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Four takeaways from Syracuse's 84-72 loss to St. John's at MSG

Four takeaways from SU's stunning loss to St. John's:

NEW YORK, N.Y. -- Syracuse had their fair share of issues during Sunday's loss to St. John's, many more than most anticipated after their Battle 4 Atlantis championship run just a few weeks ago.

Here are my four takeaways from Sunday's game: 

1. Michael Gbinije is on another level: Before the season, I said on the 'Cuse Corner podcast that Michael Gbinije was a top player in the ACC. Not only is Gbinije averaging 19.8 points per game, he's arguably the only reason Syracuse is above .500. The Orange are currently 7-3, but they've only had one decisive victory, which was over Colgate earlier last week. He scored 21 points against the Johnnies, despite only taking four shots in the second half. Who knows where Syracuse would be without Gbinije.

2. Only six turnovers: Despite losing to a young, inexperienced Red Storm squad, Syracuse took care of the ball. Turnovers have been one of many issues the Orange have been battling all season, so this may be a step in the right direction. On the flipside, SU forced 15 turnovers, including 13 steals. 

3. The more aggressive Malachi is, the better: Malachi Richardson had arguably the worst game of his life, shooting 20% (4-for-20) from the field, and 0% (0-for-11) from 3-point range. Despite those gaudy numbers, he still finished with 15 points. In the second half, we saw a much more aggressive player who realized his shot wasn't falling. The 6-foot-6 forward said after the game his confidence level will never take a hit, and he will continue to shoot. When Malachi gets in the lane, like he did in the second half, it opens up his game, and everyone else's on the court. 

4. Kaleb Joseph can't do anything right, even when he doesn't do anything wrong: Joseph played three minutes against St. John's on Sunday, and recorded one block. Kaleb was subbed in for Trevor Cooney with 11:19 remaining in the first half. Malachi Richardson replaced him at the 8:14 mark, and that was it. Although I haven't gone back and watched the tape, Joseph didn't appear to do anything wrong. He was very quiet after the game, as he sat in his locker with headphones on. He's not the type of athlete to quit on himself, or his teammates, but his frustration level must be through the roof.


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