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Venting Seattle

Posted on December 8, 2018, in Our Blog by Seattle Hoo.

WARNING!  F-Bomb Alert!

Things that are pissing me off when I see them on video:

1) Mamadi Diakite shooting mid-range jumpers.  I would yank his ass from the game the second he took one. I want to see him either post up, back his man down, get the ball, and make a move. Quick jump hook or drop step.  I showed you the video before the season of Mamadi's offensive highlights, good post moves against good ACC defenders (He pwned Ray Spalding, for goodness sake).  Or, catch the ball out in that between the lines area, face up, AND DRIVE THE FUCKING BALL INTO THE FUCKING LANE.  Fuck that jump shot.  It sucked when Anthony Gill did it; it sucks when Mamadi does it.  Dribble the ball into the fucking lane, either baseline or middle, and make a move.  You're good at it.  You're very good at it.  Remember these plays?

That's how you beat teams.  That's how you get to the free throw line (where you are a good shooter).  That's how you score.  That's how you or your teammates can rebound your misses.  Stop settling for that shitty fifteen-foot jumper and attack the fucking lane.

2) Jay Huff passing up threes at the top of the key.  Every damn time he catches the ball up there, you're open.  Even when a defender is near him, he has space for an unbothered shot. Really, catch it and shoot it.  Huff gets more good looks than Kyle Guy and he passes them all up.  Why are we not pick-and-popping Huff and passing him the damn ball?  Why does he take ONE SHOT against Morgan Fucking State?  Really?  ONE SHOT?

3) None of our big men being able to post up, catch the ball, and shoot the jump hook.  Not dribble three times and then shoot a hook; but catch the ball, turn and put up a jump hook.  Quick, decisive...  Jay Huff is 7-fucking-1.  Jack Salt is 6-10.  Mamadi Diakite is 6-10 and long.  And none of them can simply catch, turn and shoot the jump hook?  I don't want to hear about Huff needing strength.  Ralph Sampson was more of a stick than Huff ever has been at UVA - fuck, his nickname was Stick - and he was able to get off shots.  Jay Huff absolutely can set a base, catch and shoot over the top.  If he can't handle some contact while shooting, then he should spend ten minutes every day in or after practice catching, turning and shooting while two manager/walkons are pushing and shoving him.

4) Dre Hunter not getting isolated with a defender on the wing more than maybe once or twice per game.  Put him one-on-one with the baseline available.

5) Jay Huff not playing in real games. He has earned the time.  He played well against Dayton - better than Diakite and as well as Salt.  He should come into the game around the 12:00 time out of the first half every fucking game.  Maybe just two minutes.  But give him time and utilize him on offense.  Flat hedge ball screens and sag off his man.  Tell him not to try to block any shots but just get between the ball and the basket and be tall.  With his size and length he can bother P&RBH without having to hard hedge.

There is a lot that I like, and I love the direction Coach Bennett is taking the offense.  I am perversely glad the defense is not as good as it was last year - because the offense is better.  That we are winning games with offense instead of with defense is a good thing.  Virginia fans can buy into the "defense wins championships" bullshit all they want but that doesn't make it true.  Offense wins tournament games.  This is the best UVA team I have seen in years when the game gets chaotic.  Hunter, Clark, Key and Jerome all excel when the game breaks down.  That's what happens in the tournament.  The game breaks down and gets chaotic because it's "life-or-death" combat, and the team that can keep its poise and make positive plays is going to win.  This team has the best players in that situation that Bennett has had.  I have not decided on whether Guy excels in that or not, but he's good and with those other four, we have a five-man lineup that will be great at finishing those games.  The Mong00se, the Splash Brothers and the Wonder Twins are the game-ending lineup we need for the post-season.

But we need to use our big men.  Diakite and Huff should be shooting threes.  They should feel free to take a shot they can put up with vision and rhythm.  They should be facing up and taking one dribble.  And all three of them should be posting up.

In tomorrow's game, I want to see our bigs really attacking the heart of the defense.  And I want to see Jay Huff.  Even just for two minutes.  No excuse not to at least do that.  You're not going to lose the game between the 12:00 and 10:00 marks of the first half.

This article contains the tags:

Mamadi Diakite, Jay Huff, De’Andre Hunter, Jack Salt