2016-17 Chicago Hoops – Playoffs Week 1 (April 2)

Updated: April 6, 2017

It has been a very long journey.  Our season started all the way back in October.. We’re talking pre-Cubs World Series here and on a fitting note we began our Playoffs on the same night the Cubs would begin their title defense.. Well enough about baseball (for the time-being), we have a TON to review from the Opening Night of the Playoffs. We had 10 Games and that meant 10 Teams were handed their first Losses of the Playoffs and are now on the BRINK of ELIMINATION. More on that below!  We had upsets, we had Overtimes, we had double-OTs, we had big-shots and big-blocks. We also saw #16 Team Schwartz win not one but TWO Playoff Games on Sunday Night.. With just 5 guys and their second Win was over a Top-10 seed!! It was a heck of a night and at night’s end 10 Teams still remain without a Loss in this Double-Elimination tournament.

Weekly Highlight Video! Powered by Dr. Jacob D.D.S.

One more thing before we get to the Power Rankings, we have some amazing Sponsors for you this Season including none other than Live Clean Chicago! They are the best Cleaning Service in Chicago bar none and more importantly you can trust them to clean your place (even if you aren’t home). Myself and my family (Holden) use them frequently!  One more brief mention as it’s likely you will want to know..   Also, StudentCity has a new program and Young Professionals are invited! It’s called the Bucket List! They take you on amazing trips abroad.

If you ever want info (and we also get deals!!) from any of our Sponsors just contact Holden@allsportsseries.com

All Stars

Quickly, as a reminder the Starters were chosen by the League during the VOTE over the past month.. The Reserves were named by the League Office.  On Sunday May 7, along side the Championship, the All Stars will compete in a 3pt Contest and All Star Game (unless they are partaking in the Championship of course..).  A special Congrats goes out to League MVP Chris Wroblewski! Chris, deservedly so, received the most Votes from the Players. He will be one of the two Captains to select their respective Teams on the final night.. Joining him will be the second-highest vote-getter which was Lane Barlow of Team Wong (in his debut season of the Chicago Hoops League) – very impressive.  If either or both are in the Championship, replacement Captains will be named..

All Star Starters (Voted on by League’s Players, Alphabetical Order)

MVP* Chris Wroblewski – Team Maione, Esto Vega – Team Zimmerman, Josh Davis – Team Kozin, Lane Barlow – Team Wong, Marin Kukoc – Team Gutman, Nate Johnson – Team Malvin, Randall Hampton – Team Kozin, Rodney Clark – Team Malvin, Scott Campbell – Team Lalez, Tim Szatko – Team Wong, Victor Ojeleye – Team UC Booth, Zack Novak – Team Harris

All Star Starters (Voted on by League Office, Alphabetical Order)

Austin Brown – Team Schwartz, Brad Deutsch – Team Maione, Brock Massie – Team Wong, Chris Ray – Team Maione, Dave Gershenzon – Team Lalez, Gage Coleman – Team Silver, Gilles Jones – Team Jones, Jonathon Gac – Team Sternberg, Joe Kozak – Team McNichols, Rob Kamentsev – Team Apuli, Matt Merrigan – Team Malvin, Max Shulruff – Team Sternberg, Sam Leewood – Team Purimetla, Terdarin Bryson – Team Wong, Tred Dean – Team Kaplan


Playoff Review

Bottom-6 Round

15. Team Cohen (Crystal Lake CDJ) v. 20. Team Silver (Benjmain & Shapiro)

Winner plays 10. Team Purimelta

These two Teams locked horns in Week 19 of the Regular Season and were lined up in the Bracket for an immediate rematch. Team Silver had more talent than the typical #20 seed but was without their leading-man All Star Gage Coleman. Team Cohen did not feel bad for them and took it to them early.. Jake Lerman had 28 and Jake Shlofrock had 16 to earn Team Cohen a big-time Playoff W in this one. They would move on to face Team Purimetla in the Opening Round. EJ Silver had 22 and Sean Cassell had 19 in the Loss. Team Silver moves down into ELIMINATION territory.. After all the dust settled of Night 1, they’d eventually get matched up with #9 Team UC Booth, who fell victim to an upset by #16 Team Schwartz.. Team Silver will need to Win that one to stay alive.


16. Team Schwartz (SLA Insurance) v. 19. Team Kaplan (Camp Ojibwa)

Winner plays 9. Team UC Booth

Team Schwartz came out ON FIRE.  Even the returning Bret Darcy to Team Kaplan was not enough to match the 3-ball party that was coming for Team Schwartz. They had 3 guys with 20+.. Greg Gonzalez went for 33 in his Playoff debut, Jonathan Blakely had 23 and Jon Sider went for 20 in the route.. Tred Dean had the second highest point total of the evening, with 34 for Team Kaplan.. Second only to Greg Gonzalez’ 36 points in Team Schwartz’ 2nd Game of the Night against Team Purimetla.. More on that below.. Team Kaplan moves into ELIMINATION GAME territory.. Their lives will be on the line next week against #11 Team Sternberg…


17. Team Apuli (Dr. Jacob D.D.S.) v. 18. Team Deutsch (Meli Cafe)

Winner plays 8. Team Zimmerman

These two Teams met all the way back in Week 1 and we saw Team Deutsch grab one of their biggest Wins of the Year. Team Apuli did not forget that and planned to make a statement while getting some retribution.. That they did. Captain Justin actually led with 18 points in this one to help guide his Team to their first Playoff W of the season. This is what they do. They gobble together Playoff wins.. Team Deutsch got 27 points from Jeff Shukis and 17 points from Ross Chuckerman but just couldn’t get enough stops on D to keep it close. They move into ELIMINATION GAME territory next week when they will take on the Defending Champs #13 Team Gutman.


Opening Round

11. Team Sternberg (Pear Tree Catering) v. 14. Team James (Chipotle)

Winner plays 6. Team Jones

Game of the Night. We’ll start there.  This one was dramatic. It had guys laying out on the floor all over the place. Both Teams desperately wanted to move on.. Regulation was not enough here.. Nor was one OT session.. We needed 2 Overtimes to decide it and eventually #14 Team James would outlast #11 Team Sternberg.  Jalal Hamad had 26 for Team James here. It was the usual suspects for Team Sternberg as Tyler Max had 31 and All Star Max Shulruff had 24.  With the Win, Team James would move on to face #6 Team Jones later in the night.. #11 Team Sternberg fell into ELIMINATION GAME territory and will face #19 Team Kaplan — a Team that has not won since October — and a group they defeated a month or so ago. If they can get bye them and with their nice seed, they could possibly face another ELIMINATION GAME with a lower seed.. It is not unthinkable to see them go on a string of Wins here. We have seen this before. Just need to stay positive.


10. Team Purimetla (Wrigley View Rooftop) v. 15. Team Cohen (Crystal Lake CDJ)

#10 Team Purimetla was entering their first Playoff Game in the Chicago Hoops League and quickly realized that seeds help put you in a nice position but Teams are often playing better than advertised this time of year.. Team Cohen was even without Justin Bowen until a handful of minutes left in the Game and this one was tight until the very end. They traded the lead numerous times and each held it late in the Game. Team Purimetla would eventually squeak out a 2point Win in what was one of the better played Games of the evening. They earned it. Sam Leewood led with 22 and Captain Pete had 15 in the Win. They now look ahead to next Sunday and a date with #7 Team McNichols who will be coming off a BYE this weekend.. They also need to prepare for a 2nd Game.. Should they Win the first, they get a date with 2x Champs and #2 Team Lalez.. For Team Cohen, it was a disappointing end to the Opening Night of the Playoffs. They played so well and just came up a bucket shy of their second Win. Oren Schwartz had 25 in this one for them. They now move to ELIMINATION territory and get to play against old friends and teammates #17 Team Apuli — only one of those Teams can survive that one.


9. Team UC Booth (Biaggi’s Red) v. 16. Team Schwartz (SLA Insurance)

Team Schwartz had some momentum building from the previous hour when they defeated Team Kaplan in the Bottom-6 Round. #9 UC Booth was welcoming back many of their Players from an extended Spring Break. They had dropped 4 in a row and as a result they fell in the Standings quite a bit heading into the Playoffs.. Could Team Schwartz, with just 5 guys keep it going for another 44-minute run?  The answer.. Yes.  Greg Gonzalez led them in scoring again and this time he had the highest total of the night for any Player in the League with 36 and they needed all of them. Team Schwartz would seal a 3 point W late. This Game went back and forth. Either Team could win but Team Schwartz really gutted this out. Of the 10 Teams alive without a Loss on them.. They are the only one without a Top-10 seed.. They came to play on Sunday Night and really shook things up. Team Schwartz will face #8 Team Zimmerman and the Winner there will face #1 Team Kozin on Sunday Night.  The returning Victor Ojeley had 19 for UC Booth. They will now move into ELIMINATION GAME territory.. They are the highest seed in the ELIMINATION GAMES right now.. We utilize re-seeding and they will be taking on the lowest seeds left for some time.. For starters, they get #20 Team Silver on Sunday Night.


8. Team Zimmerman (MB Financial) v. 17. Team Apuli (Dr. Jacob D.D.S.)

Team Apuli got a Big-W in Game 1 and came into this one feeling good.. Unfortunately, for them, they got lined-up with the stewing #8 Zimmerman squad who was still upset from their streak being snapped in the final Game of the Regular Season. This Team was as hot as anyone (aside from last week) and that continued on Sunday. Riaz Hoveydai had 27 to lead them. Dave Altman had 20. Nate Bateman had 18 and All Star Esto Vega had 16. Not bad production from your Top-4 right there.. They earned the Win in their first Playoff Game this season and now move on to a date with Cinderella #16 Team Schwartz squad.. The Winner will then move on to play the well-rested #1 overall seed – Team Kozin.  For Team Apuli, they move into ELIMINATION GAME zone and will take on Rivals Team Cohen for survival.


12. Team Harris (Stanley’s Kitchen & Tap) v. 13. Team Gutman (Live Clean Chicago)

Winner plays 5. Team Malvin

We touched on it last week but this was the one we had circled from the Opening Round set of Games. These two Teams met last year on the second week of the Playoffs and Team Gutman used it as a launching  pad to the title. That was the night when things really went well for them and off they went.. For Team Harris, it has been a year of trying to get back to that spot and make things right. On that night, their leading scorer at the time – Dylan Richter – was unable to be in attendance.. Work had kept him away from All Sports Series for just about a full year’s time. Until Sunday. Now there is a 6-Games Played rule for Playoffs, but that is for Subs and not paying-members of the League — Dylan even in his absence had paid to be a member of Team Harris and so his debut aligned with the start of the Playoffs and making up for lost time was on his mind.. His 14 points was enough to help give Team Harris a boost without Team Novak and get the Win over Defending Champs Team Gutman. Team Harris now would have the tough task of taking on #5 Team Malvin.. Team Gutman on the other hand.. Well, they would have a much harder road to the Crown this season.. They move to ELIMINATION GAME territory which means they’ll need to rattle off NINE Games in a row to Win this thing.. It’s been done before.. They will take on #18 Team Deutsch with their title-defense on the line next Sunday.


Round 2

6. Team Jones (Chicago Trolley) v. 14. Team James (Chipotle)

Team James was “fresh” off a gigantic 2OT affair with #11 Team Sternberg to earn their right to play in this one.. They had some momentum early in this one and the Game stayed close through half-time in the second half. Team James’ emotions would get the best of them and their D suffered as a result. Team Jones went on a big-time run with about 10 minutes to go — in their first All Sports Series Playoff Game as a unit — and would eventually get the 20pt Win and move on. Captain Gilles led with 26 and his squad now moves on to face #3 Team Wong in what could steal the show in Week 2. For #14 Team James, they move into ELIMINATION zone. However, they have a BYE this weekend due to their Win in their first Game. They will allow some Teams to be knocked out this weekend before coming back in Week 3 with their Playoff lives on the line on April 23.



5. Team Malvin (StudentCity) v. 12. Team Harris (Stanley’s Kitchen & Tap)

5/12 match-up.. This was the one we were waiting for.. Only, someone forgot to tell Team Malvin about the whole upset thing.. They jumped on Team Harris from the start and even without All Star Nate Johnson, they built up a big lead and rode it out to the W.  All Star Matt Merrigan had 24 and Brandon Snowden had 16 in the W. They now move on to their biggest Game to date.. A clash with #4 Team Maione. As for Team Harris, like #14 Team James, they move into ELIMINATION territory but will have a BYE next weekend. That means a handful of Teams can get knocked out while they are resting up.. When they return it will be on April 23 and it will be Win-or-Go-Home mode the rest of the way.. They are 8 Games away from the Crown. That may seem like a ton but if they bring their full compliment of Players, they can do it.


BYES last Week:

1. Team Kozin (Peak Properties)

Will take on Winner of #8 Team Zimmerman v. #16 Team Schwartz.

2. Team Lalez (Hakimian Imports)

Will take on Winner of #7 Team McNichols v. #10 Team Purimetla

3. Team Wong (Biaggi’s Purple)

Will take on #6 Team Jones.

4. Team Maione (Southview Athletics)

Will take on #5 Team Malvin.

7. Team McNichols (Al’s Beef on WESTERN)

Will take on #10 Team Purimetla, with the Winner moving on to face #2 Team Lalez.


That’s it for Week 1. Get ready for our first Eliminations of the Season in Week 2!