Seoul Samsung lost 51-88 to Ulsan Hyundai Mobis in the 2023-2024 Jeonggwanjang Professional Basketball League held at Ulsan Dongcheon Gymnasium on the 28th. It lost all nine games in 2024. In addition, it fell into a quagmire of seven consecutive losses against Hyundai Mobis. Its previous record in the 2023-2024 season is 5 wins and 30 losses.
The core of Samsung is Coffey Coburn (210cm, C). Coburn has physical, strength, and ability to finish under the basket. It can cope with the opponent’s cooperative defense to some extent. That is why the team that faces Samsung is wary of Coburn.
If Samsung’s domestic players create synergy with Coburn, Samsung’s power could double. In other words, if Samsung’s outer resources shoot, Coburn’s under-the-basket-shot power could increase.
Samsung, however, failed to create a synergy effect between Coburn and Korean players. Young players who can throw three points (Shin Dong-hyuk and Cho Joon-hee) left the court for a long time, and Lee Won-seok (206 cm, C), Coburn’s front-court partner, also failed to do as well as expected.
That’s why Lee Jung-hyun (189 cm, G) had to do a lot. He is the only Korean player in Samsung who scores double digits on average (10.0 points per game). However, Lee is also struggling to keep opponents in check. Nevertheless, Lee should let his guard down from the outside. It is Samsung’s only outside option.
In addition, Samsung lost all of its last six showdowns with Hyundai Mobis. Eight games in 2024 were also lost. For that reason, Samsung players should increase their fighting power. Lee Jung-hyun should take the lead in restoring the atmosphere as both a captain and a top executive.
However, Lee has been excluded from the starting lineup. “We made changes to the starting lineup in the first quarter. We wanted to boost defense and energy from the start,” acting Samsung coach Kim Hyo-beom said before the game. “We will increase the overall energy level of the team’s defense, and then deploy key resources such as (Lee) Jung-hyun, (Kim) Sirae, and Coburn.”
However, as the lineup was mainly focused on defense, there was not enough people to solve it outside the three-point line. Shin Dong-hyuk (193 cm, F) threw with confidence, but Shin Dong-hyuk’s three points also failed. Due to this, Samsung had a bad start. It fell behind 6-13 in the first 3 minutes and 35 seconds of the game. Samsung, which failed to start properly, requested the first timeout.
Lee took the court for the first time since his timeout. He blocked Choi Jin-soo (202 cm, F), who is 12 centimeters taller than him. However, Choi was not the real target of defense. After standing in the middle between Choi and Lim, he focused on preventing Hyundai Mobis from attacking the paint zone.
“We played 2 to 2 in the offensive end.” Lee’s specialty. However, both Hyundai Mobis ball handler defenders and screener defenders put pressure on Lee. The team drastically reduced the radius of Lee’s action. No matter how competent Lee Jung-hyun was, he could not do anything in front of the narrowed options.
However, Lee did not lose concentration on defense. He is the oldest and veteran, but has expanded his field of defense with teammates and failed to yield offensive rebounds for Choi Jin-soo (202 cm, F), who is taller than him. It also integrated well into Samsung’s 2-3 regional defense rotation. Why Samsung ended the first quarter 21-28.꽁머니
However, the seven-point difference was by no means a small difference. Therefore, Lee Jung-hyun’s performance improvement was required. To be precise, it was Lee Jung-hyun’s offensive power. It is because Samsung can change the mood only when Lee Jung-hyun scores to a certain extent.
However, Lee rarely scored a goal. He also had difficulty shooting properly. He was under pressure from Hyundai Mobis big man as well as persistent defense by Kim Kook-chan (190cm tall). Samsung also remained silent on its offense. Samsung failed to display strong offense and summoned Lee to the bench just three minutes and one second after the start of the second quarter. It tried to increase Lee’s physical strength.
Existing players such as Lee Dong-yeop (193 cm, G) and Shin Dong-hyuk were on the court, but Cho Joon-hee (188 cm, G) also took the court. Except for Lee Jung-hyun, players had to gain confidence. Notably, rookie players such as Shin Dong-hyuk and Cho Joon-hee had to do more.
However, resources outside Samsung failed to gain strength. This increased Coburn’s burden. Samsung’s offensive balance was also shaky. This led to Samsung’s poor defense. Samsung, which lost all of its stability in offense and defense, finished the first half 41-60.
Lee Jung-hyun started the third quarter from the bench. However, Samsung, which lacked the central point of attack, was shaken a lot. Within 4 minutes and 9 seconds of the third quarter, the team seemed to lose 47-72. Sensing a crisis, acting Samsung coach Kim Hyo-beom had to use the first timeout in the second half.
Samsung and Hyundai Mobis got bigger even though acting Samsung coach Kim Hyo-beom took action. It was difficult for Lee Jung-hyun to do something. It was the same in the fourth quarter. It was worse then. Because he had to accept defeat.
However, acting Samsung coach Kim Hyo-beom said after the game, “I think I put too much pressure on (Lee) Jung-hyun. I feel so sorry for him. I want him to be a little selfish, but I don’t think he can do that due to team circumstances.” He felt sorry that he only put pressure on him.