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Husky Men's Basketball

The latest news and analysis on Husky men's hoops.

January 27, 2009 at 3:17 PM

MBA says X-rays negative

Matthew Bryan-Amaning said he underwent an X-ray this morning and was told there’s no serious damage to his big left toe. He said it’s still sore and throbs, but he’s expected to play Thursday at Arizona.
During his press conference with the local media, coach Lorenzo Romar said MBA hurt his toe Thursday against USC, but was obviously able to play Saturday and he practiced Sunday as well. It’s unknown how much the sore toe is affecting his game, but in his last outing he finished with two points on 0-3 shooting, five rebounds and three turnovers in 19 minutes.
MBA’s health status was the only significant news to come out of Tuesday’s interviews with players and coaches.
Much like the Pac-10 teleconference, Romar spent most of his press conference answering questions about Seattle’s newest and brightest star, Isaiah Thomas. By my (unofficial) count, Romar fielded 22 questions and 12 were about IT.
The fab frosh is deserving of the praise, but I won’t go into great detail about Romar’s comments about his point guard.
The coach said Thomas has developed an unblockable step-back jumper because at 5-8, he’s had to be creative offensively. He said Thomas has room to improve. He compared Thomas to Damon Stoudamire and Nate Robinson, but agreed when someone said IT reminds them of Calvin Murphy. He said Thomas awakening was against Portland in the season opener when he had 10 points against a vanilla defense. He said his fears about Thomas went away at WSU when IT assisted or scored on 15 of the UW’s first 17 points. He said he’s been impressed with Thomas’ defense.
Ok, enough of Thomas for now.
— Romar said Arizona is much different under interim coach Russ Pennell than Lute Olson. “Under Coach Olson they were much more in attack mode and now they’re probably more conservative,” he said. “Defensively, obviously when Coach Olson was there they played some zone last year. They changed up quite a bit more. They play man to man more.”
— Romar praised UA’s big three of F Jordan Hill, F Chase Budinger and G Nic Wise, but admitted that the Wildcats’ weakness is their bench. “Several teams in our league don’t have a deep rotation, they don’t really deep into their bench. Arizona was like that last year where they didn’t have a deep bench.”
— The UW leads the Pac-10 with 211 free throws against conference teams. Oregon, which has played eight games, is next with 155. The Huskies average a conference-high 81.4 points and they average 14 points per game from the line. Romar attributes the frequency of free throws to an aggressive in-and-out offensive attack. “If you look at our guards, last year versus this year with Isaiah and you look at the difference,” he said. “I would bet you he’s taken more foul shots – take Justin Dentmon away – I bet you he’s taken more than the rest of our guards combined last year.”
Thomas has converted 88 of 120 FTs. Last year, the quartet of Venoy Overton, Ryan Appleby, Tim Morris and Joel Smith sank 120 of 181 from the charity stripe.
All for now.



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