Around the Rim: Las Vegas Invitational Pt. 2

In the final two games of the Continental Tire Las Vegas Invitational, Nevada will play two power conference schools in UCLA and Missouri. Lets take a look at two players from each team the Wolf Pack must stop on Thursday and Friday respectively.

UCLA Must Stop Players:
The 19th ranked Bruins enter their game on Thanksgiving at 5-0 at Adams is a big reason why. A shooting guard who first year UCLA head coach Steve Alford has called a "dynamic scorer" is the teams leading scorer averaging 22.2 points per game. Adams is shooting a ridiculous 56.3 from the field, 46.2% from the three point line, and 87.1% from the free throw line, so he can essentially score from anywhere on the correct. Additionally Adams is averaging 3.4 steals per game so he could be put on Deonte Burton or Michael Perez in the backcourt. Look for Perez to match up against Adams on defense for the Wolf Pack. If Nevada has any chance of pulling off the upset, Adams will have to be contained by a solid team defensive effort.
Adams has been the best scorer for the Bruins but it could be easily argued that Anderson has been the best player. The Bruins are 4th in the nation in assists per game (20.4) and 38th in the nation in rebounds per game (42.2) and Anderson can be credited with a bunch of that. On the year Anderson is averaging 11.6 points, 9.8 rebounds, 7.8 assists, 1.2 blocks, and 1.8 steals per game. A versatile player who can play any position except center, Anderson will provide a match up problem for most teams the Bruins face. The best way to guard Anderson is for the defending team to allow him to shoot from the outside because Anderson is only a career 20% shooter from 3-point range. For Nevada, they will likely use a combination of Jerry Evans and Cole Huff to try and slow Anderson down.

Missouri Must Stop Players:
  • 6' 5" Junior Guard Jabari Brown
A preseason first team SEC coaches pick, Brown is a guard who takes half of his shot attempts from behind the three-point line. When Brown struggles from the behind the arc his scoring number are vastly effected so its important to limit his opportunities. To combat this, Perez will likely guard him during the game and trial him all around the perimeter coming off numerous screens. Furthermore Brown is important in the Tigers full court "40 minutes of hell" defense.
  • 6' 9" Freshman Forward Johnathan Williams, III
What has never struggled with on defense this year? Rebounding. What does Williams do well for the Tigers? Offensive rebounds. While Williams is not the second best player on this Tiger's team, he does provide a tough matchup for the Wolf Pack. Averaging 3.2 offensive rebounds on the offensive end and 9.2 rebounds total, Williams will need to be boxed out by the big man rotation of Ali Fall, Ronnie Stevens, and Lucas Stivrins. If the Wolf Pack bigs cannot contain Williams, it will be a long day for the Pack.

Silver And Blue Sports Top Stories