Sounds like Bruins were still in snorkeling mode when they came out to took on Long Beach St. last night at Pauley. Thanks to Tydides for his instant analysis which jives very closely with Brian Dohn's game report. Before busting it lose in the second half our boys were getting man handled inside during first half and continued their atrocious performance from the charity line:
The Bruins were manhandled on the boards 25-14 in the opening 20 minutes, and shot 13 of 33 from the floor, and that was offset by a sublime 8-of-14 shooting from 3-point range.
And, of course, there was the dismal free-throw shooting. The Bruins were 60.8 percent in their first four games, then clunked and clanked their way to a 7-of-13 effort in the first half and finished 15 of 24.
"Quite frankly, it was just strictly about our effort," Afflalo said.
Said Josh Shipp: "You could see it on his face, coach was mad."
Howland relaxed a little after the quick second-half start.
And Russell Westbrook made the crowd stand when he made three consecutive three-pointers later in the half. Westbrook is playing the role held by Collison last season -- point guard in training. He finished with 11 points and a big smile.
Anyways, I am with everyone wrt to concern on FT shooting. The numbers are bad. But I am hoping this is a correctable problem which we can work out during next few weeks before the start of conference game.
There was one interesting bright spot from last night's game.
That left the area around the three-point line wide open, enabling the Bruins to play like long-distance shooting stars.
The Bruins, normally a 33.3 percent shooting team from the arc, shot eight three-pointers in the first half en route to a 41-36 halftime lead. Josh Shipp had 4 of 6 three-pointers in the first 15 minutes; he had made just three in the Bruins' first four games.
And one more positive note: the coach was pleased with our defensive effort:
"We need to have more of the same type of defensive effort we put forth in the second half." Howland said. "We are last in the Pac-10 in field-goal percentage defense so far this year. We need to improve our defense before we start Pac-10 play."