Sunday, January 13, 2008

ZZ & Roy . . . Roy, Roy, Roy ... Roy, Roy, Roy

Great day for two athletes that I've come to very much enjoy watching: the incomparable Zheng Zhi and Roy Hibbert. ZZ netted two more goals for Charlton at the Valley against the Tangerines, bringing his season total to nine as an Addick (7 in the fizzy pop, one in the Carling Cup, and one in the FA Cup). ZZ's got many detractors in SE7, but I was thrilled when Charlton was able to pick him up regardless. At the one match I've been able to attend this season, I spent much of the second half of the match with Scunthorpe trying to decide whether to approach ZZ and thank him for signing up for another go around. I chickened out and contented myself with taking snaps instead:

I am even happier for Roy Hibbert. At the beginning of the second half in the Hoya's blowout of Fordham on New Year's eve, Roy launched a cheeky shot from behind the three point arc, thus connecting on the first and only tres of his collegiate career. Hibbert hit another shot from inside the three point line during the game, seemingly showing off range that he has not previously demonstrated for Georgetown.

Fast forward to Gtown's Big East home opener against UConn. Verizon Center is packed. Students are in the rafters. Consecutive three point shots by the freshman Austin Freeman and the junior Jessie Sapp close a six point lead that the Huskies posted late on the Hoyas. With 32 seconds left in the game, JTIII subbed in DaJuan Summers, who had been benched in favor of Ewing Jr. for most of the Hoya's comeback, and put the game in his hands. Whatever Summers' deficiencies on defense, he makes good decisions on offense and, after nothing opened up for anyone with the clock winding down and UConn's very good shot blockers ensconced below the basket (Thabeet had five blocks for the game), Summers put the ball in Hibbert's hands to shoot an open three at the top of the arc with no defender in sight. Pandemonium. As surprising as the shot was, it shouldn't have been. Roy has clearly been working on his outside shot. We got to the game twenty minutes later and I snapped off some photos of Hibbert, most of which were, like the one below, of Roy taking outside shots:

Hibbert even took a long range two point shot to start the game (that he missed). It will be interesting to see over the next few weeks whether this part of his game is further integrated into the Hoyas' offense, as his shots from the perimeter certainly look good.

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