by Ron Chambers
Kevin Harper has a reputation as a strong GM and only Pat Fullum has claimed more WBA titles. This year expect Oregon to keep up their winning ways and once again compete for the title.
PG- Bishop Stein: Stein has made a name for himself as a high scoring all around Point Guard for the Bears. Don’t expect that to change. He is a star and will be one for years.
SG- Evilio Nunez: This is the weak spot for the Bears. Nunez is a sold player but not a stand out player. He is on his 5th team in seven years which shows that teams see his potential but he hasn’t been able to really find a home. I doubt that home will be in Oregon at least not as a starter.
SF- Marquez Houston: This is another position where Oregon has a legitimate star. Houston is a great scorer and rebounder. His only weakness is that he is a little soft on the defensive end. Like Stein he is also relatively young and will be a key figure in Oregon for years.
PF- Cory Mosley: Here Oregon has maybe the top rebounder in the league. Mosley is also a solid defender. He is 31 now so age may start to catch up with him soon.
C- Lou Gonzales: Lou is a tall skinny shot blocking machine. He is the WBA’s best shot blocker ever and he is a good scorer. His one weakness is rebounding but Mosley helps make up for that.
Bench- Ian Tilmon, J.J. McCauley, Art Campbell, & Tom Perkins: Tilmon is a young talent, McCauley is a defensive sage, Campbell a solid back-up and Perkins a former star who now is a force off the bench. All told this is a very talented bench.
Alaska Snow Bears
Alaska is…well… a hard team to expect anything out of. At 27% they have the worst winning percentage of any WBA team.
PG- Jermaine Lee: Lee is a young talent. I’m not convinced he will become a star but he should develop into a solid Point Guard. He still has a lot of room for improvement.
SG- Mike Lewis: Really he is not ready to start but this is the Snow Bears. Lewis does have good upside and in a few years will be a very nice player.
SF- Ed Rhodes: He really isn’t a Small Forward. But, the Snow Bears have NOOO talent at this position.
PF- Donavan Jones: He is a decent scorer and rebounder and a solid defender. He won’t win any awards but he is functional. He would make a great reserve on a good team.
C- Zane Rivers: Rivers is a good rebounder but not much of a scorer. His defense could also use improvement.
Bench- Horace Colbert, PJ King, & Bohuslav Hruska: Colbert is a star past his prime. King and Hruska are young players with potential. King actually has a lot of potential and may start at Small Forward. In a couple of years he will be quite good but he isn’t there yet.
Sacramento Fighting Cocks
This is a team that has shown slow steady improvement over the last several years since Lawrence became the GM. But, they had a rough off-season and were able to score very little talent in Free Agency.
PG- Evelio Jackson: Jackson was a good free agent pick-up for the Fighting Cocks. He is a solid Point Guard with good defense and decision-making. He is a very good fit for this team.
SG- Samir Sheth: Few players get to the line like Sheth. He is the center of the Fighting Cocks offense and will have a great year scoring. His ability to get to the line puts a lot of pressure on his opponents.
SF- Edgar Kamara: Here is the one true point forward in the league. He is a good rebounder, excellent defender, and fantastic floor general. He doesn’t look to score but Sacramento focuses on specialists and scoring is not his job.
PF- Mark Miller: Miller is all about defense. But, he is also a good scorer. He does not rebound as well and many other Power Forwards in the league which is his one weakness.
C-John Van Horne: Van Horne is a good rebounder and gets to the line really well. He is also a solid defender. At 29 he is still very athletic.
Bench- Bobby Egan: This is where Sacramento’s off-season hurt them. They just don’t have much depth. Egan is fantastic and may en up backing up the PG, SG, & SF positions. He is one of the best defenders in the league and could lead the league in steals again this year. He is also a nice scoring punch off the bench.
Las Vegas Gamblers
This is probably the youngest team in the league with only two players over 24. Steven Goodstadt is no longer at the helm but new GM Alex Junge is expected to have a bright future with all this young talent.
PG- Al Levy: Levy may not be as good at Wes Taylor right now but Levy is more of a natural Point Guard. If the Gamblers gamble on Levy and give him time to develop it should pay off.
SG- Chad Archer: Archer will become a star in this league. But, the Gambler also have Marella and the rookie Sewell at this position. They are all extremely talented. Look for Junge to move some of this depth to fill other holes.
SF- Justin Hill: This is the type of player who will be good at everything. He just needs time to develop. He is already an all around player but he has the potential to become a special player.
PF- Jeremy Sims: Here is another player with a variety of skills. He will be a scorer who can rebound and handle the ball exceptionally well for a big. He will also be a good defender. He is only 21 though so it will take a couple of years.
C- Senecca Redd: Yet another player who will be very good. But, like the rest of the team he is just okay today. If Las Vegas can hold these players together for a few years…watch out!
Bench- Wes Taylor, Lenn Marella, Brian Sewell, & Victor Pearson: It is the same story here as for the rest of the team. Young and talented but need time to develop.
This is another young team with potential.
PG- Daren Benson: Benson is a pure Point Guard. He is a pass first ball handler with quick hands and fast feet.
SG- Ajan Estay: Seoul has a lights out shooter at Shooting Guard. At 22, he is already a tremendous shot from range and has the ability to develop an all around game.
SF- Ryan DePina: This is the weak spot for the Dragons. DePina will become a solid bench player but he isn’t there yet so starting is just too much for him.
PF- Merlin Lundy: Seoul took Lundy with the 7th pick of the draft and it was a good pick. Lundy is already a solid scorer and will become a very good defender. Rebounding is his weakness so they need to put good rebounders around him.
C- Brian Armstrong: It is the same story Young talented player. He will be a top rebounder so he balanced Lundy well. He will also be a very strong defender.
Bench- Jesse Szcygiel, Tristen Collins, Chad O’Donnell, & Joe Siebert: There is some good talent on the bench for Seoul. Szcygiel was a good free agent pick up and Siebert is a strong defender off the bench. Nothing spectacular but solid.
- Oregon Bears
- Sacramento Fighting Cocks
- Las Vegas Gamblers
- Seoul Dragons
- Alaska Snow Bears