Although they lost, coach Jeon Hee-chul and the SK team did their best.
The Seoul SK Knights lost 97-100 to Anyang KGC Ginseng Corporation in the 7th game of the 2023 SKT A-Dot Professional Basketball Championship held at Anyang Gymnasium on the 7th.
The eventful season of SK, which has played a total of 70 games, including the regular league, EASL, and playoffs, has come to an end. At the beginning of the season, they fell to the bottom, but the last two teams showed their potential to advance to the remaining championship match. No one can call SK’s season a failure.
After his managerial debut, Jeon Hee-cheol became the manager who stepped on the stage of the championship match in his first two seasons. After a long coaching career last season, he took over as SK’s commanding tower and led the team to its first combined victory with thorough analysis and the right tactics and strategies. It was an example of a prepared young leader.
Compared to the previous season, which was smooth in its own way, this season was by no means easy. Despite Ahn Young-jun’s enlistment, SK, which was classified as a high-ranking candidate, had most of its other core resources intact. At the beginning of the season, many rotation resources, including Choi Jun-yong, were in crisis due to injuries.
Choi Jun-yong’s return and Choi Seong-won’s joining after being discharged succeeded in reversing the atmosphere, but the bad news did not disappear easily. Choi Jun-yong, who led the team’s rebound, missed again due to a heel injury in mid-February. The tighter schedule compared to previous years in the aftermath of EASL also bothered SK.
However, coach Jeon Hee-cheol and the SK team did not collapse easily. Coach Jeon led SK’s upward trend at the end of the season with a tactic that maximized the power of the one-two punch between Kim Seon-hyung and Jamil Warney while Choi Jun-yong, a key resource, was missing. Other players such as Choi Bu-kyung, Choi Seong-won, Heo Il-young, Choi Won-hyuk and Oh Jae-hyun also did their part.
SK, which finished the 6th round with a 9-game win, seldom lost in the playoffs. After defeating KCC in the semifinals, SK reached the stage of the championship match by defeating LG, the 2nd place in the regular league, in the semifinals with a total of 3 wins.
Coach Jeon referred to SK’s basketball as ‘Kim Seon-hyeong and Warney’s basketball’, but it was a winning streak that was only possible because the players’ division of labor was thorough. You can never rise to the ranks of a strong team with basketball that recklessly relies on only two players. This is only possible because the players are well in harmony with the coaching staff’s operational instructions.
The championship match, held in a sold-out march, was a match that will remain in KBL history. SK, who took the series lead by winning Game 5 after a fierce battle, ran away with a 15-point lead in the third quarter of Game 6 and seized the victory. It seemed as if the championship trophy was right in front of them.
Director Jeon, who called Operation Time, chose to take a breather, excluding Kim Seon-hyeong, Choi Seong-won, and Heo Il-young, who were physically burdened. Instead, players stepping on the court were ordered to endure for about 1 minute and 토스카지노30 seconds remaining in the third quarter. It was a realistic choice considering the game plan that looked at the end of the 4th quarter and the fatigue of the players who had accumulated until the championship match.
However, while SK’s key players were resting, KGC effectively attacked the drop zone defense and the atmosphere fluctuated. In the end, SK, which could not bring back the flow that had passed, suffered an unbelievable come-from-behind defeat, scoring 20 points in a row in the 4th quarter. After losing the 6th game, coach Jeon said, “It was a disappointing game for myself,” and showed remorse for his judgment for not being more aggressive.
SK, which failed to finish the series in the 6th game, fought a bloody battle that went to overtime in the 7th game, but gave up the championship trophy by a single margin. The come-from-behind defeat in Game 6 is a situation that I cannot help but think of as a former coach.
Director Jeon, who is usually the type to calmly answer questions while pointing out the record elements in interviews. However, he was different after the end of Game 7. Feeling sorry for losing the series due to his own mistake, coach Jeon shed tears in the interview room, saying, “I’m so sorry to the players. I made a big mistake in Game 6.”
However, it is impossible to place the blame for the defeat on the former manager. He showed off the face of a great commander as the commanding tower of SK, which faced various bad news and tight schedules this season. Without the meticulous analysis, resourcefulness, and charisma of former coach, the championship match would not have been successful.
After all, he is a manager who has just finished his second season. Defeat is painful right now, but it is an experience that can be a great nourishment for moving forward. Can the former coach, who shed tears of regret, shed tears of joy at the end next?