Nerves of Steal

UCLA head coach Ben Howland would not second-guess Lee’s decision to go for the steal on the game’s decisive play, an inbound pass to Walker that left Lee on the ground after slipping and Walker at the 3-point line, nailing a three that put the Gators up four with 1:14 left.

“You can go for it, but you can’t put yourself out of the play,” Howland said. “It’s hard; he’s playing the game, playing as hard as he can as he always does. You miss out on the steal, and it is one thing. Unfortunately, he took himself out of the play.”

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  • UB (Ultimate Bruin)

    E-X-A-C-T-L-Y !!! You don’t take yourself out of the play. Not in that situation. Not at that point in the game. CBH won’t say publicly that it was a critical error, but it was. Lee always plays hard, so I don’t fault him for going for it if he thought he had a good chance at the steal. Hey, if he makes it, and is downcourt for a lay-up/dunk, he is a hero. But, this was the NCAA tournament in a tight game against the number 2 seed. You stay at home and defend! This was one of many mistakes in that game that cost us dearly. Reeves could not finish on 3 “and one” situations. Just missed chippy lay-ups. Honeycutt had two of those opportunities too! But, the BIGGEST problem was our Free Throws. If we shoot better from the line we not only win this game, but several others throughout the season. Gotta work of FT % in the off-season. Missing free throws is not just a point-for point cost, it also changes the strategy of other teams and their aggressiveness. Other teams can be aggressive against the Bruins because we don’t make FTs.

  • Anonymous

    Good point on the opponent’s aggression being checked by good free throw shooting.

    Free throws win championships, just as defense wins championships.

  • TruBruin

    All I can say is Ben often takes his team out of the game by some of his questionable in game decisions!