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Thread: UCLA Post Game Media

  1. #1
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    Default UCLA Post Game Media

    AP: Kyle Wiltjer scores 24 points as No. 9 Gonzaga easily beats UCLA

    "They've been there, done that. We've got a lot of guys going through it for the first time," UCLA coach Steve Alford said. "They don't panic, they play with great poise. Offensively, they're really hard to guard because they have so many guys who can make 3s, yet people will tell you their strength is on the inside."
    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right

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    LA Daily News

    In its biggest home game yet, Steve Alford’s team generated one more comeback inside the last five minutes. Bryce Alford hit a pair of free throws, and backcourt-mate Isaac Hamilton followed with a quick steal and a freebie of his own — missing the back end of a one-and-one opportunity. That cut Gonzaga’s lead to 71-63 with 4:43 left to go.

    Then, Kevin Pangos finally showed up. The Bulldogs’ veteran point guard had uncharacteristically missed his first five attempts from beyond the arc, but squared up and swished a triple from the left wing.
    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right

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    Orange County Register

    For the Bulldogs, it was experience that ruled the day. It was the combined effort of two fifth-year seniors, Kyle Wiltjer and Byron Wesley, that eventually sunk the Bruins for good – a striking contrast from UCLA’s set of first- and second-year contributors. The pair combined for 44 points on 16-of-21 shooting, far outperforming UCLA’s senior leader, Norman Powell, who had a brutal 3-of-11 shooting night with just 12 points.
    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right

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    Replay on ESPN U now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheZagPhish View Post
    Orange Co can't count Wiltjer's eligibility? He's a fourth year junior, at least according to what I know.
    Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.
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    NBC Sports

    Gonzaga’s depth gives them a margin for error that some teams just don’t have, and that was the case for UCLA. And while the Bulldogs may not have landed the knockout blow that could have turned this game into a blowout in the second half, they had more than enough production to maintain a comfortable margin. Gary Bell Jr. and Kevin Pangos scored nine points apiece, and that level of production wasn’t an issue for Gonzaga because others were ready to step forward.
    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right

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    Fox Sports

    "From an offensive standpoint, they are really good inside-out," Alford said. "They really battle defensively with those experienced guys that understand time and score and the necessity of when a stop really is needed."
    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right

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    UCLABruins.com

    “We have had a couple bad starts, but I don’t think this was a bad start,” UCLA head coach Steve Alford said. “I just think we didn’t make shots. This is, in my opinion, the best team we have played all year. We got down 10 points early. They made shots and we didn't make shots, and this is a hard team to get in that kind of hole against.”
    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right

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    LA Times

    The problems were on the defensive end, where UCLA couldn't handle Gonzaga's versatile scoring. When the defense switched to zone, Gonzaga shot over the top. When it corrected, holes opened for mid-range looks. The team's 87 points surrendered was a season high, and Gonzaga shot 58% from the field.

    “If you gave them an open shot,” Kevon Looney said, “they weren't going to miss it.”
    Once in a while you get shown the light, in the strangest of places if you look at it right

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheZagPhish View Post
    2 5th year Srs?

    In the words of Maxwell Smart, "missed it by that much."
    This post is for March Madness seeding purposes only.

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    Thanks Zagphish and all for the nice collection of post-game reading! Enjoyed it!

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    Very good article from CBSSports about Kyle:
    Kyle Wiltjer continues to blossom into a No. 1 option for Gonzaga
    By Sam Vecenie | CBSSports.com
    December 14, 2014 10:47 am ET


    ....
    Wiltjer leads Gonzaga in scoring by averaging 17.2 points, and he's doing it extremely efficiently as the owner of a 60 percent true-shooting rate. You know how many other players can say that they're scoring at least 17 points per game with a true-shooting percentage over 60?

    Five. Two of them -- Bryce Dejean-Jones and Georges Niang -- play in Iowa State's frenetic offensive system that is known to inflate scoring numbers due to pace. Two others are potential All-American guards in Jerian Grant and Ron Baker. The last one? Only the leading candidate for national player of the year, Jahlil Okafor.

    So basically, Wiltjer has been one of the most effective, efficient weapons on offense in college basketball this season. He likely couldn't have asked for a better start to his Gonzaga career after transferring away from Kentucky to get a bigger role, as he's now the No. 1 scoring option on a Gonzaga team that is currently ranked second in KenPom's adjusted offensive efficiency metric.
    ...
    And he's become that weapon by growing into a more well-rounded offensive player.

    During his time at Kentucky, he was mostly deployed as a role player whose job was to space the floor for coach John Calipari's dribble-drive offense. During his two years with the Wildcats, 52.5 percent of his shot attempts were from behind the arc. However, this season with the Bulldogs, he's only taking 30.6 percent of his shots from 3-point range. He's reduced that number by taking his year-plus off the floor to develop an excellent midrange game, and it shows with his 53 percent mark on 2-point jumpers.

    "I've worked on my game a lot, so just having that versatility is huge," Wiltjer said. "I want to be able to score down low, midrange, or 3s. It just makes me harder to guard.
    ..
    Another place that he's seen marked improvement is in the post.

    "We spent a whole year on (his midrange game) and posting up," coach Mark Few said. "He's really effective in the post. He's can go either way. He's really crafty. He's done a good job of embracing that."

    Wiltjer was challenged when he arrived in Spokane.

    "We told him when he came to Gonzaga that he's not going to be a one trick pony," assistant coach Tommy Lloyd said. "We've got to be able to take advantage of his skill level and exploit other teams. If they want to switch a guard onto him, he's gotta be able to score inside. He's gotta be able to score one-on-one inside against post players. And then, if he falls into a few 3s we're OK with that. But we didn't want his sole deal being to jack 3s."

    A major reason why he's now able to do all of those things that his coaches want is the strength that he's added since being at Gonzaga. The big man is now up to 240 pounds, which helps him play more physical in the paint.

    "He definitely changed his body," Few said. "It's not there yet. But it's functional now, whereas before it really probably wasn't functional to do something like that. And now it is."

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    thank you for gathering and sharing ZagPhish and ZagNative
    humanity is one family ... with one heart

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    Quote Originally Posted by sittingon50 View Post
    2 5th year Srs?

    In the words of Maxwell Smart, "missed it by that much."
    Alford will really be bummed next season when Wiltjer drops 24 (or more) on them at the Kennel.

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    Something I'd be curious to know after UCLA plays Kentucky is how Allford and Rick Barnes think the Zags stack up against Kentucky. Of course you have to take into account that the Zags had to play them in neutral & road environments as compared to Kentucky getting them at home, but it sure would be nice to hear what they think.

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    Quote Originally Posted by abarefootboy View Post
    thank you for gathering and sharing ZagPhish and ZagNative
    +1.
    This post is for March Madness seeding purposes only.

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    Thanks for the posts!
    "The best players will play. That's the way it will always be." Larry Bird

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    Quote Originally Posted by zagamatic View Post
    Something I'd be curious to know after UCLA plays Kentucky is how Allford and Rick Barnes think the Zags stack up against Kentucky. Of course you have to take into account that the Zags had to play them in neutral & road environments as compared to Kentucky getting them at home, but it sure would be nice to hear what they think.
    UCLA plays UK in Chicago.
    This post is for March Madness seeding purposes only.

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    The Wiltjer article makes me wonder if he can win the WCC POY.

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    Depends on who Few nominates. I'm guessing Pangos.
    This post is for March Madness seeding purposes only.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Martin Centre Mad Man View Post
    The Wiltjer article makes me wonder if he can win the WCC POY.
    IMHO if GU wins the conference and Hawes in still injured then KP will get the WCC player of the year. As much for his 4 year body of work as for what he did this year.

    KW can win it next year.

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