The St. John’s Red Storm have started the season pretty much the way most expected. The 3-1 start is not surprising, but the end results of each game are not what is troublesome. It’s pretty much how bad they looked in the loss, how their wins aren’t that impressive and that a few players are not exactly living up to their preseason billing.
It’s a fact. The Red Storm’s record is where it should be, but the play on the court is not. Also worth noting — which it should, has and will be to the point of nausea — is that St. John’s doesn’t play like a team who is projected to make the NCAA Tournament. Past excuses like needing time to build chemistry and whatnot are all gone. Sans a few players, this is basically the same team as last year. Gelling shouldn’t be an issue.
This isn’t be being a negative Nancy or downer Drew. I’m not even blaming Steve Lavin for all things Red Storm problems related. It could be a mixture of things. Maybe the talent isn’t as good as we thought or that the talent is there, but too much of the same kind. It may also be as simple as these players just don’t work together.
All of that is not to say that they can’t right the ship. It’s incredibly early in the season, things can change and players can continue to develop. But, as a person who has followed St. John’s since I knew what basketball was, this feels a little too familiar. As in a team who everyone wants to be good, so we project them to be good or to get better, but they just aren’t.
Laying blame on coaches post Lou Carnesecca has been all the rage. Personally, I think Lavin was the perfect hire at the time and is still the right man for the job. He continues to get perceived quality recruits, has put St. John’s back on the perceived map and he is a name coach. Only problem, all of those things (outside of being a “name” coach) is that they are all perceptions — some of those perceptions are just not rooted in reality when it’s no longer perception time, but tangible time.
Eh, I digress. Doing a State of the Program address is another article for another time. All I am trying to say (or do, really) is let St. John’s fans know that now is not the time to panic, but it’s not celebration time either. This Red Storm team has a lot of work to do and they don’t seem to be nearly as good as everyone assumed they would be. Again, that’s not to say they won’t be good, but if St. John’s basketball were a stock it would have started low, went high right before the season and would now be trending in the wrong direction.
Regardless, we should take a trip together. A magical journey if you will. To the land of slideshows. A place where everything is in list or numerical form. Well, except for this one (kinda). Let’s look at 10 takeaways from the very early portion of the St. John’s season, okay? Please, please say yes.