2018 WINTER  |  SEASON 40

By: League Analyst
Contributing Writer


Ball Broz vs. nWo
12 p.m.


Heart over Height. Mike Peters went to work scoring a game-high, 31 points, 4 three-pointers against a huge front line.

Beating the re-vamped nWo roster was a tall order for Ball Broz, a team that is looking for a match-up against previous #1 team, Killmonger. The new roster was met with a lot of raised eyebrows as several 6 footers made their debut for nWo.

"Oh so they're picking up a bunch of big players now huh," said a player from Ball Broz.

MVP candidate Mike Peters saw the new nWo skyline, smirked, and went to work as Ball Broz made a huge statement in a 75-73 win.

Peters was a talking highlight scoring a weekend-high, 31 points, 7 rebounds, 4 three-pointers. Peters was on fire in the 1st half knocking down 4-of-5 three-pointers but cooled off in the 2nd half before finishing 4-for-11 from 3-point territory. GM Gabe Rodriguez is out(knee) while Andrew Lozano stepped up with 17 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists. Robert Morgan continues to fill up the stat sheet, scoring 16 points, grabbing 8 rebounds and dishing for 2 assists.

Heart over Height. While most players would have sulked in the height difference between Ball Broz and nWo, Ball Broz raised their level of play and figured out the mis-matches, in their favor. The League Commissioner, all 5'2 of the League Commish and that's on a good day, has never imposed a height restriction and believes that players should stop looking at height as a disadvantage.

"That's the best feeling in the world, when opponents overlook you cuz you're shorter than everyone else and you utilize your strengths - your speed, ball handling, your shot," said the League Commish. "You play with a chip on your shoulder and prove you're just as good if not better. Hard work. It's heart over height, and Ball Broz proved that."

Ball Broz never trailed despite a late comeback led by Mark Mercado who finished with 23 points, 5 three-pointers on 5-for-8 shooting. Down by 12 with 2 minutes left, Mercado knocked down 3 three-pointers in the game's closing minutes but failed to get the ball when he had a chance to put the game away. Jerry Tennison finished with 14 points on 40% shooting while Luis Riascos added 12 points on 83.3% shooting. Beau Reyes added 5 points while Ever Carro finished with 8 points.

NOTE: Great players mentally play through it and the ones who are putting up numbers aren't letting the refs dictate the game...they simply play through it. Officiating is tough in any league, in any sport, and it's always going to be a problem. If you're going to complain to the refs every call, every possession and looking for a bail out, then playing in a men's basketball league isn't for you. No names mentioned.


Elements vs. Reckless
1 p.m.


"Not gonna get me". That's either a reference to James Bernardo's defensive tenacity or James Santillan's infamous Week 2 pic.

Welp. It happened. Despite numerous warnings, they still did it. We said, "don't do it," yet again they did it.


...and that was pretty much the theme for the Elements as Elements lose to their rival team, Reckless, 71-42.


"Don't shoot it, Luke."

He shot it.


"They're gonna force this no look pass, watch."

They forced it.

"Pass the ball!"

Luke does a crazy behind the back dribble, only seen once in Superstar Basketball but misses the shot.

"Okay, you know what, your handles are getting better," admitted a league analyst.

Elements are continuing to defy Father Time and despite a 40-17 deficit in the 1st half, Elements played a respectable 2nd half (31-25) using ball movement and defense. James Bernardo finished with 3 steals, 5 assists and a Top 5 block on Reckless' Luis Montes. Bernardo's fast hands continues to be overlooked by his opponents but not by Reckless' Nate Federico who held Bernardo in high regard.


"James is still a Top 10 pure point guard in the league," quipped Narob with a smirk.


Adrian Cueto finished with a team-high 16 points and logged a double-double grabbing 11 rebounds in Elements' second loss of the season. Einil Cueto added 6 points while Montilla added 9 points and 3 rebounds. Luke Montilla finished with 9 points, 3 rebounds and was 2-for-8 from inside 3-point line.


Luis Montes finished with 14 points, 8 rebounds while David Guerrero added 15 points, 11 rebounds, 3 blocked shots. Rinzo Molitika added 13 points, 3 assists while Brian Serpas tied a team-high with 11 rebounds. GM Noel Serpas (5 points, 4 assists) spent a lot of time playing his bench knowing his main guys will be ready against some of the league's top tier teams.


Chicle vs. Undisputed Era
2 p.m.


Sir, can you show me where the Player of the Week is going to? That way...


It was a week early, but the good luck jerseys were welcomed as Chicle avoided their first losing streak of the season. The rookei team debuted their new Cavs inspired green jerseys as Chicle improve their record to 2-1 in a 60-47 win against Undisputed Era.


Two players scored in double figures as CJ Pang and Louie Venegas tied a game-high with 19 points apiece. After missing last weekend, CJ made his return en tune to team-highs of 12 rebounds, 3 steals and 5 assists. Venegas, one of the fastest players in the league, shot 78% from the floor scoring mostly on uncontested drives to the basket. Despite these individual performances, the biggest stand-out was Chicle guard, Jay Tapang, who finished with 13 points, 3 assists and 7 STEALS! In a sequence in the 2nd half, Tapang took over logging 2 straight steals and 2 straight made baskets.


"We saw a lot of good individual performances today, but 7 steals is equivalent to 50 points," said a league official. "If that's not Player of the Week status, I don't know what is."


Undisputed Era had high hopes coming in this match-up as Jason Rico continues to put up solid numbers for GM Erick Maldonado's team. Rico made it rain by dropping 17 points, 3 three-pointers while hitting nearly 40% of his shots.  His yoga partner, Herman Pech, finished with 13 points, 6 rebounds while Jose Rivera added 6 points. Despite the loss, Maldonado was ecstatic with the return of veteran forward, Manuel Rivera, who finished with 4 points, 6 rebounds and 2 steals. Rivera, rumored to be out this season, should be a key player for Undisputed Era down the stretch.


"Manny is like the eye patch to the Raiders logo," said a league analyst. "Erick is blinded by Manny, no?"


"He's like Brian O' Connor to his Dominic Toretto," added the league analyst. "Nevermind... he's just happy to see him back. Oh wait, he's like HHH to his Shawn Michaels... there you go."


Killmonger vs. East LA Dream Team
3 p.m.


Do not let this man shoot! Mario Miramontes put the game away with 2 clutch buckets in the 2nd half.


You couldn't have written this any better.


Dream Team, the defending Champions after beating Powerball a year ago, was distant in the opening of the new season. Where was T'Challa, err East LA Dream Team, the heir to the throne? Where are the kings of Superstar? Were they aware of the responsibilities as the new leader of Wakanda, err Superstar?


Killmonger, an undefeated team with a 2-0 start, the new King of Wakanda, errr, Superstar, was sitting on top of rankings. While they served as the new kings of the hardwood, many questioned the new leaders of Wakanda err, Superstar. Only 19% agreed with their #1 ranking and Killmonger was out to prove the authenticity of their 2-0 start.


*grabs popcorn*

*plays The Weeknd, Kendrick Lamar - Pray for me*

Killmonger tried to be the Weeknd, but they were more like a weekday as Killmonger fall flat to T'Challa err Dream Team, 80-61.


Jordan Salley led Killmonger with 20 points and logged a double-double grabbing 14 rebounds (not 19) in the team's first loss of the season. Uzoma Kalu finished with 16 points, 5 rebounds and 2 steals while GM Steven Ancheta scored 7 points. Dion Hudson finished with a team-high, 5 assists and scored 6 points in a forgettable game for Dion. The team played without 2 key starters in Darren Johnson and Frankie Eturti, both players who need to understand their roles in the system.


"We can't have players not show up on game day, they need to understand we all need each other, we're a team," said Ancheta, post game. "We know our roles, but some of our players need to understand that."


"They're a good team, they're on our radar," said Dream Team Founder, Reyes Cervantes.


East LA Dream Team came out hungry and ready to prove they still deserved the #1 spot until further notice. Alan Rosas finished with 12 points, 4 rebounds, while Andrew Martinez led all players with 27 points, 4 rebounds, and 2 assists. Martinez, deserving of Player of the Week honors, was a close Runner-up to Chicle's Jay Tapang who finished with 7 steals. Frankie Morales added 12 points and 5 assists while GM Mario Miramontes finished with 11 points.


Killmonger narrowed the gap to just 6 points in the 2nd half but Miramontes quietly subbed in and knocked down 2 three-pointers to put the lead in double digits. Killmonger, a team many regards as the "fittest" team in the league, had no answers for Miramontes' hot shooting in the crucial 2nd half.


"Can't overlook players man, they don't know about Mario," said the League Commish. "When he was just as fit as Killmonger, he was hitting half court shots at LA Fitness six years ago. King of LA Fitness...forever."

*buys tickets to watch Black Panther, again*