Stat line vs. Elon: 20 MIN | 11 PTS | 3 REB | 3 AST | 5/10 FG | 1/4 3PT | 2 STL | 0 TOV | 4 PF
In the first full game without Xavier Johnson, along with some “load management” for Trayce Jackson-Davis, freshman guard, CJ Gunn, was a major standout off the bench for Mike Woodson, and he definitely earned some playing time in the coming games, especially with injuries piling up.
Prior to last night, Gunn had appeared in nine other games and had not reached the 20-minute mark of playing time in any of those games. The freshman from Indianapolis poured in a career-high 11 points on 5-for-10 shooting.
It wasn’t just his scoring, it was Gunn’s energy and young legs that gave Indiana basketball a lift that they’ve been looking for over the past two weeks. Since the beginning of December, the Hoosiers have looked uninspired and energy-lacking, losing three of their last four games before snapping their first multi-game losing streak of the season.
Both CJ Gunn and Miller Kopp were part of the postgame press conference for Indiana basketball and, of course, Gunn implores how he’s staying ready to hoop and willing to do whatever he can to earn more playing time, but what stood out to me was Kopp’s leadership talking about Gunn and his approach to practices and perfecting his current role on such an experienced and talented team.
Check out the press conference below (Gunn’s word was tiddlywinks & Kopp’s was an interesting phrase):