Sunday, November 27, 2011

No Games, Itchy Fingers

The Mailmen are off this week and will begin regular season play on December 4th versus Team Eric.

That does not mean the team isn't busy however, as the front office signed a few of their roster members today.

The Mailmen announced they would re-up Ryan Stuver's 10-day contract when it expires this week. Stuver made $1.75 million last year, but left the team when he was signed to a soccer program. The Mailmen were able to bring him back last week after injuries left the team with limited numbers. A year contract will be debatable once this second 10-day contract is up.

Big man Andy Kempf was also re-upped this year, after a $1.8 million dollar deal last year. After a successful season in the front office's eyes, the Mailmen signed Kempf for three years at $7 million total. He will make $2 million this season.

Pat Cripple and Michael Giardina were signed for the same amount $1.75 million dollars a year, but were signed for different lengths, two and one years, respectively. Crip performed well in his minutes with the team and Giardina should see action next week.

Johno Reminder was signed to a one year, $1.78 million dollar deal, with a option in 2012 for $2.35 million. Reminder missed the first game with personal obligations. He looks to be a body in the middle, taking minutes where big man Kerry Hunter left as he recovers from surgery.

Brent Hunter's contract situation was also an odd one for the team. After playing in only a handful of games last year under his Developmental League contract, he eclipsed the maximum amount of games played for the professional team. Under league rules, the team must either sign him to a 10-day contract, a full-year contract, or send him back down to the developmental league for one full year under a new contract. The Mailmen decided to make Brent an official part of the Mailmen, giving him a two-year $5.67 million contract. He will make $2.55 million this year.

The Mailmen have also had prelimanary talks with former Reignmakers Michael Petrilli and Clinton Weigel about possible returns to the team or their Developmental team association.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

New Look, New Year

Preseason basketball was good to the Mailmen.

A 54-43 victory over PBR's Finest this past Sunday night gives the good guys some ground to build off of.

After a change in uniform and a few tweaks to the roster, the Mailmen saw a lot that they liked.

The team shot 41% from three, 38% from the field total, as they continued the trend from last season of taking control in the second half of games. With only 6 players available due to various situations, the Mailmen extended their 10 point lead slightly to 11 to finish 1-0 in the preseason.

Brent Hunter led the team with 19 points, hitting three of six from deep. Brandon Hunter followed suit. 18 points, four of 10 from three and added 9 rebounds.

Rebounding was key Sunday. The Mailmen were the smaller team, a theme similar to last year. Four of the six players had more than 5 rebounds. Andy Kempf grabbed 10, Brandon 9, newly acquired Pat Cripple (10 points) had 8, and coach Jason Hunter (7 points) added 6. The Mailmen used their legs in the second half, taking control of the boards and the game.

"We aren't in the best shape," injured big man Kerry Hunter said afterwards. Kerry was highly involved on the bench, taking control of subsitutions, calling plays from the sidelines. "You could see us doing more standing late in the first half. We got back into it after the break. We will need to talk and move more because we will always be the smallest team on the floor."

Being small showed in the shooting percentage. The Mailmen only shot 36% from inside the three point line. Most of those shots coming within 5 feet of the basket.

"It's tough once we get to the key," Coach Hunter said, "we are small, we get banged up in there. Not a lot of clear shooting lanes once we get close. Brandon took some shots inside. We did well driving, we know we can't rely on the three point shot all the time. I liked what I saw, we had guys playing extended minutes tonight. We will take a W."

The Mailmen actually signed former player Ryan Stuver to a 10-day contract Saturday night in order to have bodies for rest. The team will look at his contract situation later and may sign him to a second 10-day contract this week. Johno Reminder should be back next week as should Michael Giardina, giving the team more depth. Kerry Hunter is still looking to be out at least 4 weeks, rehabbing his knee.

The schedule for the year will be released tomorrow and we will get a first look to see where the team sits division wise. Most analysts believe they will be slated in Division II again this year, as they came up short in the playoffs last year.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Welcome to Mailmen basketball!

So the NBA is in lockout mode...the BMRL, Brunswick Mens Rec Basketball League, is not.

The league will begin play, on schedule, this Sunday, November 20th.

As you can recall, the Reignmakers came up short in their goal of a championship last fall and decided to rename the team, in order to get a fresh start and new outlook this season.

The team also made a few roster changes, hopefully resulting in more wins and hopefully a championship run this season.

A few of the names from last year are returning. Jason Hunter (10.2 ppg, 4.8 rpg), Brandon Hunter (21.2 ppg, 8.1 rpg), Kerry Hunter (10.7 ppg, 8.2 rpg), Brent Hunter (17.3 ppg, 2 rpg), and Andy Kempf (2.9 ppg, 4.2 rpg). There have been changes however. After losing Ryan Stuver and Mike Petrilli to a switch in sports, Chad Dobson to a Michigan league, and Clintion Weigel to a contract dispute, the now "Mailmen", had to search for replacements.

Pat Cripple, Michael Giardina, and Johno Reminder are the new faces on the roster, all which bring different aspects to a team in need of varying dynamics.

Johno Reminder comes back after a year hiatus from the team. He brings more size and toughness inside and on the glass. Reminder was out of basketball last season while developing his skills overseas and has now found a place on the Mailmen's roster. Familiarity with Reminder's game, and his added size, were a big reason why Coach Jason Hunter decided to bring the big man back. "With Kerry out for about a month after knee surgery, Johno will step in with major minutes early in the season."

Michael Giardina will ultimately take Weigel's place in the lineup this year as a defensive hustler and slasher on the offensive end. "Mike brings a lot of things we like to the table," Coach Hunter said. "He thrives on the defensive side of the ball, playing passing lanes and pressuring the ball handler. We don't have a ton of quickness on that side of the ball and he brings that added dynamic to our roster." Giardina was signed after playing overseas basketball this past season.

Pat Cripple, or Crip, will be another addition with some size and athleticism being added to the team this year. Again with big man Kerry Hunter sidelined for some time after successful knee surgery and newly acquired Johno Reminder already scheduled to be out for the first preseason game, Crip will be thrown into the fire right away. The Mailmen are only listing 6 players on their roster for that first game, and we will get to see how Crip fits into the system on night number one.

The Mailmen will be playing PBR's Finest for their first preseason game. There is not much of a scouting report on Finest due to the fact they are a new team to the BMRL. After a dissapointing end to the season last year, the new-look Mailmen have their championship goal in mind.

Another report will be added later in the week with new player interviews and a look back at last year.

"It's basketball time...!"