Hardaway, Burke flourish together

Michigan junior shooting guard Tim Hardaway Jr. and sophomore point guard Trey Burke are tremendous college basketball players in their own right. Together, they form one of the most formidable and productive backcourts in the country.

If Friday night's 100-62 opening season win over Slippery Rock is any indication of what the 2012-13 season will be for the backcourt duo of Tim Hardaway Jr. and Trey Burke, Michigan will be one difficult lion to tame.

"When you have him (Tim) on the floor and Trey on the floor and either Matt (Vogrich) or Nik (Stauskas) over there, I wouldn't like to defend those type of shooters when he has it going," said Beilein.

"Tim Hardaway was really special today. I mean real special. With the ten rebounds and the finding people. He's been practicing this way probably for about a week and it's really nice to have him."

Hardaway Jr. lead all scorers with 25 points, including the thousandth point of his Michigan career, while Burke finished with 21 points and 8 assists against a veteran Slippery Rock team.

Numbers aside, Hardaway and Burke are utilizing the bond they've formed off the court as fuel for their mental and physical connection on it, resulting in what should be a deadly combination in their second go round together in the Wolverines' lineup.

"Definitely more comfortable," said Hardaway Jr. "That's just all of the summer and just doing a great job of hanging out with one another, knowing each other's tendencies a lot more. And as you can see we're out there finding each other."

Burke is no stranger to stuffing the stat sheet in the scoring column, but on a night when Hardaway is shooting 80 percent from the field including 5 for 5 from the long line, the maturity of the Wolverine's sophomore point guard to find the hot hand doesn't go unnoticed.

"Trey was beautiful setting him up," said Beilein. "Those two are working really well together. They really look for each other and Trey set him up several times and that's huge."

"One of his last threes there, Trey just turned and gave him this ball with great spin, right in here --- its difficult for Tim to miss those. It makes us tough to defend because he can get his own. That's a beautiful jump shot now, and if he keeps making that progression he's going to have a heck of a career here and beyond."

Stat of note

In his career with the Wolverines when Hardaway Jr. scores 20 points or more Michigan has a record of 12-1. When Hardaway Jr. pours in 21 plus, the Maize and Blue are an undefeated 8-0.

Michigan is set to take the floor again Monday night at 9 pm as they welcome IUPUI to Crisler Center in the first round of the NIT Season Tip-off (broadcast on ESPNU).

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