SI Article: Replacing Napier | The Boneyard

SI Article: Replacing Napier

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Silk31

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http://www.si.com/college-basketbal...ies-shabazz-napier-ryan-boatright-kevin-ollie

Good piece on replacing our fearless leader...it's not about one person stepping up but a team effort all way down from our coaches to the last player on our bench.

I'm not as worried about everybody stepping up their on court production to compensate for the losses of Bazz, DD & Niels as I am about the leadership and accountability carrying over.

Everybody is looking to Boat to be that guy and I think he certainly is in great position to take advantage of this great opportunity to show us how good he can be, but KO will need to continue to find a way to draw the best out of his team which has a new makeup
 
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Last year we had dependable long range shooting. Do we have that?
 

Inyatkin

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I don't know, I'm pretty worried about replacing the on-court production of one of our best players ever and two other hugely important players.
 

nomar

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I don't know, I'm pretty worried about replacing the on-court production of one of our best players ever and two other hugely important players.

I agree. I also have some concern about Boat trying to do too much. I think Ryan's grown up a lot and will be the team's unquestioned leader, but we have a lot of weapons and I hope he can create for/defer to them when appropriate and play a balanced game on offense. I know he's capable of it. I also know KO will be all over this.
 

Inyatkin

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Not to belabor the point, but we went through this in 2012 when a lot of us tried to wave away the fact that our do-everything All-America guard was gone, saying it'd be fine because we had so many great pieces left. We did then, and do now, but you just can't overestimate how much Napier meant on the court. Not just leadership, but baskets and rebounds. It's a huge void.
 
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Not worried about Boat. He's gonna do a Kemba or a Bazz, but whoever he kicks to needs to knock down 35-40% from 3. So is that Rodney, Omar, Cassell, DHam, TSam?
 
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Not worried about Boat. He's gonna do a Kemba or a Bazz, but whoever he kicks to needs to knock down 35-40% from 3. So is that Rodney, Omar, Cassell, DHam, TSam?

How is anyone supposed to know without any games played yet? Before last season nobody knew that DeAndre or Niels would be the knockdown 3 point shooters they turned out to be, Niels shot 29% from 3 the previous year and was hesitant to pull the trigger, DeAndre shot 30%, they bumped those numbers up to 48% and 41% respectively last season. When we start seeing games played and see how guys fit into the offense and what kind of shooters we have, then we'll have an answer.
 
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Not to belabor the point, but we went through this in 2012 when a lot of us tried to wave away the fact that our do-everything All-America guard was gone, saying it'd be fine because we had so many great pieces left. We did then, and do now, but you just can't overestimate how much Napier meant on the court. Not just leadership, but baskets and rebounds. It's a huge void.

The optimistic response would be that the 2012 team didn't have a senior point guard returning. It had sophomore year Shabazz, who was nothing like senior year Shabazz, or senior year Boatright for that matter.

I agree with those concerned with shooting. We can talk chemistry and leadership all we want but sometimes there are even simpler explanations for why teams have success. Last year's team had 40% 3-point shooters all over the floor and made every single free throw when it mattered. You can mask plenty of deficiencies when you do those things.
 
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"His on-ball defense, especially in the NCAA tournament, was like death by a thousand small cuts. He was unrelenting and reliable, just like the All-America guard next to him."

What a great metaphor to describe his D.
 

Marat

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Last year we had dependable long range shooting. Do we have that?

Hopefully, but I don't expect this team to be as good from beyond the arc. I also don't expect the high free throw shooting percentages. It will be a different type of team. One that will run and gun, attack off the dribble and hopefully rebound and play very good defense. Can't wait for the season to start.
 
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The optimistic response would be that the 2012 team didn't have a senior point guard returning. It had sophomore year Shabazz, who was nothing like senior year Shabazz, or senior year Boatright for that matter.

I agree with those concerned with shooting. We can talk chemistry and leadership all we want but sometimes there are even simpler explanations for why teams have success. Last year's team had 40% 3-point shooters all over the floor and made every single free throw when it mattered. You can mask plenty of deficiencies when you do those things.

I know it won't be a popular response, but I think we'll also see a better performance from the sidelines from KO than we saw from JC that year. One week you would have Bazz taking shots at guys in the press, the next week AO calling the guards selfish, then taking shots at JC on twitter, that type of stuff needed to be nipped in the bud from start and that starts at the top. All of the things KO did to improve team chemistry like bringing in the sports psychologist to work with team was in direct response to all of the nonsense that went on during that season.
 

RichZ

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I guess we'll find out if Glenn Miller's Steve Nash drill really works or it was just a one time deal with a specific group of players. I think our uncanny foul shooting percentage -- especially late game foul shots -- was at least as important, and maybe more so, as our three point shooting.

Of course there's more to foul shooting as an offensive strategy than just making the shots. You've got to play in a fashion that gets you into the bonus as early as possible, and find a way to have a lead late in the game to increase the pressure on the opponent's defense, forcing them to foul. Last year's team excelled at that, and was incredible in converting the FT opportunities it generated into endgame points.
 

Silk31

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With us losing so much 3 point shooting, don't expect KO and our players to try and match the same kind of 3 point shooting from a year ago. They will have to change up their game plan and their identity. They won't be as good as long range shooting team this season, but they can certainly be adequate.

This season isn't the same as 2012 in that Boat is a senior and we had no true go to guy in that season, Lamb disappointed that year and Napier failed miserably as a leader by his own admittance. I think KO has really gotten through to Boat and he gets it now. KO is also a master of game planning and exploiting mismatches, he will need to find out how to best utilize his new group.

For those who want us to be a 3 point shooting team again, you will be disappointed. That kind of dependency on the long ball can do you in during the tourney but we just so happened to be able to also get to the line and knock down FTs at a historic clip. We can still be a great FT shooting team this season, we will just have to play solid D, grab boards and push the pace, we have the horses to push the ball down your throat this season
 
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Boat has waited 3 years for this moment. I really think he is the best person to step in during this transition. My only concern is that when all is said and done Boat's contributions not be marginalized, since he deferred (to Bazz) for the sake of the team.

He's unstoppable, very experienced and more than capable replacement for Bazz. I expect to be highly entertained and seeing him elevated to AA status and elavating the team to another post season appearance.
 
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This team really is going to be a mystery until March, I think. The preseason could be rocky as news guys get used to the demands of UConn hoops. The AAC won't tell us too much, just because of the quality of the teams--only Memphis and SMU are likely to be good, and even they won't be great. So I think the true UConn won't show until very late in the year.

I agree that KO will build this team better than JC rebuilt the 2012 team post-Kemba. And I agree that Boatright will be an asset in doing so. But replacing as much production as UConn must replace is always going to be a challenge. Take away all of those late shock clock three's and step back two's from Napier, and last year's offense starts to look like a disaster. Ollie will need to be at his best to get the Huskies offense into gear. I do expect their defense to be lethal no matter what, though, with Boat up top and Brimah/Nolan in the middle.
 
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Last year we had dependable long range shooting. Do we have that?
No we have unproven long range shooting but what we do have is a lot of guys who could step up deliver outside points. If KO really wants us to be a press and run team somebody is going to have to make shots. Omar and Hamilton could very well be the keys to this team's success. Otherwise teams will pack it in against us and make it difficult for slashers like Purvis to get to the rim.
 
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I am a Boatright fan. I am very confident in the kid. He is the leader this year.
 
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Inyatkin said:
I don't know, I'm pretty worried about replacing the on-court production of our best player ever and two other hugely important players.
FTFY
"Ima let you finish, but shabazz was the greatest husky of ALL TIME"
 
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Last year's team excelled at that, and was incredible in converting the FT opportunities it generated into endgame points.

Not only did our making FTs lock up games for us, but our FT shooting prowess was so exceptional and so widely renowned that it actually caused an opponent to alter its strategy, to their detriment, in the final minute of the championship game.

Have you ever seen a team "pitch around" another team's free throw shooting? Incredible!
 

CL82

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Boatright said:
Boatright bristles at the idea that he'll need to win a title to secure his legacy alongside the likes of Napier and Kemba Walker, the star guard who led the Huskies to the 2011 NCAA title. “That’s for y’all to do,” Boatright says. “I’m not going into the year thinking like that. I’m going into the year thinking (of) being me and being a good teammate and trying to win. If it adds to my legacy, then so be it.”.
That's a good start.
 
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intlzncster

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Everybody is looking to Boat to be that guy and I think he certainly is in great position to take advantage of this great opportunity to show us how good he can be, but KO will need to continue to find a way to draw the best out of his team which has a new makeup

That's what we pay him for.
 

intlzncster

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Not to belabor the point, but we went through this in 2012 when a lot of us tried to wave away the fact that our do-everything All-America guard was gone, saying it'd be fine because we had so many great pieces left. We did then, and do now, but you just can't overestimate how much Napier meant on the court. Not just leadership, but baskets and rebounds. It's a huge void.

Yeah, but there's a massive difference between an inexperienced (leadership-wise) Soph Bazz trying to lead an often disgruntled bunch vs an experienced Senior Boat leading a reportedly lock type family oriented crew.
 

intlzncster

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The optimistic response would be that the 2012 team didn't have a senior point guard returning. It had sophomore year Shabazz, who was nothing like senior year Shabazz, or senior year Boatright for that matter.


Beat me to it.
 
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