The brakes were placed on SK’s unstoppable winning streak.
The Seoul SK Knights lost 67-81 in the match against Anyang KGC Ginseng Corporation in the second game of the 2022-2023 SKT Adot Professional Basketball Championship held at Anyang Gymnasium on the 27th. The series record for both teams was 1 win and 1 loss.
Looking at the entire championship game, it’s not a bad result for SK. I recorded 1 win and 1 loss on the road, and now I move to the home and have 3 consecutive matches. The overall flow isn’t bad.
With 1 win and 1 loss, winning Game 3 became very important for both teams. Especially for SK. This is because it is necessary to prove that there are no aftereffects from the long-awaited defeat so that the series can be played smoothly.
It has been a long time since SK lost this day. After losing 84-90 to KGC in the 2023 East Asian Super League (EASL) Champions Week final held at Okinawa Arena in Okinawa Prefecture, Japan on the 5th of last month, SK did not lose once.
In terms of KBL alone, the last defeat was a 68-73 loss against KCC in Jeonju on February 23rd. It is the first defeat in 63 days. During this period, SK finished the regular season with 6 rounds of victories, followed by 6 consecutive wins in the playoffs, and also won the first round of the championship. He went on a 16-game winning streak.
Many coaches emphasize that not only winning streaks are important, but also a rebound in mood when winning streaks are broken. This is because there is a possibility that problems and weaknesses that were not revealed when going well may suddenly come to the surface. Be wary of falling into a losing streak after a long winning streak ends.
In fact, since March, SK’s situation and schedule have not been smooth. Last season’s regular league MVP Choi Jun-yong left. In the meantime, due to EASL, I had to go back and forth to Japan. They fought fiercely for ranking until the last game of the regular league. In the end, they failed to reach the second place they were aiming for, and had to play the playoffs from the sixth round.
KGC, their opponent in the championship match, also played the EASL schedule, but considering the regular league rankings and playoff schedule, it is true that SK has more ups and downs, including their physical inferiority.
However, even in this situation, SK has been playing a game that does not lose based on a come-from-behind drama. Even if you run for the same amount of time, there is a huge difference in the fatigue you feel when you win and when you lose. Dopamine from Seungri was the biggest driving force for SK to overcome the arduous schedule.
However, the unstoppable march to victory finally stopped. It is even more difficult to rebound if a losing streak continues after a winning streak. This is why winning the third game is more important to SK than KGC. Even with the same loss, the burden on SK is bound to be greater than on KGC.
At the media day of the championship game, coach Jeon Hee-chul expressed his opinion that he was not too worried about the situation when the winning streak was broken.
Coach Jeon said, “Last season, we had a 15-game winning streak and it was cut off, but our players didn’t fall into a bad rhythm and showed us winning right away. In the championship game, the flow of winning and losing in each game is more natural, so it will not have a big impact.”
However, with the suspension of the winning streak, it is definitely a concern that SK got the one-two punch they could trust the most.
Head coach Jeon Hee-cheol proclaimed the so-called ‘molppang basketball’ ahead of the championship game. With the current strategy, a one-two punch using Kim Seon-hyung and Jameel Warney should lead the game.
The combination of Kim Seon-hyeong and Warney was already showing great power in the playoffs. In six playoff games in the semifinals and semifinals, he averaged 43.0 points, 16.0 rebounds and 10.8 assists per game.
In the first leg of the championship match held on the 25th, he had 45 points, 16 rebounds and 13 assists. Kim Seon-hyung’s field goal rate was 66.7%, and Warney, who only succeeded in one out of six field goals in the first quarter, boasted a high success rate of 60% after the second quarter.
But the second round was different. Kim Seon-hyung and Warney tied for 19 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists.
This is the first time in the playoffs that Kim Seon-hyeong and Warney jointly scored less than 20 points. Even there was only one game where their scoring joint did not reach 40 points.
Ahead of today’s game, Shin Ki-seong, a sports commentator, emphasized that KGC should find a countermeasure against the Kim Seon-hyung-Woni combination. 메이저놀이터
He said, “KGC is definitely better in terms of power, but in the end, it couldn’t control Kim Seon-hyeong-Warney. Regardless of whether it won or lost, KGC must find a solution to defend Kim Seon-hyeong-Warney. We can take the possibility, but even if we win, we will struggle if we don’t find a way to defend against them.”
With the end of the streak, SK’s high scoring streak of Kim Seon-hyung and Warney also stopped. Depending on whether the bombardment of the MVP duo is a period or a comma, the aftereffects of SK’s winning streak will appear in different ways.