Not only is the concern focused on filling the lost void with Embiid in the interior. But the perimeter aswell. With the exception of Andrew Wiggins; Wayne Selden, Frank Mason, and Naadir Tharpe and the other guards in the front court are just as important for Kansas to make a run as do the back court.
Think of it as this, most of Kansas' forced turnovers thus far were by the victim of poor guard play. Which resulted in limited touches for Embiid when on the floor. Now, with the latest setback. Embiid won't be on the floor this time to save Kansas escape hazardous plays, by bailing the offense out with pure skill.
Yes, Black and Traylor's production must become more vital and impactful. Making Kansas a stronger unit inside next week for the NCAA Tournament. We now that.
Aside from it all, the key to anything this point of the season revolves around the point guard. Something that is still foggy and in no shape of clearing up. Tharpe and Mason are good point guards for this team, but can they carry Kansas to the final stretch?.
I don't think so, by themselves that is. So which is why they need extreme help. Barring Wiggins boosting the moral the rest of the season. Going beast mode and scoring 40+. Wayne Selden can't fall asleep on the wing as a scorer. At times, he hasn't developed himself during crunch time. In games against Oklahoma in Norman, Oklahoma State and a few others. Selden was able to assert himself properly to being the deciding factor in games.
Everyone who has seen the floor this year. Is capable of leading the team. Though only a few can separate themselves into a reliable one. Naadir Tharpe and obviously Andrew Wiggins are the ones that are felt as the dependent ones. As the pressure turns up only Wiggins has stood out from the crowd. Which is why if the chaos is felt, he can carry them.
Tharpe however, despite the performance against Oklahoma game clinching the Big XII crown. He has broken under the pressure of being this young teams's vocal leader. (Something they don't necessarily have at this point). It is his job to run the offense fluently. He hasn't right now and aiding any help on the leadership department could be mostly beneficial.
Afterall, Kansas was still a suspect team heading into March with Embiid. They have an identity though, something that will be mandatory to perform outside their character role. If Kansas still wants to make a serious run still. It will have to run through their guard play.