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Wilbekin likely to play vs. KU, Finney-Smith seeks consistency

GAINESVILLE -- Senior point guard Scottie Wilbekin (high ankle sprain) is expected to play against No. 6 Kansas on Tuesday (7 p.m. ESPN), according to sources with knowledge of Wilbekin’s injury situation.

Wilbekin rolled his right ankle late in Florida’s buzzer-beating loss at No. 12 Connecticut on Monday, and the school later announced X-rays were negative but that they showed a high-ankle sprain. 

If Wilbekin -- who is averaging 11.3 points, 5.7 assists and 3.3 steals in three games this year -- is unable to suit up against the athletic Jayhawks (6-1), the shorthanded Gators (6-2) face the prospect of playing a second game this season without a traditional point guard.

With positional uncertainty, the Gators desperately need versatile forward Dorian Finney-Smith to step up.

Zimbo.com(Courtesy zimbo.com)

Although the redshirt sophomore has rebounded (both offensively and defensively) at a ridiculous rate this year, the former Virginia Tech transfer has been inefficient in nearly every other facet of his game.

Teased as a playmaking point-forward, Finney-Smith has struggled as facilitator, finisher and shooter for Florida.

The 6-foot-8, 205-pound sophomore poses matchup problems for opposing defenses, but early in the season he’s caused more troubles for UF’s otherwise efficient offense (48 percent field goal shooting ranks No. 8 nationally).

After tallying 17 points and nine rebounds in his Gators debut, Finney-Smith has produced wildly inconsistent results since.

In Florida’s last four games, Finney-Smith has 12 turnovers to five assists and is an abysmal 1-of-10 from 3-point range. His 36 percent field goal shooting is the lowest of any UF rotational regular averaging at least 20 minutes per game.

Finney-Smith is immensely talented, and during the summer he was rumored to be the best player on the team, but the Gators need his versatile skill-set and athleticism to translate into consistent production. 

Follow me on Twitter @JesseReSimonton


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