Hands-off basketball will be better for Lady Vols and the game

Middle Tennessee guard Shanice Cason, front, looks for help from teammate China Dow (24) as Cason is defended by Tennessee guard Andraya Carter, right, in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game on Friday, Nov. 8, 2013, in Murfreesboro, Tenn. Tennessee won 67-57. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Photo by Mark Humphrey

Middle Tennessee guard Shanice Cason, front, looks for help from teammate China Dow (24) as Cason is defended by Tennessee guard Andraya Carter, right, in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game on Friday, Nov. 8, 2013, in Murfreesboro, Tenn. Tennessee won 67-57. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

The Tennessee women’s basketball team will face two challenges in Chapel Hill, N.C., on Monday night.

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johnlg00 writes:

One reason why the LVs have for many years looked "painful" on the offensive end, in the immortal words of an ESPN analyst, is because of that relentless commitment to defense. The players all had gaudy offensive stats in HS but they only played at UT if they were fully committed to defense. Since that was what was rewarded, that is what they worked on, and few Lady Vols came close to the offensive numbers they put up in HS. Obviously, this system worked well for many years, but it increasingly seemed that other teams were more successfully blending defensive toughness with offensive skill. Defense will always be important for the reasons Adams mentioned, but it is likely going to have to be a different kind of defense than that to which we have become accustomed. On the plus side, what seems to be a skilled offensive lineup should benefit from less physical defense on them. I'm still dubious about how games will go early on, but the promise is there for a much more free-flowing game whenever they get it all figured out.

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