The chess moves of Matt Painter led to the Final Four


Before their Sunday night Elite Eight matchup, the women’s basketball teams of Texas Longhorns and NC State Wolfpack encountered a strange disparity.
The three-point lines on each side of the Moda Center court in Portland, Oregon, have different distances; this was communicated to the NCAA.
The three-point stretches appeared to be in place during UConn’s victory over Duke on Saturday night, which raised concerns over the weekend according to The Athletic.
The NCAA verified that the three-point distances between the Longhorns and Wolfpack were not the same after officials measured them on the floor prior to tip-off.
FOR MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS, CLICK HERE. COM But it didn’t affect the game because Texas head coach Vic Schaefer and NC State head coach Wes Moore decided to play with the lines already in place.
The report first appeared on the ESPN broadcast, which also mentioned that the court was used the entire weekend.
Before Monday night’s Elite Eight match between UConn and USC, the NCAA confirmed the problem in a statement released at halftime. The court will be fixed.
“The three-point lines on the court at Moda Center in Portland are not the same distances,” the statement says, citing notification from the NCAA made today.
“After being informed of the disparity, the two head coaches decided against correcting the court and postponing the match in favor of playing the entire game on the court as is.
The court will be fixed in time for tomorrow’s Portland game. “.”.
The group didn’t provide an explanation for how the disparity initially occurred.
Finally, No. 3 NC State defeated No.
1 Texas, 76-66, to advance to the Elite Eight.
The unbeaten South Carolina Gamecocks will be their opponent.


DETROIT — Matt Painter crossed the court and held out his hand before the nets were dropped on a day that will be remembered by many. He had to see one for himself. As a radio analyst for Westwood One, Robbie Hummel had been trying his hardest for the past two hours to be impartial and play it down the middle, but now that he was holding his former coach’s hand, everything came out. Large, genuine, burning tears. the most pure variety. For Purdue’s victory over Tennessee this Sunday in Detroit and their invitation to the program’s first Final Four in forty-four years, Hummel is perhaps the most knowledgeable person in the program.

Hummel was barely able to gather himself, so Painter’s questions were answered by broadcast partner Kevin Kugler. Hummel managed to say a few words only towards the end of the interview.

“We are so proud of you,” he said, referring to both himself and all other Purdue jersey wearers. “.

Everyone had had enough. This Midwest Regional triumph was anything but typical. We experienced catharsis in this way. A moment so monumental that both young and old fans wiped away their tears. The last time Purdue advanced to the Final Four, its current patriarch, Gene Keady, was a 43-year-old head coach at Western Kentucky. Nine years old in 1980, Painter is 53 years old now. Hummel never was.

But for two hours, this was the day that Purdue basketball truly is. A brutal and hard-fought victory of 72–66. Human remains on the ground. elbows positioned in the chest. Co-pays are required for rebound services. However, it was also precise and tactical. Timely readings are provided by the right. Adjusting direction during timeouts.

Well-designed basketball.

That is precisely what Painter has spent so much time trying to materialize.

Painter would later remark, “If you can put skill and competitive spirit together.”. “Man, those two qualities work together like magic. “.

“Up 10 or down 10, I don’t care” was Painter’s parting message in the pregame locker room on Sunday, marking the start of the alchemical process. Proceed with caution. Make a point with the ball. Additionally, remember to have f—ing fun. “.

The theory was put to the test right away. Dalton Knecht of Tennessee is a first-team All-American because he kills fools with a wide variety of skills, gets off shots that few others can, and is unaffected by morality. On Sunday, it was all on full display fifteen minutes into the game. Knecht scored 16 points in the first nine minutes of play after making six of his nine shots, including all four 3-point tries. When Painter noticed that there was 5:11 remaining in the game and his team was behind 15–2 and suddenly trailing 32–21, he called a timeout.

Every teammate gave Knecht a chest bump as they followed the floor to their individual huddles. Then, he exclaimed, “This is my f—ing game!” as he peered up into the endless rows of Volunteers supporters behind the bench.

Braden Smith, a 6-foot Purdue guard, was checking Knecht, which contributed to his tidy appearance. Painter assigned Lance Jones the duty of pursuing and intimidating Knecht in order for Purdue to provide a more physical defense for the Vols star. Despite not being much taller than Smith, Jones is more physically fit, older, and stronger.

In that meeting, the necessary things were said.

That timeout, according to Hummel, “completely changed the game.”. “I don’t know what (Painter) said, but that would be a very profitable thing to bottle and sell. “.

Elliot Bloom, the director of basketball operations at Purdue, discovered that Painter wasn’t the only one speaking. Yes, when 300-pound, 7-foot-4 Zach Edey speaks, people pay attention. Zach Edey had a message to share. Edey exclaimed, “We’re not tired.”. “They’re worn out. Let’s move on!”.

Tennessee was trailed 15-2 by Purdue at the half. Knecht only scored on a runout dunk during the final stretch, going just 1-of-5. Being claustrophobic makes it difficult to score, and Lance Jones placed him in a packed elevator.

Painter’s substitution was crucial, even though Knecht was amazing. With 37 points from 31 shots, the soon-to-be NBA lottery selection concluded. He was introduced to Jones and went 2-of-8 on 2s.

As stated by the Southern Illinois fifth-year transfer, “He was cooking.”. I therefore desired to turn off his water in any way possible. “.

Ignore the amazing quote for a moment and focus on the facts that the Vols only scored 14 points at the rim and that no other Tennessee player finished in double figures. Hummel questioned aloud throughout the entire game whether Knecht could truly defeat Purdue on his own from behind the microphone.

It would have required that, after all.

Incredibly well-prepared, as is often the case with Purdue. There was an answer for every question, and the offensive end usually started with a middle ball screen. Tennessee was forced to constantly decide between guarding Edey on the roll, attacking the ballhandler, and sending a help defender as guards Smith and Fletcher Loyer played off Edey’s relentless screens. Because Purdue takes great pleasure in using your decision against you, Choose Your Own Adventure games usually end poorly.

The Boilers entered their offense for a pivotal possession with less than four minutes remaining, Edey having scored 12 points in a row, and Purdue leading 61-60. Smith slammed into the right side of the lane, with Edey and Loyer piled high as screeners. Center J from Tennessee was on an island. A. P. Between leaving Edey and giving Smith an easy layup, Estrella was forced to make a decision. While leaping to stop Smith’s shot, Estrella was only able to observe as the ball traveled past him and into Edey’s open, waiting hands. With 3:22 remaining, the dunk put Purdue ahead by three points.

Smith got back to work after the other end missed a Knecht 3. After some more sequencing, Edey moved to the outside for a ball screen, which again sent Smith hurtling down the right side. When Zakai Zeigler of Tennessee faltered this time, Smith kicked the ball to Jones, who stepped into a dagger 3-pointer. Go for it, 66-60, with 2:40 left.

Smith questioned the Boilers’ perplexing attack, asking, “Do they want to stay with (Edey) or stay with us when we drive, and we’ll shoot the layup?”. There, choose your poison. “.

It’s an interesting thought exercise to consider Edey as a poison. Poisoning does not happen quickly. A well-planned, painstakingly executed poisoning is extremely effective. The ignorant view Edey as a monster and believe his creation is solely determined by his size and strength. In actuality, Painter’s brilliant mind is the source of inspiration for every move he makes.

An unofficial tabulation against Tennessee indicates that Purdue generated 40 post touches for Edey from offensive sets. This is true even though Tennessee takes every precaution to stop these entry passes. All 13 of Edey’s made field goals, the majority of his 15 (!) fouls drawn, and six missed shots came from those 40 touches, while he passed out on the remaining ones (often recovering the ball).

Hummel praised Painter after the game, saying, “That’s high-level stuff. The way he moves Zach, the pick-and-roll stuff, the fake-dribble handoff play.”. He is merely engaging in a game of chess outside. “.

The glass sustained the majority of Edey’s harm. To be clear, power and size had a direct impact on this. Numerous tip-outs and five offensive rebounds. Purdue recovered from about 45% of its errors. Given that the Boilers had 67 possessions and 13 offensive rebounds, their final 3-point shooting performance of the season (3 of-15, 20 percent) was essentially overlooked.

Ultimately, Edey fulfilled his legend. He scored 40 points, a new career high, in his 136th game at Purdue, which was also the biggest the program had played since 1980. He converted 13 field goals and 14 free throws. He pulled down 16 rebounds. For forty-ninths of a second, he performed.

He gave the eulogy as well, suitably. With Tennessee attempting to prolong the game and Purdue leading late, Edey walked off the court with his head hung low after misfiring on a foul shot. Towards his left, teammate Mason Gillis nudged him. Edey merely shook his head, glanced at him, and said, “I’m good. “.

In less than 40 seconds, Edey faced star v. Knecht as the Vols attempted to trim Purdue’s lead to two or three points on the following play. star, alpha v. Alpha — and deflected the shot to end the game.

With no other option, Edey broke the line and stepped in front of Tennessee coach Rick Barnes to give his head coach a hug as the final horn blew. He gripped tightly. It may have been worth it, even though Painter may have suffered a collapsed lung from the squeeze.

For a player who is presently awaiting his second shipment of national player of the year awards, Edey’s high school scholarship list was relatively light. “I get to pay him back,” he said. “I was passed over by so many coaches. Identify a program, and I can identify a coach who evaluated me. “.

Fans of Tennessee will probably lament the officiating. Reasonably, I suppose. While Edey drew 16 and was called for one, the Vols were called for 25 fouls as opposed to Purdue’s 12. His 22 free-throw attempts were twice as many as Tennessee’s team total of 11. When the two teams played earlier this year, Purdue emerged victorious in the Maui Invitational, telling a very similar tale.

But Barnes made it clear afterwards that he held the officiating not responsible. According to him, Edey is a special case and very challenging to officiate, so whatever was done was done.

And Purdue is no longer in the Phoenix Final Four. Although there isn’t enough time to explain every ring in the tree that came before this one, Hummel is one of them and may be able to speak for everyone. Every previous Boiler. The greatest players of the past 44 years, including him, Glenn Robinson, E’Twaun Moore, Caleb Swanigan, Carsen Edwards, and Jaden Ivey, who were unable to advance to the Final Four. Painter, who played from 1990 to 1993, qualified for three NCAA Tournaments before taking over as head coach 19 years ago from his former coach, Keady.

“Dude, this team makes me so proud because they do things the right way,” Hummel remarked, quoting a number of former players.

In a different reality, some of those former players could have led Purdue to the championship game. They’ve all undoubtedly given it some thought. Hummel most certainly had. He has spent the majority of his adult life harboring resentment toward the fact that those demonic injuries not only ended his career but may have prevented Purdue from arriving in this promised land years before.

Hummel remarked, “I am aware of their experiences.”. “Having survived hell, they now stand tall. “.

There, the perspective is different.

It resembles Phoenix a great deal.

(Top image: Gregory Shamus/Getty Images; Zach Edey hugging Matt Painter).

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