January 7, 2013 at 1:12 am #8775
I appreciate your basketball knowledge at times, but your post is ludicrous. You can post that trash on the Bucknell board, but if you post it here, I am going to tell it like it is. Anybody that thinks Mike Muscala is a better player than CJ McCollum is kidding themselves, and simply does not know basketball. You can give me some ridiculous stats like “MM’s KenPom offensive efficiency rating is blah, blah, blah” It doesn’t matter, I care about one thing. Can the kid really play, and can the kid really play at the next level? It is similar to the discussion about Bucknell’s deficiency in stealing the basketball. It is really irrelevant, what matters is does the other team score baskets against them, and at the end of the day, do they score more than they let up. Everybody is too caught up in these totally worthless statistics that tell you very little. I like both of their games, and I question both of their games. I wonder if CJ has the handle to play the point guard in the NBA. I am not sure he does. I have even more questions after the VCU game. I think he could probably have a career at the 2 guard, but the NBA wants to see him first at the 1. His bottom line is he can stick it in the hole from just about anywhere in any way, and that talent is hard to find at any level. If he was a couple inches taller, I think he would be lock lotto. I worry that Muscala is not athletic enough to be an NBA player. He can get off in college, but can he do damage against athletes, who are his size or bigger. He has a nice midrange jumper with range out to 3, so I like that about his game. But, I think he has trouble with his back to the basket at the next level. We will see.
If you look at the statistics for this year, I don’t see MM having a better year than CJ. CJ entered yesterday’s game leading the nation in scoring (25.7), and 3 point shooting (53%). He is a scoring guard, that is what he is asked to do, and he is doing it better than anybody in college basketball, anybody. For a college 2 to shoot over 50% from the field on both 2 point FGs and 3 point FGs is amazing. Throw in 85% from the line, with 5 rebounds, and 3 assists, and hard to argue with his numbers. Muscala is at 19 per game, 6 less than CJ. He shoots slightly better from 2, about 4% higher, but he is shooting a lot of in close layups and chippies in the paint. He is expected to shoot a higher percentage. That is why centers lead the league in FG%. CJ is connecting at a similar clip taking much tougher attempts. Muscala is 33% from 3, again, 18% worse than McCollum. I won’t even hold that against him, as I don’t expect my 7 footer to shoot the 3, unless his first name is Dirk. Muscala has 11 boards a game, so he is plus 6 there, with 2.5 blocks and 3 assists. The assists for MM are impressive for a big man, and I have discussed it before, he gets kick out assists to shooters when trapped in the paint. Muscala is a great college rebounder, but he rebounds, in my opinion, based on his sheer size advantage. Similar to how he blocks shots. I would not call him a ferocious rebounder. He is a big positional rebounder. I don’t see him rebounding at a high level against NBA competition or blocking shots there. So, I am not sure how anybody is going to lose the argument based on stats that CJ is not better than MM.
I’m sure you will bust out some meaningless KenPom or other source stat, but do those really matter? I don’t want well-regarded metrics, I want performance and potential. The metrics are Moneyball nonsense projections based on a lot of jibberish, that is equally meaningless. I think most people would agree that the best player would be the one most highly regarded by basketball people (scouts and scouting services), not some computer simulation game.
CJ is projected to be a lock first round NBA pick, as high as lottery level. I have seen as high as 7 in various mocks, but first round for sure. Muscala is slated to go in Round 4, and guess what, there are only 2 rounds, which means he is not getting drafted. Not first, not second, undrafted. If he makes the league it will probably be as an undrafted free agent, a Euro guy, or a D-League guy. If both players make the NBA, how can we project them? CJ, I would project being a first round pick, as making a squad, with the potential to be a starter down the road. Potential to be a starter, not guaranteed, not a star, although it is possible. Muscala would project to be an 11th or 12th player at the end of a bench. Journeyman in the NBA is probably his upside. So, I am not sure how there is any discussion between these 2 as to their overall ability. CJ was the best player at all of the major summer camps he went to (Chris Paul, Lebron, etc). I did not hear anything similar from Muscala. Muscala is a great college center. There has been a long list of 7 foot white players to dominate in college, but they don’t usually project too well to the next level. Unless you have freakish skills like Dirk or Kevin Love, it is not easy.
Be happy with MM’s POY honors this season, which he will only get because of CJ’s injury.January 7, 2013 at 3:22 pm #8784
My guess is CJ has played his last game in the brown and white. He has nothing left to prove. At this point, there is only potential downside. For example:
1) Chance of another injury
2) Chance he comes back at 90% and with sloppy play (like Saturday) raises more questions about his handle
3) Chance he comes back at 100% but team fails to match last year’s accomplishments.
Any one of these scenarios could cost CJ millions. The first two possibilities could cost him a 1st round selection. The prudent thing for CJ to do is simply finish his academic collegiate career, heal his injury, and begin final preparations for his NBA career.
Sure, it would be nice to take another run at a Patriot League championship and a #1/#15 matchup in the NCAA tourney. But, I would figure (a) he is lucky his injury is fully recoverable and (b) he has nothing left to prove to NBA scouts or anybody else.January 7, 2013 at 4:00 pm #8785
Totally agree. With all that CJ has done for the program I would be totally unboard with him not coming back this year. He has done amazing things for the program and needs to be 100% for workouts in the springtime. Obviously as a Lehigh fan, I would love to have him back, but I would have zero problem with him picking sometime in April as being his target date to be 100%.January 7, 2013 at 8:18 pm #8790
Lehigh90, I won’t respond to all of the silly things you said, but I don’t appreciate the rewriting of history.
1. YOU are the one who introduced statistics – ” had a chuckle reading Bucknell board where somebody actually said Muscala had passes CJ as best player in PL. Somebody needs to tell that guy that CJ was leading the nation in scoring.” It appears you were making a comparison based on one stat – scoring – which is ludicrous, especially if not adjusted for pace of play (LU games have a lot more possessions) or for quality of opposition (LU played a much weaker ooc schedule this year).
2. You went out of your way to misquote the Bucknell poster. That poster said that a number of “experts” had stated Muscala had passed McCollum this year. That was correct. One is the ESPN guy who follows the midmajors. There are a number of others.
3. I specifically said that “I won’t claim Muscala is the best PL player” in my post. Why would you imply I said otherwise???
4. The better metrics are far better than anyone’s narrow subjective viewpoint. You probably are aware that NBA teams use many of them extensively in their pre-draft process. In fact, John Hollinger, who created the Player Efficiency Rankings that had Muscala as #1 in the nation – was just hired by an NBA team to help with draft evaluation. Latest NCAA PER rankings: http://insider.espn.go.com/ncb/hollinger/statistics
5. Who will be the higher NBA draft pick is irrelevant to who is having a better college season. Having said that, I’m surprised you wouldn’t also quote the sites that have Muscala going in the second round.
6. FWIW, in PL statistical categories, Muscala has the higher overall ranking.
7. Before responding, read my original post and/or read #3 above.January 8, 2013 at 5:06 am #8795
CJ surgery Tuesday per tweet.January 8, 2013 at 8:12 am #8796
My prayers are with CJ and his family. The best of luck with the surgery and healing. You have done so much for LU and the PL. Placed them on the map. Good luck.January 11, 2013 at 1:01 am #8849
My son just informed me that there was an ESPN interview with Dr. Reed today indicating that it is unlikely that CJ will return this year. Everyone wants to make sure that they don’t jeopardize his future.January 11, 2013 at 1:03 am #8850
TMHParticipantJanuary 11, 2013 at 1:27 am #8851
The article only says he “may not return” IF it means risking his NBA career. Doesn’t sound like anything has changed. Also says Reed is preparing as if CJ won’t be back – but that is what he has to do – even if he is pretty sure CJ will be back. I will be very surprised if he isn’t suited up when the PL tournament begins.January 11, 2013 at 2:25 am #8853
It would be the height of selfishness for Coach to ask or even allow CJ to come back and play. The Redskins’ RGIII situation should be taken aa a cautionary tale.
I repeat: CJ has nothing left to prove to anybody in terms of his readiness for the NBA. Nothing left except to get healthy and back to 100%. He has excellent chances at a lottery pick ..
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