Post-Oakland Observations

Since I plan (hope) to do something a little more in-depth about this game as an experiment, I’ll just give a few brief thoughts on the game.


He can definitely shoot the open three. He was 4-6 from behind the arc, though the first few looks he got were wide, wide open. He only played 16 minutes (6th on the team), which was probably a good way to ease him in. What I thought was more interesting was the fact that he never played at the 1 spot. Going in, most observers thought he’d be taking away point guard minutes from former walkon David Merritt, while leaving Kelvin Grady’s playing time intact. Instead, LLP took away minutes from former walkon CJ Lee, and maybe Jevohn Shepherd.


“How did he take away time from Jevohn Shepherd?” you may ask. Perhaps it actually had nothing to do with the availability of Laval, but this game, the coaches went a with a very small lineup very often. Grady or Merrit played the 1 spot, and two other shooting guards were on the court at the same time. Somehow, having Stu Douglass and Zack Novak on the court at the same time failed to rip a hole in the space-time continuum. Regardless, this was an intereting lineup choice, and it will be interesting to see whether it is something the coaches see as being viable in the long-term, or if it was a one-time (or few-time) deal against a particular weakness they saw in Oakland. Also, Anthony Wright didnt’ play a second in this game. That can only be construed as a good thing.


Michigan actually managed to out-rebound the Golden Grizzlies, which is an encouragin sign. Not only did Oakland have a fairly large lineup (especially when they played 7-footer Ilja Milutinovic), but Michigan went with a small lineup for much of the game. When you look at the rebounds that went through players’ hands (hopefully bad luck, rather than a pattern), there is even more room for improvement here, which could certainly aid the fortune of Michigan down the line, as Beilein’s teams have never rebounded all that well, and it would be a boon if they could.

Manny & DeShawn

Harris had a quiet first half, not scoring at all. He came back in the second half to notch 15 points, but it wasn’t his scoring that made Manny important in this game. He notched 13 assists without a single turnover. He had 6 rebounds, making him 4 away from a triple-double. If this is considered an “off night” for Manny, imagine what he can be when he is truly on. I think in the future, the role players are going to continue stepping up, so Manny doesn’t have to take control in every game. That said, he will still be capable of doing so when his team needs him. DeShawn Sims, on the other hand, produced consistently throughout the game, and scored a game-high 20 points. He still had a slightly slow first half, and again the role players proved they can help the team survive slumps by the stars.


Was it just me, or did the rims in the Palace seem reallllly soft? There were a few times where shots just died on the rim, and then fell in. There were some really ridiculous bounces on free throws that ended up dropping in as well.

The refs were crappy (as they so often are). Of course, it may be my bias speaking, but I thought a slight majority of the poor calls went against Michigan. When I watch the game more closely, I reserve the right to change my mind.

Posted under Basketball
Tags: , , ,

Comments are closed.

More Blog Post

Previous Post: