Caleb Earnest-Grading Game 4

Oilers-3 out of a possible 4

It seems that you had the entire game under control, and UCU was just scrapping of anything that they could find. Ball movement was good, along with great spacing on offense. Kami was much more interested in the game this time around, and things were going well, but if you happen to lose this series, we are all going to remember the 1.5 minute stretch in the 4th quarter where UCU just took over and left you standing in wet cement. Last night, we didn’t see the same maturity on court as we have come to identify you by. Technical Fouls and indiscipline didn’t see to matter early, but I am certain that you would like to have those free points back. Are you the better “team?” Yes, but you have to continue to be the better team, and stop taking moments off.

UCU-3 out of a possible 4

Just when I made the statement, after Landry banked in a 3 for the Oilers to have a 8 point lead late in the 4th quarter, “This is over, and is just isn’t the Canons night,” you guys started playing out of your minds. On a night, where you didn’t have all things together, you were able to manage a win. Let’s be honest, you stuck up and grabbed this one away from Oilers. Apparently these large defects and comebacks are going to be something that defines this series. I wish you luck, but wouldn’t you want to just dominate from the beginning?

Man of the Game-

Again, Steve Wundi. This guy is turning magical. I remember as a kid going to the Supermarket, and putting a quarter in the gumball machine and turning the dial. Then I would watch in amazement as the gumball would make its’ way down the spiral and exit the machine. I feel the same way about Wundi. It is like you put in 1,000 shillings and you get 3 points. It is automatic, and most of the time without fail. I am certain that this guy misses, but I just can’t remember any.

Coach Mande-5 out of 10

The lost the advantage that you had when your team becomes the one that fights and argues with the referees. Your team is the calm mature one. Your team is the team that has won back to back championships.

You don’t have to prove anything to anyone, so stop your guys from running their mouth. Stupid technical cost this game. You need to regain that maturity that your team is supposed to have. Also, why does your bench need 1,000 people? I understand management, structure, and support, but I believe that this hurt you last night. When these guys got fired up at the referees, and all surrounded court, it set a tone for the rest of the game. Perhaps it is better for you if these guys sit elsewhere to let you coach, and complete a back to back to back.

Coach Nick-7 out of 10

I don’t particularly think that it was a good night for Canons, with the exception of the win. There were lots of turnovers and sloppy play. Rebounding was fair, and defense was decent. I never felt that you had a chance to win, even when you were up six with a minute to go. Congrats, but I am still not convinced that you are able to find 2 more wins before Oilers do. You have changed the landscape of the Finals, and have a team that is ready to believe, but they still have a lot of work to do, and they have a lot to prove. I am certain that Innocent being out of uniform has reasons, but I would really like to see this guy on court. He is a smart guard who has experience to compete and make great decisions. I feel like there are others who are just taking their turn shooting without any results to show for it on the other end, and you are wasting possessions.

It is the Finals. Not everyone should play, and certainly not everyone should have the Green Light to shoot. In Wundi We Trust, but soon you are going to need a little something different because this guy can’t be perfect forever.

Refereeing-7 out of 10

The refereeing in the game was very balanced, and very consistent. Fans make not like the many calls that were made, but I believe that they were all things that needed to be called. The game was called very tight, and players needed to adjust to that. Once again, the problem with calling a game in the manner has very little to do with the game itself, but the rest of the season when many of these fouls were not fouls. Players get in a habit of being able to do some of these cheap things, and a culture is developed. I wish the entire refereeing landscape was the same so that players will know what is allowed and not allowed.

This game was refereed well, but others haven’t been in the past. It confuses players.

Even though the game was refereed well, the lower mark stands because of the power trip that it seemed Baker and Opolot were on. Just calm down. I was completely disgusted in the 1st quarter when Yahya protested a call, and Opolot walked strongly toward him, put his whistle in his mouth, and motioned his hands as if he was going to give a technical. Calm down. You don’t have to get angry to do your job. Everyone there knows that you are in control. You don’t have to prove it.

Your presence on court sets the tones for the reactions of players and coaches. The manner in which you use your mechanics can make a situation worse for a player who has just committed a foul. If you call a foul, call a foul, but don’t stand there and stare down a player. Certainly don’t step to a player. Just calm down.

Lastly, how in the hell did City Oil bench not get a second technical with members from the crowd surrounded the court. Many of these City Oil guys are not on the official score sheet to have the right to sit where they sit in some games, but often that are at the score’s table, on court, sitting on bench, and definitely being major players in what is happening. Last night when two individuals, who were not on court stepped to the refereed to protest the technical given to Mande, then this has to be addressed. Baker was right to make the one gentleman move to another area, but seriously, there should have been another bench technical at that point because that bench was out of control.

This is my last post for the Finals. I am leaving today to go home for Christmas. Basketball in UG is alive, and it was great to see all of the fans. I hope both Canon teams finish strong, and I hope someone else can keep me updated. Take care, and see you next year.