1. The veterans were incredibly disappointing
Watching this game on Monday night, one thing became abundantly clear: the veterans did not come to play. Outside of the aforementioned Tyson Walker, the veterans were borderline embarrassing. OK, not borderline, they were embarrassing.
AJ Hoggard was 2-for-11 from the floor with nine points and three assists. Malik Hall was 2-for-12 from the floor with four points and some really head-scratching shot attempts. Jaden Akins was 2-for-10 from the floor and was non-existent for most of the night. And Mady Sissoko (great dude) was lost for 20 minutes, scoring four points with four rebounds, five fouls, and two turnovers.
The veterans not named Walker were a combined 8-for-36 from the floor and 0-for-12 from deep. That just can’t happen if this team plans on living up to its potential.
Hoggard talked all season about playing with a chip on his shoulder because everyone kept doubting him and then he came out and laid an egg. Akins flirted with the NBA and had high expectations for himself this season only to disappear (though he did have 11 boards). Sissoko has not improved at all since last year. And we’ll give Hall the benefit of the doubt since he had offseason foot surgery and maybe he’s still finding his way back.
Doesn’t really matter, these veterans were horrible. Tom Izzo is going to have a field day at practice until Thursday’s game.