UCLA (25-9) vs. MINNESOTA (20-12)
SCOUTING REPORT: Two mystery teams. UCLA has little inside game and a thin bench. Yet, with one of Ben Howland’s best coaching efforts, the Bruins won the Pac-12 regular-season championship and reached the conference tournament title game. UCLA lost Jordan Adams, who sustained a broken foot in the final seconds of the Pac-12 semifinal against Arizona. The Bruins are battle-tested with a 9-1 record in games decided in the final two minutes. Minnesota also prompts questions. Are the Golden Gophers as good as their 15-1 start or was their 5-11 finish a true indicator? Even as the Gophers meandered down the stretch, they upset then-No.1-ranked Indiana.
KEY TO THE GAME: Minnesota has an inside presence in Mbakwe that the Bruins will have to deal with. The Gophers are eighth nationally in rebound margin. UCLA has been outrebounded in 18 of its last 21 games. The Bruins have offset their rebounding woes by forcing turnovers and getting points in transition. Minnesota averages 13.8 turnovers a game. A frantic pace favors the Bruins, who are 11-0 when scoring 80 or more points. Everyone is looking for Powell to plug the Adams hole, but Drew said that the chore falls on everyone.
|Shabazz Muhammad||6-6||225||17.8 ppg||G||Austin Hollins||6-4||185||10.6 ppg|
|Norman Powell||6-4||215||5.9 ppg||G||Joe Coleman||6-4||200||8.7 ppg|
|Larry Drew II||6-2||180||7.6 ppg||G||Andre Hollins||6-1||200||13.9 ppg|
|Kyle Anderson||6-9||235||9.8 ppg||F||Rodney Williams||6-7||205||10.3 ppg|
|Travis Wear||6-10||230||11.2 ppg||F||Trevor Mbakwe||6-8||245||10.0 ppg|
|David Wear||6-10||230||7.0 ppg||F-G||Julian Welch||6-3||194||3.2 ppg|
|Tony Parker||6-9||275||2.2 ppg||C||Elliott Eliason||6-11||260||2.2 ppg|