RC4 won’t have too many ice cold nights, hopefully, where he is 5-19 on 2pt shots, 1-5 on 3pt shots and 2-5 on FT’s … but when he does, another scorer has to emerge to prevent the Hogs from losing more games to teams they should handle.
Last year, the Hogs were in trouble early in the season if JD Notae had a bad shooting night … when the light finally came on for Stanley Umude, the Razorbacks started winning SEC games - home and road - with regularity.
Going into this season, many felt having RC4, NSJ and TB as candidates who could put up 20+ on any given night would provide the team a scoring cushion should one or two of them have an off game … with the injuries to NSJ and TB, that cushion no longer exists.
It was obvious AB wasn’t 100% last night still recovering from the flu, and maybe that limited his aggressiveness in trying to score … he showed us in Maui he could get baskets when needed, but that isn’t his natural bent (like it is for RC4 and NSJ). Jordan has tons of talent, but still lacks consistency and plays like the freshman he is at times … though his continued development is critical to the team’s postseason success.
Bottom line, IMO, if Arkansas is going to repeat the success of the last two years, Nick has to get healthy so the team has at least 2 bonafide volume shooter/scorers, especially for road games … the Razorbacks certainly played well enough on defense to win at LSU, but another volume shooter/scorer is going to have to step up when RC4 isn’t hitting on all cylinders. If not Nick, then who?
Great points. When we lost our best and 3rd or 4th best player we lost more than just 2 great players. We lost our depth. We immediately go from a solid 8 man rotation to a 6 man rotation, with the 6th man not a scorer, but very good rebounder and good defender.
The loss of depth gives us a double whammy. Last night, AB, Ricky, and Devo all played 40 minutes, while Mahki played 36 and Jordan played 32. Mahki (especially), AB (sick), and Ricky were noticeably exhausted the last 4-5 minutes and thus playing with diminished effectiveness. It showed up in free throw shooting and overall shooting. The double whammy is the loss of 2 great players and the diminished value of the other 3 starters due to playing 40 minutes a game.
So you are definitely right. If we are to be what we all want the team to be, Muss has got to find 2 more major (8-12 minutes a game) contributors. My hope would be Graham and one of the 3 freshmen. Or one more (Graham?) if Nick can end up with a sound knee and finish the season from mid-January on.
As an example, last night LSU got 60+minutes out of their bench, while we got 12 minutes. LSU was the freshest team at the end of the game. And it showed.
If NSJ doesn’t get healthy enough to play then this season has very little chance of the type of success projected for this team with him playing.
TB being out for the season is a big deal and it will continue to be now that the conference season is underway.
If NSJ can’t play then we may look back at this season as the one that got away due to injury to two players.
If I remember correctly, this is the first team with lateral quickness that we have played this year. Ricky has had his way so far, but LSU’s quickness bothered him and AB last night. LSU is one of the top defensive teams in NCAAs. They will be ready for Missouri.
One a side note, it was impressive how Matt McMahon has his team playing together, similar to how Muss has 11 newcomers jelled as a team. Additionally Matt had no idea what the roster was going to be when he took over. Thank you Transfer Portal and immediate eligibility rule.
I agree,we have to have multiple scorers(so far only R4 has shown we can count on him most every game) that can make a big basket,I LOVE what I saw of Walsh in the 2nd half.He was like give me the ball I will show you how to score,He has the heart of a lion! and will only get better,I want him to shoot More but he is so good at rebounding on the Offensive boards,i see why he doesn’t.
R4 just had a bad night,mssed a lot of midrange shots he normally makes and missed FT as well…I had a feeling we were going to have a bad game bc we always seem to i n BR.
Mizzou game is huge and it will be a war!! not going to be easy,they are very good! and we will have to click on all cylinders to win but we have to win that game! bc we go to Auburn and have Bama at home and they won by 10+ in Starkville and Lord knows we know how tough that is.
No way I would rank Brazile ahead of AB or Nick. That’s why I said #3 or 4. It could be a toss-up between TB and Ricky. I wouldn’t argue either way. A healthy AB and Nick will both be high NBA draft picks. The last one I saw had Nick going #4 and AB going #10. I love TB, but this year he’s not at that level (at least not yet).
I’m not sure we’d be better than a .500 team with the SEC games without AB and Nick (zero PGs). I believe we can compete for the SEC championship without Nick and TB. It will take great coaching by Muss, but I expect that.
Okay. The Hawgs didn’t show a lot of scoring against LSU. One game please. The sky is not falling. As nd the season’s not a bust. These young guys have prove they can score and win without Nick and Trevon. Don’t get me wrong, would love to have both playing. But that’s just not gonna happen. Muss and the team will adjust. Just like they have the last two seasons. And with not as much talent as this team has, if I may add.
I don’t think he can be a knockdown 3 pt shooter but with his great form he can be very adequate which would only open up his drive by game.I know Muss sees him everyday and wants him to shoot which makes me think he is making plenty in Practice for Muss to encourage him to in games
I still believe Jalen Graham is the option there, but he isn’t going to get the minutes until Muss feels comfortable with him out there. Jalen needs to figure it out quick, but that’s the guy in my opinion.