During his weekly press conference coach Lorenzo Romar didn’t have much information on redshirt forward Tyreese Breshers, who injured a right finger in Saturday’s game against Belmont. Breshers sat out Sunday because he felt discomfort and couldn’t grip the basketball.
Breshers, however, was back on the court Tuesday night at practice and appeared okay. He had his middle and ring finger taped together and took part of every drill that I saw. I’m still not certain, which finger he hurt and a school official was unsure if it’s accurate to say the finger was sprained, dislocated or what. So for now, it’s just injured.
I’m expecting Breshers will be cleared to play in Friday’s game against San Jose State.
Meanwhile, the Huskies returned to the court after taking Monday off and if you didn’t know better, you would have thought they were 0-3 rather than 3-0 the way Romar was barking at them and making them run. Practice was intense.
Romar had them working on close out drills, defensive rotations and boxing out for defensive rebounds. He emphasized communication and loudly and repeatedly told the Huskies they needed to talk to each other on the floor.
Speaking of talking, the coach met with the media before practice.
HERE’S THE HIGHLIGHTS OF ROMAR’S PRESS CONFERENCE:
(On Quincy Pondexter and the national expectations): “You look at how he’s playing now, and I haven’t seen all the teams around, but I can’t imagine anyone playing better than Quincy is right now. You’re talking about a guy who is 6-6 and is averaging a double-double, shooting almost 70 percent from the field and 95 or 96 percent from the foul line. And he’s defending and diving on the floor for loose balls. That’s pretty good. How does that compare on a national level? He’s playing as well as anyone. As I say that, it’s a little scary, because I remember saying those same words about Brandon Roy his senior year, around this time. His started when conference started, he had back-to-back 35, playing as good as anyone. Right now, I can’t think of anyone that’s playing better than Quincy in the country.”
(On Scott Suggs’ increased playing time) “Well he earned it. I think the main thing was he caught our attention on the defensive end. If you go back to the first night, I think with the exception of Clarence Trent, he might have been the last guy off the bench. I can’t remember if it was him or Justin Holiday. But when he got his opportunity, he made the best of it. So when guys do that, you reward them.”
(Good problem to have with the depth?) “Right now we played everybody in the game the other night, and the night before we played everyone. As as you’re trying to figure out your rotation and what’s going to be the best mix for your team, not everyone is going to get the same amount of minutes, but you try to keep everyone alive and give everyone time. But there’s going to come a time where there’s going to be some DNP’s by a couple people’s names. At that point, it comes down to what type of character those kids have.”
(On when depth establishes itself): “When a group of players consistently are in there doing the best job. It’s difficult because you can go through a stretch where one night someone really plays well, and you can emotionally say There it is! And the next night they stink it up. And someone else steps up. That’s the worst problem to have – when no one is stepping up. But eventually someone steps up day-in and day-out and they are there.”
(On the early Pac-10 play) “Oregon State, that surprised me. Washington State – new system. Oregon, doesn’t surprise me at all. Call me on it if I said that Oregon wasn’t going to be very good. I don’t think I said that. I think I said that Oregon was going to be an improved team. UCLA’s situation…we talk about our flu first week, they were worse. They had guys that were physically…groins and ankles and couldn’t do anything. Jerime Anderson, their starting point guard, was out for three weeks. I say let’s wait before we throw them under the bus. They didn’t look as good as they would have hoped last night, that’s a fact. But let’s wait a little bit. Let’s see if time doesn’t get them a little better.”
(On having some practice time to keep their hot start in perspective): “We’ve got a long ways to go, and that’s why we need practice time. That’s the main reason. Actually? With this team? I kind of feel that when they come to practice today, their esteem will be high enough to cause us to be motivated. Wow, maybe we can be special if we really work. I don’t think we’re going to come out today feeling like, alright, we’re going to the tournament now. I don’t think so, not with this team. But we need the practice. We need to get better. There are some positives. There are some things that, if we can continue to do, we can have a successful season. But you also see these things that could be holding us back. That’s what these practices, to me, these next two weeks are as crucial as our pre-season practices when you are preparing for your first game. I was concerned that getting through this tournament, we’d be worse off than we were, because I thought we were behind. But now, after playing this tournament, we can take these next two weeks and really try to get ourselves right. ”
(On Justin Holiday’s shooting, especially the 3’s): “To be honest, that was the only time he made shots, those 3-pointers. That was it. He made another shot here and there, but he isn’t shooting the ball well. He made progress in that game with those two 3’s, because they were back-to-back. And not only were they back-to-back, but he ran down the floor like he always does, with his little threes up. It’s good to see that he hit those, for his confidence. He did spend a lot of time working on his shot this summer. He really did. He was shooting the ball really well before he started practicing. Now he’s practicing and he hadn’t done that all summer and your legs are gone, you don’t have your shooter’s legs. So he was missing a lot. Time will tell.”
(On Abdul Gaddy): “He’s doing just fine. He’s like a fighter that is feeling his opponent out for the first two rounds. That’s just been his approach. He’s made huge improvements on the defensive end, in terms of where he needs to be. He has taken in and digested all the offensive concepts that we have, because he’s a true point guard. He’s not just out there playing, trying to find out where can I get my points. He’s saying, OK. Where can I get Quincy shots? Where can I get Isaiah shots? When do we want to control tempo? Where do we want to get the ball? See, that’s how he’s thinking. He’s just feeling his way right now. He’s going to be a special point guard.”