Nice offensive night for Mamadi Diakite in UVA win

mamadi diakite

Mamadi Diakite led the charge for the Cavs in rebounds and points to finish strong. GroganVision photo.

Mamadi Diakite had been a somnolent 3-of-15 from three-point range in his last 10 games heading into Tuesday’s matchup with #5 Florida State.

For a guy who had been shooting 47.6 percent from three in his first nine games of 2019-2020, you had to start wondering.

Which guy is he, basically?

The same guy, is the answer.

Photo Gallery: Virginia defeats #5 Florida State

“I keep telling the young guys, the old guys know it already, to shoot the ball whenever they get it,” Diakite said after a 19-point night that included a perfect 3-for-3 effort from three.

“I remember at practice, Kihei [Clark] telling me that I am like a conscience to the guys. I was trying to get to my sweet spot, which is posting up down low on the block, but they were doubling me. So, I was just going to take what the defense was giving me. That is what Kihei did. That’s what Braxton [Key] did.”

Actually, the threes each came on kickouts from Jay Huff in the first half and a pair from Tomas Woldetensae on back-to-back possessions in the second half.

In each case, Diakite was able to catch the ball in rhythm, square up and have forward momentum into his shots, ideal for shooting form.

Too much of late, his threes had been forced – late shot-clock, or just trying to create something during lulls.

I’ve termed it hunting shots.

Diakite didn’t need to hunt shots Tuesday night. They found him.

Story by Chris Graham

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