A Ripening Orange

Syracuse Orange point guard Michael Carter-Williams went from sometimes seeing no time to being the main option at point guard. He talks with CuseNation.com about his new position on the team inside.

On the floor as the starting point guard for the first time in his young career at Syracuse, Michael Carter-Williams has looked anything but a newcomer to the starting role.

His abilities to know where his teammates are and when to give them the ball has led to 20 assists in Syracuse's last two games, with 11 assists in the first of these two contests for a new single-game high in his career.

"I'm very comfortable with my teammates," said Carter-Williams. "They are always in the right spots and I try to put them in good positions to score the ball."

One of his teammates that has been a consistent consumer of his offensive dishes has been center Baye Keita. Keita struggled in his first two seasons to not only score, but to first keep his hands on the ball. Now, Carter-Williams sees Keita as a true contributor to the offense. "He's a big part of the offense," Carter-Williams stated. "He does a lot of little things, like [when] we drive to the hoop, he shields the big man off so we can get an easy layup."

"He's good at catching the ball and finishing it and it something that's he been working on and he's getting better and better," Carter-Williams added. Keita's feeds from the backcourt have resulted in high percentage shots and trips to the charity stripe, as he works to establish his presence inside on offense.

Speaking of establishing an offensive presence, Carter-Williams has had at least three steals in all three games the Orange have played so far this season. One of those steals, occurring within Syracuse's match-up with Princeton, resulted in a dunk by Carter-Williams in transition. Before elevating for the dunk, he flashed a smile. "I was just excited," Carter-Williams expressed. "It's just the excitement of the game and I was just happy to get the steal and dunk the ball."

As a whole through three games, Carter-Williams shared how he feels about his performance. "Good. I'm feeling confident," he said. "I just love winning [the] game. I love the game itself and I love getting my teammates involved so I'm just having a great time enjoying the season."


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