‘A bell around the cat’s neck.’
The Wonju General Gymnasium is expected to heat up in earnest on the 7th, when a cold wave is forecast. The Wonju DBs are in the midst of a long home stand as they begin the 2023-2024 season with a bang. Starting with a game against Samsung in Seoul on the same day, they will play a whopping six games in a row against Samsung on the 18th. This is a golden opportunity for the DB, who have been on the road for the past six games with only one home game, to reignite their domestic success.
The groundwork for the feast has already been laid. DB is currently on a storming streak with the only opening six-game winning streak. It’s a far cry from last season, when they missed out on the playoffs by six points.
In the meantime, the team is looking to set a new record. Since the inception of the Korean Basketball League (KBL) in 1997, the longest winning streak after opening the first round is eight games. DB set the record in the 2011-2012 season, and then Goyang Orion (now Goyang Sono) tied it in the 2014-2015 season.
DB also holds the record for the second-longest opening winning streak with seven straight wins (tied with Seoul SK in 2017), set in October 2004 during the TG Sambo era. If the team succeeds in winning seven in a row against Samsung, it will be the first time in 12 years that DB has done so and the first time in six years in KBL history.
Coincidentally, DB’s seventh and eighth consecutive wins came when Kim Ju-sung was a player. During the seven-game winning streak in 2004-2005, Kim, a third-year pro, led the team to the overall championship and won the playoff MVP award, and during the eight-game winning streak in 2011-2012, he remained in his prime, winning the Best 5 and Best Defense awards. Now, in his first season as a full-time head coach, Kim is challenging himself to match the records he set as a player. 보스토토 주소
The mood is ripe. Objectively, DB’s dominance is undeniable. They have a big gun in Dedrick Lawson, who has emerged as one of the best players in the game. Lawson hasn’t been out of the spotlight in every game, including being one of the main contributors to a come-from-behind victory (90-79) against the Hyundai Mobis in Ulsan on the 5th. Lawson has been playing the role of a two-man mercenary, but with NBA player Jeff Weedie joining the team as an injury replacement, he has been freed up. Here, DB is building a “new DB acid” with Lawson (2m2) or Weedie (2m13)-Kim Jong-kyu (2m6)-Kang Sang-jae (2m).
Against this, it will be interesting to see if Samsung, who have lost two in a row and are tied for 8th place (2W4L), can put the bell on the cat’s neck. The way things are going so far, a win for Samsung would be an upset. Samsung boasts the height of DBs like Lee Won-seok (2m10), Cho Woo-seong (2m7) and Kim Seung-won (2m6), as well as 1-option mercenary Koby Coburn (2m2), but they have been outclassed in practice. While Coburn is the ‘boy wonder’ of the defense, Samsung’s lack of domestic players is also a big concern. Moreover, Samsung was 1-5 against DB last season, and even this season, except for two wins against lower-ranked teams (Sono and Korea Gas Corp.), they have not beaten a top-ranked team.