Ryonan High School basketball team


Ryonan High School basketball team

The Ryonan High School basketball team is a fictional Japanese high school basketball team depicted in the anime and manga series "Slam Dunk" from Kanagawa Prefecture. Ryonan is considered one of the top teams in Kanagawa along with Shoyo and Kainan, the defending Kanagawa Interhigh Tournament champion for 17 years running. The team was seeded first in their respective division during the Interhigh Tournament. However, their main weaknesses are the lack of a star point guard and a three-point shooter.

Players

Hikoichi Aida

(相田彦一 "Aida Hikoichi"):Year: 1st Year:Height/Weight: 165 cm, 52 kg:Voice Actors: Masaya Onosaka Cheerful and energetic, Hikoichi aspires to become a player like his Ryonan teammates but, not being up to their level, he just stays with the reserves (more specifically with the coach, Moichi Taoka) and acts more as a team manager than a full player, taking detailed notes during matches. His catchphrase is "gotta check it," aside from shouting "Unbelievable!!!" every time something exciting happens during a match. He too considers Hanamichi a great player, because he was talked into it when they first met. Hikoichi also idolizes Ryota because he is a starter for Shohoku despite his short height (Ryota is only three centimeters - about one inch - taller than Hikoichi). He has an older sister, Yayoi Aida, who is a reporter for a basketball magazine (and from whom Hikoichi might have gotten his habit of taking notes).

Kicchou Fukuda

(福田吉兆 "Fukuda Kicchō"):Year: 2nd Year:Height/Weight: 188 cm, 80 kg:Jersey Number: #13:Position: Power Forward:Birthday: N/A:Voice Actor: Hideo IshikawaFukuda is the other ace Ryonan has up their sleeve. His offensive power rivals many of the best players in the Kanagawa prefecture and is seen throughout the series doing alley oops with Sendoh as the passer but his defensive ability is weak and can be easily exploited. He has something of a special rivalry going on with Hanamichi from the first time they knew of each other, when the latter was depressed over the loss to Kainan and was near a basketball court where Fukuda was practicing. Fukuda had previously heard about Hanamichi from Sendoh and had wanted to play him, but the latter refused. They do not actually meet each other until the last match of the Interhigh Tournament, when Fukuda outplays Sakuragi for the first half and lights the fire within him, with the words "I won, Sakuragi". Unwilling to accept the loss, Hanamichi strengthens his marking over Fukuda in the second half.

Ryonan coach Moichi Taoka saw potential in both Fukuda and Sendoh starting from when they joined the team together. However, as Fukuda still seemed green and thick-skinned, Taoka would frequently criticize him while praising Sendoh. Fukuda however, turned out to be quite sensitive. As a result, in an exhibition match at Ryonan, Fukuda released his pent-up aggression on Taoka. This incident resulted in a suspension from all games up until the Interhigh Tournament. Thus he does not play in the practice match against Shohoku and is not seen until Ryonan plays Kainan. Possibly because of all the rudeness he used to be treated with, Fukuda loves to be respected and praised. He even bursts into tears when the crowd cheers him on against Kainan.

Ryoji Ikegami

(池上良治 "Ikegami Ryōji"):Year: 3rd Year:Jersey Number: #5:Height: 183 cm:Position: Small Forward:Birthday: N/A:Voice Actor: Hikaru MidorikawaAs pointed out by Taoka himself, Ikegami is the best defender in the team. In the last half of the Shohoku-Ryonan match he was asked to mark Mitsui and he did manage shut him down(only for some time). He leaves the team with Uozomi after the loss to Shohoku knocks Ryonan out of the National Championship run. Unlike Uozomi however, who starts to get emotional in encouraging his teammates to bring Ryonan further the next time around, Ikegami is cool and collected. He's hinted in the anime to come from a rich family.

Hiroaki Koshino

(越野宏明 "Koshino Hiroaki"):Year: 2nd Year:Jersey Number: #6:Height/Weight: 174 cm, 62 kg:Position: Shooting Guard:Birthday: N/A:Voice Actor: Shinobu SatouchiKoshino is one of Ryonan's main playmakers. Although not up to the level of Mitsui or Jin, he is still a good long range shooter. He also has a rather dry wit.

Akira Sendoh

(仙道彰 "Sendō Akira"):Year: 2nd Year:Height/Weight: 190 cm, 79 kg:Jersey Number: #7:Position: Power Forward/Point Guard:Birthday: February 14:Voice Actors: Hochu Otsuka

Akira Sendoh is Ryonan's ace and is considered one of the top players in Kanagawa. An easygoing person, Sendoh usually has a smile on his face whether on-court or off. He can be lazy at times, and has a reputation for arriving late to practice sessions and matches. His tardiness is tolerated though, because of his abilities. One of his hobbies is fishing, and he has a taste for lemons. His teammates trust him wholeheartedly, firmly believing that he can lead Ryonan to victory even if they are trailing. However he was outplayed by Eiji Sawakita in junior high.

Sendoh's all-round skills are repeatedly displayed throughout the series. He is capable of playing a one-on-one style of play like Rukawa, but also understands how to utilize his teammates effectively. Against Kainan, Sendoh was deployed as a Point Guard, but transformed himself into a deadly scorer when the game was on the line. In the second match against Shohoku, he traded shots with Rukawa. Sendoh succeeds Uozomi as captain after he and Ikegami leave the team.

Tomoyuki Uekusa

(植草智之 "Uekusa Tomoyuki"):Year: 2nd Year:Jersey Number: #8:Height/Weight: 170 cm, 62 kg:Position: Point Guard:Birthday: N/A:Voice Actor: Kōzō Shioya, Koji Tsujitani (episodes 74 and 75), Shinobu Satouchi (episode 76)Uekusa has a discreet court presence, but still has his share of importance in playmaking for Ryonan, especially when Koshino is off court. Though not a strong player, he can hold his own quite well in play. Even Sendoh recognizes him as the player with a high stamina but in the Shohoku game, Uekusa was totally outplayed and exhausted by Miyagi.

Jun Uozumi

(魚住純 "Uozumi Jun"):Year: 3rd Year:Height/Weight: 202 cm, 90 kg:Jersey Number: #4:Position: Center:Birthday: N/A:Voice Actors: Yukimasa Kishino Jun Uozomi is the team captain. He considers Takenori Akagi his rival, but has never managed to personally beat him, although Ryonan has beaten Shohoku on occasion. However their rivalry is not antagonistic; indeed, there is respect that borders on friendship. When Akagi was outplayed and discouraged in the match against Sannoh, Uozumi was able to restore Akagi's spirits. After the loss to Shohoku in the Kanagawa prefectural trials eliminated Ryonan from national competition, Uozumi left the team to train as a chef, since his family owns a ramen restaurant; Sendoh succeeds him as team captain. Sakuragi likes to refer to him as "Boss Monkey" because he is as well-built as Akagi, and even taller.

Uozumi's size and power are unmatched in high school basketball. However, he started as a very weak player, and was ridiculed and bullied by his upperclassmen for only having height but very little of everything else. Ryonan's coach Taoka Moichi encouraged him to continue playing though, and eventually Uozumi developed into becoming a fearsome center. He is considered as one of the top centers in the Kanagawa prefecture. However, his bad temper and lack of control in game situations has led to serious consequences for his team on more than one occasion; during the second match with Shohoku, Hanamichi tricked him into committing four fouls and almost got him ejected.

Coach

Moichi Taoka

:Voice Actor: Unshou IshizukaMoichi Taoka is Ryonan’s coach and a contemporary of Kainan’s Riki Takato, who is a year younger than him. Both of them have known each other since high school, when Taoka was known as “Kanagawa’s Taoka”. Taoka compares himself to Sendoh, which his players find hard to believe. Both men are still friends, but are also rivals. Taoka trained his team hard enough that when he asked them to close their eyes and think about it, they became agitated. If he had had his way, his dream team would have consisted of Sendoh, Uozomi, Mitsui, Miyagi, and Rukawa, with the latter three playing the same positions they now play for Shohoku. He personally recruited them, but each turned him down for various reasons (Mitsui and Miyagi because of Anzai, and Rukawa because Shohoku is closer to his home). Still, Taoka is happy with his current team and believes that out of all the teams he has coached, it has trained the hardest. He even believes that this team can beat his dream team.

Taoka is a good coach, but has made mistakes in judging his players and the opposition. He still has an eye for talent though, as he recognized Uozomi’s potential and gave him encouragement when Uozomi’s skills were weak and he was thinking of quitting. Taoka also realized that when Sendoh and Fukuda joined the team that they would become key players. However, he thought that he could encourage Fukuda by criticizing him while at the same time praising Sendoh. Fukuda’s personality turned out to be more sensitive, and after a year of criticism, he snapped, attacking Taoka during a practice match. This resulted in his suspension from the team, which is why Fukuda did not play during the practice match with Shohoku. Having learned from his mistake, Taoka uses Fukuda to great effect during the match with Kainan. During the league round match with Shohoku, Taoka underestimates how much Sakuragi’s abilities have grown in the short time since Shohoku first played Ryonan. He also underestimates Kogure’s abilities. These errors cost Ryonan, and Taoka acknowledges them after the game.


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