Why the Realtors are Winning

On: 03 January 2008

By Reuel Vidal
Manila Standard Today, 31 December 2007

The Sta. Lucia Realtors, the hottest and most surprising team in the Philippine Basketball Association right now, are winning because of teamwork and good old fashioned defense.

The glamour teams have the high scorers and the high-profile players but the Realtors are winning because of the grunt work of their hard-working, blue-collar players. The Sta. Lucia Realtors play hard on defense and protect the ball on offense, which actually reminds me of how their coach Boyet Fernandez used to play in the PBA.

PBA statistician Fidel Mangonon released the statistics for the elimination round and it revealed that Sta. Lucia point guard Denok Miranda is no. 1 in steals while Sta. Lucia combo guard Ryan Reyes is no. 1 in assists-to-turnover ratio.

Sta. Lucia's focus is on defense, which is why even though their best player Kelly Williams is only no. 7 in scoring with 16.50 points per game, and they don't have anybody in the top 10 in 3-point shooters, the Realtors are still winning.

Sta. Lucia is simply the league's best defensive team.

The Realtors are the no. 1 team in points allowed with only 88.44 points per game. They are numero uno in steals with 9.06 per game. They are the best in assists allowed with only 15.75 per game. They also force their opponents to commit the most turnovers with 23.50 per game.

Oh yes, the Realtors are also the most deliberate team on offense committing the least turnovers per game with only 15.50 per game.

Sta. Lucia is in solo second place right now and on the verge of accomplishing what the team has never been able to accomplish before--finish at least second after the eliminations and get an outright berth to the semi-finals.

I think Alaska coach Tim Cone put it best. Sta. Lucia is winning because its coach Boyet Fernandez, who was a tough-minded guard as a player, has his team playing in his image.

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