Tuesday, 26 February 2008

U of T vs. Ottawa Thoughts

I was only able to watch one game this weekend and as it turned it out it was another in the growing list of classics between these two very evenly matched programs in Toronto between Ottawa and the Varsity Blues. In the end, credit Gee-Gees Head Coach Dave DeAveiro with a tremendous job preparing for and getting his team to execute the little things necessary to pull out a very important road playoff win for his program. First the preparation: knowing how well U of T runs their sets and how intelligent their wings are in reading screens and getting open, DeAveiro for the first time possibly ever in his career unveiled a 1-2-2 three quarter court press after made shots and dead balls with a forward at the top of the press, making it more difficult to throw over top. The purpose of the press appeared only to take time off the shot clock to allow less time for the Blues to work into their sets. Early on, the press confused the Blues and create at least a couple of turnovers allowing Ottawa to forge into an early lead. As the game wore on, the Blues had difficulty getting into their end game as the 24 second clock wore down. This new wrinkle worked beautifully as the high-scoring Blues, who averaged almost 75 points per game in the regular season, scored the majority of their 60 points in transition or on the offensive glass and hit only 6-21 3's after scorching the Gee-Gees for 11-23 3's, many off set plays that freed up their strong array of three-point shooters, in their previous encounter in Ottawa. Early the game, DeAveiro tried to establish the inside game early with 6'9" Dax Dessureault to no avail as Dessureault started the game 0-6 and was unable to draw any double teams. The Gee-Gees quickly went away from Dessureault, relying on their defense and scoring in transition and from the perimeter, until late in the game when, with 6'4" Josh Gibson-Bascombe tiring, the Gee-Gees went back inside to Dessureault who delivered when it counted. During the critical stage of the game for Ottawa, when, down 9 after giving up an 11-2 run off the start of the second half, DeAveiro called timeout and emotionally emplored his troops to stay with the offense, Ottawa was able to climb back in the game by the end of the third quarter. All in all, it was one of DeAveiro's finest coaching jobs ever against his mentor Mike Katz. Going forward, the Gee-Gees will have to find a way to keep Gibson-Bascombe fresh after it appeared the talented guard wore down toward the end of Sunday's game after playing all but about 30 seconds of play. It will take another herculean effort of preparation and execution by Ottawa to have any chance of defeating #1 and undefeated Carleton Ravens, a deep, talented and well-coached team running on all cylinders after somewhat coasting to the finish line of the regular season, in the Raven's Nest next weekend.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh seriously could you show anymore bias towards Ottawa in that report? The way you make it sound is that only one team played in the game. It was a great game of basketball and both teams played their butts off, but from reading your report its not hard to tell where your allegiance lies. Your starting to sound like Joe Scanlon from "Carleton University"

Mark Wacyk said...

This particular post is about the job I felt DeAveiro did preparing for this particular game. The game report is a couple of posts back. One of the issues in doing what I hope is an objective site is that it is now very difficult for me to recognize when my former collegue does a good job without appearing biased. If you have been a regular visitor to my site, you'll note that I've tried to be balanced when it comes to uOttawa and in some cases more critical of them than others. On Sunday, Dave did a fine job of coaching and regardless of my past associations I felt it was important to recognize that. Once again, if you'd like to read the actual game report on the site, it can be found at this url http://wasssports.blogspot.com/2008/02/oua-east-gee-gees-come-back-to-defeat.html

sager said...

Oh, please, with all due respect to Mark and to Joe Scanlon, that comparison is off-base. The only similarity is they are both straight-up about being true to their schools.

Mark gives us a great service and this breakdown of the game plan Dave DeAveiro put together for his players was top-notch. It's also something you can't get anywhere else in the media.

No word of a lie, when I saw that Ottawa had won and kept the game in the low 60s, I thought, "Wow, Dave must have coached one hell of a game." I appreciate that Mark took the time to explain just how Dave coached one hell of a game.

DIB said...

All credit must be given to Deaveiro and the job he did preparing his team to win the game. Not only did the token pressure not allow the Blues to get into their sets early, they switched all screens and frustrated Toronto in the half-court. But we could easily be talking about a Blues-Ravens final right now if Boguski, Eisley, and crew didn't see fit to job Toronto with questionable calls throughout. Look at the box and you'll see how Ottawa went to the line TWICE as much as Toronto - not to say that a home game should necessarily mean more calls but that is not a favourable disparity. One of Toronto's best defenders, Paul Sergautis, couldn't get a call all night and picked up at least two to three ticky-tack fouls guarding Peter, on whom he did an excellent job most of the night. He ended up fouling out in his last career game, a crying shame. And Ahmed Nazmi (who flushed a nasty one on Desserault's head in Ottawa) also had an agressive take and and-one erased by probably the worst call in the entire game (punished by Boguski again). Also, Wacyk's boy, Andrew Wasik, was just not his normal self inside and on the glass. If JGB wasn't on pure fire in the first half and the free throw disparity is reduced, it's a Toronto win. But as was the case all year, Nate, Toronto never got the respect it deserved from the refs or the media (even though you empathized with them in your blog). That's the way the cookie crumbles, I suppose, and I'm sure the Blues will bounce back in a big way with First Teamer Robbie Paris, Nick Snow, Carleton-killer Nick Magalas, and improving bigs Andrew Wasik and Drazen Glisic all returning, along with what is likely to be an excellent recruiting class. All the best to Dave and his team next week, hopefully they play more inspired ball and knock off a cocky, and oft-classless Carleton squad.

Mark Wacyk said...

Solid comments up until the final note about Carleton which added nothing to the post and actually in my opinion lacked class, especially when unsubstantiated and behind the shroud of initials. Future posts with such material will be immediately deleted.

Anonymous said...

Cocky and classless? This must be some other Carleton team to which you refer

The team is too busy looking for ways to improve after every game to be cocky about what they've accomplished so far this season.

If you equate classless with large scoring margins then you need to pay attention. Every one of those big Carleton wins this season saw the bench emptied and the starters sitting earlier than usual. How is it classless if a team simply has much more talent from 1-12?

Anonymous said...

it was a pretty biased report to say the least....but regardless, the game came down to the last minute and unfortunately was decided by a weak foul call by the official( who also missed a clear goaltending earlier in the game) But overall it was a great game and both U of t and U of O should be proud in their play.