IBL Player of the Week presented by Phiten- Chehales Tapscott
2012 Rookie of the Year, IBL All Star and Diamond in the Rough delivers again this season with his team going 1-1 this week. Averaging 27.5 points, 13.5 rebounds, 3 assists shooting 70% from the field with 8 double doubles in as many games, this is his first POTW nod this season. With two in 2012 it is possible we will see Tapscott here again and his new Coach agrees.
“Chey is one of the hardest matchups in the league. He's skilled enough to step out and score on the perimeter and he scores at will on the block. He opens up so much for other players because of his scoring ability and unselfishness. The guy just doesn't stop on the boards and if he was getting the same minutes he was getting last year he'd be averaging 30 and 17 a night," Coach Navarro boasts.
We caught up with Chehales ‘Chey’ Tapscott (@SugaChey on Twitter link) whose favorite pre-game meal is chicken and rice, to hear what he had to say about his time in the IBL.
IBL: Sounds like you had a great week in 2 games at 70% shooting from the field, averaging 27.5 points and 13 rebounds, what support do you get from your teammates to get the job done?
CT: My teammates are very supportive, especially Paul Hafford and Mike Ward. They are really good at what they are doing, space out the floor so that other teams can’t double team me, which makes it really tough for our opponent. It is hard to double team me with great players helping me.
IBL: Eight double doubles in a row so far this season, averaging a double double in the 2012 season, how do you stay so consistent?
CT: I just work hard that’s really what it is, I work hard at my craft and I come to every game thinking I’m going to help my team win and I’m just consistent with that approach.
IBL: How did the IBL help you get further in your pro career?
CT: It helped prepare me for the pro levels and its helped me know what its going to be like playing at the next level.
IBL: You talk about the next level, how many D-League teams did you work out for after the IBL Season and how did you feel about your chances in making a roster?
CT: I tried out with 3 different teams and I actually felt pretty good about making a team, but didn't have the opportunity to quite make it.
IBL: You went into the 2012 D-League draft, why don’t you think you were picked up by a team?
CT: Probably because lack of exposure, which the IBL is helping me with. They really didn't know who I was or what kind of player that I am. I hope to get the opportunity again.
IBL: How did your experience overseas this winter help?
CT: It really helped to define my game- everything about my game, from ball handling to communications in another language!
IBL: Winning 2 player of the week nods in 2012 and now one so far in 2013, how is it different and do you think you will get a second this season?
CT: Last year I was on a team where I was expected to score big numbers and now I am on a team where we just ball together and win games together. If I get a second this season or not, I will keep working hard and get that from my father. I wouldn't be able to do what I do without my father he is a big influence and he makes me play the way I play so I do this for him.
IBL Game Recaps
Volcanoes at Sabres
The Vancouver Volcanoes took on the Salem Sabres on Friday May 17th at Chemeketa Community College. After Vancouver’s six-game win streak this season, they were stopped in their tracks as Salem continued to play better than ever. Top scorer for the Sabres, 6’3” G Kyle Long led the team with 28 points and 6’9” F Daniel Deane had 22 points and 13 rebounds. Coach Freeman was excited for the Sabres to get their second win of the season, and against the Volcanoes was a great accomplishment. “This was a good win, one that we needed, us meeting them for the 3rd time, a veteran team and Coach, it was a good overall team win for us. (Joe) Burton is really playing well, his transition is coming along from college to the pro game and we will continue to work with him to become more dominant. We are a work in progress, each practice and each game is a continuous and constant test, are we learning are we getting better and coming together as one, “Coach Freeman shared about the status of the Sabres. 6’6” F Chehales Tapscott from the Volcanoes had 25 points and nine rebounds while top scorer 6’3” G Josh Tarver made 12 of 22 shots and was a player with double-figure scoring. However those 32 points made by Tarver were not in his nor the Volcanoes favor as Salem beat the Volcanoes 134-116. "We've had to overcome some injuries the last 2 weeks, and it caught up to us in the 4th quarter in Salem. We're missing about 60 points per game without Alex (Hartman), Andre (Murray), Gjio (Bain). I'm really happy about how we stepped up. It's going to turn out to be a positive for us, lots of new players are getting major minutes right now,” Volcanoes Head Coach Joe Navarro shared about the circumstances of their loss in Salem, which ended their six game winning streak and started one for the Sabres.
Tornadoes at Slam
The Bellingham Slam had another big win against the Japan Tornadoes at Lynden High School on Friday, May 17. G Jacob Stevenson led the Slam with 23 points while forward Chas Kok, finished with 21 points who started for the first time in his return to his old high school gym. Japan worked hard on and off the court, but a 14-2 run late in the second quarter helped the Slam to a 73-39 lead entering halftime, and got them the win 130-83. Catch the Nippon Tornadoes take on the Bellingham Slam in a final rematch on Sunday, June 16th.
Strikers at Chinooks
The LoneStar Strikers made it just in time to Portland for their first IBL game and showed great determination and heart to get there. The team was delayed in attendance as they were stuck in Dallas Fort Worth airport during the tornadoes last week. However, the team pressed on and played three games this weekend, starting at the Chinooks home in Eastmoreland. 6’2” G Greg Foster scored a high for the team with 35 points and 6’6” F George Williams scored right behind Foster with 30 points. Top scorers for the Chinooks were 6’6” F Germain Jordan with 28 points and 6’9 F Brian Morris with 24 points. The Strikers played a hard fought game after coming back from a flight delay, but were also delayed in scoring as Portland took the win, 124-105. The Strikers will show some southern hospitality to the to the Chinooks next, on June 1st and 2nd at John Cooper in the Woodlands, TX.
Chinooks at Sabres
After their first win against the Vancouver Volcanoes, the Salem Sabres fell short and took on the Portland Chinooks at home on Saturday, May 18th. Jared Cunningham was the top scorer for the Chinooks, scoring over 39 points. Cory Largent of Salem also was top scorer, with 19 points. Portland took the lead and carried it to the end, winning 113-101. A worthy rematch between these two teams is set for this weekend on Saturday, May 25th, 7pm at Chemeketa Community College.
Strikers at Volcanoes
After their six-game win streak coming to a halt, the Vancouver Volcanoes were back in action in a game against the newest IBL team, the LoneStar Strikers at Clark College on Saturday May 18th. After one quarter against Lonestar, Vancouver trailed 33-21. The Volcanoes came back and outscored the Strikers over the final two periods and came in with the win, 134-113. Paul Hafford led the offensive effort with 39 points, including 11 of 21 from 3-point range. IBL Player of the week Chehales Tapscott added 30 points and 17 rebounds, his eighth double double in a row. The Volcanoes take on the Portland Chinooks this Friday at Eastmoreland for another game in the Battle of the Bridges series. Although LoneStar won’t be playing against the Volcanoes anytime soon, look for them when the Portland Chinooks visit them in Texas on June 1st.
Tornadoes at Admirals
Japan got their first win on Sunday, May 19th against the Kitsap Admirals. Japan set a steady lead in the first half, putting up 30 points in both quarters. While the Admirals were not far behind, Japan succeeded 112-96. The Admirals have had the week off in preparation to take on the 2012 Champions at home on June 2 at Olympic High School. “Our team was not ready to play serious basketball on Sunday at home, we have this week off to prepare and be ready for the Slam at home on the 2nd,” Admirals Head Coach Ashley Robinson shared. Next for the Tornadoes is taking on the Vancouver Volcanoes for the first time this season, with a familiar face from the Japan team now with the Volcanoes roster, the Rocket!
Strikers at Slam
The LoneStar Strikers also took on the Bellingham Slam as they continued their game series in Washington at Whatcom Pavillon on Sunday. The Slam started off on the right foot, outscoring the Strikers 33-19 in the first quarter. The Strikers kept it competitive in the second quarter by matching Bellingham point for point. F Nick Moore added a double-double with 22 points and 12 rebounds for his best performance this season. George Williams led the Strikers with 23 points, while Greg Foster added 19 points, 10 rebounds, and 8 assists. “I really enjoyed the opportunity to work with the Strikers and although we didn’t win a game, given the circumstances, I think the guys got better and we did well,” Coach McCann commented as he lead the Strikers this weekend.
Basketball Japan League (bj-League) IBL Connection
bj-League 2012-2013 Champion Yokohama Head Coach,Reggie Geary with bj-League Commissioner Kawachi
LaShawn Malloy (6’10” PF), former Vancouver Volcano is now a bj-League Champion. Yokohama won their first title, in their second season lead by former Wildcat guard Reggie Geary who has quickly reached the top of the Japanese basketball world, leading Yokohoma to the championship of the b-j league as the first foreign coach to win a title in the bj-League. “It’s incredible. It’s unbelievable,” Geary told the Japan Times. “I know this hasn’t set in yet, but these guys have been through so much this season and really have just shown such high character throughout the entire season.”
Fukuoka Rizing gave Yokohama a good game in the final May 19th, and featured IBL 2012 Nippon Tornadoes Coach, Kanazawa Atsushi leading his team to second in the bj-League this season. Placing third out of twenty one teams this season, with a 79-72 victory Kyoto Hannaryz of the bj-League included had number one pick in the 2012 bj-League draft (non-import), 6’3” G Masaharu (Masa) Kataoka on their roster, who will return to the Nippon Tornadoes and the IBL in early June. Masa averaged 10ppg this season in the bj-League and last season averaged 21ppg with the Nippon Tornadoes in the IBL, gaining a D-League workout. Another bj-League star, 5’8” G Narito Namizato from Okinawa GK who made it all the way to the semi-finals in the Western Division this bj-League season, will also arrive in June after post season events and activities, to be a part of the Tornadoes
The IBL would like to congratulate the bj-League and Commissioner Kawachi on another great season of outstanding competition as the premier men’s professional basketball league in Japan. Growing again to twenty three teams next season, where rosters and benches will feature IBL talent, we look forward to celebrating both the bj-League and IBL 10th season together in 2014.