The goal of the ‘defending champion’ SK is, of course, to win. The key is to overcome the tough schedule ahead.
Seoul SK met Daegu Korea Gas Corporation in the 2022-2023 SKT A-Dot professional basketball regular season game held at Jamsil Student Gymnasium on the 11th and won 89-85.
SK is currently in 3rd place. However, the difference between Changwon LG in 2nd place, Hyundai Mobis in Ulsan in 4th place, and Carrot in Goyang in 5th place is not large. The difference between 2nd place and 5th place is only 2.5 games. If you have a winning streak or a losing streak, there is a good chance of a change in the rankings.
However, SK’s remaining schedule is not good. A situation where we have to play 6 games in the coming 9 days. Meet LG after the Korea Gas Corporation exhibition. On the 18th, they met Wonju DB and on the 19th, they met Anyang KGC. It’s a tough schedule to meet a top team right after a match against a mid-table team. Lastly, the tough KBL schedule ends with a game against Jeonju KCC.
But that doesn’t mean SK’s tough schedule is over. I’m going to Japan for EASL. A situation where you have to play the season without a break period. After the end of EASL, round 6 must be played again.
Aware of this schedule, SK coach Jeon Hee-chul said ahead of the Korea Gas Corporation match, “We play 6 games in 9 days. I will go to Japan later. After that, there is another back-to-back. Until then, the schedule is tight. It will be physically difficult. The game to be caught must be clearly opened and finished quickly so that the playing time can be controlled. But our players don’t keep it. (Laughter) Starting today, we have to create that kind of opportunity.”
SK was on a two-game winning streak, and KOGAS was on a six-game losing streak. SK was ahead with a record of 3 wins and 1 loss. The team ranking was also higher for SK. Since the game was played at home, it is more advantageous for SK. However, as the former coach predicted (?), the game was a close match.
SK set the mood early in the game with Jameel Warney (199cm, C) at the forefront. Warney was involved in all of the team’s first 10 points. However, he could not control Jeong Hyo-geun (202cm, F) and the score gap quickly narrowed. And at the end of the quarter, a series of unfortunate mistakes came out, allowing the opponent to turn around. The chase continued in the second quarter, but fouls and mistakes caught the ankle. The first half ended 42-45.
However, SK caught the mood through the 3rd quarter. First, it was reversed with Warney’s consecutive goals and Kim Seon-hyeong (187cm, G)’s breakthrough score. In addition, Choi Jun-yong (200cm, F) brought the atmosphere by scoring 8 points. After that, the score followed a series of steals, and the score difference between the two teams quickly widened. As a result, SK finished the third quarter with 71-62.
After that, SK faced a crisis as they could not control Murphy Holloway (196cm, F). However, 14 seconds before the end of the game, Choi Jun-yong scored a decisive block shot. Although they faced a crisis due to Choi Jun-yong’s foul 3 seconds before the end of the game, Lee Dae-heon (197cm, F) missed 2 out of 3 free throws and SK, who kept the remaining time, won the game.
It was hard to put the first button to start the tough schedule. It could have been easy, but the game was close and SK players should have done their best until the end.
Coach Jeon Hee-chul, whom I met after the game, won, but confessed his concerns about the remaining schedule and the upcoming LG match. “The game is very tight. If it collapses, it can be a difficult situation.”
“The next match is against LG. too strong Marey is also very strong,” he said. “I plan to catch it tomorrow and touch the fight for second place. That way, I think the players will have fun too. I plan to prepare better,” he sighed.
Choi Jun-yong, who was selected as the Distinguished Player, also expressed regret about the schedule. Choi Jun-yong said, “KBL only has 10 teams, but they play 54 games. Compared to other countries, we play a lot. As a result, injuries come out in the second half. It may be difficult to fix, but I hope you can fix it.”
The goal of the ‘defending champion’ SK is, of course, to win. As the ranking battle is still a long way off, we have to do our best in every game and get a high ranking. The key is the tight schedule ahead. SK has to overcome the rest of the schedule to keep the championship. 안전놀이터