Mike Moser and Arsalan Kazemi appear to be polar opposites. They grew up on opposite ends of the earth; one rocks a beard and the other rocks a half-beard. One is built like a bear while the other is built like a giraffe. But on the hardwood, the two seem to be cut from the same cloth.
Statistically speaking, Moser’s numbers this past season don’t compare to Kazemi’s, but that’s an unfair comparison, considering Moser played injured and out of position all season. By contrast, if you compare Kazemi’s numbers this year to Moser’s in 2011-2012, the similarities are apparent. Kazemi averaged a combined 2.7 blocks and steals per game; Moser averaged 2.9. Kazemi averaged 10 rebounds per game, Moser 10.5. Not to mention, Moser averaged six more points per game than Kazemi, although he played in a much less balanced offense.
From a qualitative perspective, the two are also very similar. The word that sums up both players’ games is “opportunistic”. Kazemi and Moser both read the passing lanes well defensively; both snatch rebounds on the offensive glass and convert put-backs; and both thrive on the fast break. They have both struggled to develop an effective outside shot, but are above average in comparison to most power forwards. Their differences are most apparent physically as Kazemi possesses much greater strength, while Moser is more athletic.
Moser’s former AAU coach Kumbeno Memory acknowledged the comparison while talking to Oregon Live. “They’re both high-energy guys, they’re both glue guys who can help bind the team together and help get the team extra possessions,” he said.
It’s unrealistic to expect anyone to spark energy into the Ducks’ program the way Kazemi did. Still, If Moser can avoid injuries and play his natural position at power forward, he can create his own legacy and potentially propel the Ducks to unforeseen heights.
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