Preview: Vermont in Halifax

 This is Halifax’s last shot at the defending ABA champions.  They’ve played four times before and this will be the third distinct line up that Vermont has faced.  By contrast, Vermont has only made minor tweaks to their line up this season.  edit: The Herald has an article on tonights game.  It’s available online.

At this point I think we all know what Vermont have in their favour:

  • Experienced minor league players
  • The ABA’s best coach who knows how to exploit mis-matches
  • Crazy depth and players who all buy into a team first system and lots of role players surrounding a few studs
  • Very strong pressure defense and at least three different full court presses
  • Two incredibly gifted offensive players (Konare and Green) who create huge match up problems.

Halifax simply have been unable to match up with them this season.  The game in Halifax on Jan. 9th was the best home game of the season with Halifax playing them tight, mostly because of Anderson’s ability to get the ball up the floor consistantly with almost no help.  Without his ball handling I don’t know what this game will look like, but Sunday’s 123-78 thrashing is a good indication.

Halifax has added three new players who Vermont haven’t seen, though: a PG, a strong shooting combo guard and a monster of a big man.  I think the key here is new guy Tyler and workhorse Crookshank scoring in bunches downlow.  Vermont have had a bit of trouble with teams going inside consistantly and have shown a willingness to leave the perimeter open to try to contain overly strong post players.  If Silverhorn and Clark can hit open shots then the Rainmen have a shot at this.   Halifax also need to play with a toughness and grit that they haven’t shown yet this season – it’s toughness and an inside/outside game that have given Manchester the edge over Vermont in their wins over the ABA champs.

I think Halifax has the potential to put a huge line up on the floor now – Tyler, Crookshank, Richard/Oliver, Silverhorn and Clark.  This could cause huge match up problems for anyone.  The new faces mean that I honestly have no idea how this will play out on the court.

Off the court I can see this being a huge success.  Weekend games have drawn well, the promotion machine is cranked up for Q104/Semi-Pro night, and the Heaves are a great team.  If people come through the door tonight they will be impressed by the level of basketball.  Speaking of Semi-Pro night:  first 100 people through the gate get free passes to see the Will Ferrell movie, and at half time people will be competing for an insane prize pack.  I predict 2500+ people tomorrow.  I hope I’m not wrong.

In other news:  The Metro actually had a decent article on the new Rainmen signings.

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2 thoughts on “Preview: Vermont in Halifax

  1. I agree with you Chris on all the basketball stuff. I think the new guys may be the key to rounding out our formerly guard-heavy team with some big offense. Will Lewis’s program fit them in to actually make a difference? That remains to be seen, but we will have a half-dozen chances to see it, over the next 3 weeks.

    A clarification on the Semi-Pro ticket giveaway. The free tickets are actually double passes, so the first 50 people each get a double pass. This info is from Rainmen front office.

    I read the Metro article. Chris, you and I consistently write longer passages on this website than that 178-word footnote. Other than talking to Mr. Levingston for a couple of sound bites, the reporter did less research than you do for most of your posts. While I am pleasantly surprised that there is even local news in the paper, the length of the piece shows what I said about the tabloid’s editorial slant towards stories that can be read in 30 seconds or less.

  2. They had a fairly comprehensive article on the last road trip as well, they covered the Vermont game better than the Herald, which is saying something. They had a nice big colour picture from the game in Vermont, along with post game comments from Rick Lewis. It’s pretty surprising considering how poor the rest of the paper is. It’s definitely a positive for the Rainmen, and I will probably take a look at it every now and then just to see if there is anything new.

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