Lonzo Ball on Isaac Hamilton: ‘Obviously, he’s back.’


None of the three UCLA players who had postgame press conferences after Thursday’s 102-80 win over Arizona State had any idea Isaac Hamilton tied a significant school record.

It’s hard to blame them. Bryce Alford tied the same record with nine 3-pointers in a game a week earlier. It’s probably just understood at this point that No. 3 UCLA is so special offensively, breaking records just comes with the territory.

Hamilton wasn’t one of the three players made available to the media after the game because the senior guard was getting stitches after suffering a lacerated tongue. But making 9 of 14 attempts from 3-point range and scoring a season-high 33 points had to mean a great deal to him after a recent shooting slump during which he made 4 of 34 attempts from beyond the arc range over a seven-game stretch.

Hamilton made 4 of 5 3-pointers a week ago, seemingly pulling out of the slump during a win at Colorado, where UCLA set a school record with 19 3-pointers. But Hamilton followed that with a 1-for-7 performance from beyond the arc in Saturday’s 83-82 win at Utah. He made 7 of 8 from 3-point range in Thursday’s first half alone, outscoring Arizona by himself, 25-21, by the time he made his seventh with 6:08 left in the first half.

“Obviously, he’s back,” Lonzo Ball said. “I like playing with him when he’s like that.”

Links to our coverage of the 102-80 win over Arizona State:

  • Game story: Hamilton leads UCLA to best start since 1992
  • Notebook: UCLA to honor Kareem at halftime of Arizona game
  • Video: Lonzo Ball ready for UCLA’s offense to get even better
  • Video: TJ Leaf takes it personally when teams try to run with UCLA
    Share this post:Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditShare on TumblrShare on LinkedInEmail this to someonePrint this page
  • Isaac Hamilton’s shooting slump the worst of his UCLA career

    UCLA senior Isaac Hamilton was the team's leading scorer before totaling two points during the team's two-game road trip to OregonWould the UCLA basketball team still be undefeated if Isaac Hamilton’s shooting slump didn’t bottom out in Oregon? All the Bruins needed was three more points in the last-second loss to the Ducks Dec. 28 punctuated by Dillon Brooks’ 3-pointer.

    Hamilton, the leading scorer 11 games into the season for the highest-scoring offense in the country outside The Citadel, had 2 points in Oregon. That’s one basket over two games – an 89-87 loss to Oregon and a 76-63 win over Oregon State – for the Pac-12’s top returning scorer from a season ago.

    UCLA’s shooting guard has made 2 of 23 three-pointers over a five-game span and 1 of his last 16 field goals in the last two games combined.

    “It’s a slump,” Hamilton said. “But it’s nothing I can’t bounce back from.” Continue reading “Isaac Hamilton’s shooting slump the worst of his UCLA career” »

    Share this post:Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditShare on TumblrShare on LinkedInEmail this to someonePrint this page

    UCLA basketball beefs up resume with major conference wins


    It wasn’t just that No. 14 UCLA beat SEC and Big Ten teams over the weekend, it was how those wins were achieved that should inspire some more confidence.

    For the first time in this young season, UCLA found itself in not one, but two tight games. It won both, claiming the tournament title at the Wooden Legacy in the process.

    In Friday’s semifinal it staved off a pesky Nebraska team that nearly erased UCLA’s 15-point second-half lead. Then it withstood four lead changes and two tie scores in the final five minutes of Sunday’s win over Texas A&M in the tournament title game.

    It’s not like they’re toppling the best teams in the country (Wait for it…UCLA plays at No. 1 Kentucky on Saturday!) but these are major conference opponents that pushed the Bruins to provide answers to some significant questions. Most notably, could freshmen Lonzo Ball and TJ Leaf answer the bell in close games? The answer is an unequivocal yes. Continue reading “UCLA basketball beefs up resume with major conference wins” »

    Share this post:Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditShare on TumblrShare on LinkedInEmail this to someonePrint this page

    Hype grows for UCLA backcourt with 2 watch list candidates

    Senior Isaac Hamilton, the Pac-12's top returning scorer, is a stark contrast to the other member of UCLA's backcourt named to a preseason award watch list.

    Senior Isaac Hamilton, the Pac-12’s top returning scorer, is a stark contrast to the other member of UCLA’s backcourt named to a preseason award watch list.

    How deep is the UCLA backcourt? Two guards have been named to preseason award watch lists – not including two returners who were starting guards last year.

    Senior Isaac Hamilton, the top returning scorer in the Pac-12, was a natural choice for the Jerry West Shooting Guard of the Year Award watch list announced Tuesday. The buzz about freshman Lonzo Ball is only growing after he earned the distinction as a watch list candidate for the Bob Cousy Point Guard of the Year Award.

    To illustrate the depth in the UCLA backcourt, consider that Bryce Alford, who averaged seven tenths of a point less than Hamilton last season, is a certainty to be in the starting lineup when the season begins Nov. 11. As for Aaron Holiday, whose minutes are more difficult to project than the coach’s son, all he did was averaged double figures as a freshman last season and play the best on-ball defense of anybody on the roster. Continue reading “Hype grows for UCLA backcourt with 2 watch list candidates” »

    Share this post:Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditShare on TumblrShare on LinkedInEmail this to someonePrint this page

    UCLA links: Men’s basketball cruises to win in Australia

    UCLA coach Steve Alford said this year's Bruins don't respond as well to "mental pressure" as last year's team. (David Crane/Staff)

    UCLA coach Steve Alford praised his three freshmen after the Bruins blew out Sydney University in their exhibition game Tuesday. (David Crane/Staff)

    Freshmen starred for the UCLA men’s basketball team in its 123-76 exhibition blowout victory over Sydney University on Tuesday.

    UCLA’s trio of freshmen had 46 combined points with TJ Leaf leading the way with a team-high 21. Ike Anigbogu had 16 and Lonzo Ball had nine. Leaf added nine rebounds and Anigbogu had eight boards. Ball had four assists, two steals and two blocks.

    “They were outstanding, all three of them – Ike, Lonzo and TJ,” head coach Steve Alford told UCLABruins.com. “We know what they can do. They came here in their first exhibition game and all three played very well.”

    UCLA seniors Isaac Hamilton and Bryce Alford had 18 and 17 points, respectively.

    Other links:

    Share this post:Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on RedditShare on TumblrShare on LinkedInEmail this to someonePrint this page