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MDABE80
01-06-2018, 11:07 PM
First of all, let me say I think Josh is much improved since the first game. TO's are down, Passing is better. As of tonight, he's out leading scorer. So for me , that's not a issue.
What I'm wondering is this: From our first game, who is most improved.

For me, inconsistent play has plagued the team. Some players have sensational games while they seem to lack consistency.

In my opinion, I think Rui is improving by leaps and bounds. Nobody ever doubted his superior athleticism. How he plays from the first game is one of steady improvement. Every game he shows us something new and better. He's sensational.

How about others? opinions vary but I'm wondering what the board's thoughts are..Fire away.

Zags11
01-07-2018, 02:25 AM
Hmmm...

How bout the bench? I think we beat Florida if game happened today. The bench has mightily improved.

TexasZagFan
01-07-2018, 03:13 AM
I am most excited about the growth of Rui, Zach, and Corey.

Zach’s near double double last night was workmanlike. Rui brings another dimension of athleticism when he’s in the game. Corey’s been an assassin for us since his ankle healed.

cggonzaga
01-07-2018, 03:39 AM
I think everybody has improved except Melson. That being said on Melson, you pretty much know what you’re going to get from him night in and night out.

sheps001
01-07-2018, 04:01 AM
I think everybody has improved except Melson. That being said on Melson, you pretty much know what you’re going to get from him night in and night out.

Yes. He's consistently inconsistent. LOL. That's a shame. Should he even be starting??

cggonzaga
01-07-2018, 04:05 AM
Yes. He's consistently inconsistent. LOL. That's a shame. Should he even be starting??

I don’t see it that way at all. He’s by far our best and most consistent defender. He’s inconsistent shooting the basketball but I’d say he’s solid everywhere else offensively. I definitely think he should be starting. Who would you start over him? Kispert? I know he got hurt but he certainly hasn’t been a model of consistency and struggles defensively.

jazzdelmar
01-07-2018, 04:11 AM
There has been plenty of individual growth but not much that I can see as a team. One can argue the team’s best games are behind it. Like Ohio and Creighton and part of Texas. Seems counterintuitive but that’s how I see it. Individually Rui has advanced the most. Kispert has dipped post injury.

GonzagasaurusFlex
01-07-2018, 06:49 AM
Norvell and Rui have improved the most during the course of this season imho. Wish Larsen would get at leasr 10-15 mpg so we could watch him improve too. After a year off, he needs in-game experience to develop. Norvell only shook off his 1 year off rust after Kispert went down allowing ZN more minutes.

I’m not sure the team is improving, frankly. Great Tillie and JWIII can each have dominant performances vs weakest WCC foes, but we’ve seen Zags struggle to establish low post threats / clear offensive identity vs high level competition. What are they doing to address this weakness and lack of a backup PG? One or both of the above will bite this team in the a** come postseason so they need to fix those now.

GrizZAG
01-07-2018, 06:55 AM
Agree Jazz. On Melson I am never uncomfortable when the ball is in his hands. When he wants he can drive to the rim but doesn't tap that ability enough. He adds more to this team than some may think.
If Rui had handles he would flat dominate. Kispert will emerge once he feels he's earned the right to assert himself freely without the hook as a threat. Getting consistent effort from J3, JP and KT has been an issue. My take is ZN and Rui are most improved or perhaps emerging.

sheps001
01-07-2018, 07:55 AM
I don’t see it that way at all. He’s by far our best and most consistent defender. He’s inconsistent shooting the basketball but I’d say he’s solid everywhere else offensively. I definitely think he should be starting. Who would you start over him? Kispert? I know he got hurt but he certainly hasn’t been a model of consistency and struggles defensively.

Kispert is getting better and better and better. Would be interesting to see him at starting guard. Real big and size matters. Playing defense is an acquired taste, though. Maybe Wade would be better (but later in the season). He is a tremendous defender and made some of the LMU players look real bad. Conversely they made Melson look real bad a couple of times and he even fell down. I would have yanked him immediately after that. Melson has been dead on offense too. PS I was at the Garden to See our Zags get killed by Nova and it really really hurt and was expensive too. I don't ever want to see that again.

bartruff1
01-07-2018, 08:05 AM
They are all getting better the team is getting better..... as Few remarked after the PK...." We can play with anyone ".

kitzbuel
01-07-2018, 08:11 AM
There has been plenty of individual growth but not much that I can see as a team. One can argue the team’s best games are behind it. Like Ohio and Creighton and part of Texas. Seems counterintuitive but that’s how I see it. Individually Rui has advanced the most. Kispert has dipped post injury.

What I think makes Rui’s improvement possible is his understanding of Few’s system and the effective application of his skills within the system. This in and of itself is making the team better. Rui’s freelancing (or any player’s for that matter) hid his abilities within the system. Now that he is learning it, his skill really emerges.

Zagdawg
01-07-2018, 08:29 AM
Rui, Kispert, Norvell are making solid advancements (finding their opportunities in the flow of the offense)---Larsen is steadily improving--- Melson seems to have slowed offensively but defensively continues to be the solid defender we know he is. We saw challenges at home against UND and against San Diego State ----and the guys picked it up after that for the last 4 games.

Guys that did not play at all or significant minutes last year are making strides -- Norvell, Kispert, Rui, Larsen.

As the guys continue to get experience and grow we will continue to move in the right direction.

MileHigh
01-07-2018, 08:58 AM
Rui is most improved player

As for the team, I have no clue how good they are in relation to a month ago because they have not played a real team since SDSU. These WCC teams are so, so bad that Zags can play their C game and still win by 20+. The players right now are bored, especially the older players that have been through this stretch of blowouts year after year. They are still playing hard, and still listening to their coaches....but that extra adrenaline and focus you have when you know you have to play good to win aint there. Its human nature and athletes at every level in every sport fight it when going into a contest that they know they will win.

I am hoping 11 days from now after the St. Marys game we will know a little more about this edition of the Zags

amaronizag
01-07-2018, 09:27 AM
Rui--always showed promise, but played below what I hoped last year. This year, exceeding my highest hopes based on last year. Very happy with him. Exciting young player.
Larsen--started the season with very limited minutes, but gave me hope. At this point, he is showing great promise and playing better than I expected for this point in his career. If he continues to improve over the remaining 14 conference games, he can really help this team in post conference play.
Norvell--I had really big expectations and predicted he would lead the team in scoring at 16 pts per game. I am in no way disappointed in his play and he is living up to my high hopes. With more minutes per game, he could yet reach that 16 ppg mark. Makes stuff happen, knows how to score. Lots of deflections, active hands, defense improving, great rebounder.
Kispert--He appears to be back to 100% physically, now he can return to steady improvement after the injury took him in the wrong direction. With additional minutes in a tightening rotation, he will have a good year. High hopes for this athletic dynamo as his confidence, defense and shooting improve.
Perkins--I was really excited when this kid signed with GU. I've been waiting for him to prove himself when it was finally his turn to run the show. I think he is elite on some levels, but like (almost) all players, has his flaws. Very happy to have him here. Still improving at both O and D. Really hope he stays another year. I can live with a few turnovers because he can really pass. And shoot. He pushes the tempo this year more than in years past.I like that too.
Melson--Always liked this guy. Solid and unflappable. Assigned toughest defensive role almost every game for a good reason, while his role in the offense has always been limited to about the third option. Like all players, has off nights shooting, but solid shooter that keeps the defense honest. Excellent free throw shooter. He quietly goes about his business in a workman like way that is often not noticed or fully appreciated by some. Great hops and great all around Zag. Gary Bell Jr type of role player.
J3--really solid. Hasn't shown a big jump from last year, but I was happy with last year. He can really step up and take over when the stars align. Stay healthy my friend.
Tillie--I'm a huge fan. This year I wish he would have more consistently thrown himself into more of an aggressive offensive role, but like J3, he capitalizes when the stars align. Love watching Tillie play. I like his timing on blocks and rebounds. Depending on matchups, he can be a real force. Hate to see him go, whenever that is.

That is the 8 man rotation. Others will continue to contribute important minutes this season as situations demand or allow. Hopefully those minutes will be high enough to allow continued development so they can contribute more this year and shine next year. We need to develop those guards in waiting.

MileHigh
01-07-2018, 09:40 AM
Rui--always showed promise, but played below what I hoped last year. This year, exceeding my highest hopes based on last year. Very happy with him. Exciting young player.
Larsen--started the season with very limited minutes, but gave me hope. At this point, he is showing great promise and playing better than I expected for this point in his career. If he continues to improve over the remaining 14 conference games, he can really help this team in post conference play.
Norvell--I had really big expectations and predicted he would lead the team in scoring at 16 pts per game. I am in no way disappointed in his play and he is living up to my high hopes. With more minutes per game, he could yet reach that 16 ppg mark. Makes stuff happen, knows how to score. Lots of deflections, active hands, defense improving, great rebounder.
Kispert--He appears to be back to 100% physically, now he can return to steady improvement after the injury took him in the wrong direction. With additional minutes in a tightening rotation, he will have a good year. High hopes for this athletic dynamo as his confidence, defense and shooting improve.
Perkins--I was really excited when this kid signed with GU. I've been waiting for him to prove himself when it was finally his turn to run the show. I think he is elite on some levels, but like (almost) all players, has his flaws. Very happy to have him here. Still improving at both O and D. Really hope he stays another year. I can live with a few turnovers because he can really pass. And shoot. He pushes the tempo this year more than in years past.I like that too.
Melson--Always liked this guy. Solid and unflappable. Assigned toughest defensive role almost every game for a good reason, while his role in the offense has always been limited to about the third option. Like all players, has off nights shooting, but solid shooter that keeps the defense honest. Excellent free throw shooter. He quietly goes about his business in a workman like way that is often not noticed or fully appreciated by some. Great hops and great all around Zag. Gary Bell Jr type of role player.
J3--really solid. Hasn't shown a big jump from last year, but I was happy with last year. He can really step up and take over when the stars align. Stay healthy my friend.
Tillie--I'm a huge fan. This year I wish he would have more consistently thrown himself into more of an aggressive offensive role, but like J3, he capitalizes when the stars align. Love watching Tillie play. I like his timing on blocks and rebounds. Depending on matchups, he can be a real force. Hate to see him go, whenever that is.

That is the 8 man rotation. Others will continue to contribute important minutes this season as situations demand or allow. Hopefully those minutes will be high enough to allow continued development so they can contribute more this year and shine next year. We need to develop those guards in waiting.

Very good analysis. I am in lock step with you on your assessment on all 8 of those kids

Ezag
01-07-2018, 09:44 AM
I think most people are actually disappointed in many aspect of this year's team, team growth and justifying the opposite. Either way, this team is good enough in the WCC.

WallaWallaZag
01-07-2018, 09:53 AM
i'm curious as to whether losing his starting spot has maybe affected kispert's confidence a little bit...obviously the injury is the primary factor, but he just doesn't look the same as before. not being 100% hurts, but can't help but wonder...

MileHigh
01-07-2018, 09:54 AM
I think most people are actually disappointed in many aspect of this year's team, team growth and justifying the opposite. Either way, this team is good enough in the WCC.

In what way? not disagreeing just curious why most people would be disappointed with this years version of the Zags

WallaWallaZag
01-07-2018, 09:57 AM
I think most people are actually disappointed in many aspect of this year's team, team growth and justifying the opposite. Either way, this team is good enough in the WCC.

speak for yourself...i think this team has overall been better than i expected, though disappointed with a few of the efforts. i think pk80 put many people's expectations overboard.

former1dog
01-07-2018, 09:58 AM
I think most people are actually disappointed in many aspect of this year's team, team growth and justifying the opposite. Either way, this team is good enough in the WCC.

If true, it's a sad commentary on our fan base.

Hoopaholic
01-07-2018, 09:59 AM
speak for yourself...i think this team has overall been better than i expected, though disappointed with a few of the efforts. i think pk80 put many people's expectations overboard.

This
I expected a struggle to gain individual and team chemistry with the huge turnover and the youth being inserted. They stepped up big during PK80 but were still struggling to find the team chemistry. I had figured by the first SMC game we would be gelled and start to play outstanding as a team on both sides of the floor. Offensively they have blown my view and concern out of the water....90 PPG ranking in top 10 offensively.....Defensively I am seeing steady improvements both on individual as well as team engagement.....not exceptional yet but steady improvement

Reborn
01-07-2018, 10:05 AM
Rui is most improved, and he keeps on improving. He showed us a couple of new moves last night, ie that fall away turn-around jumper in the key. Wow. SWISH!!! He's also the most improved defensively too.

I disagree with those who believe the team is not improving, and can not improve because of the WCC. History shows that Gonzaga DOES improve their play in the WCC. Every team Gonzaga plays is going to give them their best game, and give LMU credit for doing that last night. They played damn hard. The TEAM is improving. I can see it. They are still not where they need to be, but darn it the season is just beginning. The few games that this team lost were very close and IMO they losses helped us improve. I agree with thinking which says that every player is improving. The team is slowly adjusting to their roles, night to night, because as we can see the roles change almost every game. That's something very unique about this team, and the reason it is the way it is, is because we have such talented players. You take one guy out of his game and another one steps up. One night it's Norvell, another night it's Tillie, and then on another night it's JW3. And don't forget Perkins, and Melson and even Kispert because on any given night thiese guys have led the team in scoring.

Go Zags!!!

Birddog
01-07-2018, 10:05 AM
If true, it's a sad commentary on our fan base.

Only if you think that the 20 to 50 regular posters/critics on this message board are representative of the fan base in general, IMO. I've haven't even tried to count, it might be less than 20 albeit a very outspoken group.

Hoopaholic
01-07-2018, 10:16 AM
Only if you think that the 20 to 50 regular posters/critics on this message board are representative of the fan base in general, IMO. I've haven't even tried to count, it might be less than 20 albeit a very outspoken group.

theres about 8 negative Nancy types that have half empty glasses all the time....they are just loud and consistent (almost a cut and paste) in regards to their view of this years team and particular players


I dont think it is anywhere near "most"

Worthington
01-07-2018, 10:18 AM
Hachimura and Norvell have steadily improved throughout the season, but I would agree with those posters who said that our best team performances came in some of our earlier games, which is a disconcerting trend.

The biggest problem this season has been the inexplicable inconsistency of certain players. I understand having an off night, but these games happen so regularly for some that it seems like a toss-up to which version of the player we're going to see on any given night.

23dpg
01-07-2018, 10:30 AM
The Zags just won their first 4 WCC games by an average of 33 points per game. I would wager they’ve NEVER done that before. How can anyone say they’re not improving?

WallaWallaZag
01-07-2018, 10:41 AM
Hachimura and Norvell have steadily improved throughout the season, but I would agree with those posters who said that our best team performances came in some of our earlier games, which is a disconcerting trend.

The biggest problem this season has been the inexplicable inconsistency of certain players. I understand having an off night, but these games happen so regularly for some that it seems like a toss-up to which version of the player we're going to see on any given night.

for casual fans, a lot of this is optics and not necessarily fact...first, defense is always more of a work in progress early in the season, so easier to look good...and playing against good/decent teams that want to run up and down like florida, creighton, and huskies make the zags look better than they are. playing bad teams has the tendency to also make you look bad as their ugliness makes the overall game look ugly, and wcc teams muck it up because they know they can't run with the zags.

agree with your "inexplicable inconsistency" ...but maybe to be expected with some young players and new roles. jw3 is the only head scratcher for me...i haven't tried to analyze if the games he struggles the opponent is doing anything specific.

Worthington
01-07-2018, 11:09 AM
for casual fans, a lot of this is optics and not necessarily fact...first, defense is always more of a work in progress early in the season, so easier to look good...and playing against good/decent teams that want to run up and down like florida, creighton, and huskies make the zags look better than they are. playing bad teams has the tendency to also make you look bad as their ugliness makes the overall game look ugly, and wcc teams muck it up because they know they can't run with the zags.

agree with your "inexplicable inconsistency" ...but maybe to be expected with some young players and new roles. jw3 is the only head scratcher for me...i haven't tried to analyze if the games he struggles the opponent is doing anything specific.

You make a good point, I'm sure what you're describing is playing somewhat of a role in my perception. The games against North Dakota and San Diego St (and to some extent IUPUI) just left a really bad taste in my mouth. We weren't even close to a tournament worthy team during that stretch. Conference play has started off well, but it's hard to recapture that feeling of optimism with the competition we have faced off against so far.

Coach Crazy
01-07-2018, 01:03 PM
Hachimura and Norvell have steadily improved throughout the season, but I would agree with those posters who said that our best team performances came in some of our earlier games, which is a disconcerting trend.

The biggest problem this season has been the inexplicable inconsistency of certain players. I understand having an off night, but these games happen so regularly for some that it seems like a toss-up to which version of the player we're going to see on any given night.

I can understand the struggle. They don't have that go-to deep post entry, and Coach Few is adding more motion to the offense, as he's gonna have more athletic, skilled players that can face up/dribble-drive.

This team is really the guinea pig for another level of offense. I think that we are seeing the lack of consistency and continuity affecting defense, as well. As it's stifling rhythm, giving teams extra opportunities (and off turnovers, so harder to defend), and this is team is playing at a higher pace, which already leads to more points (hypothetically) on both ends. A year or two from now when we these kids have more familiarity with the motion additions, when we have better depth at 1 and 5, and are able to get more consistent floor leadership, as well as a buoy from that deep post entry. Not only will the offense be ridiculous, but defense will benefit from that refinement.

Spinning plates can be difficult to keep spinning at a buffet.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

MDABE80
01-07-2018, 01:21 PM
Hachimura and Norvell have steadily improved throughout the season, but I would agree with those posters who said that our best team performances came in some of our earlier games, which is a disconcerting trend.

The biggest problem this season has been the inexplicable inconsistency of certain players. I understand having an off night, but these games happen so regularly for some that it seems like a toss-up to which version of the player we're going to see on any given night.

Superior and thoughtful post. Succinct...and summarizes how many of us feel.......me included.