Cuonzo Martin has encouraging stats to ponder on flight to Maui

More production from Hall remains troublesome

Tennessee head coach Cuonzo Martin signals to his players as they play Louisiana-Monroe at Thompson-Boling Arena Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2011.  The Vols won 85-62 over the Warhawks.

Photo by Adam Brimer, copyright © 2011

Tennessee head coach Cuonzo Martin signals to his players as they play Louisiana-Monroe at Thompson-Boling Arena Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2011. The Vols won 85-62 over the Warhawks.

Cuonzo Martin on Tennessee's 85-62 win over La. Monroe

Cuonzo Martin had some encouraging stats to ponder Thursday on Tennessee's long flight to Maui — and at least one nagging concern.

Three of the holdovers Martin inherited from former coach Bruce Pearl put up impressive numbers in an 85-62 win over Louisiana Monroe on Wednesday night.

Skylar McBee's career-high 15 points and five 3-point baskets helped the Vols weather the storm on a slow-starting evening.

Trae Golden, the sophomore point guard, notched his first career double-double with 17 points and 11 assists. The assists bettered his previous career high of nine in the opener against UNC Greensboro.

Golden's 11 assists were the most since Bobby Maze had 11 against Chattanooga on Nov. 15, 2008.

Jeronne Maymon, a junior forward, also registered a double-double with 11 points and 11 rebounds. In two games and two exhibitions, Maymon has recorded three double-doubles.

However, Martin and his staff need to get junior center Kenny Hall up to speed.

Tennessee faces No. 6 Duke on Monday (TV: ESPN2, 5:30 p.m.) in the Maui Invitational. The Vols have to get more production from Hall.

Hall has yet to play more than 20 minutes in any of the four outings, primarily due to early foul trouble. Counting both exhibitions and games he's averaging 4.75 points and 6.25 rebounds.

Hall was 1-of-5 shooting against ULM and played only 17 minutes. But it wasn't because of foul trouble.

Martin said Dwight Miller and Renaldo Woolridge got more minutes because they can guard

perimeter players and ULM used a small lineup.

Miller made the most of his opportunity with seven points and six rebounds.

The explanation on defending ULM also accounted for why freshman post Yemi Makanjuola did not play.

Good Finish: The Vols left town feeling better about the second half than the first.

From a 42-42 halftime tie, Tennessee outscored ULM 52-29 in the second half and improved its field-goal shooting from 31.3 percent in the first half to 57.1 percent in the second.

After making 10 first-half turnovers, UT had only one in the second.

"Coach Martin told us to be patient,'' said Maymon, "let the offense develop and let everything come to us.

"I think that really helped us.''

Maui History: The Vols played in the 2004 Maui Invitational. They beat Stanford, then lost to North Carolina and Texas.

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Comments » 25

CoverOrange writes:

I didn't remember the 2004 Maui trip but wasn't there a trip in 1999 or 2000 where Green's thugs got into a fight?

CoverOrange writes:

in response to MOUNTAINofOKEMO:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Or maybe he plays like he did against Kansas.

Okemo has burped.

mocsandvolsfan writes:

To possibly beat Duke we'd have to mainly play hard defense and control the offense. Sounds easy to me.

no1djkb#278630 writes:

in response to MOUNTAINofOKEMO:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Wasn't Golden a true freshman last year? Don't remember him getting a lot of playing time against top talent.

OrangeShmee writes:

Doesn't anyone ever have anything positive to say on here...

dlobh writes:

in response to MOUNTAINofOKEMO:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

He was talking about Woolridge.

Weak?

CoverOrange writes:

in response to dlobh:

He was talking about Woolridge.

Weak?

What else could "video boy" been referencing?

Okemo doesn't even read his own expellations.

tennrich1 writes:

in response to MOUNTAINofOKEMO:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Two of the three points you make are completely unfounded....Golden DID NOT even play against upper national talent last year...uhh...what team were you following...thanks for the heads up...I will skip your post in the future though...

CoverOrange writes:

in response to slaw_way:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

True he had pretty good results, but he lost control of the team, the fans and connected alumni. I met him once at an alumni dinner that had Fulmer showing off his new NC ring. He walked right out after his speech and didn't converse with anybody. Losing 10 games in a row after starting 16-1 didn't help.

carbonzip writes:

How does McCrae fit in?

Stepchild_nFL writes:

Enjoy the vacation boys. You deserve it. Mcbee and Tatum may have found their snot I mean shot. Who knows. Miller and Richardson. Well its up to you. Have fun. Win or lose, have fun.

cdldoc#211897 writes:

in response to 10seVol85:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Good, he had me thinking I had "oldtimer's" disease.

txvolsfan writes:

in response to MOUNTAINofOKEMO:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I think Golden is playing better because he finally got some coaching. I truly believe that Cuonzo is a better coach(teacher) of the game than Pearl. CBP's teams never seemed to improve and he was a great recruiter and marketer but I don't feel he was a good coach!!!
GO VOLS
TXVOLSFAN

DSmith1669 writes:

in response to slaw_way:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I can't remember if this was his last game or not at UT but I remember watching it vividly...

http://espn.go.com/ncb/boxscore?repla...

johnlg00 writes:

in response to carbonzip:

How does McCrae fit in?

Good question. Clearly, the progress of the team the rest of the year requires McRae, Tatum, and Hall to get in better synch with Maymon, Golden, and McBee. We have seen flashes of brilliance from McRae and Tatum--Hall, not so much--but they seem to be playing their own game--too much free-lancing from McRae, too much standing around from Tatum--rather than truly blending with the others. I'm sure Martin is working on it, but those guys HAVE to produce. They are three of the six four-star recruits on this team. It's time for them to step up.

SouthPaVol writes:

Golden is showing some real skills shooting on the move. His 15' pull up jumper is looking great, and when he puts the ball on the floor he is covering some ground, making the defense work, and then hitting the shot when a gap opens up.

McBee, while his stationary shooting is solid, doesn't offer a lot if he takes more than one dribble. Would like to see SM cover some lateral space--say 10-12 feet in 2-3 dribbles--to force the defense to shift a little. While I love his shot when spotting up, if he learns to move a little faster on the dribble and shoot a jumper while moving at top speed, we will have two very good offensive threats.

Jury's still out on Josh R, but he seems to have a natural instinct for where to be on the floor. Easy to see what CCM saw in Josh--moves well and the basketball seems to be an extension of his arm. Promising.

SouthPaVol writes:

in response to johnlg00:

Good question. Clearly, the progress of the team the rest of the year requires McRae, Tatum, and Hall to get in better synch with Maymon, Golden, and McBee. We have seen flashes of brilliance from McRae and Tatum--Hall, not so much--but they seem to be playing their own game--too much free-lancing from McRae, too much standing around from Tatum--rather than truly blending with the others. I'm sure Martin is working on it, but those guys HAVE to produce. They are three of the six four-star recruits on this team. It's time for them to step up.

Agree. Tatum has not transitioned well from Pearl's style offense to what CCM is running. McRae appears to be "back on the block," playing some free-lance style like in the Rocky Top league. Hope these two get their heads around our offensive objectives pretty soon.

Hall needs a drop step move or a way to contribute with his back to the basket. Until he can show offensive improvement in practice, I'd say keep him back side and baseline, with his offensive focus on hitting the boards from the off side. At least that freezes the opposing team's 3/4/5 players from releasing too quickly, cause they are looking to screen out Hall. Go Vols!

johnlg00 writes:

in response to SouthPaVol:

Golden is showing some real skills shooting on the move. His 15' pull up jumper is looking great, and when he puts the ball on the floor he is covering some ground, making the defense work, and then hitting the shot when a gap opens up.

McBee, while his stationary shooting is solid, doesn't offer a lot if he takes more than one dribble. Would like to see SM cover some lateral space--say 10-12 feet in 2-3 dribbles--to force the defense to shift a little. While I love his shot when spotting up, if he learns to move a little faster on the dribble and shoot a jumper while moving at top speed, we will have two very good offensive threats.

Jury's still out on Josh R, but he seems to have a natural instinct for where to be on the floor. Easy to see what CCM saw in Josh--moves well and the basketball seems to be an extension of his arm. Promising.

Good points. One thing that has impressed me about Golden is that he has pretty good instincts for when to take it all the way to the hoop, when to pass off, and when to pull up for the mid-range jumper. Too bad our posts haven't always been ready for the passes off the penetration. Not many of the recent Vol PGs seem to have been able to make that judgment correctly and consistently.

The next step in McBee's evolution as a complete offensive player will be developing a strong drive, set up by his outside shooting. He may not be quick enough to take it all the way to the rim just yet, but, as you say, a couple of dribbles from the three-point line and throwing a hard stop into a 15' jumper will add greatly to his production. Remember how Lofton incorporated that feature into his game in his last couple of years, and he probably wasn't any quicker than McBee. It's all about the timing and picking your spots.

johnlg00 writes:

in response to SouthPaVol:

Agree. Tatum has not transitioned well from Pearl's style offense to what CCM is running. McRae appears to be "back on the block," playing some free-lance style like in the Rocky Top league. Hope these two get their heads around our offensive objectives pretty soon.

Hall needs a drop step move or a way to contribute with his back to the basket. Until he can show offensive improvement in practice, I'd say keep him back side and baseline, with his offensive focus on hitting the boards from the off side. At least that freezes the opposing team's 3/4/5 players from releasing too quickly, cause they are looking to screen out Hall. Go Vols!

I agree here as well, especially speaking of Hall. We have seen him put on an occasional good pivot move, but his timing seems to be off right now. Maybe he would in fact be better off lurking on the weak-side for offensive rebounds until the rest of his offensive game comes around.

hikerdude writes:

I have said several times that this team is going to be better than most expected initially. But, we can't count on much help from McBee. He will disappear with any moderately talented defender on him.

budd#207344 writes:

in response to txvolsfan:

I think Golden is playing better because he finally got some coaching. I truly believe that Cuonzo is a better coach(teacher) of the game than Pearl. CBP's teams never seemed to improve and he was a great recruiter and marketer but I don't feel he was a good coach!!!
GO VOLS
TXVOLSFAN

Then how do you explain his record and the constant improvement of players like Bradshaw and JJ Smith? Was it magic dust or did he look at the film?

theoldbear writes:

I wish I could be along on this trip. My wife has always wanted to go to Hawaii, and I could see Tennessee play my favorite sport.

I don't expect them to beat Duke. I would like to see them beat Memphis. If they play well, gain some experience, develop as a team, that's enough. This tournament is just three more exhibition games. If you don't believe that, remember Chaminade.

allvollego writes:

Lets get this out of the way now, we would all love for our players to play perfectly and do everything that will help them win ever single game. Since this is not the case there is always work to be done. This has gone with every team. If we start from the top. CCM has a completely different offensive scheme than pearl's. Pearl ran a flex offense. That offensive thrives on mismatches that allows players to either slash to the basket or shoot from the outside. What type of players typically do well in that system, SG, SF, and PF. With the motion offense that is ran by CCM, the decision making of the players is the main strength with the movement of everyone on the court coming in at a very close second. The positions are more defined. So when you have a natural playmaker such as Golden, they can thrive and lift a whole team. The positions are more defined. Give the vols time to grow and things will work out. Hall has an impressive face up post game, and with a big body rebounder like Maymon, it opens up opportunities to get good shots and offensive rebounds. This team will gel and we will see the real effects of CCM's team in the next few weeks. McRae is a scorer he just has to find his niche, and Tatum is being a great teammate and taking high percentage shots, he will emerge when other teams begin to focus more on Golden and McRae.The main thing is that defense will keep them in games, and always poised to make a run. Stay positive, this team can be good.

jhayes0926#638474 writes:

in response to OrangeShmee:

Doesn't anyone ever have anything positive to say on here...

I am positive we get beat 3 times next week, but I still love my VOLS!!

volcraze writes:

First of all, my thoughts and prayers for the University of Oklahoma State.
Second, as long as the Vols compete for the whole game I will be happy.

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