Well – we are the season end. Last regular season game on tap this week and everyone seems to have settled into their seeds even before the final games are played. There is a very distinct split in the major powers of the league vs. the bottom of the barrel. That is why the Genzyme win over Vicious and Delicious was so important for Genzyme as they secured the No.2 seed and with a win over Nasties this week could actually have the top-seed.
The three seed belongs to the Steamboats (unless V&D can win by 19 points or more this week) but that is the hot spot as Sixth Sense currently holds the 6th slot. Everyone needs to watch out for the toughest 6th seed in the business and the Steamboats should be wary of the 3-6 match-up. With a Sixth Sense win this week and a Tip-Offs loss – the teams could flip-flop in the standings based on head-to-head tilts. Vicious and Delicious will be monitoring this as they have the fourth seed and would face the eventual fifth seed. I would love to know who they would rather face. So plenty of drama left but the votes are in for the All-Stars and Awards.
The All-Star game which will be played at the Winter Hill School on TUESDAY, December 8, 2009 @ 6pm. If you are nominated to play – please contact Tibbs at firstname.lastname@example.org or private message me on the Message Boards to confirm you are playing or to let us know if you can NOT play. The three All-Star teams will be divided into two teams and I would LOVE to have a captain pick against me in a fantasy-style draft. Tibbs and I would do this when we shared leagues back in the day and it makes things fun with a small beer wager as well. If not – I will split up the rosters how I best see fit based on positions and style of play.
There will be 8 players to a team so if you notice, first, second, and third team All-Stars are only 15 deep – so we need you as a group to vote on the final member of the team. The poll above shows the two guys that missed the All-Star cut due to injuries during the season. In any season – a healthy Mike Dinh or Steve Barbuto would not only be on the All-Star team but they would be battling for MVP supremacy as well. Player with the most votes by Thanksgiving gets the last spot to play in the inaugural B2 5v5 All-Star game. Get your friends and family signed up to vote for your favorite player!!
I chose the All-Stars and the Awards without the usage of the Player Rater. Just going on what I saw as I watched the first nine weeks of play. So there may be some snubs – maybe not. I feel the player rater is a little skewed towards the big men in the game so I did match my selections with the PR for stat backup – but in essence these are my picks alone.
But it’s 1:21 am on the East Coast – so that only means it is an early 10:20pm here in chilly San Francisco. I got the fridge full of beer and am ready to roll. Lots of awards, All-Stars, and usual banter to get to so, as I always say ON WITH THE SHOW!
MVP – Spencer LeFlem (Silk Nasties) ~ This was not as tough as you would think. Steve Barbuto ~ who is considered the top gun on this squad ~ missed half the season with an injury and the Nasties needed someone to step up. LeFlem did that and then some. Here is where the stats help: 3rd in the league in scoring, 45% 3-point percentage, 7.5 rebounds and in the top 10 in assists all season long. A complete player that contributed to the best record in the league.
Runners Up: Scott Mulholland (Genzyme); Dave Shapiro (Just The Tip-Offs)
Offensive Player of the Year – Dave Shapiro (Just The Tip-Offs) ~ The Admiral had the MVP locked up at the midway point. Leading the league in scoring, plenty of rebounds, assists, etc. Just a late season swoon knocked Shapiro from the top spot and a 3-6 record can not be ignored since he was there for all of them.
But you can not deny the Admiral’s penchant for filling up the basket. Had one of the best scoring nights with 29 points and 7 rebounds in Week 2 against Sixth Sense to put himself on the map. Just a few percentage points from locking down the scoring title with Pat Lawson holding a slim lead, but Lawson came along late in the season as a midseason replacement for Mike Kmiec for Genzyme. For that – Shapiro takes the gold.
Runners Up ~ Patrick Lawson (Genzyme); Leng Tang (Steamboats); Jay Layman (Silk Nasties.
Defensive Player of the Year – Scott Mulholland (Genzyme) ~ Another one that was pretty easy as Mulholland was in the late discussions for MVP based mostly on his defense and his surprisingly expanding offensive game. If using the Player Rater ~ Mulholland would be considered top dog overall as he leads the league in PR and that should count for something.
But Mulholland’s lock down defense is what is giving Genzyme hope for their first banner in 5v5 competition. Mulholland beat out Jason Johnson for the blocks title (based on the first nine games) and was in attendance more then Johnson as well. Attendance means a lot to me as running a team is tough if you have guys that no-show.
I know, I know GladHands ~ I know all about the wife running the show ~ but you got be here to take the gold. If Mulholland can continue to score in double digits ~ Genzyme may be tough to beat come playoff time.
Runners Up ~ Steve Zavackis (Steamboats); Jason Johnson (Scalped Tickets); John Carolan (Silk Nasties)
Rookie of the Year – Steve Zavackis (Steamboats) ~ The man I dubbed BAGZ – The Big Asian Greek Zavackis. At first glance I thought the Steamboats signed a second non-Asian (Jesse Rumble) which would be tough to continue the Asian Assassins jokes, but much to my chagrin- Big Steve is half Asian. Good enough for me and good enough to tear down the Rookie of the Year Award.
Usually a ‘rookie’ is anyone who has not played in the particular league ~ even if they played in other leagues in previous seasons. But since the B21 5v5 League is brand new ~ everyone is essentially a rookie. So I had to go with a ‘true’ rookie and Zavackis was a force on both sides of the ball in his legit first-year with the CAC.
I did have a tough time with this one as I scanned the Vicious and Delicious roster thinking their entire team is a bunch of rooks ~ but no one in particular really stood out as they had multiple players play big game-to-game. Again ~ even though I am trying to stay away from the Player Rater ~ the big men seem to be dominating. Glad I went with LeFlem for the MVP. Had to give a shout out to Mike Rocco from the Running Rebels too. If they didn’t move leagues – The Rock had this one wrapped up tighter then a five-dollar foot long.
Runners Up ~ Damien Melvin (Vicious and Delicious); Mike Hepburn (Vicious and Delicious); Dave Shapiro (Just the Tip-Offs); Mike Rocco (Rebels).
Most Improved – Ken Gowell (Silk Nasties) ~ Here is an award I DO use 100% statistical analysis. I try to find someone who’s numbers go up from season to season and Gowell surely qualifies here.
When a player goes from a lower league to a high league – the numbers usually go down, but Gowell stepped up his game with more minutes due to the absence of Kimball and Barbuto and his numbers increased from the C League to the B2 5v5. Better competition, better numbers, equals Most Improved.
Sixth Man Award – Erin Johnson (Genzyme) ~ You think I would leave out the only girl tough enough to roll with the boys in B2 5v5? Child, please. Erin Johnson is a top five player in the tough women’s leagues in the CAC and came to Genzyme’s rescue about Week 3 of the season after the usual Genzyme roster fluctuation proved insurmountable for the unnamed GM of the Evil Empire.
It took some time for Johnson to feel comfortable running with the Gang Green but Erin has spelled Matt Peredna and Van Tran quite nicely playing whatever role she is needed to fill. One week – 10 points and three steals; the next week six rebounds in only 18 minutes of play. Yes, a 5’8″ girl is out-rebounding you guys
Runner Up ~ Ricky Ng (Steamboats)
GM of the Year – Mark Maglio – Vicious and Delicious ~ Now – I finally found the proper slot for the V&D squad. An entire team of rookies, a new league, high expectations and coming back from a sinful 25-22 win over the Tip-Offs in Week One. I had these guys ranked high in the power poll due to some of the athletes from the Heights. We had two Division 1 tennis players and a Division 1 cornerback. I assumed they would roll ~ and at times they have. The turnaround against the Tip-Offs two weeks ago proves these guys can play and hang with anyone if they can hold their offense together.
So to have his team sitting at 5-4 ahead of veteran teams like the Tip-Offs and Sixth Sense is a job well done in my book. Also – managing a 32-man roster is not very easy. Kudos fellas.
Runner-Up ~ Jay Layman (Silk Nasties)
All Tommy Team: This is a new concept introduced (somewhat) by Marc Frail in the B2 South and I usually name an ‘All BFab Team’ which consists of guys I’d like to play with, like the style of play (hustle unselfishness), and now a new wrinkle – a player that I think could hang on a Thirsty Thursday anytime. This eliminates most Genzyme players – as I’ve played with most of them at some time – but here is an All-Star Respect Team from my warped view ~ the all new Tommy Team.
Center ~ Manu Patten (Sixth Sense) ~ the energetic, high flying big man is contagious. Patten comes to play every night and even games with low scoring outputs from himself or anyone on his team � all he does is encourage and look forward to the next time running with the fellas. Every team needs a Manu Patten to keep everyone even keel and remind everyone it is only a game and we are even lucky to still be playing it out of college.
Power Forward ~ Chris Harvey (Genzyme) ~ Harvey is another que sera sera player that gives his all for 44 minutes and then is just looking for the next smile or joke or next pitcher of beer Thursday nights. Harvey came from the free agent pool when Genzyme was struggling for players and could not have worked out any better.
When the Evil Empire was low on man-power � Harvey was leading the league in scoring. As the roster has settled more, Harvey is just as happy deferring to the rest of the group and is having just as much fun doing so. Harvey does the little things and making others better by just having presence on the floor is not something you can teach. Harvey makes everyone better ~ on and off the court.
Small Forward ~ Thuy Nguyen ~ (Steamboats) ~ My arch nemesis. My King Sandbagger on the Vegas lines. That aside ~ Nguyen would never be mistaken for a top-notch player in any league by just looking at him but that is when he is at his best. Fall asleep on Thuy and he is spin moving you to death to the rack.
Looking at Thuy’s numbers from other leagues ~ his production is down but he never relents and 100% effort is all I ever ask when I put teams together. Thuy would never be a problem on that end.
Shooting Guard ~ Jay Layman (Silk Nasties) ~ Despite my constant needling of his namesake and just trying to get a rise out of him ~ Layman is downright tough on both ends of the floor. Doesn’t shoot enough but plays tough defense and never gives an inch. I mean he is tossing baseball passes and running the floor up 30 a few weeks ago. The score never is an issue for Jay. Down 10 or up 10 – same intensity. Doesn’t take any flack and I would not have names him to my top 40 or so WWE/CAC characters on my blog if he didnt belong in the elite.
Point Guard ~ Martin Yuan (Steamboats) ~ Talking about a guy who defers and doesn’t shoot enough – Martin is the quintessential teammate everyone loves to play with. Distributes the ball unselfishly even when he is the best player on the floor. Kid can score 20 a game if he wanted to but that would be no fun for him – or so it seems. Seems he gets pleasure out of seeing dudes like David Ho and Ricky Ng going for double-doubles and feeding Thuy and Dinh their touches rather then worrying about his own averages. Will dive on the floor for the ball and if they need it Yuan has the ice in his veins to pull up for the winning dagger from anywhere. Stud.
All Defensive Team:
SG – Mike Hepburn ~ three-point specialist plays toughest defense in the league. Just look at the Points Against for V&D. Hepburn is a major reason for it.
PF – Scott Mulholland ~ Defensive Player of the Year gets the obvious nod.
SF – John Carolan ~ quiet man � Christmas Carolan is long and can defend centers but is athletic enough to cover the perimeter as well. Gives smaller guards fits.
C – Steve Zavackis ~ I move Mulholland to power forward to make room for BAGZ. BAGZ is better near the rim while Mulholland can and has had to cover outside the paint for Genzyme to be successful.
PG – Rolando Vega ~ the feisty leader of the Sixth Sense is the league leader in steals. Just inches past Matt Peredna (Genzyme) for the PG spot on all-defensive team as did Carolan to Justin Oppenheimer.
Runners Up ~ Matt Peredna (Genzyme); Justin Oppenheimer (Just The Tip-Offs); Jason Johnson
Defensive Team ~ Vicious and Delicious ~ This is a team-award and V&D deserves it. The swarming bees from the Heights held teams in 5v5 under 45 points a game (42.22 PPG). An amazing feat for a bunch of rookies led by Sam Wagner, Mark Maglio, Hepburn, and Wishman on defensive end.
Again, the All-Star Game is scheduled for the Winter Hill School on TUESDAY, December 8, 2009 @ 6pm. This gives everyone the opportunity to make adjustments to their schedule or to let Tibbs or I know that they can not make it. The Awards are done so I’ll keep this short.
We have a first team, second team, and third team consisting of 15 players. I stick to traditional positions – or try to – to give every team a little love. So if you can’t make it – I’ll contact others to fill in but each team with have 8 players after the vote above determines the fan’s selection for the All-Star Team.
Both Steve Barbuto and Mike Dinh suffered injuries during the season. Both are usually MVP candidates – never mind All-Stars, so if they played the full season both would be there. They didn’t so the fans voted and Barbuto wins the Fan Vote as the 16th and final player.
PG – Spencer LeFlem
SG – Dave Shapiro
SF – Pat Lawson
PF – Scott Mulholland
C – Steve Zavackis
PG – Rolando Vega
SG – Leng Tang
SF – Damien Melvin
PF – John Carolan
C – Brian Kimball
PG – Dillon McGovern
SG – Mike Hepburn
SF – Jaime Mendel
PF – Jeff York
C – Manu Patten