This season, I have found myself making Peyton Siva a different player in my head than the rest of his career. Maybe this is because of the evolution of Russdiculous, or maybe it's because he began the season shooting well. Either way, I created a mental image of a point guard that can post up and shoot at will.
In recent weeks, when Peyton's shooting touch has gone AWOL, I found myself getting angry. Not because he was taking the shots, but because he was missing them. I realized before the Pittsburgh game that I shouldn't be mad at Peyton for missing the three balls, I should be mad at him for not creating the way he used to.
Everyone has been talking about Russ this season. Russdiculous has become a common word and should soon be added to the Merriam-Webster's Dictionary. It seems, though, that everyone has forgotten that Peyton was the exact same way. He wasn't quite as out of control as Russ, but he could drive the lane and create, often leaving all of us onlookers scratching our head as to how he possibly made it work.
I will say it flat out. I MISS OLD PEYTON!
Early on, I fell in love with Peyton being able to hit threes. Now that the fad has come and gone, it seems as though Peyton has forgotten the other aspects of his game. Sure, he put up 10 assists against Pitt, but in the previous games, he was hardly accounting for any team points. Like it or not, this Cardinal team lives and dies with Peyton Siva. The Syracuse game was a perfect example. Russ put up 25 points but we still fell because Peyton had a subpar game. There are an unreasonable number of other things to blame that loss on, but if Peyton had hit some threes, we win the game.
My main problem with this is that we shouldn't be depending on Peyton to hit the three. Everyone is doing it. Even Peyton is doing it. It seems as though he thinks that the three ball is the only way he can score. He has lost his confidence, not just in his shot, but in his game.
When Peyton begins to create for himself and others, I believe the entire team will open back up. Shooters won't have to force ugly shots. Big men won't have to try to catch tough passes. Peyton will be able to do what he wants. I think that the day Peyton goes back to driving the lane and putting up an amazing layup, or having a spectacular dish, he will be back. Teams will have to respect all aspects of our game. Our half-court offense will improve. Heck, maybe Peyton will even begin to hit threes again.
Maybe I'm crazy, but Peyton Siva wasn't the Big East Tournament MVP and Preseason Player of the Year for shooting threes.