Monday, April 02, 2007

Re-visiting Saturday Night

I'm gonna be honest, I've got very little memory of what happened Saturday, and that's probably for the best. The brief post that preceded this one was an alcohol fueled rant, and trust me, there was a lot of alcohol involved. Word of advice, it's probably not a good idea to get really, really drunk the night before you have a morning golf tournament. We finished second, which was less surprising than the fact that we were even able to wake up in time to make it. Of course, we won it last year, and I played the whole round with food poisoning after spending the morning puking, so maybe I was in better shape this year.

If you had told me before the game that the Bruins would win the turnover battle 16-3, I would have felt pretty good about the game. Of course, that would have meant omitting the fact that they were completely dominated on the boards, that they couldn't shoot (39%), and that they really couldn't shoot from beyond the arc (22%). The Bruins had the game within four early in the second half before Florida ran off a 21-4 run that more or less decided the game.

As for the officiating, I don't believe the refs cost UCLA this game. I do believe that the game was pretty much over when they called the second foul on Arron Afflalo. They can't win a big game without Afflalo playing a major role, and when he was taken off the floor practically before the game even started on what were really ticky tack fouls, the game was essentially over. They can't win a big game when he only gets 22 minutes.

Before the game, I figured that a key for the Bruins would be the player (either Afflalo or Shipp) who was not guarded by Brewer, because I figured that was a matchup advantage for UCLA. When Afflalo was taken off the floor in the first two minutes, it took away that advantage. I'm not saying that analysis was correct, but we never got a chance to find out whether it was.

Speaking of Shipp, he provided a lot of hope for next year. His play down the stretch this year was excellent, and he was the lone bright spot in the semi-final. He finished with 18 points, shooting 50%, grabbed four rebounds, dished out five assists, and stole the ball four times. It will be good to have him back, even if Afflalo decides to leave.

So ignore the vitriol in the previous post. It was a disappointing end to an excellent season, and again, the Bruins should be even better next year with the arrivals of Kevin Love and Chace Stanback, combined with the continued improvement of Aboya, LRMAM, Keefe, Roll, and Westbrook. They may even get contributions from Ryan Wright and Nikola Dragovic. I still think they're a top five team going into 2007-2008.

So congratulations to the Bruins on a great season, and hopefully OSU will beat the shit out of Florida.

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