Jamie Rhodes-US PRESSWIRE
1. This wasn't a performance that was exactly a giant leap forward from the past two, but this was a "doesn't matter how it happens, just win" situation. The perimeter was once again sub-par and the defensive rebounding was abysmal for stretches, but credit the guys for getting the job done.
2. All things considered, Russ' corner three after Pitt had trimmed the lead to 53-50 might have been the biggest shot of the season so far. The Panthers had all the momentum in the world, and would have built on that had Smith misfired on a contested look that came very early in a key possession.
Russ gonna Russ.
3. Solid white polo, grey slacks, white shoes performance from Wayne. Wasn't expecting it, but couldn't have been more pleasantly surprised. The young man is a veteran.
4. It was a shame that he picked up two fouls in the first half and that he didn't wind up shooting the ball better, because this was one the best all-around efforts Luke Hancock has given as a Cardinal. He recorded three steals early, he resisted the urge to throw the unnecessary lob pass, and got the ball where it was supposed to be in the halfcourt.
5. I've said this before both this season and in previous ones, but I have no clue why anyone goes zone against us. And I swear I think Rick Pitino talks about how much more effective zone is than man strictly because he doesn't want opponents to play man against his teams.
6. Kudos to Jay Bilas for doing the whole "answer Twitter questions from fans at halftime" deal, even though it put him in a fairly awkward situation. Basically, Bilas couldn't say anything borderline negative about Louisville without being booed by 22,000 people. It happened when he called Peyton Siva and Russ Smith short. Peyton Siva and Russ Smith are short.
7. My Peyton Siva shot prediction touch is officially gone. Granted, he's been in a giant shooting slump recently, but Monday night was the first time I felt really confident about him making a shot where it didn't come to fruition. It was a solid overall bounceback effort from Peyton, who dished out 10 assists while playing all 40 minutes.
8. It's becoming an overly-discussed issue, but I will give all of my old WWF action figures to anyone who can convince Chane to get rid of the unnecessary power dribble. It's the most frustrating thing in the world, especially since it consistently costs the team two points and would seem to be easily correctible. Please, please, please, keep the ball high and go straight up with it.
9. It felt good to win a game with superior free-throw shooting down the stretch, especially when Gorgui and Chane were the players responsible for the biggest makes. If nothing else, that has to be a confidence booster.
10. Raise your hand if you had Tim Henderson and Dark Slime playing at the same time in the first half of an extremely important Jan. 28 game against Pitt. Put your hand down, Russ.