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UNC Basketball: PJ + LMAC, Offensive Equation

It is no secret that while a young team and with growing pains on the defensive end the current edition of the Tar Heels biggest problem is offensive production. Clearly UNC’s best combination in the low post is that of Brice Johnson and James Michael McAdoo but on the perimeter it still seems like Roy is trying to figure it out. This team has to be successful from the perimeter if it wants to succeed because it doesn’t have the post depth that previous UNC teams have. I don’t pretend to know more than Roy and I am sure he is still in the process of figuring out the proper rotation for what is still a very young team. There are some things however that are pretty clear.

UNC has weapons plenty of them on the perimeter but it is important they start being used together. Reggie Bullock while certainly a threat is sometimes streaky but I think we can all agree he makes the team better and needs to be on the court. Reggie however is not enough especially when playing along the offensively limited Dexter Strickland and often tentative freshman Marcus Paige. That is a tandem which must be relegated to handling the teams PG duties. This fact is simply a case of UNC not being able to afford to keep two offensive weapons on the bench behind Dexter Strickland whom will be huge for UNC at the point spelling Marcus Paige. In games that demand UNC’s best Dexter Strickland filling the 2 spot doesn’t present it.

Simply enough PJ Hairston or Leslie McDonald must be on the court for a majority of the time and it wouldn’t hurt to seem them out there together for some extended time. Not only can they both hit shots but that ability to hit shots makes everything easier for the other players on the court. Both have started to find their rhythm and are becoming the players that many believed they would be. Both players average more than 10 points a game in less minutes than Reggie Bullock and Dexter Strickland. I for one would like to see what they could do with 25 minutes a game. The results I believe would speak for themselves.

Splitting time at the point seems like the right equation for Marcus Paige and Dexter Strickland. UNC’s three best perimeter players can play the 2 or 3 this leaves three players plus JP Tokoto to split 80 minutes. That rotation is just a little to crowded to add in Dexter Strickland. UNC’s focus has to be keeping its best weapons on the court. As we approach ACC play I hope to see a shift to get more and more playing time for Leslie McDonald and PJ Hairston and more minutes for Dexter at the point. Dexter can pass and his on the ball pressure must be utilized on the opponents primary ball handler. For UNC to continue to get better and continue to become a more dangerous team PJ and LMAC must continue to increase their time on the court. As we know however at UNC everything must be earned so far I think it has been quite clear those two have earned a ton of time on the court.

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