OPINION: Scouting the Philippines-Iran friendly

Rick Olivares

Posted at Jun 10 2016 04:33 PM

Andray Blatche goes up against Iran. Photo courtesy of the PBA Media Bureau

There was a lot to take from this game for both sides that ended with an 81-70 win for the home team. Let’s break it down.

PHILIPPINES 
Offensive end: 

Gilas’ willingness to attack the interior caused so many problems for Iran defensively. Shot more free throws 18-15.

Blatche’s presence forced Iran to also pack the lane leaving the shooters open.

Shooters in the corners — Norwood, Parks, Reyes, De Ocampo.
Iran couldn’t stop the drives of Castro and Romeo and that led to a lot of early buckets from drop passes or kickouts. Iran adjusted.

I thought that after a while, the Philippines stopped playing team ball and opted to go one-on-one especially Romeo and Blatche. Sure the team has better isolation players. Iran had 20 assists to Gilas’ 15.

Nine players attempted a three-pointer. We seem to have more shooters.

Lots of bench production coming from Romeo, Parks, and Aguilar,

Baskets when they needed it: 

Blatche
Romeo
Parks

Players along the baseline for drop passes/hand-offs: 

De Ocampo
Parks
Aguilar

I like how Tab Baldwin left Parks, Romeo, Tenorio, Blatche, and Norwood in at the end. Not too much heights but a team that can handle the ball and hit their free throws should Iran foul. He didn’t bring back Castro and other regulars. But this was to see how they’d do.

 

Defensive end: 

Was outrebounded 35-31. When Blatche is outside trying to drive or shoot, there isn’t anyone to rebound.

Guarding the pick and roll, Blatch would help leaving the lane open. But Gabe Norwood was there to protect the rim. Better rim protection. 3-1 in blocks for Gilas.

Very active hands on defense and in the passing lanes that caused problems (7-5).

Jamshidi and Yakchali would drive from the left side of the arc or from the middle. Noticed we were a little vulnerable from the drive on that left side. Jamshidi has speed and is long and that helped him get to the basket quick.

 

IRAN 

That’s a very young Iranian team. I applaud their efforts to give their youngsters valuable playing time as their Golden Generation of players wind down their international careers.

Offensive End: 

What I liked about Iran is they did not get caught up with the Philippines’ penchant for the spectacular. They just ran their sets. Drive and draw. Move the ball around and hit the open man. When the offense stagnated, they relied on Jamshidi and Yakchali to create.

They got spotted a pair of 20-plus leads but they cut it down each time. With this young team with only two battle-tested vets in Ashgar Kardoust and Oshin Sahakian, that’s pretty good.

Of the 11 Iranians fielded by Dirk Bauermann, eight players attempted three-pointers.

Players who will really shoot that three- Sahakian, Jamshidi Yakchali, and Zangeneh.

Likes to run a pick and roll on the wings.

Bench production is a concern. Zangeneh is the only reliable one.
Their frontline was somewhat intimidated by Blatche.

Jamshidi though playing the two or three is their top assist man (better than point guards Sajjad Mashayeki and Aslani Farid). He finished with 8 points, 3 rebounds, and 7 assists vs 2 turnovers.
Sahakian plays the power forward position. Can post, shoot the three, and will drive given the chance unike Kardoust who prefers to muscle his way in.

 

Defensive End: 

Played match up zone. Some time late in the game — I could be wrong here — they went to a 3-2 zone.

Didn’t pressure the Philippine ball carriers. Sometimes sat in their 2-3 zone to stop the dribble drive penetrations.

Disclaimer: The views in this blog are those of the blogger and do not necessarily reflect the views of ABS-CBN Corp.