To continue my Wizards-centric coverage, as that’s what I was originally brought on to do, here are my notes on last night’s 102-87 loss to the Bayhawks:
First, for Erie, I will say that Erik Daniels is a stud. How he had 26 points and 12 boards at 6-8, I’m not sure. He was playing the 4/5 the majority of the game, against the big-bodies of the Wizards. It’s unfortunate the majority of them are soft. Ivan Harris, Oliver Lafayette, and Maureece Rice were also very good tonight on the offensive end. The Bayhawks starters scored at will.
Quemont Greer has NEVER seen a shot he didn’t LOVE. He shot 3-11 last night, in just 15 minutes of action. For example, he made a big 3-point shot, got the rebound on the Bayhawks possession, drove all the way down court, didn’t look over to the wing to give an open Wizard a wide open 3, but rather, he drove the lane, missed the layup, and got Mo Baker T’d up. I assume Baker only argued the foul call because he was embarrassed that Q would do this with Mo, a point guard that should touch the ball on every possession, on the court. You could play a drinking game where you had to drink every time Quemont touched the ball and didn’t shoot, and not get drunk at the end of the game. I may play this game tonight, just so my beer lasts me a little longer as expensive as it is at the Bismarck Civic Center.
Hamed Haddadi had his first BAD game as a Wizard. He fouled out in 13 minutes, going 1-for-4 from the field. He was also getting pushed around by Ivan Harris and Erik Daniels quite a bit. He’s got at least half a foot on both of them, though Daniels might not be too far off weight-wise. If there was no fouling out or illegal defense, Hadaddi would be a beast. He will contest every shot and really works when he’s on the court, just lacks serious basketball IQ.
Renaldo Major/Mo Baker are the two studs of this team. Both, coincidentally, are the only two Wizards with regular season NBA playing experience. Neither has done anything to stand out, but they’re very effective when on the court, playing well on the defensive end and quietly scoring within the system on the offensive end. They are also the leading scorers for the Wizards, as both are averaging 18.8 points per game. Hopefully the rest of the Wizards start to follow their example, or it’s going to be a long season for Coach Ticknor.
Will Frisby played well in limited minutes last night. I don’t understand how he only got 25 minutes when he wasn’t in foul trouble, breaking his streak of 27ish straight games, especially against this team without any real girth, but he scored 13 points, grabbed five boards, and had four assists. He looks to be in great shape this season, and when he gets the ball at the free throw line, he drives pretty well right. I didn’t notice this last game, so I’m not sure if this is a regular part of his game, or the Bayhawks D on bigmen just isn’t great.
Brad Stricker is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. He’s a scary looking dude -- very Ivan Drago-like (including the bleach blonde hair), calves larger than most people’s chests, tats of barbwire and dog tags on his arms, and a mean looking sneer. Add to that, his only post move seems to be to go baseline and hit a reverse layup, which is awesome when watching in real-time. You can definitely tell he was out of basketball for awhile (only played one season of pro-ball after leaving Georgia State in 2000) while owning a construction company.
Marcus Hubbard could probably jump up and touch the shot clock.
David Bell can shoot. If Denham Brown keeps struggling, I’d say Ticknor should start giving Bell more minutes. Bell is the Wizards third leading-scorer at 11.8 points per game.
The crew of ref’s was not liked by fans of Dakota. They were made up of annual nemesis Josh Tiven, a 5-foot-3 ref named Marcus Clayton, and George McDaniels. I couldn’t really pick out who was the head guy on the crew. I’m fairly certain it wasn’t Clayton, but none of the three really took control on any questionable calls.
Sioux Falls coaches Nate Tibbetts and Tony Fritz sat at the table next to me, which had a very nice Wizards banner on it. There were also 4 or 5 Skyforce players in the stands. I can’t imagine what the other 6 were doing that they didn’t come to the game.
Wizards-Sioux Falls has always been an exciting rivalry, currently at 36-32 in favor of the Wizards, dating back to their first game, Christmas day, 2001.