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Jun 22, 2018 - 01:29 AM

Slam Dunk: Team Toyotama

When former coach Kitano introduced the 80% offense and 20% defense tactic to the Toyotama team, the team improved and became no.1 of Osaka and later even managed to reach the quarter finals of the IH games. Everyone cheered on the Run & Gun playing style. The school invested a lot of money in the basketball club and demanded even better results. When Kitano sensei could not live up to the high expectations, he got fired.

Minami and Kishimoto, both great admirers of Kitano sensei and his tactics, carried on playing the offensive Run & Gun. They have no respect for the new coach at all, giving him a really hard time.

Their strongest tactic is Run & Gun. This strategy is also the reason that the top 3 scorers of the district Osaka are all Toyotama players (Minami, Kishimoto and Itakura). In the district games and district finals Toyotama managed to get over 100 points every game. Every one except one: versus Daiei Gakuen, which is also the team they lost to, becoming no.2 of the district.

Each player of Toyotama possesses scoring abillities, lifting the offenisive powers of this team to another level. They are not depending on one scoring player which makes it hard to defend them. As this team plays Run & Gun, their speed and stamina should not be underestimated.

Trash talk, provocation and pushing when out of the referree's sight are the dirty tricks that Toyotama players like to use.

Team captain Minami is a great player, being good at defense as well as offense. He also is good at analyzing the game and recognizing the ace player of the opponent. However his eager to win put him on the wrong track: he injured Rukawa on purpose in order to eliminate the best player of Shohoku.

Weak points:
The players (and even their fans) are very rude people who disregard everyone. They are very short tempered and although the provacation is always from their side, I believe they are not good at receiving it when the opponent uses it on them. They easily lose their calm.

When needed the players are even rude and violent to each other, which cannot be good for the team spirit.

The lack of a good center is a problem in this team, because they will need at least two players to guard a capable center such as Akagi, which make long(er) range shots from Rukawa and Mitsui possible. They were having a very hard time to defend the two seniors of Shohoku.

They play only 20% defense, so their defense is quite weak. They believe it's not a problem, because they only need to score more than the points they get against them. This is a dangerous tactic when you meet well balanced teams such as Kainan and Shohoku, who have a decent defense and an arsenal of offensive abilities.

Both Shohoku (in the 1st half) and Daiei Gakuen used a strategy with which they slowed down the pace of the entire game to disable the fast attacks. Both teams were successful, so the single strategy of Toyotama can be broken.

#4 Minami Tsuyoshi aka Ace Killer
3rd year
Small Forward
184 cm

Minami is the team captain and the top scorer of the district Osaka. He is a good defender and also possesses great 3-point shooting abilities.

In last year's IH championship Minami injured Shoyo's ace player Fujima, but entirely on purpose. He just didn't expect Fujima being brave enough not to dodge his elbow. And he got nicked "Ace Killer" for this incident.

Toyotama fired coach Kitano because he wasn't able to bring the team further than the quarter finals with his offensive play. Minami and Kishimoto however strongly believed in Kitano-sensei and were determined to prove everyone wrong. They continued Kitano's tactic and put winning before everything, even if they had to play dirty; like injuring Rukawa (elbowing in his face).

The split second before Minami would eliminate Rukawa (his knee was going for a full hit in Rukawa's face) he remembered that Kitano-sensei told them to always enjoy the game they love. Minami turned his knee away just in time and only injured himself by a hard fall.

When he returned from his treatment he hit two 3-pointers to decrease the gap to 4 points, but the game and the championships were over. They lost 91-87.

That night he also brought Rukawa some special balm to treat his injury. He told Rukawa that Sannoh's Sawakita Eiji is the best highschool player and if he wanted to become the no.1 player of Japan, he has to beat Sawakita first.

#5 Kishimoto Minori
3rd year
Power Forward
188 cm

Kishimoto is the 2nd topscorer of Osaka. His long hair that he normally wears in a pony tail is his remarkable feature. He is a very arrogant guy who shows no respect to others, except Kitano-sensei. He was even rude against Kainan's Maki. He also claimed that Sendoh is not such a great player as said in the magazines, which pissed Hikoichi off who, in return, faxed Shohoku all the information he gathered on Toyotama.

Despite his terrible attitude, he is a good player.

#6 Itakura Daijiro
2nd year
Point Guard
183 cm

He is the 3rd topscorer of the district Osaka and has a great 3-point shot. This guy has a lot of trash talks and made Miyagi losing his calm. He took advantage of the great height difference between the two and provoked Miyagi continiously. However, when Miyagi put himself together again, Itakura was not able to stop the short and speedy guard anymore.

Yasuda knew Itakura would not be able to beat Miyagi as a guard, because this tall guy probably started playing as a point guard from his highschool years on, while Miyagi had been a point guard for his entire life.

#7 Yajima Kyohei
3rd year
Shooting Guard
180 cm

I found out that this guy really plays no role at all in this team. It took me long time to scan a good picture of him from the manga. He guarded Mitsui so I believe Mitsui got a lot of points in that game. :p

#8 Iwata Mitsuaki
3rd year
190 cm

He defended Akagi and experienced how hard the job was. Anzai noticed the diffence in power and advised the attacks should go via Akagi. Also, Akagi said that Uozumi was much more better than this Toyotama center.

#14 Ookawa Teruo
1st year
181 cm

Ryonan's Aida Hikoichi knows him from junior high, when they played basketball together. He sent Hikoichi a letter inviting him to see his team playing the last district game. Teruo has grown 16cm since his last meeting with Hikoichi.

Head coach

After Kitano-sensei was sent away, this man became the new head coach of Toyotama. However, the team showed no respect at all, especially Minamino and Kishimoto disregarded him and even attacked him.

He hates how they ignore him and even become violent. Although the hard feelings, he still supports them.

Former coach

Kitano-sensei is a great supporter of the "80% offense and 20% defense" tactic. In his years of coaching he first guided the team to become no.1 of Osaka and then later also brought the team to the quarter finals of the IH championships. However, the board of the school set the target higher and higher and finally decided that his playing style was not sufficient anymore and fired him.

He then became coach on a primary school, still holding on to his belief. Although the little kids were of course not capable enough to play real Run & Gun at a high level, he enjoyed how the kids played with passion and love for the game.