At First Glance: De La Salle Green Archers

Pio Garcia - The Philippine Star

Will the Archers finally regain their swagger or will still eat Ateneo’s dust? Let’s check them out then.

The Good

Offseason is meant for developing skills and maturity not only as an individual but also as a team. Therefore, a summer of training should’ve helped hone already-impressive King Archer Jeron Teng.

Not only that, the continued development of point guard Thomas Torres should be a good sign come the UAAP wars for the Taft-based cagers. Almond Vosotros can stay with the bench unit and hoist the Sixth Man of the Year award by season’s end. He should embrace the Microwave role deeper this time around if DLSU wants to go past the eliminations round and the Final Four.

They have a crack unit from 1 through 3. You can add guys like Kib Montalbo who’s proving he can be the reliable backup for Torres IF LA Revilla is once more unserviceable due to injuries plaguing his entire career. Do not forget Oda Tampus, who can form a dangerous 1-2 with Vosotros off the pine.

But it’s at the paint where the Archers lack. Norbert Torres is a true center in Philippine terms. However, he is being underutilized time and again. There’s no one who can put a body against him now at 6’7” and 200-plus pounds by the estimate. No more Greg Slaughter. Though there’s UE’s Charles Mammie and NU’s Alfred Aroga. But that’s beside the point. If the Archers want to go all the way, they should learn to recognize their advantage in having Norbert Torres down low. He should get the ball down low, at the free throw line, at the elbows, on the seal, on the team bus for crying out loud.

The Bad

There’s no help for Norbert Torres.

Arnold Van Opstal? That guy is still raw. After three years. All height, no post moves. Blowing a lay-up when you should’ve just dunked it? Yeah pretty much.

Enter Jason Perkins. He’s the clone off of a Ryan Buenafe and additional liempo experiment but this baller from Minnesota knows how to play to his strenghts. He can dish out punishment down low, though his board work remains a lot to be desired when matched up against taller guys. Remember, Charles Barkley was listed generously at 6’5” but the Round Mound of Rebound ate the boards like no guy for his height. Perkins should try to emulate that else a hardworker gets better position and denies them second chance points.

The Ugly

Coaching carousel three weks before the season starts?

It does not matter how long Juno Sauler has been an assistant coach. But how do you expect a team that is still learning the ropes of Gee Abanilla’s system suddenly switch to a new one on the fly? You have an offseason to switch coaches, not three weeks before the start of the tournament.

Plain stupid and this gives The Green Mind a big excuse if the Archers falter once more.

Watch out for…

Jason Perkins. Kib Montalbo.

Two names for every De La Salle foe. Jeron Teng is a given. So is Almond Vosotros heating up right after getting subbed in. These two will provide pressure alleviation to Teng whose task is to carry this team like what Kiefer Ravena and Bobby Ray Parks do for Ateneo and National University respectively.

They might bring back the Archers glory days. Wherein they don’t simply rely on a superstar but on a team. Well, even if bought off, it’s still a team.










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