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The Orange Key.

Through 14 games, I think it is fair to say that what you're going to get on offense out of Tiger starters Dan Mavraides, Douglas Davis, Patrick Saunders and Marcus Schroeder is relatively constant.

Mavraides has been in double figures 11 times this season and has hit double digits in eight straight games.

Davis has gone to double figures nine times and has cracked 20 points four times in the last 10 games. On only one occasion in 2009-10 has he scored fewer than eight.

Saunders will shoot when open, tops on the team in FG%, 3FG% and FT%.

Schroeder drives the offense, leading the team in assists and steals.

For Princeton to succeed in Ivy League play this year however, the key is senior center Pawel Buczak.

Buczak is averaging 6.3 ppg in Princeton's nine wins, 19-45 from the field (42.2%). His assist-to-turnover ratio is 22:24 across those games.

Buczak is averaging 2.8 ppg in Princeton's five losses, 4-22 from the field (18.2%). His assist-to-turnover ratio is 8:11 across those games.

Against Goucher, Princeton focused on going inside to pass outside and Buczak needs to not only get position for more touches, but be aware of fast double teams coming and making the right decisions in these situations.

Finding the trio of Davis, Mavraides and Saunders out of the paint leads to good things on the perimeter. Those three are 78-199 from three point range (39.2%). The rest of the roster is just 26-97 (26.8%) from deep.

Buczak currently is part of 19.6% of Princeton's possessions - compare that number to 27.7% for fellow center Zach Finley off the bench and 22.8% for center/forward Ian Hummer. In 2008-09 he was part of 22.9% of all possessions.

By getting Buczak more involved offensively, you're going to see an increase in turnovers as well as assists, but it should open up the floor.

Compare his stats for 2008-09 over 27 games to the first 14 games of 2009-10:

25.9 5.1  34.3 35.3 73.1 2.1 3.8 0.9 0.9 09-10
23.6 7.7  55.0 36.0 65.3 2.1 4.1 0.7 0.9 08-09

If Buczak can produce numbers comparable to how he did in Ivy play as a junior, it would improve the Tigers' interior.

25.4 8.1  56.2 38.5 76.0 2.1 3.5 0.9 1.1 08-09

Right now Buczak takes just 15.6% of his team's shots. Last year this number was 20.2%.

His assist rate is 17.9% and his turnover rate is 32.9%

Compare those numbers to 2008-09: 23.6% versus 26.3%.

Finally, Buczak is shooting 17-49 inside the arc this year (34.7%). He was 74-126 (58.7%) as a junior. He is one of two players in Princeton's ten man rotation with a better three point shooting percentage than two point percentage - Nick Lake is 1-4 inside the arc, 7-19 outside the line.

Buczak has to have, in the words of his coach after a 5-5 performance at St. Joe's to begin 2010, "a sense of urgency to start the game." In that contest Buczak assisted on two of the team's first three baskets before stepping outside for a three of his own. He finished that game with a season high 14 points.

“The first couple drop in and all of a sudden [our centers] feel much better. If the couple don’t drop in sometimes they lose that confidence,” Johnson added.

Without a confident Buczak, the Tigers look unable to challenge Cornell and Harvard at the top of the Ivy.

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