Forwards in the mid-190cm range are a rare commodity in professional basketball.
Therefore, if a forward of this height can do his job inside and outside, the chances of gaining an advantage in the height battle with other teams increase.
The Suwon KT of the Korean Basketball Organization (KBO) has become stronger in this position in just one season.
Moon Jung-hyun, a 194-centimeter forward out of Korea University, joined the team before opening night as the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, and Park Jun-young (195 cm) returned to the roster on May 15 after completing his military service.
Even Moon Sung-gon (195 centimeters), whom KT recruited ambitiously this summer, is close to returning after shaking off an ankle injury.
The best defender in professional basketball, Moon Sung-gon, who has won the best defense award for four consecutive seasons, is scheduled to return for a home game against Seoul SK on the 18th.
Park Jun-young and Moon Sung-gon are both No. 1 forwards from Korea University. They entered the professional basketball league in 2018 and 2015, respectively.
After spending the first half of the season playing Han Hee-won (194 centimeters) alongside Moon Jung-hyun, Song Young-jin now has a variety of forwards at his disposal.
Han Hee-won, who was the second overall pick in 2015 behind Moon Sung-gon, is averaging 9.9 points and 4.6 rebounds this season, the most since entering the league.
KT has other second-round forwards like Han Hee-won.
The power forward position is another area of strength for KT, with Ha Yun-ki (203 cm) and Lee Doo-won (204 cm), who were both drafted as the team’s No. 2 picks in 2021 and 2022, respectively, out of Korea University.
In particular, Ha has established himself as one of the best big men in the league, averaging 19.6 points and seven rebounds in nine games this season.
With the addition of Paris Bass, who stands at 6-foot-9 and is more of a technician, KT is able to showcase a variety of forward combinations.
Add to that the addition of Heo Hoon, a South Korean national team guard who has completed his military service, and there is a lot of excitement on and off the court.
Heo, Moon, Sung-gon, and Park Jun-young all participated in the team’s training session at the KT Victory Center in Suwon, Gyeonggi-do, on Nov. 15 and worked out with the same intensity as the other players.
Moon Sung-gon, who normally participated in 4-on-4 half-court drills as well as full-court fastbreak drills, ran between the two courts and made layups.
Park Jun-young, whose mobility was considered a weakness, also showed promise by finishing fastbreaks without falling short of his teammates’ efforts, who had improved their physical condition during the season.
His teammates, who had become more agile than before he enlisted, encouraged him by saying, “Oh, Jun-young is playing well!” as he picked up speed.
For Song, the arrival of these long-awaited players isn’t just a pleasant surprise.
As many new players as there are, there will be some departures from the existing squad.
Despite not being at full strength, KT has started the season with six wins and three losses and sits in third place.
Heo is confident that the returning players, including himself, can add to the team.
In an interview before training, Heo said, “The environment (at the club) has changed a lot this season. The team atmosphere is really good,” he said, adding, “I can’t say it’s the ‘right time’ to win, but I think we have a better chance than in previous seasons.”
“From the outside, I think (the team) has changed a lot. I was surprised to see that the defense and organization are much better than before I joined the team,” he said, adding, “I think we can show a better performance if I can match the team.” 파워볼