Akok or Whaley

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Through no fault of his own, due to injury, Akok was on a Randy Edsall type season last year. He got bigger, stronger and faster, etc. He also did not contribute much. It’s up to him to translate it into games. I hope he does, he’s a great kid.
 

Huskyforlife

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UConn should have one of the best frontcourts in the nation. That's not a homer call, media agrees.
I think we do, but 1 of 1 might be a stretch. It's definitely the strength of our top 25 team.
 
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IMO. .If everyone returns healthy to begin the season and stays healthy throughout the season. We have a top 10 frontcourt.
 
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IMO. .If everyone returns healthy to begin the season and stays healthy throughout the season. We have a top 10 frontcourt.
I will go out on a limb and it’s a little muddy with guys who can play the “2” or the “3”. I think we will get more production out of the backcourt than the front court.
 
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I hope they all have a great season but I'm interested to see who will wow us more, Akok or Jackson. Of all the returning players these two are the greatest mysteries. I think a healthy Akok will have a more impactful year but I'd love to hear other's thoughts.
 

Huskyforlife

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I hope they all have a great season but I'm interested to see who will wow us more, Akok or Jackson. Of all the returning players these two are the greatest mysteries. I think a healthy Akok will have a more impactful year but I'd love to hear other's thoughts.
Akok higher floor, Jackson higher ceiling.
 
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Akok higher floor, Jackson higher ceiling.
Right now until we see evidence Jackson can’t shoot. Akok can shoot but is he strong enough to mix it up down low, defend and stay on the floor? Tell me the answer and I’ll tell you how good we are.
 

Huskyforlife

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Right now until we see evidence Jackson can’t shoot. Akok can shoot but is he strong enough to mix it up down low, defend and stay on the floor? Tell me the answer and I’ll tell you how good we are.
We dont know if Akok can shoot. He can probably survive anywhere defensively and stay on the floor if his injury doesn't limit him. But we know he will attempt open 3s, and he has potential to make them.

All of Jackson's potential is in his half court and open floor playmaking. Can he take over as the go to shot creator with quality shooters and bigs in support? Or is he awkwardly standing in the corner while Cole and Martin do their best? That's why he raises our ceiling if he hits.
 

HuskyHawk

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I agree with those saying Whaley starts initially. But Whaley is also going to play probably 10-15 minutes a night at the 5. Ultimately Akok may beat him out for the starting spot (we need to hope he does) and will probably play more minutes at the 4 than Whaley does. It's a nice problem to have.
 

HuskyHawk

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Whalley is a defensive beast. What is Akok?

A better defender in the paint, longer, faster, better jumper. They have different skill sets, but Akok can be a defensive beast for sure. Especially now that he's stronger. Whaley is great at hedging, and I honestly expect that when the two play together with Sanogo out, Akok will be a defensive 5 and an offensive 4. One of our challenges has been hedging with Whaley while nobody who can provide rim protection stayed back. Akok solves that.
 
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A better defender in the paint, longer, faster, better jumper. They have different skill sets, but Akok can be a defensive beast for sure. Especially now that he's stronger. Whaley is great at hedging, and I honestly expect that when the two play together with Sanogo out, Akok will be a defensive 5 and an offensive 4. One of our challenges has been hedging with Whaley while nobody who can provide rim protection stayed back. Akok solves that.

100%. In our system with the 5 often hedging so much, it's really more important we have a shotblocker at the 4 than the 5 on defense. Of course, both is the ideal situation.
 
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I will go out on a limb and it’s a little muddy with guys who can play the “2” or the “3”. I think we will get more production out of the backcourt than the front court.
Could easily see some combination of RJ/Gaff/Hawk/AJ/TM/Polley putting up 55-60 pts / game.

DH has a lot of flexibility in the frontcourt as well. Their value on the boards/defense/hedging/shot-blocking and shot-making will be key to a deep run in the Tournament.
 
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Akok can fit in any lineup which is a plus for him. Whaley and Sanogo clash more, but one is our best offensive player and the other is our best defensive. Those 2 will be tougher to manage IMO. Foul trouble may solve the issue in most first halves anyway though.

Assuming Akok’s full health, the good news is that with he, Whaley, Martin, and Jackson, our defensive ceiling is very high. That should give us a decent floor, which is important while losing a star scorer and having a HC who hasn’t proven himself offensively.
 

olehead

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I hope they all have a great season but I'm interested to see who will wow us more, Akok or Jackson. Of all the returning players these two are the greatest mysteries. I think a healthy Akok will have a more impactful year but I'd love to hear other's thoughts.
In agreement with @imno1 and @ superjohn. Akok and Jackson, almost by default are this year's wildcard. These are our two vets with the greatest upside. Both have shown evidence of high level play, both defensively, and offensively in transition for Jackson and Akok as a stretch 4 with three point capability. If they play to their reputations, they will undoubtedly be the difference makers. And that's primarily because we know what we're getting from the guys with significant minutes from last year, notwithstanding the freshmen. Jackson and Akok are still mystery men, certainly offensively. And most probably believe they have something to prove, especially Andre.

Both Whaley and Akok are guys Hurley loves because of their intensity and disruptive ability defensively, they will both play. I'm not even certain how important starting is either. We have a fantastic problem that many squads don't. Finding playing time for two high level four's who each offer unique dimensions that lead to wins.
 
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Akok looks stronger in the upper body but he has a matchstick lower body and that’s what broke down last time. He has a very smooth shot so that’s promising. Been burned by my own expectations a lot, expecting these players to become what we want them to be - game changing talents. It ain’t that easy but I’ll always hope I guess.
 
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I agree with those saying Whaley starts initially. But Whaley is also going to play probably 10-15 minutes a night at the 5. Ultimately Akok may beat him out for the starting spot (we need to hope he does) and will probably play more minutes at the 4 than Whaley does. It's a nice problem to
Akok can fit in any lineup which is a plus for him. Whaley and Sanogo clash more, but one is our best offensive player and the other is our best defensive. Those 2 will be tougher to manage IMO. Foul trouble may solve the issue in most first halves anyway though.

Assuming Akok’s full health, the good news is that with he, Whaley, Martin, and Jackson, our defensive ceiling is very high. That should give us a decent floor, which is important while losing a star scorer and having a HC who hasn’t proven himself offensively.
Good point about foul trouble often solving the problem and with us it’s been often early in the games. In part, due to Bigs hedging too far away from the basket.
 
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