Waiters benched for Marquette loss

Syracuse guard Dion Waiters received the first “did not play” (DNP) of his career in Syracuse’s 76-70 loss to Marquette.

In Tuesday’s 90-68 loss against Seton Hall, Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim removed Waiters from the game, and Waiters reportedly cursed at Boeheim as he walked toward the bench, according to a Syracuse radio host. It led to speculation throughout the week that Waiters had been suspended, though that rumor was flatly denied by Boeheim.

Waiters practiced with the team and made the trip with the team to Marquette. But during warm-ups, it became clear that Waiters wouldn’t play because he was only wearing the team’s practice T-shirt instead of his jersey. During some of Syracuse’s timeouts, Waiters stayed off to the side while the other players huddled.

Following he game, Boeheim was asked for the reason why Waiters didn’t play.

“He’s shooting 30 percent from the field, 30 percent from 3 and not playing good defense,’’ he said. “Other than that, I can’t think of any.’’

Boeheim’s statistical analysis was slightly off. Waiters is actually shooting 39 percent from the field in his first season with the Orange. Waiters had seen action in all 21 of Syracuse’s games.

In his absence, Boeheim promoted guard Mookie Jones to the rotation. Jones didn’t score in four minutes of action.

Syracuse also went with forward Kris Joseph at the top of the zone during stretches of the second half and also relied heavily on starting guards Scoop Jardine and Brandon Triche, who combined for 72 minutes of action.

Wesley Cheng is the Editor in Chief for The Juice Online.

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Wes Cheng

About Wes Cheng

Wes has worked for Rivals.com covering the New York Knicks, as well as for Scout.com covering Syracuse athletics. Wes has also worked for the South China Morning Post (Hong Kong) and reported on the NBA and MLB for the New York Sportscene. A native of Long Island, New York, Wes graduated from Syracuse University in 2005. Follow him on Twitter @ChengWes.
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