The picture is becoming clearer for what the 2022-2023 Louisville men’s basketball team will look like. After Friday’s announcement that Jae’lyn Withers would remain with UofL, forward JJ Traynor announced he would also remain with the Cards. Traynor is maybe the most enigmatic of the returning players because we saw so little of him.
Staying home🖤❤️ pic.twitter.com/6QAwiOKc5u— JJ (@JJTraynor20) April 9, 2022
JJ Traynor is the son of Louisville Legend Jason Osborne. He played for another Louisville Legend at Bardstown High School, Boo Brewer. He came to Louisville to follow in his father’s footsteps, but he also wanted to create his own legacy. While Traynor has played sparingly over his first two years, he’s flashed some of his potential.
In his very first game in a Louisville uniform, Traynor scored 11 points and grabbed 5 boards against Evansville. In another early season game in the 2020-2021 season, Traynor scored 9 and collected 5 rebounds against in-state foe Western Kentucky. He also has multiple games that season with 2 or more blocks.
This past season, Traynor didn’t see the floor as much as he had in his freshman campaign. This stumped many UofL fans and media as Traynor had shown glimpses in his freshman season of the kind of player he could be. He rarely played more than 9 minutes a game. The exception was a 28 minute performance against Miami. He only scored 2 points, but grabbed 7 rebounds, had 1 assist, and 1 steal.
In the time Traynor did play, he showed a propensity to shoot the three. He also showed his length can be a deterrent to guards driving the lane. Traynor can even handle the basketball. While he regressed from year 1 to year 2, I believe the thought for Traynor and Coach Kenny Payne is that he can blossom under Coach Payne’s tutelage. Traynor, in my opinion, played out of position at the 5. He’s a stretch 4 who may be able to moonlight at the SF position. I feel that Traynor has the most untapped potential of any returning player. It will be interesting to see how Coach Payne and staff develop him and utilize him.