Tick Tock (FurSports.net)

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Tick Tock (FurSports.net)

Postby JWolfman » February 2nd, 2017, 9:48 am

Tick Tock

Two months ago while doing a report on the Plymouth Taproot's game against the Santa Ana Spectrums, I walked with a small group of other reporters on our way toward the visitors' locker room when I accidentally took a wrong turn while I was distracted by my phone, separating from the group. By the time I realized my mistake, I found myself alone in the hallways of Roots Garden, and only the muffled sounds of the crowd could be heard in the distance. Due to my heels, every step I took rattled the silence with its noise, and it somehow reminded me of a loud grandfather clock.

Tick tock. Tick tock. Tick tock.

The game against Santa Ana was the Taproot's third win in a row, and although they lost the next game against Winnipeg, they moved on to win another three games in a row. It was an exciting time for the FBA in Massachusetts as the fans temporarily forgotten about the fact their team continued to dwell either in the basement of the league or just skimming above it. Their victories against high-powered teams such as the Spectrums, Bangor Tides, and Albany Alphas gave the fans a new sense of hope that this season would not be like their previous season when they ended up at 12-52 in the FBA Strike-shortened season and at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. Their first draft pick, perhaps the best player out of Finland in modern history, had been dominating from the post, and Nina Lime along with Travis Buckner finally seemed to find their stride. Their weak 2-8 start seemed like a distant memory, pushed out by short-burst winning streaks. Then just as their feelings of euphoria were at their highest, the floor collapsed underneath them.

The December 20th victory against the Hawaii Kahunas was their last victory as of this writing, just an estimated three weeks shy of a full two months ago. The team spent an entirety of January without a single drop of victory, and by the midway point of the season, they still haven't acheived their tenth overall victory. While the Finnish Center Erik Tiovonen continued to grab rebounds and score points worthy of an All-Star Rookie, he made his frustrations with the team more public, especially on twitter which threatened to divide the frayed unity of the team, already hampered by the low morale molasses that could only be caused by a losing streak that is now approaching 20 games.

Travis Buckner. Nina Lime. Rocky Caracal. Erik Tiovonen. Sarah Lancaster. At least two or three of those names were former Captains in their earlier respective teams. One is a rookie in the strong running for Rookie of the Year. This is a team loaded with talent, but they are only as strong as their weakest links. Their two draft picks from last season, Waylon Stone and Ginovani Bartolini, failed to make any great impression and the other drafted rookie, Jared Sunderman, had not been all that impressive with his 27% shooting accuracy. Christopher Zwischenberger and Kwaku Bbwaddene had not been able to regain their stride, and there's already talk of retirement concerning Zwischenberger. Rookie Anton Ivanov along with veteran Jonathan Sirhan had been non-factors thus far, and Darius Cole is trying his best but is easily overshadowed by the better-performing Tiovonen. The pick-up from the FBADL, Cassandra Cassiano, is perhaps the best move Chris Farrow had done over the past three months, but it is simply not enough by far.

If Chris Farrow had been more active in trying to improve his team than his constant mentions of Underwood alumni currently in the FBA Developmental League, then perhaps the Taproots would finally find their way out of last place. I'm very sure he's aware of the state of his team, but his seemingly lack of pushing for a stronger and deeper bench is a part of a reason why the team's in such a state as it is. Having very little wiggle room on his salary cap is merely an excuse, and being in the business as long as he has been, he should know this already. By this point, all the Taproots can hope for now is yet another First Draft Pick for next season.

There is hope for next season however. A high draft pick is pretty much a certainty by now, and while Chris Farrow will lose nine players to Free Agency, he will have $51.5 of salary cap space to work with, and only Sarah Lancaster is worthy enough for Mr. Farrow to fight bringing her back, along with perhaps Cassandra Cassiano. But that is next season, and there are still thirty-nine more games to go in this season. So the Taproots will face more depression, more losses, and more deflated morale. Sooner or later, if things don't improve, Chris Farrow will have to answer to the one group that should be above him even though he is the general manager: his fans.

Tick tock, Chris Farrow. Tick tock.

Tashira Rucson is a reporter for FurSports,net. She writes a column online on FBA team rankings, and this is her second year with FurSports.

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