On the block: Assessing how Syracuse matches up with Georgetown ahead of last Big East duel in the Dome

first_img Related Stories Otto-matic: Star forward Porter has carried Georgetown on the offensive end this year Facebook Twitter Google+ Point guardMichael Carter-Williams is coming off of one of his best games this season. Against Providence on Wednesday, he scored 15 points and handed out 12 assists in the Orange’s 84-59 win over the Friars. Simply put, Syracuse’s offense runs far more efficiently when he’s able to be a facilitator instead of a scorer. When he does both, the Orange is almost impossible to beat. Georgetown’s Markel Starks is averaging about three assists per game, which pales in comparison to Carter-Williams’ 8.2. Carter-Williams is one of the best point guards in the nation, and continues to steadily orchestrate Syracuse’s offense. Against a competitive defensive team in Georgetown, that’ll be even more important.Advantage: SyracuseShooting guardWhen he’s playing well, Brandon Triche is an absolute scoring machine. Against Seton Hall last week, he scored 29 points and hit four 3-pointers. But his inconsistency has been a point of concern at times. Before his lights-out shooting performance against the Pirates, Triche shot only 3-of-15, and missed all seven of his 3-point attempts at Connecticut. If he’s able to get open looks, Triche can knock them down with ease. His steady demeanor is also something that will help him in front of what will likely be a raucous Carrier Dome crowd. Jabril Trawick is only a sophomore and only averaging 5.6 points per game. It’s clear Syracuse has the better “two” guard in this game.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAdvantage: SyracuseSmall forwardOtto Porter is unquestionably a threat on the outside for Georgetown. He’s averaging 15.1 points per game, shooting a staggering 49.8 percent from the field and is hitting 44.6 percent of his shots from the arc. Jerami Grant has been somewhat inconsistent since he became a starter in early February. The transition from the bench to the starting lineup has come with some ups and downs. Against Providence on Wednesday, Grant only scored three points on 1-of-3 shooting in 21 minutes on the floor. But in other games, he’s been unstoppable. Against Notre Dame, he scored 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting, and played all 40 minutes.Advantage: GeorgetownPower forwardC.J. Fair has been one of Syracuse’s best players all season long. It seems like all season he’s put up incredible numbers while playing almost every minute of every game. He’s coming off of a 20-point performance against Providence. And as Fair has shown all season, he’s able to thrive in even the toughest of spots. Nate Lubick is simply not the player Fair is. He’s averaging a respectable 7.8 points and 5.4 rebounds per game. He’s also the same height as Fair. Still, Fair has been great all year. In one of the biggest games of the season, there’s every reason to expect him to be great again.Advantage: SyracuseCenterRakeem Christmas is not necessarily an offensive threat, but the super athletic center can be a nightmare for opponents in the low post defensively. He’s averaging six points and five rebounds per game for Syracuse, and has racked up 55 blocks this season. The 6-foot-9 Mikael Hopkins is putting up about the same offensive numbers as Christmas with 6.2 points per game, but is only averaging 2.6 rebounds. Hopkins, who was a high school teammate of Syracuse’s Jerami Grant, is up against a tough test in Christmas.Advantage: SyracuseBenchJames Southerland is a force off of the bench for Syracuse. When he’s shooting well, the Orange’s offense can put huge numbers on the board, just as it did Wednesday against Providence. In that game, Southerland was a remarkable 7-of-8 from the floor, including 3-of-3 from the 3-point line, and ended up with a total of 20 points. But Syracuse’s bench is still somewhat thin, especially when it comes to guards. Trevor Cooney is struggling from the arc, and hasn’t hit a 3 in the last three games. Georgetown freshman D’Vauntes Smith-Rivera has been a lightning rod, and is coming off of a 33-point performance against DePaul where he knocked down five of his six 3-point attempts. Still, playing on the road is always tougher, and Southerland has the edge in experience. While Syracuse’s bench is relatively thin, it has performed well when it’s needed to.Advantage: Syracuse Commentscenter_img Published on February 22, 2013 at 2:03 am Contact Chris: [email protected] | @chris_isemanlast_img

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