Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Finish Line

How many chances can you give a team to beat you? UConn seemed to hand Northeastern several dozen, missing one and ones, coughing up the ball, missing lay-ups, and letting a smaller team dominate the paint in the second half. They shouldn’t have won this game, not with the effort put out there. The energy that this team displays is lethargic, shown by running back or playing solid defense. They are a step behind and end up fouling. They were lucky to have Dyson heat up and sneak out a victory, but this team isn’t playing like it could possibly be their last and they should.

Boy it was good to see Dyson playing well again. He deserves to go out playing solid basketball. It didn’t start out well, getting pulled early for lazy defense and deferring on offense, but when he was put back in, he was aggressive. He was driving more and finally had some of his runners falling. He alone carried this team over the finish line.

Walker had a great first half, but tailed off in the second. He still played with energy, which is more then what other players can say. His jumpers weren’t falling and he very nearly cost them the game with horrible free throw shooting down the stretch, but he was great on defense. He had a couple of charges and steals that helped fuel the comeback.

Somebody get Robinson a six pack of Red Bull, because he is playing with no energy. He lingers around the baseline for dunks and had one nice dribble drive, but he lags behind on defense, gets beat off the dribble and isn’t sticking his nose into the paint for rebounds anymore. He should be crashing the boards on every possession, offensive fouls or not. His offense is useless down the stretch of ballgames and he needs to contribute in other ways and he isn’t.

Edwards had a solid game. His jumper was falling and he rebounded well, but he also struggled on rotations and was beat off the dribble. Oriakhi had a solid first half but didn’t do much in the second half, which is usually what he does. He hit his jumpers and had a strong put-back dunk, but had no offensive input in the second half and they desperately need him to scrap more for put-backs. Majok and Okwandu didn’t play much but both showed good hustle and made positive plays.

Coombs-McDaniel played solid defense and wasn’t shy about shooting the ball, which is a great sign. He hit a 3-ball and showed a strong drive which ended with an and-one. Beverly came in and pushed the tempo but didn’t play much. Smith played sparingly and had two horrible passes.

This team looks exactly like it did in October and that just isn’t a Calhoun team. They are usually a totally different team at this time of the year and it is baffling. What else can Coach do? If seniors are playing in what possibly could be their last game of their collegiate career with lackluster basketball, there really isn’t any more buttons to push. The thing is that the talent is all there. They played Syracuse, Georgetown, Duke, Kentucky, and Louisville all tough and beat Villanova, West Virginia, and Texas. They are a solid squad that had the potential to be a Sweet Sixteen team, but they just can't sustain forty minutes of energy to get over the finish line and that is the most perplexing thing to see.


hedgie said...

They have had no real leaders this year, more so than in any other year. Dyson carried it for a bit but then faded back to how he has been for uconn fans, just a stud when he wants to and then marginal in other periods.

Guys like AJ Price, Okafor, El-Amin would have too much pride to let the ugys around them play weak. When Robinson doesnt get fired up or Dyson doesn't, then u see guys like Edwards revert too. It's no surprise that when Edwards was having good games it was cause the other guys were firing on all cylinders.

Robinson has prob dropped himself to a 2nd round pick at this point. Does he even have an NBA game for a 6'10" small forward?

David Gillett said...

Walker really stepped up and took the mantel of leader of this team but when he did, Dyson struggled. Robinson has been the same ole player since the Indiana game two years ago. A team will take a chance on him in the middle to late first round just for his athleticism. NBA teams drool on potential and Robinson has that. It was Dyson's play that hurt his draft status the most. I don't even know where he could go, if he does.