It was a great season in the Grown Up Sports Saturday Men’s Basketball League in the Houston Heights. Now that the season is all wrapped up, let’s take a look at the teams in this season’s playoffs.
#1 New Creation (7-0)
Undefeated all year, New Creation has played with a singular focus all season. With one goal in mind, and that is winning, on any given Saturday any one of their players could go off. Whether it is the outside shooting of Elmer and Chris; the inside presence of Bobby; or the slashing of Frank, Marquise or Arthur, New Creation is a truly balanced team and ready to take its first ever GUS Championship.
- Frank Morales - Smart player; willing distributor; good at taking the ball to the bucket and finishing
- Arthur- Lightning quick; springs for legs
- Jacob Olmos - Nice crossover, great all around player; possesses good kickball skills
- Oscar - Big body in the paint; giant with a heart of gold
- Chris Gonzales - Stone cold shooter, great mid range pull up; can catch and shoot with the best; capable of driving past players closing out on his shot and finishing at the bucket; has friendly rivalry with Elmer Jimenez for supreme shooter in all the land
- Victor Scales - a beast in the paint; old school game around the rim; think Clarence Weatherspoon pre-40
- Bobby Lee - A force to be reckoned with; too big for most guards to handle, to quick for most bigs to stop; willing passer
- Marquise Christian - Runs roughshod through opponents for steals; great team concept;
- Elmer Jimenez - An excellent point guard; former GUS league 3 point champion; kills on the 1′s and 2′s and busts the 2-3 zone with ease; has friendly rivalry with Chris Gonzales for supreme shooter in all the land
#2 Goal Breakers (5-2)
Many of last years free agent team came back together this year to form the Goal Breakers. With the ability to beat anyone, the Goal Breakers true opponent this year has been themselves. When they play solidly as a unit and are taking smart shots, they are extremely tough to beat. The most athletic team in the league, they can blow by you at almost any position. In addition to having the talent to beat you, they have also played their share of close games, including a triple OT thriller v. LetsGetIt, a one point victory over Trail Mix and a one point loss to Those Guys. These close game experiences will guide them through the playoffs for what looks to be a deep run.
- Robert Walker - Described as “trouble” by Coach Jackie, hustles for rebounds, still holding back a little for playoffs
- Brian Sanders - Described as “game changer” by Joe the stats guy, relentless on offense and defense, nice touch around the basket
- Raymond Elliot -Extraordinarily efficient; excellent rebounder; mid range game is superb
- Jeremy Dean - Described by Coach Jackie as “game changer”; clear leader on the floor; can kill you from afar, but just as likely to put you in the rim; the go to guy in the clutch
- Reginald Matthews - True post with a flare for the long ball; can bang inside with the best of them; soft touch for such a big game
- Justin Wilson - Beast in all aspects; unlikely to show up to playoff games
- Melvin Gray - Only takes good shots and also makes a high percentage; keeps a mohawk with a taper
- JC Jones - Combo guard; very good off the dribble, but also plays well off the ball; tenacious rebounder for a small guard; plays the passing lanes well
- Willie Laster - If he’s hot, he’s going to kill you from deep; relentless on offense and a strong defender; won’t let you blow by him without making you feel it
- William Peck - Strong shooting guard/small forward who is also relentless on both sides of the ball; add in major athleticism and you may want to put your best on the ball defender on him
- Konitz “K2″ Hughes - Shooting point guard who will let it fly from deep with a hair trigger; when the game gets serious he’s ready to “start a riot” in order to win
#3 Those Guys (5-2)
This team truly has it all. Lost post scoring? Jacob Harris and Josh Davis – check. Great point guard play? Jason Joseph – check. Potent scoring option? Earl Robertson – check. Outside shooting? Zain, Jason G, Tony, Neemo – check. If they can find a way to play defense, this team will be a very tough out. Since game 1, their lone defeat came at the thrashing they received from Trail Mix, whose run and gun style seems to be the one weakness of this squad. If Those Guys can keep games to a half court set, they should thrive.
- Sam Chung - Smoking Sub Guy; capable of knocking down daggers if he gets hot
- Eugene Kim - Magic Sub Guy; lightning quick; a true pg but capable of scoring at will; good rebounder; chemistry maker
- Stephen Coffman - Korean Sub Guy; has two moves and is not afraid to use them
- Jason Joseph - Mr. Perfect Guy; excellent point guard capable of doing it all; never afraid to back down from an opponent; a triple double waiting to happen
- Zain Hussain - Bucket Guy; capable of catching fire at any second; deep threat that can’t be left alone
- Jason Gardner - More Knees Guy; unsure what his name means
- Jacob Harris - Big Guy; solid all around game; good passing ability for a big man; nice outside shot when he takes it
- Andrew and Patrick Graves - Lost Guy and Missing Guy; Missing persons bulletin posted for them
- Josh Davis - One of the premier one on one players in the league; scores at will in the post; very efficient; good weak side help defender
- Earl Robertson - 20+ guys; led last season’s champions all the way; strong scorer from both inside and outside; not flashy, but effective
- Tony Ma - Old Guy; knock down shooter from deep; improving all around game; can’t leave him open or he will make you pay; not that old
- Neemesh “Neemo” Chheda - Fish Guy; not sure what his name means either; streaky scorer whose outside jumper has been steadily improving to become one of the smoothest in the L
#4 Los Blancos Guapos (5-2)
Last years #1 seed was undefeated until the last two weeks of this season when the wheels seemed to come off with back to back 20 point defeats. Of course, when those two teams are the Goal Breakers and New Creation, and you are playing short handed, those things can happen. The Guapos are one of the most feared teams in the league, and with good cause. They will beat you up, both physically and mentally, and then even a little emotionally. They love to talk to both the refs and their opponents, but they almost always back it up. With the competition mounting, and a slew of temp players coming through the Guapos farm system to play one or two games this season, which unit shows up will play a decisive factor in this season’s playoff run.
- Chris M- Jumper is super wet; quick and will pull with no hesitation
- Doug Sykes - Capable of nailing the shot from deep; positive demeanor an instant team chemistry builder
- Adam Gonzalez - Tough match-up; too quick for most big men; too strong for small players; good outside shot; loves to play mind games with opponents
- Clint Yoeje - Feisty; conspicuously missing most of the season
- Andrew Gonzalez - The most dynamic scorer in the league; currently holds the GUS record with 51 points in a game;
- Sean Pina - One of the finest flag football players of our generation; a good passer who always finds his man
- Derrick Geise - Tough; hard nosed defense can antagonize foes; good outside shot
- Ryan Brandon - Great all around skills; good passing ability, and outside shot
- Josh “Chitwood” - Like his namesake, always seems to make the right play, and never misses a shot
- Hendrick “The Gunslinger” Sijthoff - The Gunslinger
- David Bryce - The coolest cat on the planet; knows he has five fouls and isn’t afraid to use them; will knock down the open jumper like PJ Brown in his prime
America’s favorite team to watch. Last seasons runners up, Trail Mix plays a seven seconds or less brand of basketball that keeps this team in any game they play. Down by big numbers several times this season, they always mount a comeback and storm the castle to make a game of it. Opponents and spectators acknowledge the brand of basketball Trail Mix plays is second to none when it comes to ball movement and play calling. Though typically a powerhouse, Trail Mix struggled to catch a break, losing by one possession to both the Guapos and Goal Breakers before finding their swagger in recent weeks with victories over Barberians and LetsGetIt. If they can keep the momentum going, they should be ready to make a playoff run, but, like the regular season, they no doubt have the toughest road to hoe in order to make it there.
- Andre Woods - Big body; has a bark that resonates around the gym; has a high basketball IQ, setting savvy screens and finding open shooters for knockdown looks
- James Thai - Stone cold shooter; runs the pick and roll with Andre to perfection; really coming on strong as of late
- Emmanuel “Manny” Munoz - Excellent all around player; plays the game at a high level in all aspects of the game; one of the team’s best perimeter defender
- Rojer Lujano - Heady player who makes the right moves; spaces the floor well and swings the ball
- Kendall Smith - A maestro on the offensive end, orchestrating the offense like a puppetmaster; prolific member of the jet life style – three words
- Trill - Typically strictly a 3 point shooter (and one of the best in the league at it), has found himself making several put backs and slashes to the bucket for easy scores
- Johnny Slick - What a classical human being he is. It was 201 years ago today, that Beethoven’s symphony number 3 in e flat which escorted in the age of romanticism in music. And when I look at Johnny Slick I think of Beethoven and the age of the romantics. This guy has got it all.
- Lee Bradford - Does all the small things to help the team win; wears a head band in spite of having a perfectly normal hairline
#6 LetsGetIt Again (4-3)
One of the true mystery teams of the league. At full strength, they can beat anyone, but rarely do they play at such a capacity. Additionally, the team requires a true challenge to get motivated. However, much like this year’s OKC team, even when down big, they are primed to make a comeback as shown by their 17 point comeback against Trail Mix two weeks ago. Though they fell short, LetsGetIt has what it takes to make a run. If one team is built to push the tempo in transition to take advantage of Those Guys sometimes spotty defense, its LetsGetIt, whose Claude Cox and Tony Jones can go 1 on 4 and still make the bucket as a one man fast break.
- Randy Appiah - Mystery man; though logging no stats, he is rumored to be a pg with no peer
- Tony Jones - Athletic swing man; one of the best perimeter defenders in the league; slashing scorer willing to kick to the open shooters
- Tim Hammond - Who is this guy? Somebody that I used to know.
- Tim “Tootie” Ortega - An offensive spark waiting to be lit
- Tom Schnakenberg - Does it all; has the heart the size of three regular men; needs to go to the doctor to check up on said heart; excellent rebounder who can finish strong inside or kill you with the long range J
- Claude Cox - An elite scorer with a passion for music and literature; lightning quick; risk taker on defense
- Kunal Patel - A renaissance man; if Phil Ivey and Dennis Scott had a child, they would have named him Kunal Patel
- Simmie Colson - A true Adonis; enforcer on defense; a vacuum on the boards; Charles Oakley with waves
- Stephon Davis - Uses his mind to overpower opponents like a true Jedi master
#7 Barberians (4-3)
Barberians. One of our personal favorite teams. They just come out and play ball. No complaints, no frills. They play the game the right way, and are usually rewarded for it. The team sets itself up with great ball movement. With the defense shifted, Barber, Julian, Jr or Marlon usually take that moment to drive and either kick to the open shooters or sky to finish at the rim. The team added some size throughout the season with big men Khalid and Christian, but a late season injury to Christian may have him and his silky wet jumper out for the playoffs. Let it be known here first, when the Barberians shots are falling, they will beat anyone.
- Christian Schmidt - Might be out for the season with a knee injury, which sucks because he is awesome
- Julian Barron - Athletic swing man who can hang and fade to hit big shots; good fundamentals
- Andre Barron – Smart player; good rebounder and passer; takes smart shots
- Khalid Tahe - Big man; starting to round into game form as he shakes the rust off; sets some of the best screens in the league; is a dj in his free time (joe edit: GOAT GIF)
- Eyman Eghterafi - Does it all and quietly; rebounds, passes; a catalyst for team chemistry; cares about his loved ones and volunteers at homeless shelters
- Michael Matthews - The enforcer; strong man with a strong will to win; not afraid to get dirty; uses his body well to body defenders into poor shots
- Michael Barber - The namesake for his team; the most relentless player in the league; never gonna give up, never gonna let his team down, never gonna run around and desert them; his pursuit of the bucket and ability to take contact and still finish is second to none
- Wes - Went to the Trent McKinney school of shooting (which is why he makes 60% of his shots and not 70%)
- Marlon Trujillo - Most underrated player in GUS according to multiple sources; will put the team on his back; great outside shooter; unparalleled penetrator
- Sam - Solid player; stronger than you think; good defender and rebounder; hustles; midrange is niiiice
- JR Melo - Solid all around player; able to get to the lane for the floater or kick out; has serious range; herky jerky style confounds his opponents on the floor; like Ronaldo (the better one) on the floor- all he does is score
#8 Wax On, Whacks Off (3-4)
The team, at full strength, is fantastic. Unfortunately, they are usually at five deep. If Kevin and Emmerich are present, they instantly become one of the most athletic, running teams in the league. With their absence, the game slows considerably. Held down all season by the high scoring Paul Brewer (sorry, you missed scoring title by… that much), Wax On has been able to pull out victories in the most dire of circumstances. Lead by the coolest of the cool, Yuichi Watanabe, Wax On is capable of anything, including shocking the world like the Nuggets in 94. Unfortunately, even if they knock off New Creation, they will have the Guapos or Trail Mix waiting in the semis, neither of which are slouches. A gauntlet indeed, but Paul has no problems with that. “We will win.” Guarantees have worked before. We have our popcorn ready.
- Rob - Big body with a good mid range stroke; prefers the stroke over the poke
- Kevin Charles - Super athlete; great defender; takes it strong to the cup with the greatest of ease
- Emmerich Grimm - Sprite Slam Jam Champion; a man among mice
- Marcus Bables - Excellent shooter; could use some work on his 42 game; one of the teams best perimeter defenders; second best beard on the team
- Curtis Blanton - The fan’s favorite players; a true bastion of hope to all who come to behold his glorious play
- Torresy Smith - Giving old school buckets to new school fools; responds to heckling with better game play; the cagey veteran leader on the floor
- Yuichi Watanabe - Yuta!; great at providing ball pressure defense; his strong frame disrupts opponents drives to the cup; great all around player; unselfish; a 5×5 waiting to happen
- Josh Prasatik - Led the league in rebounds after two games and disappeared; never been seen in the same room as Andres Nocioni
- Alton Brown - Deceptively good outside stroke when serious, especially for a big; think Sam Perkins on the SuperSonics. Enjoys telling tales of Friday night in addition to playing Saturday afternoons
- Russell Shipley - Highest release on a set shot in the GUS leagues; good rebounder; needs to work on his beard to truly be a team player
- Paul Brewer - Great scorer, especially from the outside; loves to scream And 1, even when shooting in warm-ups; outside shot opens up his driving to the bucket; can score in a variety of manners; best beard on the team still
That’s all I got.
Don’t forget to sign up for next season! Here are our current league offerings. Sign-ups going fast so confirm your spot today!
- Tuesday Men’s Basketball (Open) in the Houston Heights @ Lutheran High North – July 17
- Thursday Men’s Basketball (Open) in the Houston Heights @ Lutheran High North – July 19
- Thursday Men’s Basketball (Recreational) in the Houston Heights @ Lutheran High North – July 19
- Saturday Men’s Basketball (Open) in the Houston Heights @ Woodland Community Center – July 14