So that’s how this season is going to go, huh? A head-scratching loss to a team you feel like we should beat, and then following that up with a dominant road win over the 12th ranked team in the country as a double-digit underdog. Well then, buckle up! After watching the game again, it got me fired up as if I were watching it for the first time. The Cards just played so well. Yes, UNC missed some shots they normally make, but that’s just the game. Louisville still outplayed them and got a lot of loose balls and had UNC making bad decisions with the ball. Such a good win, and doing these is a lot more fun after games like that.
-Dwayne Sutton, you are a bad man, my friend. You just go out and get 17 points, 10 rebounds, 7 assists, 4 steals, and have 0 turnovers? A well-deserved ACC Player of the Week honor came your way after a performance like that. He set the tone early and played well all game with energy and aggressiveness.
-I don’t care if he starts or comes off the bench, but I am all for Steven Enoch getting the majority of the minutes at the five spot. In this game, he played 27 minutes and Malik Williams played 12. Some games may just be matchup based, but Enoch was dominant. He established position before he ever got the ball, which you will see in the film review, and he played like he knew he was the best big man on the floor. He started the season playing great, but we knew it was against weaker competition. He seemed to hit a lull when the opposition stepped up, but I think it’s safe to say that he is a legit player at this level. I think he is the second most important player on the team.
-Who is first? Christen Cunningham. I can’t say enough good things about him and what he means to this team. He plays with no fear, but has the poise to run the show. His experience he brings can not be overlooked. A head coach wants his point guard to be an extension of the coach on the floor, and he is that. He doesn’t play too fast for himself and you are never (or I wouldn’t think so) nervous when he has the ball.
-Darius Perry is struggling right now, and he seems to be trying to get out of it all too fast, rather than letting the game come to him. If you watch when UofL runs the pick and roll, Perry doesn’t drive his man into the screen. There is too much space between him and the screener, that his defender can just stay right with him, so the whole screen is pointless, and the defense does not have to rotate at all. Christen Cunningham does exactly what needs to be done. Just something to keep an eye on. Hopefully he fixes it and I sound way wrong, but for this game, that was definitely the case. It’s like he knows the pick is coming and he is just too excited to attack the basket, but he has to let the screen get there and then actually use it.
-Nice to see Jordan Nwora get his shot back. Shooters shoot, and we know he won’t stop doing that. There weren’t many glaring mishaps on defense this time. There were a couple, but I chose to leave him alone for this one.
-All in all, a very good effort by the Cards and it helped to get rid of the bad taste in our mouths from Pittsburgh. Just like the Pittsburgh loss did not have me thinking NIT, this UNC win doesn’t have me screaming National Championship. I just think it’s going to be like that in the ACC this season. Louisville will lose games we don’t think they should, and they will knock off some more big-time programs. Either way, it’s going to be exciting. The ceiling is the roof.
UofL’s first bucket. Pick & roll, Luke Maye’s man is Jordan Nwora. Maye gets caught in help and loses Nwora. Dwayne Sutton’s man helps over, leaving Sutton open and Maye is too slow to get out there. pic.twitter.com/5iWSHEDlkC— Justin Renck (@JustinRenck) January 15, 2019
Same play as before, but Maye gets through and gets back to Nwora. Just wanted to show the difference in this and the first play because a shooter didn’t end up wide open. pic.twitter.com/Gs7biIWOk4— Justin Renck (@JustinRenck) January 15, 2019
I love when Steven Enoch does work before getting the ball to get position. He screens across and immediately begins to seal his man, leading to the easy dump down and score. pic.twitter.com/gntRBF4QW1— Justin Renck (@JustinRenck) January 15, 2019
Jordan Nwora comes to set a screen for Darius Perry. He doesn’t use it, so his defender stays with him and he has to force a bad shot. I noticed this several times with Perry and not leading his man into the screen. He has to dribble in to take his defender into the screen. pic.twitter.com/guQHRaWBAW— Justin Renck (@JustinRenck) January 15, 2019
This one is all about Dwayne Sutton and his defense on Luke Maye. Nothing techinical to break down, just effort and being in the right spot. pic.twitter.com/wHdIeNhQNA— Justin Renck (@JustinRenck) January 15, 2019
More Enoch, same play as earlier. Screens across and has Maye on his back, so he keeps him there and spins and holds him off. Perfect high-low game. pic.twitter.com/aUizGNIKn6— Justin Renck (@JustinRenck) January 15, 2019
Christen Cunningham gets switched onto Maye. Mismatch, right? Not here, as Cunningham’s effort on defense leads to UNC forcing a bad pass and turning the ball over. pic.twitter.com/yj6hN0t95V— Justin Renck (@JustinRenck) January 15, 2019
If you have kept up with this film review this season, you see this set play against a 2-3 with the two guys screening at the bottom. Last game, Nwora and Sutton screened the same guy. Here, I think Nwora releases from his screen too soon or Enoch would have been open. pic.twitter.com/YRU5xbQkiw— Justin Renck (@JustinRenck) January 15, 2019
Cunningham gets the assist, Enoch gets the huge slam. It doesn’t happen if V.J. King doesn’t keep the ball alive in the first place. Great hustle play that leads to major momentum. pic.twitter.com/QIwitLgDaj— Justin Renck (@JustinRenck) January 15, 2019
Another play where Perry is too far away from the screener, so his man isn’t touched at all. So nobody on the defense has to help, and this forced pass looks really bad. pic.twitter.com/X6bFoNxvh7— Justin Renck (@JustinRenck) January 15, 2019