Brogdon Shows Versatility Early At UVa

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Malcolm Brogdon

When Malcolm Brogdon joined the UVa men’s basketball team as the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Georgia Player of the Year, one thing that looked promising about the incoming freshman was his versatility. It’s what coach Tony Bennett calls being a complete player, one who can contribute in multiple categories and different ways to the team.

So far Brogdon hasn’t disappointed.

Through 14 games, largely as the first guard substitute off the bench, Brogdon has averaged 6.9 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 1.7 assists. He’s chipped in 5 steals and 2 blocks too while shooting 35.4% (33.3% from 3-point range) from the field and 82.9% from the line. His contributions go beyond the statistics, though.

Brogdon has given the Hoos an additional option at point guard behind Jontel Evans and Sammy Zeglinski as well as minutes at his more natural wing position. The important part of that versatility is that it gives Virginia three ballhandlers against teams trying to pressure on defense. It also gives the Hoos a strong free throw shooter on the floor in games where they are trying to close out teams that are fouling in an effort to lengthen the game.

“The ability to have guys on the floor, again, that are complete, that can handle, make decisions, put it on the floor, shoot shots – Malcolm can sort of play a power point guard for us, Jontel certainly, and Sammy. I have no problem playing that as long as we can match up defensively and we’re sharp, but that ballhandling aspect and the ability to create is sound,” Bennett said earlier this season. “That’s why I like complete guards.”

One other area that the Cavaliers are giving Brogdon a handful of looks is around the paint in a post-up role. At 6’5″ and 215 pounds, Brogdon has a physical size advantage on some guards trying to defend him and the Hoos have added some post touches for Brogdon