By: Greg Levinsky
Scoring 20-plus points in three-straight games, Boston University junior forward Max Mahoney appears unstoppable in the paint. Averaging a team-best 16.1 points per game to go with 5.2 rebounds and a stellar 67.9 percent field goal percentage, there’s a question that must be posed.
— BU Men’s Basketball (@TerrierMBB) December 15, 2018
What’s next for the 6-foot-8 Mahoney?
“Maybe stretching it out a little more,” Mahoney said. “I can play out to 15 feet pretty comfortable.”
Previously, Mahoney’s main knock was free-throw shooting. He’s just above a 55 percent shooter for his career, but Mahoney seems to have found his stroke. He’s gone 13-of-15 (86.7 percent) from the charity stripe over the past five games to up his season’s mark to a respectable 65.8 percent.
One interesting note. Mahoney has never once pulled up from beyond the arc in his nearly 1,200 minutes of collegiate play. He hasn’t even hoisted a 3-ball to beat a halftime or shot clock buzzer.
“Working in my jumper more would be one thing,” Mahoney said. “Just to expand my game and make people guard me in a different way.”
Head coach Joe Jones agreed, but emphasized conditioning as another key to the elevation of Mahoney’s game. Jones wants Mahoney to exceed his average of 24.0 minutes per game and work up to around 30 minutes per game.
Mahoney’s season-high is 27 minutes. He’s played at least 20 minutes in 10 of his 11 appearances.
“He gets tired quick,” Jones said. “I don’t know if he’s ever going to play more than [30 minutes], but can he stretch it out a bit little longer?” I don’t know if he’s ever going to get there because we have to take him out. He gets exhausted. His stamina is the thing I would say would allow him to be better.”
It’s a pretty simple two-fold approach to a more effective Mahoney: jumpers and stamina.
Greg Levinsky can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @GregLevinsky