Santa Ana Spectrums
|Santa Ana Spectrums|
|History||Santa Ana Spectrums (2004-present)|
|City||Santa Ana, CA|
|Team colors||Royal Blue, Gold, White, and Dark Gray
|Owner(s)||OAthletic (sports emanation of OMEN Technologies) (2010-present)|
|RL Primary Contact||BladesDaRaccoon|
|RL Secondary Contact||Zenbas|
|General manager||Emily LaDuke (Female Ocelot)|
|Head coach||Freya Blackborne (Female Deer)|
|Assistant coach||Alonzo Murillo (male black panther)|
|Lead trainer||Kathleen Robles (Female Coyote)|
|Conference titles||1 (2015)|
|Division titles||2 (2015, 2022)|
|Retired numbers||Justin Destrier 51|
2004-2010: The Hollywood Years
Hollywood movie mogul Will Fox had gone from being a poor, simple San Joaquin kit fox growing up in an empty salt plain in the California Central Valley to building a massive entertainment empire in the Southland. His success brought wealth and power, but through it all, he had a clear vision of supporting his own, especially his family in whatever way he could. When his nephew Niclas Novak began showing an early aptitude for basketball, Mr. Fox petitioned the FBA to open a new franchise in Southern California. When the FBA said that they couldn't add a new franchise to the Western Conference without having one open in the East as well, the mogul quickly convinced Lucas Bryn, another owner eager to start an FBA franchise in Florida, to squeeze the trigger on his project, offering both encouragement and cash.
On the surface, the creation of the Spectrums was a personal project for no other purpose than to feature the owner's nephew when he was old enough to play professional ball. But Mr. Fox had had too much faith in his nephew, and by the time the 2007 FBA Draft rolled around, it was clear that Niclas Novak was not the superstar that his uncle had been expecting. Frustrated with his nephew's performance, he didn't bat an eye when the Spectrums passed up a chance to draft him, instead choosing the much more impressive L.V. McDyess, who went on to be one of the team's star players. Niclas Novak eventually ended up on the Dakota Bikers, until being traded to the Baltimore Spirits, taking him further from his uncle-- much to his relief.
Despite the family row, Mr. Fox has found owning an FBA franchise to be lucrative and a business-savvy move at first. The Prism Palace, where the Spectrums play, often has big Hollywood stars sitting in the lower seats. FBA star Justin Destrier held prominent floor seat while taking a break from his basketball career, and could be seen sitting there for nearly every game-- though never during games against the Thrust. While Mr. Fox has left team management to what he believed to be a capable set of paws, he occasionally checked in himself, having found a passing interest in the sport-- and often passed out tickets to important Hollywood clients. While the team did struggle in its handful of years in the FBA, it showed glimmers of hope, leading most critics to believe that the Spectrums would be a highly competitive team in the coming decade.
2010-2013: An Auspicious OMEN
Sadly, the critics had to eat humble pie as over the years, the Spectrums sank lower and lower in the standings, until at last at the end of the 2009-2010 season, Will Fox called it quits and announced that the team was to be put up for sale. While the Prism Palace, had all the glitz and flash which was to be expected for the area, the team had languished under the wandering direction of its management, though not soley for lack of talent among the players.
In a surprise move, media, industry and technology giant, OMEN Technologies, swept in immediately to pick up the team. Determined not to repeat the mistakes of their predecessors, OMEN let the team’s former management go in favor of new blood. Specifically new head coach, Jackson Price, former MVP and three-time championship winner. In short time, Price called in Randall Yoster, famed former assistant coach of the Huntsville Mayors, to be his own assistant coach, and the team secured Frankie Brunswigger, the top athletic trainer in Los Angeles. With a clear vision for success, Price brought the team the order and guidance it had lacked from the start, as well as the drive of a former player who had tasted championship success, and still hungered for more.
While 2010 was a big transition year for the Spectrums, it was clear that the team had taken a great step forward, finally able to properly utilize their talent. In a surprising move, the team even picked up former superstar, Justin Destrier, out of retirement. With My Big Pony bringing back the high-profile attention the team so sorely lacked, Price filled in the rest of his open roster with key players like college superstar Wescot Yobia, and with veteran forward Omar Pink being promoted to team captain, regulars like Alejandro Perez, Milton Dianna, Phineas Jackson and Sandy DiTullio brought unity back to the team, until by mid-season both Perez and DiTullio had been traded for younger, more energetic talent to suit the changing style of the team.
In the wake of such a massive change of both management and lineup, the Spectrums showed they had become a force to be reckoned with. By 12/30/10 the team was already ranked #10 in the league, and had wins over some of their toughest competitors. Crediting teamwork and a clear vision for success, the team fought hard, ultimately earning their first playoff berth after edging out the Blanks in the final game of the 2010-11 regular season. They were knocked out by the defending champion Dakota Bikers, but at least the friendly voice of Alan Foster, the team’s new Australian announcer helped make the disappointment bearable. That voice gave encouragement to the team and fans alike when the club could not get a repeat post-season appearance in the 2012 FBA Playoffs.
For the 2012-13 season, the team came back fighting even harder, but it was also clear that head coach/GM/and majority owner, Jackson Price, was having difficulty managing the strain of so much work. His legendary temper worked into overdrive, breaking down the bonds he had originally worked to build among the team, leading the Spectrums to a slow, disjointed start. Then on 12/15/12, while driving home from a late practice, Jackson Price became involved in a horrific single-car accident which claimed his life. Majority ownership of the Spectrums fell to his son, Taylor Price, and coaching duties were taken up by assistant coach, Randall Yoster, and a new GM was found in Ralqul Witt. Under Randall's leadership, the Spectrums found the heart and hunger they had lost, and finished the season with another playoffs appearance, though they were knocked out in the first round by the league leading Winnipeg Voyageurs, with Crosby Sutters filling in for an injured Omar Pink.
2013-2014: Change for the Better
2013 marked a new beginning for the Spectrums, with the arrival of a new head coach from a most unlikely source. Alan Foster, the team's announcer, interviewed for the position, and his playbooks and game study won over GM Ralqul Witt. Gone was the harsh, overbearing ways of the Price era, replaced with limitless exuberance and love for the game, and a passion to improve and succeed. Sadly. all the enthusiasm in the world could not help the Spectums as their momentum slowed mid-season, and drastic changes were made as point guard Li Ho Fook and bigfur Daius Aurelias were traded to the Las Vegas Wildcards in exchange for their first round draft pick, Luukas Hirvonen, who went on to become Rookie of the Year. The cougar brought direction where Fook had left them wandering, and backed by Omar Pink, Alonzo Murillo, Monty Silverthorn and Justin Destrier, the Spectrums charged into the playoffs. Once more, Crosby Sutters found himself filling in for an injured player in the playoffs, this time Alonzo Murillo, and while he performed very well, the Spectrums still found themselves falling to the Winnipeg Voyageurs in the first round. Justin Destrier was honored with Defensive Player of the Year.
2013 also saw the departure of long-time anchor, Omar Pink. With such a drastic change, other changes were made as well. Daius Aurelias was brought back from the Wildcards, Ain Iannizzi to take Omar Pink's place, Remy Belgique from the Tallahassee Typhoons to back up Luukas Hirvonen at PG, Terrell Vora of the 2013 World Champions Dakota Bikers, and Kamakani Iona. Draft picks included the sharp-shooting Zack Plushpaw and the upcoming center Joseph Davis. With Luukas Hirvonen as the team's new captain, a sense of youth and boundless energy has filled the team, leading the Spectrums to their best-ever season start, leading their division.
The Spectrums finished the 2013-2014 regular season fifth overall, playing the Whips in their first round playoff season and ultimately triumphing in 7 games. They went on to play the 8th seed Spokane, and out-lasted the Rapids in 7 games. Finally, the Spectrums had made their very first conference final, where again the team forced a game seven against the 3rd seed Edmonton. This time the team wasn't so lucky, and was ultimately defeated.
With the start of the 2014-2015 season, the Spectrums lost both their GM and star player. General Manager Ralqul Witt left for a Vice President/General Manager position in Albany while 2012 Rookie of the Year Luukas Hirvonen went to join Edmonton. The Spectrums were quick to rebut any whispers of a 'rebuilding season' when newly installed General Manager Taylor Price, son of former Spectrums Head Coach Jackson Price, took the reins and began to work, making quick signings with Scott Parsons, L.V. McDyess, Anthony Rios and charismatic red fox Stephan Soro. The team also drafted the highly touted rookie guard Aditya Anggun as a cornerstone point guard. Under retired Assistant Coach Randall Yoster's request, the management also reined in retired FBA Bigfur Alonzo Murillo as the new Assistant Coach for the Spectrums to complement and assist Head Coach Alan Foster.
With veteran leadership taking charge and the team hungry to win it all, the 2014 season looks to be strong for the Spectrums.
2014-2019: A Rising Culture
The 2014-2015 Season became the best season the Spectrums had ever had in franchise history. They were able to not only able have the most regular season wins in the franchise, but in the entire FBA of that season with 59 victories. With the trio of Soro, McDyess, and Destrier leading the way, the Spectrums were able to return to the Western Conference Finals for the second straight year, facing their Pacific Rim Rivals in Alaska. After a grueling battle, the Spectrums were able to punch their ticket to their first ever finals in history as they went up against Rodger Umaechi, Jackson Nuez and the Albany Alphas. The Spectrums proved themselves to be too much for the squad in Albany and they were able to snatch away the series after an amazing last second shot from the Finals MVP, Stephan Soro, taking home the Halley Summers for the first time.
2020-present: Flipping the Table
Following a series of first and second round exits, some even thinking the Spectrums had become the Western conference's 'Jobbers to the stars' It was clear the top needed a shake up, kicked off by the firing of GM Dave Walnuts followed by Head Coach Eric Schmidt following him right out the door. The first of the new faces stepping in for the effort to get Santa Ana over the hump was the rebellious, hard-edged and somewhat enigmatic Emily LaDuke...daughter to the president of Motorcycle company Purrley-Davison. Manning the helm in the GM's seat, she made bold claims from the jump stating that no one in the Spectrums' staff should feel safe, since after all those disappointing runs nothing's sacred and that she planned to strip the team of the 'jobber' title and turn them into something to be feared in the west.
|Point Guard||Shooting Guard||Small Forward||Power Forward||Center|
|11||Aditya Anggun (Balinese Civet, G)||17||Kiara Hughes (Spotted Leopard, G)||31||Lee Jin-Sung (Black Bear, F)||47||Sebastian Kosciusko (Toucan, F)||75||Viking Lagerström (European Badger, F/C)|
|36||Benjamin Aquino (Barbados Black Belly, G)||34||Bernard Peace (Hippopotamus, C/F)||18||Adana Gondwe (Hyena, G)||34||Oscar Johansson (Saint Bernard, C/F)||14||Ronan London (Jackal, G)|
|22||Shelly Brie Leonard (Striped Hyena, F/G)||15||Carol Quiñones (Wolf, F/C)||Jonas Beckett (Thylacine, G)||Michelle Peabody lll (Great Egret, F)||48||Shalini Aziz (Albino Spectacled Cobra, F)|
|Head Coach Use Only:|
|Name||Nickname||Species||Gender||Title||Height||Weight||Birthplace or School||Seasons With FBA #|
|Eric Schmidt||Wolverine||M||Head Coach||6'4"||210||Helena, MT||13|
|Alonzo Murillo||Slasher||Black Panther||M||Assistant Coach||7'1"||275||Medellin,Colombia||14|
|Frankie Brunswigger||Frank the Tank||Tiger||M||Athletic Trainer||6'6"||251||UCLA||5|
Spectrums 2014-2015 Season Goofs