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Samsung Ball Clubs Cut from Same Mold

Posted April. 25, 2006 05:18,   


Samsung has reeled off three straight wins in the pro basketball championship finals against Mobis and needs only one more win to capture the season title. Samsung’s walkover so far reminds us of their pro baseball club. The Lions, Samsung’s pro baseball club, recently won the Korean league championship series over Doosan in a sweep.

Aside from the fact that Samsung’s unstoppable basketball and baseball clubs share the same sponsor, many more coincidences are noticeable.

Strong focus-

Samsung’s baseball club won its first two finals matches in upsets. The second match that lasted for 4 hours 45 minutes was the longest in the Korean baseball history. On the basketball side, Samsung scored hard-fought, come-from-behind victories in the first three matches of the finals. The second round match went into extra time, just like the baseball club.

Samsung’s tendency to focus better in the later part of the game can be explained by the harmony between their defense and offense, and the wide variety of talent they have in disposal.

Division of labor-

Lions manager Sun Dong-ryeol’s strategy shines when he sticks to the solid division of labor between the pitching of his starters, his bullpen, and his closers. This “gate keeping” strategy was particularly effective under the leadership of Samsung’s seasoned coaching staff: Kwon Oh-jun, Oh Seung-hwan, and Sun Dong-ryeol.

Samsung basketball coach Ahn Jun-ho displays similar characteristics in his leadership. Ahn makes full use of the height advantage Seo Jang-hun, Oyedeji, and Johnson possess under the net, while effectively rotating Kang Hyeok, Lee Jeong-seok, and Lee Gyu-seop on the outside.


Kim Eung-ryong, the president of Samsung baseball club, has 10 Korean series championships under his belt. His extensive field experience and generous financial backing are the source of the ball club’s success. Similarly, Samsung basketball club president Jo Seung-yeon used to be highly successful as a basketball coach. He is the man responsible for Samsung Life’s six Basketball Festival wins, and the Korean national team’s silver medal glory at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. These former-coaches-turned-CEOs are known to trust their coaching staff’s decisions, rather than trying to micro-manage the teams themselves.

Jong-Seok Kim kjs0123@donga.com