - Kevz

Coach Lawrence Chongson created Paul Lee, and Paul Lee created Coach Lawrence Chongson. Without Chongson's free-flowing offense, Lee would have struggled, or at least would not have been as explosive, running set plays, and without Lee's penchant for nailing unlikely shots in big time situations, Coach Chongson's lack of a scheme would have looked stupid. For those reasons, it's only fitting that Lee decide to leave with the exit of his coach.

Now take note, nothing has been decided officially yet, but it seems all but certain that Lee will instead opt for the PBA draft. While there is a loyalty element to the situation, there's also a pragmatic aspect. Should Cordinera be more structured offensively, or if he asks Lee to play defense, Lee could wind up with a subpar year, hurting his draft stock. Better to just bolt now since it was unlikely anyway that the Red Warriors could have made some noise in the Final Four.\

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