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Michigan State basketball: Stock watch after win over No. 10 Illinois

A lot of stocks on the rise.



Michigan State basketball
© Nick King/Lansing State Journal / USA TODAY NETWORK

Michigan State basketball picked up a win over No. 10 Illinois on Saturday afternoon. Here’s your post-win stock watch.

This was one of those Michigan State basketball games that this team needed to win, especially for how this season has gone. This was probably the last opportunity for this team to get a Quad 1 win at home against a very good Illinois team.

These two teams faced each other earlier this year but this Illinois team looks different than they did when they first played. This Illinois team now has Terrence Shannon Jr. playing and that makes a tough matchup for anyone.

With the addition of Shannon, Michigan State needed guys to have their stock rise — and that happened.

Stock Up

  • AJ Hoggard

What a response from AJ Hoggard after a bad performance at Minnesota. When you look at the box score, you see that he went 5-for-13 from the field and had 23 points. While looking at that, fans might think he wasn’t efficient and his shooting might not have been but his play helped Michigan State win this game. When Michigan State needed a big play from its starting point guard, AJ either made it on the offensive or defensive end. There was a moment late in which Hoggard responded by making a three to cut the Spartans’ deficit to three and then he made a few great defensive plays.

Outside of his play on the court, you could see Hoggard take leadership of this team. The biggest example of that was when Tom Izzo was upset, he pushed him away and addressed an issue with Jaden Akins. This is the player Izzo has been looking for and he even said that in his press conference.

  • Malik Hall

Another great response from a player who struggled against Minnesota. When Malik Hall is confident and makes his shots, there is not much a team can do and that is what he was on Saturday. He was making plays on the offensive end and had two straight positions of 3-point plays after Michigan State went down eight with 6:30 left. Malik was showing signs of that closing player we saw a few games ago against Maryland and that is a good sign for this team.

  • Tyson Walker

Another good performance from Tyson Walker but it wasn’t from the three; it was from attacking the basket. While Tyson was perfect from deep, there were several points in this game when he slashed through the defense and made a tough basket in the lane. Walker not only did that but he was pretty good defensively while playing 34 minutes in this game and would have played more if he wasn’t in foul trouble for a few minutes.

  • The Breslin

This was one of the best atmospheres that Michigan State basketball has had at home this year. The Izzone was rowdy, the fans were standing and you could hear the impact that made on this team and Illinois. The fans did what they needed to do and Izzo even said that he was thankful this game was home. Fans can make a difference and they did in this game.

Stock Down

  • Mady Sissoko

Saturday’s game was a rough one for Mady Sissoko. It isn’t a great matchup for him but while he was out there, he struggled. It started with a second early foul, one that probably wasn’t a foul but after that foul, he did not see much action. In the 10 minutes he did play, he went 0-for-1 and had just one rebound. This was a tough ask from Mady but it is one of those games that he doesn’t play well, which is the reason why he played so few minutes.

  • Carson Cooper

This was an up-and-down game from Carson Cooper. There were moments when Cooper was effective and played good defense. There were also moments when Carson wasn’t great. One of those moments was the big run that Illinois went on and then tried a hook shot when down five. That is not the shot that fans nor coaches probably want especially in that situation. Cooper has to be better in that situation but there were also times he stepped up. He had a few big rebounds and played the most minutes out of the centers. While there were more down moments, Carson did play better than Mady.

This was one of those games in which this team did more right than wrong, which is why they won. The Spartans were making their free throws, shot the ball well, and ran whenever they could. They also got key performances from the top four players on this team. This game was won because of those top players which is why three of the top four players had their stocks rise in this game. It won’t be easy for these four to continue to have similar performances every game but if they can, they showed that they can beat really good teams.


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