Strengths: Isaac Hamilton’s malleable nature made him an ideal teammate, an ideal representative for why this UCLA team’s unselfishness made it so good, but he didn’t have a problem calling his own number when needed.
Hamilton’s average dipped nearly three points from his junior year to 14.1 points per game as a senior, but he finished third in assists behind only point guards Lonzo Ball and Aaron Holiday on the team that averaged the most assists since UNLV set the Division-I record 26 years ago. The senior was an accomplished scorer who likely would have climbed into the top 10 on the school’s career scoring list had he played four years at UCLA.
Weaknesses: Hamilton wasn’t the target Bryce Alford was on the defensive end, but he was the Bruins’ second-weakest link on that end of the floor. His athleticism translated to him being a crafty scorer and a great shooter, but lateral movement wasn’t Hamilton’s forte. Consistent struggles to stay in front of his man forced UCLA’s back line to play help defense more often than the Bruins could handle, especially with two freshman in the front court who needed time to learn defensive rotations.
Best moment: Hamilton broke out of a slump with a 33-point game on Jan. 19 in a win over Arizona State, tying a school record in the process. Continue reading “UCLA basketball 2017 report card: Isaac Hamilton” »