Pitt junior Lamar Patterson is not the most physically gifted player on Jamie Dixon’s roster. Truth is, there might be seven or eight other Panthers who could claim to have more athletic ability.
Perhaps that is why Patterson is one of the more underrated players in the Big East. There isn’t that ‘wow’ factor when he is on the floor. For basketball purists, however, Patterson is a pleasure to watch.
Patterson is much more likely to use a finger roll than forcefully thrown down a dunk, but on Saturday night at Cincinnati, Pitt’s starting small forward showed that he does have an explosive side to his game.
With a little less than five minutes remaining and Pitt trailing by one, Patterson made a cut toward the hoop, accepted a pass and threw down a dunk for a 49-48 lead.
“I don’t usually show my jumping ability,” Patterson said with a smile. “I’m not known for that. Plays like that are game-changers and my teammates expect things like that from me – to come up with a rebound or a play that shows how much I want it. It’s contagious when you continue to fight.”
After a slow start to the season, Patterson has been coming on strong in recent weeks. He has boosted his scoring average to 10.1 per game and continues to be among the team leaders in several other categories. He is third in rebounds and assists and second in steals.
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