New Year, Same Old Struggles for BayHawks

Sunday, January 3, 2010

The Erie BayHawks started the New Year with back-to-back road games at Maine and Springfield, two expansion franchises at opposite ends of the standings. Erie lost 94-86 to Maine on Friday night.

They followed that up with another loss, falling 87-75 to Springfield yesterday afternoon.

The pair of losses came on the back of a blockbuster trade announcement New Year's Eve when the BayHawks shipped their leading scorer, Donell Taylor to Idaho for Mike Gansey. Neither Taylor nor Gansey have played for their new teams yet.

With the two losses, Erie now sits at 4-11 in a tailspin heading into the D-League Showcase, where they'll play—as will all 16 D-League teams—in front of NBA scouts during a four-day stretch running Monday-Thursday. Erie's games are Wednesday against Reno and Thursday against Los Angeles. This will be the only time Erie plays these two teams this season.

I didn't see the game against Maine, who is now 4-0 against the BayHawks, but I did watch almost all of the game yesterday against Springfield. The Armor came into the game with just one win on the season, and after the teams played to a 66-66 tie after three quarters, Erie hit the proverbial wall. They were outscored 21-9 in the fourth, and quite honestly, those numbers don't come close to showing how much they were outplayed down the stretch.

Looking at the stats, you'll see that John Bryant had a double-double and Jackie Manuel had 18 points on 8-16 shooting. They were OK, but no one had what I'd call a good game in this one. The team looked like a team that was playing the second game of a back-to-back. Ivan Harris shot 4-19 from the field (2-8 from 3), Alade Aminu was 3-11, Cedric Jackson went 4-13 with just 1 assist. And while Cliff Clinkscales had 8 assists, he added 4 turnovers and 0 points on 0-5 shooting.

The BayHawks are hoping that Mike Gansey will be the magic elixir for their shooting woes, but their biggest problem seems to be inconsistency. With the possible exception of Jackie Manuel, no one on the BayHawk roster seems to be dependable from game to game. Several of them have had breakout performances, including John Bryant, Ivan Harris, Cedric Jackson, and Cliff Clinkscales, but unless they can find a way to get them all on the same page soon, this team is not going to repeat its first year success, which culminated with a playoff berth.


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About this blog/blogger

Blog Talk BayHawk is an unofficial Erie BayHawks blog covering the NBA D-League. It features opinions and information about the NBADL and the Erie BayHawks. Blog Talk BayHawk is written from a basketball fan’s perspective to fill In the gaps left by professional journalists’ coverage of BayHawks basketball and the Erie professional basketball scene.

Matt Hubert is a 25-year-old writer and basketball fanatic born and raised in Erie, Pa. He graduated from Mercyhurst College in 2007 with a bachelor's degree in English and a dual concentration in writing and creative writing. Matt's not wavering from his stance as a lifelong Los Angeles Lakers fan, but he will cover the BayHawks' NBA affiliates in Cleveland and Toronto when it makes sense to do so throughout the year.

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