Washington vs Arizona odds
As if a three-game losing streak wasn’t bad enough, Washington must now travel to Tucson to take on an Arizona team that hasn’t lost in over a month.
Washington’s last win against a team in the top-100 was back on Dec. 4 when it defeated Colorado, 73-63.
On the other hand, Arizona was able to put together the 10th-longest winning streak in the country, even despite an overall strength of schedule in the top-50 nationally (according to KenPom).
If Washington is looking for relief after a tough three-game home stretch, it won’t find any against No. 5 Arizona.
Washington’s season got off to a good start. The Huskies won six of their first seven games, including a win over Saint Mary’s (top-15 KenPom). However, that success has been in check as the Huskies have dropped five of their last eight games.
That losing streak includes one of the toughest four-game stretches on any schedule in the country. The gauntlet of Auburn, USC and UCLA ends with a road trip to face No. 5 Arizona.
To make matters worse, Washington caught the injury bug just as the season ramped up. In his last game against UCLA, Huskies freshman Keyon Menifield left early, and point guard PJ Fuller did not dress in the contest.
Mike Hopkins and Washington will be in town Thursday night. The Huskies have two starters currently dealing with injuries. Freshman Keion Manifield left Saturday’s UCLA game early, and PJ Fuller did not dress. No current word on their status.
— Aidan Alperstein (@aidanalperstein) January 3, 2023
At the time of writing, there is no word on their status, but both players are critical to a Washington offense that has struggled against top-tier competition.
Fuller leads the Huskies in assist rate at 22.9%, and Menifield averages a team-high 1.4 steals per game. Both starters are averaging just over eight points per contest.
If those two were to miss time, it would put additional pressure on Keion Brooks, who has already carried the load for the Huskies, as seen in Evan Miya’s BPR rankings.
Brooks will be matched up with Arizona superstar Azuolas Tubelis.
Overall, this matchup with Arizona couldn’t come at a worse time for Washington.
The Arizona Wildcats have been a joy to watch, especially on the offensive end.
Head coach Tommy Lloyd used Arizona’s average height of 78.8″ and 45% of the returning minutes from last season, to produce a gem of an offensive scheme.
The Wildcats are the No. 1 team in the country in adjusted offensive efficiency and two-point field goal percentage.
This offensive success is the direct result of a team that shares the ball extremely well. A remarkable 65.9% of Arizona’s baskets were assisted, which is the eighth-highest rate in the country.
That help rate will trouble a depleted Washington team that has struggled defensively. The Huskies rank 296th nationally in assists per field goals, allowing 56.6%.
In addition, Arizona will be able to create a lot of second-chance opportunities against a Washington team that gives up an offensive rebound on 32% of its defensive possessions (296th nationally).
If there was one area to pick Arizona, it would be on the defensive end. The Wildcats have struggled to create pressure this season, creating turnovers on just 16.1% of their defensive possessions.
Fortunately, Washington can solve this issue for them. The Huskies rank 244th nationally in offensive turnover percentage.
This is a game in which I don’t see an injured Washington team being able to keep up with the best offense in the country.
Washington vs Arizona betting pick
There are plenty of advantages for Arizona in this game, especially in neutralizing Brooks. Arizona will be able to match up strength-for-strength at the power forward position with Tubellis.
Additionally, this game couldn’t come at a worse time for a Huskies team that is just looking to get healthy after a grueling three-game losing streak.
Arizona is the right investment here, as long as we get the right numbers. I see value in Arizona up to 21 points on his home floor.
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