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UVA Basketball mailbag: Reece Beekman NBA draft inventory, greatest lineups, gamers as Thanksgiving sides, and extra

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After a weekend of great success for the Virginia Cavaliers’ males’s basketball group, I gathered questions from the fanbase to reply as we reassess how good this group is and the components which might decide this group’s potential. Oh, and I obtained to speak about which participant is related to which Thanksgiving aspect. Get pleasure from!

Are you seeing a sample of flooring time between Reece and Kihei? Reece getting extra alternative to run issues?

Reece is certainly this group’s lead guard. He is performed barely fewer minutes than Kihei within the first 4 video games, however that is extra attributable to some unlucky foul bother than something. Reece is the one working this offense. His utilization ranking is as much as 25.1% from 16.8% final season whereas Kihei’s is barely down from 19.8% to 18.4%. Clearly a few of the extra duty Reece has correlates to a group that’s extra catered to his strengths than final season, nevertheless it’s additionally an indication of extra progress.

Kihei nonetheless will get his alternatives. He is not going to shrink into the background anytime quickly, nevertheless it’s clear that the teaching employees is aware of who their lead guard is.

Which participant has been your largest shock to this point this 12 months when it comes to taking their sport to the subsequent degree?

As readers in all probability know I have been banking on (and crossing my fingers for) jumps from Kadin and Reece for some time now. So, for this one, I will say Armaan Franklin. After being actually excessive on him when he obtained to Charlottesville final season, I will admit to being a skeptic heading into this season concerning what position he’d play. Boy has he proved me fallacious. He is arguably been the group’s greatest participant by way of 4 contests.

And it isn’t simply his taking pictures, both. He had 5 mixed steals over the weekend and obtained out in transition effectively. Franklin’s been disruptive defensively and is changing into one of many prototypical massive guards that the UVA system loves.

Of the various permutations of 5 gamers that UVA can place on the court docket, what are your prime 3 combos? (FWIW, I used to be in Vegas for the Predominant Occasion and I do not suppose any of my prime 3 would come with our present beginning lineup)

Positively an attention-grabbing query right here. It is robust as a result of sure lineups are sustainable for longer intervals of time and that is all considerably influenced by opponents and matchups. But when I needed to listing my prime three (in no specific order), I might go together with Beekman-Clark-Franklin-BVP-Shedrick, Beekman-Clark-Franklin-Gardner-BVP, and (nonetheless) Beekman-Clark-Franklin -Gardner-Shedrick.

I do know that is in all probability not the specified reply nor the best potential one. However these are in all probability the group’s greatest three lineups to make use of over the course of a whole sport in opposition to elite competitors proper now.

That being mentioned, issues change over time and gamers can develop to the purpose of creating this dialog far harder. However I feel the continuity and consistency that may be anticipated from the present starters who began collectively final season, the twist that the small ball lineup supplies, and the way taking part in Vander Plas on the 4 with Shedrick alters how defenses should play Virginia make these the perfect combos at this time limit.

How lengthy till BVP will get into the beginning lineup?

I do not suppose he’ll. Not a knock on him — I feel he is the proper sixth man for this group. Is he essentially the most useful participant on the roster when it comes to lineup success? In all probability. He alters how the group performs when he is on the ground for a wide range of causes. However there’s worth to bringing that man off the bench contemplating how he is extra of a complementary piece than a number one man. However perhaps bringing Gardner off the bench might be even scarier for opposing groups. We’ll see, nevertheless it in all probability will not influence precise taking part in time both method.

Ryan Dunn did not get many minutes in Vegas. Coach’s choice or was he slightly underneath the climate?

Could not inform ya if he was underneath the climate, however I might wager the employees felt extra comfy with these prime six guys in opposition to such elite competitors than they did in going additional into the bench. Dunn will proceed to develop and get higher because the season progresses (as will McKneely) and might be crucial down the road.

What’s Ryan Dunn’s ceiling by March? Who’s minutes will he be taking?

As I alluded to within the final reply, that is completely one thing to observe because the season progresses. That is already a prime 10 group within the nation with how UVA is taking part in proper now and the way this roster is becoming collectively. However McKneely and Dunn (specifically) can solely make the ‘Hoos that significantly better.

Dunn’s ceiling by March… whew boy dare I say De’Andre Hunter 2017-2018? It is laborious. This group has far more front-court depth than that roster did and the BVP-Gardner dynamic on the 4 considerably limits the benefits Dunn can present as a small ball, versatile 4 for Virginia. As a guard taking part in the three, his perimeter protection is nice, however his worth might be exceeded by Franklin proper now at that spot.

So, his ceiling is to be an equation-altering participant who takes actual minutes from Gardner and/or BVP. What’s extra more likely to occur is that he is the changeup pitch to throw in there at instances when issues stagnate or the protection wants a lift of athleticism.

What’s Jayden’s vibe, is he annoyed or is he growing into the type of participant we’d like this 12 months (which is clearly totally different from final 12 months)?

I can not converse to any frustration degree that he could have, and I am positive it could actually’t be enjoyable to have his position diminished after being the man final 12 months. However all indications level to him being an superior teammate dedicated to successful. That mentioned, I feel it’ll take time for him to learn to play with this group moderately than final 12 months’s. Final season he needed to drive and make troublesome photographs, however that is not wanted for this group, so he’ll have to proceed to search out extra methods to influence the sport.

He is attending to the free throw line at an awesome charge, has been borderline dominant on the offensive glass, and continues to be fluid defensively. I do suppose he’s growing into the participant UVA wants him to be, the mindset change may take a minute.

Is Gardner going to get extra minutes, much less minutes, or the identical quantity of minutes going ahead?

Talking of, proper now Gardner is averaging 20.7 minutes per sport. I feel that quantity will tilt up barely because the 12 months progresses and UVA makes use of its small ball lineup with him and BVP extra and with fewer blowout video games the place he sits. I feel as he does regulate to taking part in with this model of the group his minutes will enhance as effectively, perhaps nearer to 24 or 25 per sport.

If each participant on the roster was a Thanksgiving aspect, what would they be?

My data of Thanksgiving sides actually is not huge sufficient to undergo your entire roster, however I will go so far as I can.

Kihei Clark — Bread rolls. An absolute staple. Been round for freaking ever. Not excellent by itself however when paired with the appropriate teammates, be careful.

Reece Beekman — Mashed potatoes. My MVP of sides, however nonetheless wants the appropriate complementary items to really shine.

Jayden Gardner — Stuffing. In the appropriate moments, completely extremely and the star of the present. In others, a stable addition to the plate.

Armaan Franklin—Gravy. Unsure this qualifies as a aspect essentially, however I will permit it as a result of I wish to. An elite aspect to pair with mashed potatoes or turkey (CTB is the turkey by the way in which), gravy and Armaan are each elite in their very own proper and make loads of performs however nonetheless want the staples round them to work greatest.

Ben Vander Plas — Mac and cheese. You do not suppose they belong instantly, however when added to the combination, it is a whole sport changer.

Kadin Shedrick — Yams. (Talking from private expertise). Took a while to develop and blossom into the star all of us anticipated, however now it is great.

Francisco Caffaro — Inexperienced Bean Casserole. Stable, simple, what you are getting. Typically a bit soggy and should not be consumed in big doses, however excellent when requested to carry out in bursts.

I am gonna cease whereas I am forward right here. Want extra time earlier than assigning the younger guys to a selected aspect.

Seems like CTB may’ve wished Traudt for depth however Traudt requested for the redshirt. Do you suppose if we’re struggling in convention play with taking pictures there’s any likelihood CTB burns the redshirt for extra added taking pictures depth?

Nah. No method Bennett makes that call. I additionally do not suppose it is possible the group struggles with taking pictures too considerably for that dialog available. However, as CTB all the time says, to redshirt or not is all the time right down to the participant and, with Traudt making that call himself, he’d have to comply with reverse it for that to occur.

I additionally do not know for positive that CTB wished Traudt for depth or would need that now as a substitute of the redshirt. These first 4 guys within the front-court are going to mop up the minutes this season to the purpose the place Traudt in all probability would not have been capable of present a lot regardless. I feel he was too good to outright redshirt however, after a sport and after seeing the rotation play out for actual, it was the appropriate choice for Traudt to make the most of a 12 months of growth whereas the group is so steady up entrance earlier than he has to leap into the hearth subsequent season.

CTB will decide up a switch for subsequent 12 months. Possibly two. What place will he be taking a look at?

Level guard. Plain and easy. Kihei Clark might be gone and, with it trying fairly clear that UVA will not be bringing in a 2023 level guard (save a spring sleeper who in all probability would not be anticipated to contribute instantly anyway), there’s going to be a necessity for depth on the level guard spot. Throw within the potential for Reece Beekman to get drafted (which I will contact on shortly) and that might change into an absolute dire want for the ‘Hoos. Both method, Bennett might be looking for a PG.

That being mentioned, I might anticipate Bennett and firm to be busy within the portal this spring. Assuming Franklin does not use his fifth 12 months, they’re gonna lose BVP, Clark, Caffaro, Gardner, and Franklin which solely leaves seven scholarship guys, three of whom possible will not have been within the common rotation but.

Thankfully UVA must be high quality on the wing with McKneely, Murray, Bond, and Dunn all greater than more likely to return and Elijah Gertrude coming in. The query goes to be within the entrance court docket. Blake Buchanan is available in by way of the 2023 class, however anticipating him to contribute instantly might be a bit naive. So grabbing potential depth behind Kadin Shedrick at middle and even one other Jayden Gardner sort participant to offer extra versatility and expertise within the front-court can be one other possible precedence.

What is the chance Reece will get drafted, if he continues to point out out?

It is undoubtedly laborious to gauge proper now, nevertheless it’s undoubtedly value having “the desire Reece be drafted in 2023?” dialog now. A normal misinterpretation about whether or not or not gamers go away early is that their video games should be full earlier than heading to the subsequent degree. That is a part of why so many individuals doubted Trey Murphy would go when, in actuality, it was fairly clear from very early in his time at UVA that he was going to get drafted and, by the tip of the season, that it’d in all probability be within the first spherical.

What issues is having just a few elite qualities which organizations can assist develop a participant to make the most of whereas filling out the remainder of their sport. Reece has these elite qualities that make him draftable after this season. Proper now he is borderline getting drafted, within the 50s-60s vary or on the sting of going un-drafted.

However, if he retains displaying out and displaying the power to attain for himself in any respect three ranges, it turns into a dialog of how a lot he values ​​one other 12 months at UVA and the way this season unfolds for the group. We have seen what late season success can do for a participant’s draft inventory. Proper now I might say it is extra possible Reece comes again than he leaves, however that reply might be very totally different like February.

Will the opponent (on Friday) put up any resistance or is that this only a glorified scrimmage?

MD Jap Shore has a few respectable shooters, but in addition no person over 6’7”. If it is a sport for longer than like 5 minutes I might be shocked. Charlotte and former UVA assistant Ron Sanchez dealt with MDES by 33 factors. The bench must be emptied by the tip of the primary half and Jayden Gardner ought to have a really feel good double-double.

If you want to submit a query for the subsequent mailbag I do, make sure you observe me on Twitter here and the STL account here as a way to see after we ask for questions.

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