Don't let the cute face fool you, the man is an absolute assassin.
The key to tonight, and potentially our season, is to slow this man down. Let Ryan Anderson go off as he did in the previous meeting and CAL is a very, very difficult team to beat.
Moreover, as we noted here last week, CAL is a light version of Arizona--this is a team that we do NOT match up with that well. Man, do I hate the tall prolific wing man....
So, its going to be a nip and tuck affair all the way through.
Aside from how we do with Mr. Anderson tonight, I think that the other key to watch is how we set up offensively. As I have noted periodically through the season, our inability to make teams pay for the overplay (particularly up top) is nothing short of alarming. Currently, team after team after team (with the NOTABLE exception of SC) have crowded us up top and jumped all of our high ball screens. The result has been few open looks for guys like Low who represent our primary play makers.
Of course, the key to the overplay is simply to cut backdoor--which we have largely failed to do. Part of that, in my view, has to do with the presence of Baynes just camped down on the low block. In effect, his post position has largely served to crowd the very lanes that our dudes need to use to cut to the basket.
So, I am hopeful that we will see much more of a high post offense over the weekend. Since Forrest appears to be primed for more minutes, a high post set should open up some passing lanes and back-door cuts and allow Caleb to knock down those 12-14 foot J's that he likes so much.
In any case, look for Rochestie to rebound a bit from his shooting slump. I also look for a high, high energy game from Mr. Robbie Cowgill who HAS played much better of late. I also think either Weaver or Low will have a nice night.
This one is going to be hard to watch folks. I say we win it 56-55 in a heartstopper. But, if Anderson goes off, this same score with go in the other direction.
We simply, simply must contain him.
"Enjoy" this one.