North Carolina Tar Heels: Bradley Still Out for Syracuse


The North Carolina Tar Heels play again short-handed tonight against the Orange.

The North Carolina Tar Heels have a quick turnaround. They play the Syracuse Orange tonight in the annual duel with the 2-3 zone as the Creator certainly intended. This will be the second game that the Tar Heels play without Tony Bradley. Bradley was scratched due to his concussion from the Wake Forest game. It means the Tar Heels will once again have to find production and minutes from new lineups.

That theory of life worked out against Florida State on Saturday. The Tar Heels got big games from Theo Pinson and Luke Maye off the bench. Pinson had a double-double while Maye collected fifteen rebounds over the course of the game. Their contributions helped the Heels overcome being a post down and having Kennedy Meeks in foul trouble.

Pinson got a lot of good plays in on Saturday. Whether it was a steal, a key rebound, or his flying dunk, the junior wing seemed pretty close to 100%. His play seemed to overshadow some of the other good performances the Heels got. Joel Berry, Isaiah Hicks, and Justin Jackson all scored in the twenties. Defense and some strange personnel choices shut down Xavier Rathan-Mayes.

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The Tar Heels will bring Jackson and Pinson for smaller lineups against Syracuse as well. In fact it might even be better against the Orange. The 2-3 zone dares teams to shoot it from distance. Having Jackson at the four will give yet another shooter to help spread the court. Jackson has also had success with the Syracuse zone losing track of him.

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The Tar Heels would also like to put together a big game from both their bigs where Bradley is absent. Meeks had the big game against Wake while Hicks had fouls. Hicks had the big game against the Seminoles while Meeks had fouls. There may be no limit for the team if the two consistently produced at the same time.

Tip-off is in a little more than two hours.