Spoilers: It’s about to get real video game-y up in here.
“Pyre” is a video game that has recently taken up a bit of my time. If you haven’t played it or even heard of it, that’s no problem, let me tell you about it. Available for PS4, XBox One and PC and developed by Supergiant Games, the same people behind “Bastion” and “Transistor,” “Pyre” tells the story of outcasts in a fantastical realm who compete in what amounts to magic basketball. Each team gets three players. To win, they must score 100 points by shooting, throwing or carrying a small orb into the other team’s goal or pyre. Some have described it as a fantasy RPG-like with basketball.
While figuring out who the best basketball team is in the Downside (the place where the game takes place) will take you about 11 hours of gameplay, there’s no doubt who the best basketball team is at Down the Drive. With all this fun information now in our heads, its time to answer a question that nobody is asking. Who would the Bearcats pick to play for their “Pyre” team?
Keeper - Kyle Washington
The keeper is the largest of the players, casting a wide net of defense and serving as the most effective protector of the pyre or goal. While they may move at a slower speed than some of their teammates, their defensive acumen makes them a force to be reckoned with.
While Gary Clark has been the superior overall defender (77.3 defensive rating), Washington is a player who more fits the mold of a keeper. He isn’t always the smoothest player, but he protects the rim exceptionally well, leading the Bearcats in block percentage (7.0) among players who have seen time in all 25 games.
Backup: Nysier Brooks
Skirmisher - Jacob Evans
If you need a player with some speed who can also defend and move the orb from long range, this is your position. A skirmisher has more quickness than a keeper, but still has a respectable defensive range as well as more accurate skills when it comes to “shooting.”
Evans is easily the best three-point shooter on the team, averaging 1.8 threes per game while shooting 40.2 percent from such distance. He is also an excellent defender and more than capable of getting out on the break if space clears up in the open court.
Backup: Gary Clark
Runner - Cane Broome
Fleet of foot and with the ability to “score” in bunches, a runner is possibly the most valuable offensive player on your side. These players are not the best at stopping the opposition, but are extremely difficult to stop thanks to elevated speed.
Broome fits the mold here perfectly. A crafty ball-handler with great quickness, he can score a ton when he needs to and get to the rim without much of a struggle. Unfortunately, he is not the UC’s best defender (87.9 defensive rating), but that’s tough to be on a team of defensive perfectionists. Regardless, his offense and speed make him extremely valuable.
Backup: Justin Jenifer
Now that we have assembled UC’s team, its time to take the road and defeat any and all challengers in the Rites.