Shabazz Sits; Wolf, Sampson Spar; UConn Loses
Couple of quick tidbits:
Shabazz Napier didn't start due to an unspecified violation of team rules. Kevin Ollie wouldn't elaborate further. Napier probably wouldn't have, either, though we didn't get a chance to talk to him after the game. He had already left the locker room for the team bus by the time we got down to UConn's locker room area, but this didn't seem to be a case of Napier ducking the press. St. John's just took an infinite amount of time in the media room.
As for the dust-up with Enosch Wolf and Jakarr Sampson, Wolf had inadvertently elbowed Sampson in the face while corralling a rebound about two minutes beforehand. Apparently, he elbowed Sampson again at around the 13-minute mark, and this time Sampson responded by pushing Wolf, which was caught by the referees.
After reviewing the play, the refs hit Wolf with the ‘T’, as well, for the second elbow.
“The first time down the court, he elbowed me after he missed and I was like, ‘OK,’” Sampson said. “The second time it happened, I was just a little upset. I probably shouldn’t have reacted the way I did, but it happens. It’s over.”
Explained Wolf: “I guess I hit him with an elbow when I got a rebound. I ran back, kinda bumped into him, we exchanged a couple of words, he didn’t like it. He pushed me on the court, and the refs saw it and called a foul. I think they looked it up on tape and called the foul on me for the elbow and on him for the push.”
Both players made one of two free throws.
We'll try to post some more while on the train ride home.