Game Thoughts

Arizona needed a win on Saturday and did more than just get the victory. The Cats blew out Washington, and did it in the same manner that they rattled of their 12-game win streak.

*What more can we say about Jordan Hill? All he did was outplay McDonald's All-American Spencer Hawes. With apologies to Ivan Radenovic, Hill was the best big man on the floor. All five of his blocked shots came against Hawes and Jon Brockman, and offensively he did not back down from the more heralded Huskies. Hill also surprisingly soft hands, and a nose for the basket. His 15-foot jumper was off, but you get the feeling that aspect of his game will develop over the next few years.

*I know the Huskies have had a few guys under the weather, but they were completely uninspiring. They lack athleticism and depth. With Hans Gasser and Brandon Burmeister playing key roles off the bench, you can tell that the Huskies are hurting from defections, lost recruits and injuries.

*Passing is the key. The Wildcats reverted to the unselfish style that we saw during the 12-game win streak. Not only did the Cats have 21 assists on 31 field goals, but they really did a fantastic job moving without the ball, finding the open man and finding the best shot. Better yet, they took just 12 three pointers.

*The Cats dominated the boards out-rebounding the Huskies 42-25. With Marcus Williams a tad limited, Chase Budinger has really begun hitting the boards. Over the last five games the freshman has averaged 9.6 rebounds.

*The Cats really helped themselves in terms of the NCAA Tournament. Assuming the Pac-10 will get six teams in the Big Dance, the Cats positioned themselves very well. They are now 5-0 against the bottom four teams in the Pac-10, including the sweep over Washington.

*Jawann McClellan may have come off the bench, but he wasn't complaining. In fact the Wildcat junior referenced Jason Terry's role on the 1997 national championship team. Lute Olson pitched the idea of McClellan being a spark off the bench by using Terry as an example, and with McClellan's appreciation of Wildcat history he had no problem accepting that role.

*In two games against Arizona this year Ryan Appleby is just 2-15 from behind the arc. Last year the shooting guard was 8-12 from three-point range.

*Jon Brockman had a season low two rebounds. In fact his previous worst outing this season was four rebounds. All told it was his second worst rebounding game of his brief career. He had a one rebound game against Lehigh last season.


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