One of the common misconceptions about playing an uptempo style in basketball is that all five players have to be flying down the court and that big men will inherently slow the team down.
Huskies | Huskies' 7-footer Aziz N'Diaye offers a new cog in talented roster | Seattle Times Newspaper
Still Romar must figure out how to maintain a high-octane attack that led the Pac-10 in scoring last season, averaging 79.2 points per game, while integrating N'Diaye into the system...During the one season with Hawes in 2006-07, he led the team in scoring but the offense stalled at times. Washington averaged 76.5 points — the third lowest points per game for a Romar-coached team at UW.
Romar downplayed concern N'Diaye will slow down UW's up-tempo style.
"That question comes up," he said. "We get two sides: When are you going to get a big man? And we get one. So does that fit your style? It compliments our style."
Yet a big man doesn't just "complement" an up-tempo style - in some cases, a big man can enhance it.
Of course, Don Nelson small ball or Mike D'Antoni's "Seven Seconds Or Less" style have worked on the strength of dynamic ball handlers leading the break and deadly perimeter shooters. But to run with the ball, a team first needs to get the ball. One way to accomplish that essential task is to have at least one player who can get defensive rebounds and initiate the transition game off the glass.
If N'Diaye comes is as strong on the boards as described in the article above and previous reports on UW, his tenacity on the boards could actually help, not hurt, the Huskies up-tempo attack.