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Iguodala, Adams bring rain indoors

By Brett Fera
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Thursday, November 13, 2003

UA basketball fans can take off their coats, because things just got real hot in Tucson.

On a day when local temperatures dipped into the 50s, sophomore standouts Andre Iguodala and Hassan Adams provided enough heat to keep the 14,005-person McKale Center crowd warmed up for hours, en route to a 43-point drubbing of the Sydney Comets, an Australian club team.

Those same fans had better keep their umbrellas handy, however, because while the Wildcats' dynamic duo couldn't do anything about the rain outdoors, the pair only made things worse inside.

Iguodala, fresh off a 32-point outing in the UA Red-Blue game last week, rained 3-pointers and showered lob after alley-oop-lob to Adams, knocking out the visiting Comets before they had any clue what hit them.

Adams, on the other hand, came into the game as a wild card to the Wildcat coaching staff, after sitting out the Red-Blue matchup with a fever topping 100-degrees

"He's been practicing pretty hard," said Iguodala of Adams' efforts to get back on the court. "He tries bringing the energy to the game, and he definitely brought it tonight."

The 6-foot-4 high-flying sophomore started his season off well, dropping 10 of 13 shots for 22 points in his first game action of the season.

Adams and Iguodala will likely be two of the most - if not the two most - athletic players on the court for each of the Wildcats' 27 regular-season games this season.

But on a night when nearly every aspect of the Wildcats' 109-66 exhibition success over Sydney seemed to mimic what was expected, it was the unexpected and untested that appeared to be the most telling for a UA squad set to tip off its 100th season in just 12 days.

From the opening minute of last night's rout - when Adams threw down an alley-oop pass from Iguodala to get Arizona its first deuce of the game - Nos. 24 and 21 were everywhere if they were anywhere.

"It's great to have them out there because if you make a bad pass, they can make up for it and still finish," said freshman point guard Mustafa Shakur of the combo that finished its first outing of the season together with a combined 41 points, 20 rebounds and a torrid .782 shooting percentage.

Iguodala and Adams both took steps toward shutting down detractors who tore apart each of their games this offseason - those claiming they couldn't shoot, couldn't get a true handle and needed to crack their "pure athlete" mantra and actually become real basketball players.

The 6-foot-6 Iguodala proved for the second time in a week that he's added another weapon to his already explosive game - an outside shot.

Iguodala drilled his first three 3-point attempts and hit 8-of-10 field goals overall.

"I can get the dunks all the time. I've just got to attack," he said. "But if people don't lay off me, I've got to rely on my jump shot."

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