For a quick review of just what these handy little charts and graphs mean, check out WarRoomEagle's post on the subject from last week.
From looking at the game flow, you can see that it took the Tigers a little while to get warmed up. This could be for a number of reasons, including Antoine Mason's first start in a few weeks and the need to knock a bit of rust off. In the first half, Auburn had at least three stretches of 3+ minutes without a basket. This allowed Clemson to jump out to a big lead. Auburn did pull it close early in the second half, but ultimately were unable to pull it out.
The second half was encouraging though, as Auburn managed to score consistently. There were some stretches early in the second half that were frustrating, but the game overall was an improvement in not going ice cold for long stretches. Depth has been a big problem all season long, but that's starting to change, now. This will likely help Auburn keep from getting tired and going cold in the later stretches of the game.
To see how the Tigers did in this game vs some of the others lately, compare the above flow chart with the one from Coastal Carolina:
You can see how the game flow for the Clemson game is an improvement. It was the best the flow has looked since the Lousiana-Lafayette game.
Those cold stretches seem to be characterized by Auburn taking too many 3 point shots or just straight missing on good open shots. If there's one thing my uneducated eyes have picked up on (aside from the horrible inconsistency in college basketball officiating), it has been that Auburn doesn't seem to attack the basket much. Maybe that's a product of size. I'll defer to our basketball gurus to explain just what Auburn is trying to do.
Regardless, having a big-time scoring threat in Mason playing - even if he's only at 80% - will keep that flow on a steady rise instead of falling flat for long periods of time.
Auburn now goes into a good five game home stand to close out non-conference play before getting into the SEC schedule. The next game will be Wednesday night at 8pm against Winthrop in Auburn Arena. I expect the Tigers will bounce back from the Clemson loss and look much better as Mason continue to heal, Trayvon Reed learns the offense more, and Alex Thompson gets back into the thick of things and is able to provide more depth.