Monday, June 30, 2008

Is There No One Else?

Visions of Achilles taunting would be challengers really do come to mind after the complete domination displayed by Manny Pacquiao yesterday. There was no time at all where it seemed that the verdict was in jeopardy. It was apparent that after the 3rd round or so, the only suspense that remained was which round will the champion Diaz finally succumb to the barrage of punches coming too quick for him to do anything about.

I grew up in Chicago and I must admire the gallant effort from Diaz. The city is known for its grit and strength of character. Pacman was just too good that he looked like he wasn't trying as hard. It seemed like a walk in the park for our hero.

At least once again for a brief moment, Filipinos felt on the top of the world despite all the difficulties in their lives.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Who's the Best? (this week)

This is it.  A personal project has come to fruition with the help of the Solar guys and of course the sports media.  We rank the top college basketball teams every week.  A group of sports media people have agreed to be part of a voting process to determine where each school stands every week leading up to the national championship.  Contributors include the Philippines Star, Manila Bulletin, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Pinoyexchange, BTV, Studio 23, Business Mirror, Universitybelt, Basketbolista, Manila Standard, Inboundpass, and Gamface.There are others and I will post the full list when I get it.  The winner of the Philippine Collegiate Championships will represent the Philippines in the World University Games in Serbia.  

I get to vote and I will post my rankings here every week.  The actual rankings based on everyone's contribution will be published in the Philippine Star sports section and various other publications/websites like Basketbolista, Pinoyexchange, Gameface, Inboundpass, and others.  This is a very subjective list but it's gonna be fun to see how it goes for the next few months as teams start beating up on each other.

My rankings for this week were as follows: 1.UE 2.SBC 3.ADMU 4.DLSU 5.FEU 6.CSJL 7.UST 8.JRU 9.ADU 10.MIT 11.SSC 12.NU 13.PCU 14.STI 15.EAC.  It is still pre season so a lot of uncertainties and many teams not having a lot of exposure.  

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Can They Bring Back the Gold?

Today, USA Basketball announced the NBA players who will be representing the USA for this year's Olympics.  They were Dwight Howard, Carlos Boozer, Chris Bosh, Kobe Bryant, Dwayne Wade, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Lebron James, Carmelo Anthony, Michael Redd, Jason Kidd and Tayshaun Prince.

For the most part, it seems like a lineup that has the talent, the willpower and the dedication to win back the gold for the United States.  I like the fact they kept Tayshaun Prince to challenge the outside shots and switch on the pick and rolls.  This team has the best scorers, passers and shooters in the world.

There is one concern I have.  Size.  Dwight Howard is the only true center and it seems that only he and Carlos Boozer have the ability to bang on a daily basis which is what it's gonna take if they want to be Olympic champs again.  What happens if one or both get in foul trouble?  Gasol, Bogut, Yao, and Nowitski are all in the same level as our bigmen.  Interior defense broke down with the countless back door plays from the top tier teams in the world.  Also outside of those two big guys, there are no other true post up players to take the pressure off the guards and small forwards.  Maybe a Kevin Garnett, or Elton Brand off the bench instead of 8 guards (not counting Prince who plays guard sometimes) would give Team USA a better chance.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Zero to Hero

Gilbert Arenas comes to the Philippines for the adidas Agent Zero Tour
Gilbert Arenas, one of the best point guards in the National Basketball Association and known as "Agent Zero" being the only player wearing the number 0 jersey, comes to Manila for the adidas Agent Zero Tour 2008.
Arenas has collaborated with adidas with its thrust for Brotherhood and the core values of basketball and have come up with the Gil II Zero collection including the Gil Zero shoes and clothing apparel.
Arenas plays for the Washington Wizards and has been known for his fierce competitiveness and "shoot-first pass-second" technique on the court. Lovers of the sport watch out for his slashing drives to the basket and long-range jump shots. Arenas showcases the many facets of his beliefs with eight Gil Zero shoes including Black President, Vote for Gilbert, Channel Zero, NBA Live 2008, Hibachi, Customize, I Love L.A. and Agent Zero. Learn about the story behind each of these shoes at These shoes correspond to the eight core values of basketball namely Confidence, Commitment, Passion, Respect, Inspire, Sacrifice, Trust and Innovative - all these promoting Brotherhood in the game.
The Agent Zero Tour 2008 will feature community events, exclusive parties, and mall tours. On July 6, Gilbert Arenas is scheduled to visit adidas concept stores including Mall of Asia store at 11:00 a.m., Rockwell store at 2:00 p.m., and TriNoma store at 5:00 p.m. This will be followed by the Agent Zero Tour 2008 statement show at the TriNoma Activity Center at 6:00 p.m. where fans and sports buffs alike can have a once-in-a-lifetime experience to meet and greet Gilbert Arenas. Guests will enjoy the activities surrounding the venue and get the chance to have their Gil Zero shoes autographed. For more details on how to join, please check out Agent Zero Tour 2008 information at adidas stores in Mall of Asia, Rockwell, and TriNoma.
While in Manila, Gilbert Arenas will also officially lead the turnover of a basketball court to a Gawad Kalinga community as part of adidas'
mission to help promote sports among the youth.

Go Green

Before the playoffs started, I joined an NBA bracket pool organized by Mo Twister, who is a huge NBA fan. I picked the Boston Celtics to beat the LA Lakers in 6 games. It was part because I thought those two teams had the best chance but also because I was hoping for the best possible matchup for all the fans. The only series that I got wrong was the Suns losing to the Spurs but I must admit that the Celts got me very nervous in the first round.

We received the ratings for the first 4 games of the finals and the numbers are very encouraging. All games hit #1 in the 4th quarter with games 1,2, and 4 staying at the top spot for over an hour! There were certain points in games 2 and 4 where the game had a 40% share towards the end of the game. Game 4's average share of 26% is the highest in the history of Philippine NBA coverage.

So the NBA and all the partner networks around the world join the Celtics in celebrating a glorious finals where the two best and most popular teams met and created interest the league has needed.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Where "The Best Ratings Ever" Happens

In the middle of the NBA season, when the Lakers traded for Pau Gasol, many started to dream of a finals series between Boston and Los Angeles.  Why not?  The Celtics had the best record in the league and with the addition of the Spanish center, the Lakers had arguably the best starting five (5) in the world.  There were questions for both squads.  Will Pau fit into the triangle and other schemes of Phil Jackson.  The Celtics, despite their record and their talent, didn't have anyone who had a championship ring in their lineup until they signed Cassel and Brown.  

Now that all the hopes and dreams have materialized, expectations on viewership and interest have been met.  In the U.S. ratings were up almost 40% from previous year for ABC 7.  Here in the Philippines, the buzz is at an all time high.  In fact, game two (2) was the highest ever rated NBA game in the Philippines based on unofficial AC Nielsen numbers.  According to the same survey, RPN9 even overtook ABS-CBN2 and GMA7 for a short time right before noon in the 4th quarter of the game.  

Sometimes, you really just do your best to market the product and hope for the best circumstances to happen.  This is why we all love the NBA, where "the best possible finals matchup for the popularity of the league" happens.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

It's Always Good to Clarify

This post is actually a clarification on a point published in a previous post and included in Quinito Henson's article.  I can take it back since I should have classified it as a personal opinion rather than truth.  Mindshare wanted some sort of retraction from the statement "overwhelmingly recommended" since according to them, they did not recommend a channel one way or another.  Maybe ABS-CBN is on their case about it.

I based that statement from the following article last May 27 written by Ronnie Nathanielsz, at the Manila Standard stating projections by Mindshare... "It was also reported that if the PBA games were aired on RPN-9, they would rate around 7.5 percent while if aired on Studio 23 they would rate around 1.8 percent."  In my opinion, if your projection is for a channel to rate over four (4) times more than another network, it is practically a recommendation.

So my apologies to Mindshare if the statement caused undue strife. I did not mean to put words in their mouth.