By Ron Chambers
Cancun is the WBA’s most decorated franchise. They have three titles and the most play-off victories. They also have the second most regular season wins. GM Patrick Fullum has shown the league for over a decade how to build a championship team. That hasn’t changed but Cancun’s stars are getting older so it will be interesting to see Fullum’s strategy moving forward. Last year they had the best record in the league. Will there be drop off?
PG- Parker Mason: Mason has long been one of the WBA’s top Point Guards. He isn’t quite what he was but he is still a threat. He is a solid scorer and ball handler and a good defender.
SG- Ahmed Dougherty: Dougherty is a big time scoring threat who is just coming into his prime. He is a little one-dimensional but he does exactly what Cancun needs.
SF- Lonnie Gerson: Gerson is a defensive specialist who comes in and shuts down players and disrupts the opposing offense. He isn’t a big scorer but the Outlaws get that from other players.
PF- Kent Mercer: He is the team’s star. Mercer has a career average of 21 points and 9.3 rebounds. He is the center piece around which Cancun has built their championships. He is also a good defender. He is 31 but still playing at a very high level and will likely stay in the league for several more years.
C- Reed Moses: Like Dougherty, Moses is a part of the young talent that Fullum has been bringing in. He is a strong rebounder and defender and rounds out the starting line-up well.
Bench- Paul Carroll, Roy Cader, & John Gaiser: Carroll is a tremendous player to have coming off the bench. He is a real talent who would start on many WBA teams. Gaiser is a good defender and Cader a solid all around player. depth is always a problem in the WBA. But, Cancun is about as deep as other top teams.
Budapest will likely take a step back after a successful season last year.
PG- Michael Kutak: Kutak is a solid all around player and a very good defender. But, he isn’t much of a floor general. He is a more natural Shooting Guard. That will hurt the team.
SG- Zachariah Salera: Salera came off the bench last season but he is a very effective scorer and will move into the starting line-up. His draw back is that he is just a scorer.
SF- Mathew Gil: The Tigers have some depth at Small Forward but not a real stand out player. Gil is a solid player but not the quality you see starting on top teams.
PF- Gordon Whitehouse: Whitehouse it the team’s star. He is a good scorer and rebounder. But, he doesn’t have the talent to really elevate a team.
C- Bobby Cress: Rebounding is what Cress does, especially on the offensive end. He is also a solid defender but at 33 he is beginning to slow down.
Bench- Jalen Bell, Frank Constantini, & Leo Rice: Bell is a pure scorer that will provide a nice spark off the bench. Constantini is a solid all around player. Rice is better than many people think. He should get a lot of minutes coming off the bench.
Capetown’s power is with the big men but their smalls aren’t slouches. I expect that they will again challenge Cancun for the best in the World Division.
PG- Eric Manning: Manning is a stereotypical Point Guard. He makes good decisions and passes well. He is also a ggod defender and a very good rebounder for a Point Guard.
SG- Dexter Kodak: Kodak makes good decisions with the ball and is a good scorer. He also is a good defender.
SF- Obafemi Mabruke: A true star, is the best way to describe Mabruke. He is a scorer, a rebounder, and a defender. He does it all as he leads one of the best teams in the league.
PF- Abdiel Gordon: If there is a better Power Forward in the league I can’t think of who it is. Like Mabruke he scores, rebounds, and defends. These two make the best forward tandem in the league.
C- Oshodi Bombata: A real rising star at the Center position. He scores with tremendous efficiency. He doesn’t rebound as well as many Centers but with Mabruke and Gordon that is less of a concern.
Bench- Oliver Doherty, George Bissett, & Mark Arceneaux: Doherty and Bissett give some quality depth at the guard spots. The big men is a different story.
Gabon is a team on the rise that still has some holes to fill. Two big holes at Shooting Guard and Small Forward, especially Shooting Guard.
PG- Charlie Meyer: A good diverse Point Guard. He handles the ball well but he also has a good shot, is a good rebounder, and a good defender. This will be his first year with Gabon so it will be interesting to see how he fits in.
SG- Stanislav Khristich: Gabon selected Khristich with the 15th pick in the draft and they are putting a lot on him right away. He isn’t ready. He will struggle this year but he should develop into a good player.
SF- Elvis Haris: Harris is a good scorer, rebounder, and ball handler. He is a solid piece but doesn’t stand out.
PF- Omar Raoumbe: This young player will likely take Jerry Bramson’s spot in the starting line-up this year. He still isn’t quote as good of a defender but he is comparable and has great upside.
C- John Devine: A top young Center with great potential. Devine is already a very good shooter with great range. He is a tremendous offensive rebounder and a solid defender. He will be the core of this team for years.
Bench- Jarrod Roe, Jerry Bramson, & Buck Jones. Roe and Bramson are about as tough as it gets for back-up bigs. Jones isn’t bad for a PG off the bench but Gabon is hurting at the SG & SF.
Mexico City Hellcats
There are a lot of teams focusing on young talent. Mexico City is one of them and they should have some good ones… inthe future.
PG- Dondrell Palmer: The future is bright for Palmer. But, he discovered as a rookie that the WBA is a tough league. He should do better this year but it will still be a couple of years before he reaches the level he needs to be at to be a solid starting point guard.
SG- Casey Pointer: Here is the face of the WBA’s future. He averaged just under 11 points a game last year. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him double that. He is that good and getting better. He is also developing an all-around game he isn’t just a scorer.
SF- Chad Nolan: This is another young player who is going to be good. A good scorer, rebounder, and defender.
PF- Jack Berkley: He may develop into a decent play but he isn’t there yet.
C- Manfred Fenstermacher: Fensterwhatever has a lot of improvement needed. But, he has the most potential of the Hellcat Centers. The other Centers aren’t much better so I expect they will give him a chance to prove himself.
Bench- Oryn Dasling, Elvin Banas, & Brenton Daniels: Solid big men off the bench. Not a lot of depth behind the starting smalls.
- Capetown Zulus
- Cancun Outlaws
- Gabon Giants
- Mexico City Hellcats
- Budapest Tigers