Four Thoughts on the Pac-12 Tournament SemifinalsPosted by Connor Pelton on March 16th, 2013
Day three of the Pac-12 Tournament is complete, and teams have made their may through the 12 team field to tonight’s championship game. The first team through was top-seeded UCLA, who used an 18-7 run late in the second half to erase an 11-point deficit and pull out a two point win over Arizona. In the second game of the night, Oregon took advantage of a tired Utah team and led the Utes by 14 at halftime before cruising to a 64-45 win.
Here are four things that stood out on day three of the Pac-12 Tournament:
- Adams’ Last Game? – UCLA freshman Jordan Adams may have played his last game as a Bruin last night after breaking his fifth metatarsal in his right foot on the final play of the game. Adams led all scorers with 24 points before breaking the foot trying to defend Solomon Hill’s last shot. A few weeks back Adams said he did not want to discuss his future and just wanted to focus on finishing the rest of the season. With his season complete, look for an announcement in the coming days on whether the star guard will go to the NBA this summer.
- Pac-12 Refs – With 4:35 remaining in the game and Arizona leading 56-54, point guard Mark Lyons drove into the lane, had the ball slightly dislodged by a Bruin defender, caught the ball, and resumed his dribble. This was inexplicably called a double-dribble by the officiating crew, and then the officials compounded their mistake by T’ing up head coach Sean Miller. The calls resulted in two made free throws to knot up the score, the first time the score was not an Arizona lead since the 14:30 mark in the first half. Pac-12 refs gonna Pac-12 ref – nuff’ said.
- Tired Utes – Utah was no 2012 version of Colorado, and they actually didn’t even come close. Last year, of course, the Buffaloes won four games in four days thanks to some stellar bench play. Utah’s Cinderella run was snuffed out in the semifinals, as the Utes got minimal production from the bench and behind the three-point line. Oregon killed its flat-footed opponents on the boards, out-rebounding Utah 36-28. This is likely the end of the line for Larry Krystowiak and company, barring a backdoor invitation to the CBI.
- So You Think You Can Dance – Both UCLA and Oregon will be included in the NCAA’s field of 68 tomorrow afternoon, no matter what happens tonight at the MGM Grand. But that doesn’t mean this championship game isn’t important. The winner will have taken three games from three quality teams (or at least “quality” at the moment) in three days, setting up confidence and momentum for what will have to be a similar run in the NCAA Tournament. The game is also big for seeding opportunities. Oregon is basically locked into the #8/#9 game no matter the result, taking an eight-seed with a win or a nine-seed with a loss. With a Bruins win, UCLA would likely move up to a five-seed in the NCAA Tournament.