How Different Is This Team | The Boneyard

How Different Is This Team

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Having watched the holiday tournament games on ESPN3 (ugh!), I am impressed with how very different this team is from last year's championship team. We, of course, sorely miss Stef Dolson's soft shot from the head of the key, her laser-like passing ability and her "this is MY low post and don't even think of asserting a claim to it" attitude. Similarly, we miss Bria Hartley's tenacity and her willingness to take the ball to the basket even if her three point shots did not fall. Dolson and Hartley brought both leadership and a comforting sense of predictability to how their team played.

But now we have a new cast of characters and the team at times seems to be locked into a feeling of uncertainty. But slowly, ever so slowly, we are seeing players affirm their old personas or assuming new ones. Moriah Jefferson has continued to grow into the point guard position, her offense has improved and her defensive prowess has and will cause opposing teams anguish. Kia Nurse is a great surprise (at least to me). She manifests a maturity and aggressiveness that complements Moriah's abilities and, as a result, we may have the best starting guard tandem in the nation. Morgan has attempted to assume the Dolson high post passing responsibilities but she hasn't yet clicked. And Breanna Stewart is, perhaps, suffering Dolson's loss the most. Additionally, she must now spend potentially too much time in the low post. The year is young, but Stewie's suffering is palpable.
 
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Oops...not done! Kiah Stokes has tried to expand her game, but to no avail. She will continue to be a defensive and rebounding rock. Sanyia Chong will be a third guard until she becomes much stronger. KML is an enigma - all that inside success has been swallowed up by her 3 point skill. I wish last year's KML would return. Gabby Williams reminds me of Kalana Green who started her career as a player who always preferred to drive to the basket but developed into a terrific forward/defender. Gabby' present advantage is that she has elevation that Kalana could only dream about. She has a lot of maturing to accomplish.

This team has great upside potential. Whether they have the internal strength to defeat Notre Dame in the land of Touchdown Jesus remains to be seen. One thing is certain. Watching this team grow will be great fun!
 
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Stokes, MoJett and Nurse are solids. Tuck and Stewie can do it but are inconsistent. Stewie has to have that "moment" like in the NC freshman year. Tuck has to learn finese. She's just to dang strong. KML is coming along, but needs to be more of a overall player since her threes are not falling consistently. While the rest of the bench is there, they don't have the force necessary to hold the line on their own.
Still a work in progress. ND is coming saturday. Will we pull it together? 50/50. Should be a game for the ages.
 

UcMiami

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I think beyond the obvious 'leadership' question the biggest issue at the moment is the entry passing. We can get open perimeter shots, and we play very well in transition, but Stokes, Stewart, Kaleena, and Tuck posting up are not getting good passes on a consistent basis. Watching those four battling inside - there are moments when the pass should arrive, and it is either late or not made at all, or made poorly. So they get beat up and have nothing to show for it.
 
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A new team trying to find there identity and develop confidence in one another. Makes sense that this is where they are at. Very evident in the beginning of games when they want to rush the offense and jack up 3's or quick shots. Major change in there defensive intensity. ND will challenge us on dribble penetration and physical play. Looking forward to a great game.
 

Kibitzer

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Stokes, MoJett and Nurse are solids. Tuck and Stewie can do it but are inconsistent. Stewie has to have that "moment" like in the NC freshman year. Tuck has to learn finese. She's just to dang strong. KML is coming along, but needs to be more of a overall player since her threes are not falling consistently. While the rest of the bench is there, they don't have the force necessary to hold the line on their own.
Still a work in progress. ND is coming saturday. Will we pull it together? 50/50. Should be a game for the ages.

Kaleena has 39 3FGA and has nailed 24, for an inconsistent percentage of 61.5%. She also leads the team in steals and is perfect from the FT line. Of course, once she gets in shape we might see some excellence.:rolleyes:
 

RadyLady

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Kibitzer said:
Kaleena has 39 3FGA and has nailed 24, for an inconsistent percentage of 61.5%. She also leads the team in steals and is perfect from the FT line. Of course, once she gets in shape we might see some excellence.:rolleyes:

exactly
:rolleyes:
EGADS!!!!!! :rolleyes: :rolleyes: :rolleyes:
 

VAMike23

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I think beyond the obvious 'leadership' question the biggest issue at the moment is the entry passing. We can get open perimeter shots, and we play very well in transition, but Stokes, Stewart, Kaleena, and Tuck posting up are not getting good passes on a consistent basis. Watching those four battling inside - there are moments when the pass should arrive, and it is either late or not made at all, or made poorly. So they get beat up and have nothing to show for it.

Agreed that we don't feed the post as well as we could. The 'effective target area' presented by the post is also important - Stef was of course a good target in the post but this is another area where Maya Moore was truly exceptional. Her unparalleled combination of instincts, hands, athleticism and off-the-ball skills made her an easy target, even for an average entry pass. It really showed itself when she would not only corral passes that were poorly thrown or headed out of bounds but then also convert them into buckets--taking a turnover away from the stat sheet and replacing it with a FG. It was one of the things about her game that admired most, and still do. Maya's effective target area was gigantic, especially for a 6'0" player.
 
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Agreed that we don't feed the post as well as we could. The 'effective target area' presented by the post is also important - Stef was of course a good target in the post but this is another area where Maya Moore was truly exceptional. Her unparalleled combination of instincts, hands, athleticism and off-the-ball skills made her an easy target, even for an average entry pass. It really showed itself when she would not only corral passes that were poorly thrown or headed out of bounds but then also convert them into buckets--taking a turnover away from the stat sheet and replacing it with a FG. It was one of the things about her game that admired most, and still do. Maya's effective target area was gigantic, especially for a 6'0" player.

A very good point. It emphasizes the role of the receiver, and in that regard I want to point out that Gabby doesn't seem to have problems getting entry passes when she posts up.
 
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