With less than a month to go, Mark and Caitlin are back with a new episode of “Stock up, Stock down.” Breaking down a different perspective each week, the idea is for the hosts to watch a player, identifying reasons for being both bearish and bullish, with a frame of reference from a few specific games as well as the Pacers. Then, zooming out with a wider focus, a guest expert reacts to the findings.
This week, @beenthrifty joins to talk about La Lumiere product Jeremy Sochan through the lens of Baylor’s games against Kansas, TCU and Alabama.
Caitlin’s pick – spin defense and movement skills
When operating at the peak of his powers, Jeremy Sochan flies defensively with the technique of a dancer spotting around a turn, maintaining awareness of movement, direction, and location in space even while turning.
Just look at this possession against Kansas, as they work their way out of the scramble situation, hitting their marks while communicating, before reading the jump pass and sliding from the corner to the opposite block without losing the lead. balance or control.
Or, how about against TCU, when in one possession, he defended all five players on the court, whether defending on the ball as a main or providing coaching. For those counting, here’s a look at the matchmaking changes.
- Start defending Jakob Coles in the corner
2. With Coles cutting the baseline from the options screens, switches and chases Damion Baugh to the perimeter
.3. Communicate the back screen and trade Baugh for Chuck O’Bannon Jr. without losing sight of the ball
4. Converges to Eddie Lampkin Jr. at the elbow as pivot point, before coming back to cover O’Bannon (and resist the urge to rush) on the cut
5. After tagging Lampkin as a roll, release Coles again, his original mission, and smash to challenge Francisco Farabello’s spinning move, completing the fivefold
To be fair, it’s not without its wobbles. Even there, in what ultimately ended in a deflection, he probably should have snapped his head off and walked with his inside arm outstretched to avoid disassociating himself from his last check, but he has an undeniable presence in the shadows nonetheless. ; sometimes he makes it look like he’s ending an entire team’s offense just with the way he skims the ground, playing a multi-position team defense.
This way, while Sochan still needs to hone his grounding, especially when it comes to tracking guards from the perimeter and sometimes being overzealous at the point of attack, his overall control of his off-ball awareness in combination with its blend of lateral softness, verticality and backward mobility point to its potential to defend with flexibility in limited contexts as well as global connectivity as part of a collective.
Mark’s Choice—Decision Making
Out of stock
Caitlin’s Choice – “Spacing”
For now, Sochan is not a reliable shooter. According to InStat, he only managed 29.8% of his three-way shots and only 58% of his free throws. Without a proven jump shot, NBA defenses won’t be as likely to bite on his over-the-top faux pump.
Besides, Alabama doesn’t seem too concerned here about leaving it wide open out of pick-and-pop. The back pursuit guard doesn’t come unstuck, there’s no tension on the rim protector, and the closest weak side defender doesn’t move a muscle.
Yet relying on volume and 3-point accuracy as the only two data points to determine “spacing” misses an important factor: can he do anything with the ball?
In this regard, there’s a difference between being ignored while standing still and slithering out of an exit screen with the auxiliary handle and contraption for its size to do so:
For the season, Sochan has only attempted nine shots after rolling or sliding to the basket, but is smart with a natural, if somewhat hesitant, feel to cut and place screens in the half court. He just didn’t always touch the ball in those situations with the ability to make a play as a connective passer. What if he did it with Tyrese Haliburton behind the wheel?
At this point, instead of wondering if he can get over the obstacle of fences, where he can sometimes be stereotypical with his footwork patterns and tends to rely heavily on his spinning motion or end up stuck in no man’s land, perhaps perceptions should shift to whether what he’s doing on defense can provide him with enough rope, especially in the right developmental context, to justify allowing him to honing what else he showed in flashes that could mitigate the need for him to improve as a deep shooter.
Although a bit rough around the edges, he wowed when deployed in the center of the point in the Kansas game, facing David McCormack at one end of the floor while raising the ball and playing both sides of the other’s pick-and-roll.
If he’s not going to be defended on the pop anyway, maybe he’ll have the opportunity to space the floor with the game, open shots for better shooters, such as Haliburton, Buddy Hield or Chris Duarte while drawing the rim protector out of the paint.
Also, while he clearly wasn’t as polished or powerful around the basket, there was that intoxicating glow where he went from stepping away from a double-ball screen to slicing and staying below a switch which was reminiscent of how Sabonis would occasionally flex between the ball handler. and finisher on the same possession.
But here’s the thing: Two-time All-Star Sabonis didn’t really start getting these types of reverse pick-and-roll reps until the backcourt is exhausted due to health and safety protocols. As such, it seems somewhat dubious that Sochan, who can do a lot in small doses but doesn’t currently possess a defining crystallized trait or the tools to consistently pressure the rim, is shaped to reshape defenses in this mold with a longer term view, let alone as a teenage rookie.
That said, even after the trade deadline, there was room in the offense for the big guys to operate as off-time trailers or a general means of continuity with transfers. These actions would see him go from 5 outs to what could be the stuff of a slippery keeper, when he can stay under control; but there’s reason to think about the tightness of the ground with Isaiah Jackson planted outside the action. Along those same lines, it’s probably fair to wonder if the aforementioned idea of Sochan as a short-roller would happen in favor of Jackson’s vertical pop or with Jackson in place of the dunker.
All this to say that Sochan has a path to “space” the floor that doesn’t solely depend on him as a reliable floor spacer or the variability of canning turnaround dribble jumpers, but is primarily built on the ground. is intriguing at this point and would apparently be the road less traveled for the Pacers, at least based on recent history.
Mark’s pick – Lack of hitting and shooting prospects
- Analyze Sochan’s defense at the point of attack as well as at the post
- Throwing him in lineups with Isaiah Jackson on both ends of the floor
- Evaluate your methodology when attacking fences
- Why the environment is important for its development
Enjoy the capsule and keep looking forward to more of these episodes as we near the draft. Also, if you haven’t already, be sure to rate and review the Indy Cornrows podcast on Apple Podcasts. and subscribe wherever you can listen.