Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Player Profile: Niels Giffey

Looking Back: Niels Giffey was coming into the season with some wind in his sails.  He had just won the three point shooting contest in UConn’s midnight madness and was praised by the coaching staff for how good he was in preseason workouts, but he was never able to translate that with a consistent presence on the court.  He shied away from open looks, especially after he missed one, and took the ball to the basket for a more difficult shot.  He never solidified his role and was in constant limbo with his minutes per game.

The Good: There is enough tape on Giffey to know that he should be a three point shooting specialist and if he wants the minutes, he will have to show Calhoun that he can knock two or three down a game.  He is a deceptively good defender laterally and does a great job of keeping his man in front of him without arm checking.

The Bad: Dribbling.  He needs to know his strengths and weaknesses and that is one aspect of his game that isn’t there yet.  It doesn’t mean he shouldn’t keep the defender honest and pump fake and drive, but it shouldn’t be his first option nor his second.  Rebounding is also an aspect of his game that he needs to focus on.  He’ll need to show a willingness to crash the boards and give those hustle plays that help the team out because he won’t be the primary focus of the offense.

Looking ahead: Giffey will have a great opportunity to get minutes and with this being his third season, he should understand what he needs to do to become successful.  If he can become a spot up shooter, learn to open his shooting hand by rubbing off on some screens, play solid defense, and get around five boards a game then he should be a major contributor to this team.

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