It wasn’t always pretty and it wasn’t always easy, but Miami grinded out a solid win over a feisty Buffalo team on Thursday night in the first round of March Madness. Miami’s performance throughout the duration of the game mostly mirrored their performance throughout the duration of the season. They were highly inconsistent with flashes of occasional dominance in between spurts of growing pains and maturations. The game began in scary fashion as Buffalo raced out to an early lead while Miami failed to generate any offense whatsoever due to a score of turnovers. The Canes soon settled in however as their defense tightened and they utilized their bread and butter transition offense to maintain a lead for the rest of the game on the way to the victory.
This was a solid win for the Canes, but old problems still persist… Miami needs to be able to play at their highest level for a full 60 minutes in order to truly contend with the heavyweights in the tournament. The team needs to settle in earlier, play more disciplined on offense to prevent turnovers, utilize the aggressive defense-to-offense transition play that their game is predicated on, and continue to improve ball movement to get the best shot out of every possession. If the Canes can learn to play full games the way they performed in the second half against Buffalo, they have a true chance to win big. Miami’s potential is huge, and they have yet to reach it.