Memphis’s Achilles Heel

All season, folks wondered if Memphis could win a title with their free throw shooting percentage below 60%. It was a glaring flaw on an otherwise dominant team. It was probably the main reason many wrote them off as being the weak number one seed in this tournament.

But then the tournament started, and suddenly the glaring flaw disappeared. Against Texas in the Elite Eight they shot 83%, and then improved to 87% against UCLA in the Final Four. It looked like this team had perfected itself. It looked like it, up until this team had a 6 point lead with a minute and a half left in the national championship game.

What happened? Chris Douglas-Roberts and Derrick Rose combined to miss four of their last five free throws, Mario Chalmers of Kansas hit a once in a lifetime 3-pointer, and this game went into overtime.

I have to pity these Memphis players. For the rest of their lives, they’ll have to contemplate this loss, and the way in which their Achilles heel cost them a championship – just like everyone told them it would.

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2 thoughts on “Memphis’s Achilles Heel

  1. “I’m truly not worried about it,” Calipari said. “My concern in this tournament is toughness and rebounding. That will have more to do with us than anything to do with free-throw shooting.”How ironic…

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  2. Calipari, post-game, didn’t seem to put much blame on anything – “when you’re up like that with 2 minutes to go – you’re supposed to win” and “the kid just made a great shot”

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