The Princeton Generals Remain at the Top of the Rankings
PRINCETON, NJ | Week 2 Power Rankings
By Phil Jackson | Princeton League Coordinator
1. Princeton Generals
The Generals are 2-0 coming out of Week 1 and are the first team to play in a double header this season so far. The two-game night seemed to have little effect on the teams performance as they bested Da Nets 63-54 and beat The Fundamentals 66-51. Michael Montella, Greg Ford, and Eric Puchon led the team to their 2-0 start to the winter season. The Generals are the team to beat once again this season, as team captain Michael Montella has drafted yet another powerhouse. The field is certainly more competitive, so expect there to be some tough challenges along the way.
2. Life Time Lakers
Anything look familiar here? The Life Time Lakers are very comfortable and familiar with the No. 2 spot in the rankings. Week 1 saw the Lakers vs. the Hoodlums in a match that was close from start to finish. The Hoodlums seemed to run out of gas when it came down to the wire and Life Time Lakers guard Kosty Yablon scored a season-high 22 points on 8-13 shooting. He was matched by newcomer Kerry Foderingham who scored 22 points on 8-12 shooting for the team as well. They were able to grab a team total of 13 steals, but suffered from nine team turnovers in the match. Taking care of the ball will be this deciding factor in whether this squad will rise or fall in this season’s rankings.
3. Life Time Hoodlums
Week 1 resulted in a loss, but there sure is promise in the Hoodlums this season. The squad suffered a 79-71 loss to the Life Time Lakers, but this team really controlled most of the game. Guard Nicholas Baughan led the way with 21 points on 45 percent shooting from deep, and Nick Rao followed suit with a solid 20 points on 7-13 shooting from the field. The hoodlums out-rebounded the Lakers in the game but turned the ball over 13 times. Ultimately this team comes in at No. 3 in the rankings because of the outstanding play of some of their newcomers and ability to control the tempo of the game. Chemistry needs work for them and will take time, but expect this team to be in the post season mix if all goes well.
4. The Fundamentals
Suffering a 15-point loss in their season opener against the Princeton Generals, the Fundamentals were left scratching their heads. Despite the loss, they were actually in control for most of the game trading baskets with Generals until about eight minutes left in the second half. The Fundaments were led by their first-overall draft pick Ilya Fedyainov with 19 points on 55 percent shooting from the field. Newcomers Joe Shovlin and Menghan Xu added 16 and 14 points respectively, but the team was out-rebounded 35-21 and suffered 13 team turnovers. Coincidentally, they simply ran out of gas despite playing against the Generals who played a full game just two hours before their matchup. It’s way too early to count this team out of the mix however for competitive play. They have some players that will need to step up if they hope to grab wins vs. higher ranked teams this season.
5. Da Nets
Previously the Princeton Pelicans, Da Nets are in a rebuild from last season. Similar problems still remain however as the team needs to establish a go-to scorer on the offensive end. Buckets seemed to come sporadically, and chemistry was lacking in their season opening loss vs. the Princeton Generals. Forward and newcomer to the squad, Jarrett Phelps led the team in scoring with 15 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 steals. Angelo Sosa added 14 points and 5 rebounds, and newcomer Andre Cole showed promise adding 12 points to the mix as well. Da Nets will see success with ball movement, and pounding the ball inside as they only shot 26 percent from 3-point range as a team. They also suffered being out-rebounded 38-22 which is simply unacceptable if they want to compete for a championship this season. Expect change as they move into Week 2.