Date Posted:Sunday, March 01, 06:26:42pm Author: oldtimer#1 Subject: Re: What a game! In reply to:
's message, "Re: What a game!" on Sunday, March 01, 05:53:08pm
Akeem - like to pay tribute to his mindset and work ethic, which is why many of us refer to him as a warrior. After last season, and with the departure of Orta, Akeem knew that he was going to play the #3 instead of the #4 he played last year. In preparation he lost over 15 lbs., making an already quick player that much quicker. Not to take issue with a prior post by JC Blog but Akeem always played the game as a slasher and an attacker of the rim, he didn't just decide to become one this year. Problem was that, last year, it was hard to slash from the #4 since the baseline presented an extra defender. This year, at the #3 JD seems to have designed some plays to take advantage of both Akeem's slashing and leaping ability. The little curl off a pick around the foul line being one example. In any event, the combination of being moved to the #3, to better utilize his quickness together with Akeem's self preparation is obviously paying dividends.
Thought I'd watch the whole weekend before I posted. Iona game was a defensive effort reminding me of Dukiet's years. Offense was inefficient too often, but Wes in the first half and Nick in second were enough. Today we didn't have the same energy early and unkind whistles on Bacon made matters worse, but second half efforts by the entire team shows how much they have grown up this year. There is still much to be done, but no doubt the staff has met even the goals that some naysyaers believed were not achievable (doubledigit wins and 8 in the MAAC). For me they have become very competitive in the league and have gotten much better. The wins are nice, but the improvement on both ends speaks to the staff's hard work and the kids willingness to learn and get better. A couple more players (big help and another shooter please Santa) and continued growth by each player and team can be an important factor next year.Kudos to oldtimer on Nick. I was wrong> I just hope he keeps his deportment in line from now on. The offensive connection between Gooding and the passers has become a beautiful thing. I was very critical of Gooding earlier, but now I'd like another year of him. How about that! Other guys can work on lots of things ie Hall's shot and drive, Wes' drive and pull up, Ryan face up. etc. But we are now talking expansion of games not basic can they play questions and that is what is most important.
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Re: What a game! -- oldtimer#1, Monday, March 02, 01:34:28pm 
Figgy, right on target analysis and thanks for the props on Nick. Truth was I saw him more than you and if I just went by his game performances, I might have come to the same early conclusion you did. Regarding his " deportment", I'm not that close to the situation but I can tell you that the players like him and see him as sort of the leader. Whatever, happened with Hogga, I have no idea. Ditto with his brief disciplinary measure by JD. Not worried about whatever happened there as JD has disciplined several over the last several years and this one was obviously minor, Both seem to get along real well.
Not sure if Nick's scoring might go down a liitle next year as he may see more time at #1 as has been the case the last several games. Brandon is a capable back-up but unless he takes an upward step (why not? he's only a freshman) I see him as a 15 minute per game back-up to Nick.
Sight unseen and not taking into account possible recruits, I think you might eventually see a lineup of Leon and Jenkins at guards, Belin at #3 (depends on the type of player he is) with Conley and Ryan at forwards/center. Costner might start at #3 given his experience but it should be tough to keep Belin out of the lineup. Hill should spell Ryan and Darius while Brandon plays the same role he has been playing recently. No inside information, just my own opinion. But first of all, we have a MAAC Tournament to take care of!