GAMEDAY! The #Bruins take the court at No. 20/17 Gonzaga tonight. UCLA at Gonzaga | TV: ESPN2 | 7 pm PT pic.twitter.com/oYGgppi5sf— UCLA Basketball (@UCLAMBB) December 12, 2015
U.C.L.A. faces a tough road challenge tonight when the Bruins (6-3) travel to face the #20 Gonzaga Bulldogs (6-2).
Tipoff is set for 7pm PT and the game will be televised on ESPN2. There should be a live online stream from ESPN here. The Zags are currently 7.5 favorites. Our Gonzaga preview is here and Bruinette's outstanding game preview and basketball notes this morning are here.
Both teams have been up and down this year. The Bruins started the season with that embarrassing loss to Monmouth, then shocked #1 Kentucky, then struggled to get past lowly Cal State Long Beach. Gonzaga was a solid 5-1 before a second half collapse at home against Arizona then struggled to get past lowly Montana. Each team will be looking to establish some level of consistent play beginning tonight.
Gonzaga may have a soft spot in the middle as 7-1 center Przemek Karnowski is doubtful with back spasms and will be a game time decision. Bruins Tony Parker and Thomas Welsh were a fantastic inside presence against Kentucky and should look to take advantage if Karnowski can't go. But the Bruins will still have to figure out how to defend Bulldog forward Kyle Wiltjer who is averaging over 20 ppg, and defense has never been U.C.L.A.'s strong suit under the current regime.
The win over Kentucky was great, but this is the same team that squeaked by UNLV and CSULB and had a bad loss to Wake Forest and was outright destroyed by Kansas. This is the kind of game the Bruins need to win to announce they are a better basketball team and are serious contenders in the Pac-12. If not, then maybe the Kentucky game was the aberration.
Here's your open game thread. Have at it.