Yang Hong-seok and Justin Gutang, who spent their last days on the bench, were “good textbooks.”

Yang Hong-seok (195cm, F) failed to raise his tension easily.

Changwon LG lost to Wonju DB 79-83 in the 2023-2024 Jeonggwanjang Professional Basketball Regular League held at Changwon Gymnasium on the 6th. It still ranks third with 24 wins and 15 losses. However, it is two games behind runner-up Suwon KT (25 wins and 13 losses). It is half a game behind fourth-place Seoul SK (23 wins and 15 losses).

LG lost all three games to Seoul SK in the 2022-2023 semifinal playoff, but LG has maintained almost all of its previous performance. It will be able to spend the 2023-2024 season with a foreign players’ union consisting of Asem Maray (202 cm, C) and Dante Cunningham (203 cm, F).

He also recruited Yang Hong-seok (195 centimeters tall, F) from the free agent market. Yang is a resource that was considered one of the biggest forward players. He has various strengths including physical and athletic ability, rebound and three-point shooting. He must grow into the present and future of LG.

However, Yang did not show remarkable performance in the three games after the season’s opening. He played an average of 29 minutes and 12 seconds in the three games after the season’s opening, but posted a poor record of 7.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2.0 assists, and 1.0 steals per game. He also had a success rate of only about 21.4 percent (1.0/4.7 per game), which is one of his strengths.

LG also lost its opening three consecutive games. Yang could have felt more pressure. However, LG regained his natural power from the fourth game, and Yang also eased the pressure. During an average of 28 minutes and 21 seconds in 38 games, he had 13.5 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 3.0 assists. He has displayed outstanding performance compared to playing time.

However, LG’s recent performance is unstable. This is because both foreign players have changed. Of course, Maray is a temporary substitute, but it is not certain that Maray will perform 100 percent of his performance after his return.

That is why Yang’s performance is important. This is all the more true in the DB match. The DB has many tall resources in Korea, including Choi Seung-wook (195cm, F), Kang Sang-jae (200cm, F), Seo Min-soo (196cm, F) and Kim Jong-kyu (206cm, C). Moreover, Didric Lawson (202cm, F), the only option in the DB1, is an outsider in the forward type. For that reason, Yang may have to stop Lawson.

Yang Hong-seok, who was included in the starting lineup, was mainly matched up with Kang Sang-jae. Kang Sang-jae is a player with height, speed, and sense. It was not easy for Yang Hong-seok to do what he did with one-on-one. Even if he dug in, he faced Kim Jong-kyu or Lawson’s help, so it was difficult for Yang Hong-seok to establish an attack strategy.

Yang, however, possessed a robust amount of activity and athletic ability. Following the ball-less movement, he penetrated beneath the basket or hit the DB rim one-on-one by utilizing instantaneous speed. In the first quarter alone, he scored eight points (2 points: 3/4, free throw: 2/2). He led LG, which almost lost ground. He narrowed the gap between LG and DB to 5 (16-21).

Nevertheless, LG couldn’t handle the DB’s momentum. To be more precise, it couldn’t keep up with DB’s attack speed. However, Yang Hong-seok hit back with his speed. He passed to Lee Jae-do (180 cm, G), who was following him after his fast-attack. He helped Lee Jae-do’s jumper. Yang Hong-seok induced DB’s first timeout with his speed and pass.

However, LG failed to crack down on rebounding. It continued to allow second chances. It failed to lay groundwork to speed up. Yang rarely got a chance to play. As a result, LG moved away from the DB. It lost ground to a two-digit gap (17-27) just 2 minutes and 19 seconds into the second quarter. 꽁머니

LG kept losing ground in the loose ball fight. It also showed stagnant movement even though it staged attacks. It failed to break through DB’s fast-paced transition to offense and defense rotation. As a result, LG lost ground to 23-41 two minutes and 34 seconds before the end of the second quarter.

Yang Hong-seok tried to change the atmosphere. However, the gap between LG and DB has hardly narrowed. The first half ended with 27-45. To be honest, LG’s victory did not seem easy.

As LG was pushed back by a large margin, Yang’s tension did not rise as well. He left the court just 3:44 into the third quarter. LG also failed to narrow the gap with DB by 53-64.

LG did not deploy Yang in the fourth quarter either. The same applied to other key players such as Lee Jae-do and Lee Kwan-hee (191 cm tall, G). However, the players who were deployed instead displayed high energy levels. As a result, LG was able to squeeze DB 58-64 in just 57 seconds after the start of the fourth quarter.

Yang did not take the court afterwards. Justin Gutang (188 centimeters, F), who was deployed as the third player, overcame some of his mismatches with Kang Sang-jae (200 centimeters, F).

At the same time, he showed 100 percent of his speed and elasticity. 5:54 before the end of the race, he assisted Juan Telo’s (203 cm, F) layup with a fastball deployment and a pass. It was meaningful to finish the race by himself. It was his performance to narrow the gap to 68-71.

However, LG’s last strength was not enough. He did his best, but he had to concede defeat. Yang’s regret must have been even greater. It was because he was not able to join LG in its last struggle on the court.

Instead, they learned better what to do. They were Gutang’s “active content,” “fast movement,” and “aggressive approach to the rim.” LG manager Cho Sang-hyun also left a meaningful message after the game. “Players without passion cannot participate. Shame on you.” was a key line of his comment.

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