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Player Preview: Denzel Gregg

Gregg could easily be the Bonnies’ biggest X-factor this year.

Player: Denzel Gregg, 6-7 Junior Forward

The low down: Gregg has been a mystery player of sorts for the Bonnies during his time in Olean. Some games, he would dominate and throw his 6-7 frame around and be a beast and other games it seemed that his mind was else where and his production minimal to nothing. He was the definition of a Jekyll and Hyde player.  SBU is going to need big production this year from Gregg, considering their lack of depth in the front court. He is projected to be a starter at the power forward position where he is slightly undersized but at least has experience at the position and did have those flashes of quality play.  Gregg earned six starts last year, most coming at the end of the season.  The junior also has a tendency to leave his area around the hoop offensively to shoot jumpers as opposed to higher percentage shots.  If he can be a successful stretch 4, the Bonnies will be much tougher to guard given their issues down low. The big question is whether or not Gregg has/can add that jumper.

One interesting fact: One of Gregg’s main hobbies is playing the piano.

Last Year by the numbers:  17.4 minutes, 3.7 points, 41% FG, 0% 3PT, 43% FT

Biggest Strength: Gregg is a tremendous athlete who can dominate when given the chance or maybe more true…when he wants too.  He’s worked all summer to get stronger and has worked hard on his game.  Confidence in his abilities will allow Gregg to exhibit that athleticism and be the player that helped beat VCU and St. Joseph’s. He’s an A10 athlete all the way, but as Schmidt has said, he needs his game to rise up to match his physical gifts.

Glaring Weakness:  Foul shooting was a major factor last year and if Gregg is going to be an effective power forward, he needs to not only get to the foul line but he needs to convert those points.  Additionally, Gregg’s level of focus and execution really must improve. Taking plays off will not be an option this season with so little depth down low. Schmidt needs Gregg to limit the mental errors and be constantly engaged in the flow of play.

Best Case:  Gregg averages a double-double (or very close to it) and becomes a similar player to Demitirus Conger.  Gregg makes great strides with his basketball IQ, his shooting percentage increases, especially from the 3-point line and foul line and his presence in the line-up makes the Bonnies a smaller, but dangerous foe.

Worst Case:  Gregg stays mired in a rut of low confidence and poor performances and the Bonnies lack a strong power forward which ultimately could doom the team.  Gregg’s minutes drop and he enters Schmidt’s infamous dog house, where leaving is very difficult, especially for a player in the second half of his career at Bonas.


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