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2017-18 NPOY...Gabby?

Discussion in 'UConn Women's Basketball' started by Bigpetunia, Sep 12, 2017.

  1. PAHuskeyFan

    PAHuskeyFan

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    I have never been a big fan of these kind of threads, largely because everyone who follows the game of College Women's Basketball, and especially UCONN faithful, have their own personal opinion on these things. Each poster makes their case why their "favorite" is the best choice, and often doesn't give much credit to those who have a different "favorite." You know what they say about "opinions."

    I saw it last year through the season. Different posters made their arguments why one player was the best and most valuable on the team...when in fact, if we look back at the season as a whole, it's clear that during different periods of time, different players "shined"...different players were the "difference maker" in a game or string of games, then in the next game or series of games, someone else was at the fore front of carrying the day. In the end, it's the TEAM that's the most important to UCONN and those of us who follow UCONN WBB. I am confident that throughout this season we will see the same kind of result. We have the benefit of knowing that if one player is having an off night we have 4 or more ready to "take the lead" and bring UCONN a victory. We are unlike other Teams with One Star who has to "bring it" every game or the Team will likely lose...for example, this year if Mitchell doesn't shine every game, OSU could lose, or if A'ja has a bad night SC could go down. I am sure that we will have times when Lou is our "big gun", then Pheesa, then Gabby, then Z, then Kia...and possibly CD, Megan and so on. This is the luxury we have at UCONN, we don't have to rely on One player...but most importantly that our Ladies know they play together as a team for Team Goals and "Team honors" and that it is WAY MORE IMPORTANT to ALL of them to win the National Championship than it is for any ONE of them to win NPOY. This is why I love watching UCONN WBB. I love the way they play "Team Basketball"... Team First, the Team Wins Together, and any "individual" honors are secondary. I agree that if things go the way we UCONN fans expect them to go, that the NPOY could well come from UCONN, it could be Lou, Pheesa, Gabby, or Z, maybe even Kia... but if someone else from another team wins NPOY, we'll all be prouder to see another National Champion banner hanging from the new Gampel rafters.
     
  2. Bigpetunia

    Bigpetunia

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    I have been a pretty rabid sports fan for most of my blessedly long life. Among other things, here's one observation I've made. In games characterized by score keeping, and in those wherein the WIN is awarded to the team that, by game's end, has amassed the most points, two things are important: 1. How many points your team scores. 2. The number of points to which the opposing team can be limited. Sometimes I feel, especially in basketball, that appreciation of the second of these factors can lead to a rather lonely perspective. UConn WBB is, I'm happy to say, traditionally very good at putting points on the board. On a given night, one of several players can step to the forefront and shine. Rarely does any one player outshine the others night after night on that end. The same does not hold true on defense. UConn's best player on that end is a true stalwart every time she suits up. Those who hand out the awards may not get it, Gabby, but some of us do!
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2017
  3. oldude

    oldude bamboo lover

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    Well said. There have been a handful of great defensive players in sport that were so good that they superseded the offensive bias of fans and journalists. In football, players like Butkus and Lawrence Taylor became superstars for the ability to dominate the game. In basketball, Bill Russell comes to mind. Maybe some day Gabby can achieve that status in WBB.
     
    Bigpetunia likes this.
  4. bizarro aj

    bizarro aj

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    I predict kls will be the leading scorer on the team and will break the ncaa record for most 3 pointers in a season. We'll have to wait and see if that's enough to win her the npoy.
     
  5. eebmg

    eebmg

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    In the history of WCBB, is there a player who dominated the game on the defense end and "intangibles" such as passing and effort but would be generally be considered the 4th option on offense (after Naphessa, KLS and Z) and won NPOY? Who is closest?
     
  6. oldude

    oldude bamboo lover

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    You raise a good point. I can only come up with 5-time MVP Bill Russell in professional basketball, who was the 4th or 5th option on offense for the Celtics. I can tell you this. For all she does, particularly in big games, there's no one more important to the success of the Huskies this coming season than Gabby Williams.
     
  7. RockyMTblue2

    RockyMTblue2 Don't Look Up!

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    Z should be quite the player, but right now she is as theoretical as everyone else but the returning starting 4.
     
  8. eebmg

    eebmg

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    I agree that it is not clear yet how far Z will develop but I would say the biggest question marks are on defense and how she integrates with the team as a whole. Her pedigree on offense at Duke where she posted team-high totals of 18.9 points is enough to view her as a top 3 UConn option on offense which is consistent with my earlier query.
     
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  9. RockyMTblue2

    RockyMTblue2 Don't Look Up!

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    Logic says you are right, but if the speed of UConn's game up and down the court, and passing/multiple option playing takes her more time to aclimate to, then her offense logically suffers. But you are right. Geno didn't bring her to UConn to be a fourth option or another Kia Stokes.
     
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  10. CocoHusky

    CocoHusky

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    One factor that does play in Gabby's favor for NPOY is the absence of larger post players on the UCONN schedule this year.
    • Baylor is not on the schedule No Brown, No Cox, Mompremier transferred
    • Maryland graduated Brionna Jones
    • tOSU not on the schedule so no Mavunga and McCoy transferred.
    • South Carolina graduated Coates
    • ND will be missing Turner
    • Texas graduated Lang
    • Kansas State not on the schedule = no Breanna Lewis
    • Nebraska not on the schedule=no Shepard unless she becomes eligible for ND.
    • Mississippi State graduated Okorie
    Collectively that is a lot less size and bulk for Gabby to deal with in the post. Mix in the fact that UCONN has added legit size (Azura) and quality bulk (Batouly) should mean far less tired Gabby=stronger NPOY candidate.
     
  11. Alydar

    Alydar

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    The closest example I can think of is Brittney Griner. While she was one of the top scorers at Baylor she won NPOY (and was better known) for being the most intimidating defensive presence in the history of wcbb.
     
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  12. oldude

    oldude bamboo lover

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    While there will undoubtedly be times when Gabby will defend the other team's post this coming season, the responsibility to defend the 4 & 5 should largely fall to Pheesa & Z, with some help from Batouly off the bench.

    Gabby will likely move to the wing, Lou to the 2 and Kia at the 1, with Danger 1st off the bench. That will allow Geno to have Gabby defend the other team's top offensive threat at guard or wing.

    Gabby will still spend some time in the post, but more likely on offense. With Z & Pheesa's ability to shoot the ball, they will pull opponents bigs away from the basket, allowing Gabby to flash in the paint, receive a pass from one of her teammates and have a smaller, hapless defender at her mercy under the basket.

    I get excited just thinking about the matchup nightmares that the Huskies will cause opposing teams. :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2017
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  13. augustaTC

    augustaTC

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    I could care less who wins what in the postseason awards. I do care how the team does, and I suspect that the awards will take care of themselves.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2017
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  14. hjoerring

    hjoerring

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    It would not surprise me if Wilson garnered MVP at year end. There are too many questions around Uconn: who are the starters, who will play the guards, how will minutes be distributed (will it be like 2 seasons ago), how have the players expanded their game, etc. And lastly, how much weight will be lifted off Gabby's shoulder to rebound, defend and do the all-round extra-things (but also Pheesa).Of course we here leave the soph and fr. classes un-examined. What if one or two of those players kick the door open?
     
  15. wallman

    wallman UCLA Bruin

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    Threads like these on this board always make me kinda laugh as you guys are spoiled rotten. But then I realize there are those fat russians out there ;)