Losing (to) Isaiah: Bruins lose 5th straight in Seattle despite a career-high 25 points from Josh Shipp; Huskies’ Isaiah Thomas harasses UCLA for 24 points, as Washington assumes the lead in the Pac-10 with an 86-75 victory
Yes, there was a Husky disparity at the foul line. But that is not why the Bruins lost. UCLA lost to Washington 86-75 on Saturday, for the same reason they have struggled in several recent games: The Offense stalls when they hit the low 50’s. For three straight games, UCLA has played well until midway through the 2nd half, when an inexplicable scoring drought ensues.
One of the factors is that Darren Collison’s perimeter jumper is missing in action. DC hasn’t hit a three in weeks, and it is starting to affect his confidence, and his overall game. Jrue Holiday also missed some open jumpers. Perhaps Jrue should try to take more advantage of his ability to penetrate to the hoop. If Collison and Holiday would drive more, the foul disparity might start to shrink. And getting to the line more might break up these droughts.
On Saturday, the foul situation took all the UCLA bigs out of early action. Drew Gordon and James Keefe both had some great early Rebounds, but foul trouble forced them out, and pressed Bobo Morgan into action. Bobo made a couple of nice plays, but also showed why he isn’t playing as much as he might have expected to. Washington’s Jon Brockman made all the Bruin bigs look somewhat second-rate, with his strength underneath.
And to complement Brockman’s inside game, the Huskies have three Guards who all hurt the vaunted UCLA D. Isaiah Thomas was the worst offender, scoring 24. The Bruins needed someone — either Michael Roll or Nikola Dragovic — to join Shipp in the “hot” category, but it didn’t happen, so Washington was able to pull away late, with a 12-point run that put the game out of reach.
And speaking of out of reach…