Can 'darkhorse' CSB make a run at the playoffs?

Norman Lee Benjamin Riego on Jul 04, 2018 07:38 PM
Can 'darkhorse' CSB make a run at the playoffs?
Justin Gutang and CSB are heading into the new NCAA season with a full head of steam

HOW’D THEY DO LAST SEASON? 4-14, eighth

YES, THEY’RE STILL HERE: Edward Dixon, Clement Leutcheu, Unique Naboa, Carlo Young

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY: Justin Gutang

GOOD LUCK ON FUTURE ENDEAVORS: N/A

WHAT SHOULD WE EXPECT FROM CSB?

Following an eighth-place finish in the NCAA last season, nobody at all was talking about CSB.

That was until the preseason began to heat up – and the Blazers began to make noise.

From the PBA D-League to the Milcu Got Skills and from the Filoil Flying V Preseason to the SMART City Hoops, the Taft-based team became the talk of the town – with everybody loving the continued development of Edward Dixon, Clement Leutcheu, and Unique Naboa as well as the good gets of Prince Carlos and Jimboy Pasturan.

“Yung mga ligang sinalihan namin, malaking bagay when it comes to getting to know ourselves as a team. Mas magandang ngayon, nagkakaintindihan na kami habang naglalaro.” – head coach TY Tang

Most of all, the hype emanated from the wing position where a Filipino-American named Justin Gutang introduced himself big-time.

Now, CSB is tipped as a darkhorse for the oncoming NCAA season – and based on all their strong showings in the preseason, they very well deserve it.

“We still want to make it to the Final Four, but before the Final Four, gusto naming mag-concentrate sa game namin. Just a game and a win at a time.” – head coach TY Tang

WHO IS/ARE THE PLAYER/S TO WATCH OUT FOR FROM CSB?

No doubt about it, the answer here is Gutang who was shown he could do it all – from shooting to finishing and from playmaking to defending.

After him, a spot in the list of the league’s top reinforcements is Leutcheu’s for the taking. Now in his third season and looking better than ever, he is poised to make a leap there.

The CSB backcourt has also been bolstered with stalwart JJ Domingo now joined by sophomore stud Naboa as well as solid recruits in Carlos and Pasturan.

“Last year, our identity was to be scrappy. This year, it’s the same, but with a lot more conviction. At the same time, we also put in our identity to be an intellectual team. We want to be a very much thinking team.” – head coach TY Tang

WHY SHOULD WE ROOT FOR CSB?

Several times in the past decade, CSB has been tagged as a darkhorse only to fall oh so short from the playoffs. Ask Paolo Taha, ask Jonathan Grey, and you would hear that the Blazers have been oh so close to the next round that they could have tasted it.

This Blazers side is young, but it has all the tools to do what Taha or Grey were unable to do. If that does happen, they will be upturning the widely-recognized established order of San Beda, LPU, Letran, and San Sebastian being this season’s playoff teams.

“For the longest time, we’ve been at the bottom of the standings. Now, I can feel us enjoying the ride.” – head coach TY Tang

WHERE WOULD CSB BE AT THE END OF NCAA SEASON 94?

At the top half of the standings, whether that be fourth or fifth is yet to be determined. The point is that CSB can hope for the first time in a while – it’s just now up to their boys to come through.

WHEN IS CSB’S FIRST GAME IN NCAA SEASON 94?

CSB gets its first chance to live up to the hype up against season host an equally revitalized Perpetual on Juley 10 at the Filoil Flying V Centre.

As always, all of the #GalingNCAA will be on S+A, S+A HD, LIGA, LIGA HD, and livestream.

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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