Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by dboss on Sat Dec 11, 2010 9:04 am

Jeb

Like the Celtics, the lakers are faced with the prospect of playing against teams every game who's effort will be above average. Everybody wants to beat them because they are the Champions.

The Lakers however have some very real issues. They do not have a BU center and they do not have a PF. Both Gasol and Odom have been playing the best all year but Kobe is only shooting .438% and Fisher is not getting any younger. Their bench is not that good either.

The biggest drop off in quality of play centers around Ron Artest. He is sitting at carreer lows in scoring 7.8 PPG and rebounding 3.3 per game. He is only shooting .37% from the field. Your starting SF has to be more productive than that but he is also in year 14 of his career so the decline should not be too surprising. Basically Ron is no longer a starting SF and neither is BU Matt Barnes.

Once Bynum comes back, it should relieve the minutes being played by Odom and Gasol but the SF issue and the lack or production from the PG spot combined with Kobe's poor shooting cannot be fixed any time soon.

This Laker team did not address their needs during the off season. Unless they make a move, they could easily slip into the bottom half of their division for the remainder of the year and then face that uphill climb during the playoffs.

As a Celtics fan I am concerned that they may not be there for us to beat up on once school lets out.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by jeb on Sat Dec 11, 2010 9:25 am

I dont know dboss when Bynum comes back I look for the Lakes to get right back in the hunt. Kobe is the key...Jackson ground him into paste last year so is he slowed by his many age/minutes/surgery related issues for a while or forvever. The Lakers aint winning it without him being full throttle.

It seems like Barnes and Blake are fitting in and will be big helps onc they get the system.

But in the meantime the Spurs are just eating teams and dallas is lookin rough too. Still It'll be the Lakers and the Spurs at the end and thats good because it should be. I always felt like the Lakers avoided our best team in 86 and I would really hate to see that again this year. I WANT the Lakers...lets settle it.
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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by beat on Sat Dec 11, 2010 11:16 am

Jeb dboss

When Bynum come back?................My question is the rust has gotta be thick and when and for how long before he's out again?

I could care less who we get if we get there. I wish nothing but losses every time they play. Last eve they ran out to a 10+ point lead about 32-22 maybe more. Then the bulls went on a run and Phil did nothing no time outs no subs. Love when Gasol Kome and all complain with palms up pleading for every call.................where are the T's I might add?

We can't worry about the finals for a long time. But I sure like where we are sittin today.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by jeb on Sat Dec 11, 2010 1:24 pm

@ beat

I want the Lakes. It wont be as sweet without beating them good and proper. We got the team to do it too.
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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by bobheckler on Sat Dec 11, 2010 1:45 pm

steve3344 wrote:Kevin Love (with 18 tonight) now has nine straight games of at least 15 rebounds. Incredible.

And is averaging 17.5 rebs his last 14 games. Guess the kid can play in the NBA. There were a lot of doubters on draft day 2008.

Steve,

So much for basketball being about running fast and jumping high.

How many more examples of this (Oscar, Bird and Rodman standout) do people need to figure this out? It's about having a nose for the ball so that you're in the right place at the right time, and ganas. You have to want the ball. Badly.

I don't mean to put Harangody in the same breath as Bird or Rodman, but that's one of the things I saw in him at Notre Dame and in summer league. He wants the ball and seems to have a nose for it. Unfortunately for Luke, in addition to being slow and earthbound, he's also undersized. If he didn't get any minutes against the 76ers despite our thinness up front, he probably won't get many minutes for a long time to come.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by bobheckler on Sat Dec 11, 2010 2:29 pm

I watched the Laker-Bulls game last night too. In the first quarter, the Lakers looked unstoppable. Kobe was absolutely toying with them. Not with his shooting so much, he actually shot pretty little in the first half (9 fga), but his passing, rebounding and defense was outstanding. He was hitting Gasol on cuts down the lane like they were the only 2 players on the floor. Noah was nowhere to be seen. The Lakers were up 12 and looking like they were going to blow the lid off early. I stepped away for a few minutes and next thing I know it's Lakers by 4, then Lakers by 2 and then tied in the 2nd. Thib's defense finally kicked in. They doubled Kobe everytime he had the ball, forcing him to make a "get out of jail" pass instead of letting him hold the ball and wait for a cutter.

A lot has been made about Ron-Ron's shooting, but his defense last night was outstanding. He was everywhere. D-Fish, on the other hand, is a liability as a starter. He doesn't have the speed to stay in front of a starting point guard anymore and his offense consists of running to the corner to be a 3pt bailout option. I know that is the "2" part of the triangle (the 3-man triangle is the primary and the 2-man game with the shooter outside is the other) but it makes him a minor part of the offense. Couple that with his inability to defend...In fact, this is the story of both their point guards, Fisher and Blake. They lack speed and aren't true point guards in the classic point guard sense. They fit in the triangle. I'm a little surprised Phil didn't put Kobe on Rose like he did in the Finals with Rondo. Kobe certainly couldn't have done a worse job on Rose than Fisher did. Is this an acknowledgment by Phil of Kobe's diminished athleticism due to his off-season surgery?

In crunch time, the Lakers resorted to their time-tested formula: give the ball to Kobe and get out of the way. The problem with that this year is that Kobe is coming off of knee surgery and isn't the same player now (he may very well be next year, ala KG) PLUS he wasn't having a particularly good shooting night last night. As a result, the most effective players on the floor last night for Phil (Gasol, Odom and Barnes) were just standing around in the final few minutes.

Gasol is playing too many minutes. Period. What good is burning him out now if he's going to be diminished if/when Bynum comes back? I'd rather have a 100% fresh Gasol and an 80% Bynum with a few more losses than an 80% Gasol and 80% Bynum. Gasol, when he's fresh, is almost unstoppable AND he's playing defense better. Then again, playing Gasol less might mean playing Caracter more and, given Caracter's injury in the Clips game, Phil may see that as Hobson's choice. Bynum is saying he'll be back Tuesday, against the Wiz.

The Lakers aren't playing happy? Who's surprised about that? Last year, they had the 2nd best record in the league and, after we bounced LeBust and the Cavs, had homecourt throughout the playoffs (which it turns out they desperately needed). Right now, they have the 5th best record in the league, with 3 of the 4 teams ahead of them in the Western Conference. NO, Denver and OKC are nipping at their heels in the west and Miami, Orlando and Chicago are surging in the east. All 6 of those teams have only one loss more than the Lakers, who are struggling. Do you think the Celts would be playing happy if they were the reigning champs and were in that position? We are in command of the east, right now, no wonder we're joyous.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by Outside on Sun Dec 12, 2010 9:42 pm

Here are my random thoughts about the league. We're a quarter of the way through the season, lots can still change, but it's far enough along that some things are taking shape.

Streaking is back in fashion

So far, it seems to be a season of streaks. Of the 13 teams with 14 or more wins, nine have had win streaks of at least seven games:

12 - Mavs (current)
12 - Spurs
10 - Celtics (current)
8 - Knicks (current)
8 - Heat (current)
8 - Hornets
8 - Lakers
7 - Jazz
7 - Nuggets

Two other teams (Magic and Hawks) have 6-game win streaks. Another team, the Bulls, has a chance to join the above list with a current 5-game win streak and Indiana, Toronto, the Nets, the 76ers, and the Clippers up next on the schedule (they play the toughest of that group, Indiana, at home).

Toughest division

Southwest, hands down. Runner up -- Northwest

What's up in the East

Records are as of Dec. 12. Order listed is basically arbitrary. I didn't include the Celtics since they're covered so well elsewhere, and I didn't include bottom-dwellers I didn't feel were worth the bother.

Atlanta (16-9 ) -- Their best wins are against Indiana and Orlando. Joe Johnson is out for months. Let me know when they beat somebody.

Charlotte (8-15 ) -- I hope Gerald Wallace liked his trip to the playoffs last year, because I don't think they're going back.

Chicago (14-8 ) -- Let's see how well Noah and Boozer play together. If they feed off each other instead of taking away from each other, this can be a very good team. Rose is a stud. They could use an outside shooter.

Indiana (11-11 ) -- I think they have a good chance to make the playoffs, but so far, they are the definition of a .500 team. Their longest streak, win or lose, is two.

Miami (17-8 ) -- Don't look now, but they're second in the Eastern conference. But they're still only 3-7 vs. winning teams.

Milwaukee (9-13 ) -- Might take a step back after seemingly coming out of nowhere last year. They're just not very deep. Bogut looks like he's going to feel the effects of that elbow injury for a long time.

Orlando (15-8 ) -- Dwight's better offensively, Brandon Bass is good, but everybody else is underperforming. They won't be serious challengers as long as they have Rashard Lewis and Vince Carter as millstones around their necks and Jameer Nelson doesn't get any better.

New York (16-9 ) -- One of the surprises of the season. Let's see if they can keep it up. Blake Griffin and John Wall get all the attention, but Landry Fields (10.3 pts, 7.5 reb) is the next-best rookie and doing a solid job.

What's up in the West

Spurs (20-3 ) -- I suppose I shouldn't be surprised, but I am. Odds are that they won't be winning at this pace by the end of the season since Pops will rest Duncan and Manu will get hurt along the way, because that's what Manu does. Tiago Splitter may become a contributor by the end of the season. They'll be dangerous come playoff time. What a solid franchise.

OKC (17-8 ) -- It's probably to their benefit that they're not meeting expectations and can lay low for a while. They'll still be a team everyone wants to avoid in the playoffs.

New Orleans (14-9 ) -- Nice start. I hope they enjoyed it.

Memphis (10-14 ) -- Poster child for why chemistry is important.

Portland (12-12 ) -- The most snakebit franchise. They showed so much promise, but now they'll be lucky to make the playoffs. How on earth did Brandon Roy lose all the cartilage in his knees by age 26? Not that I believe it's all gone, but still, there's not much doubt that he has knee issues.

Phoenix (11-12 ) -- If they make the playoffs, they should build a shrine to Steve Nash outside the arena. Look at who they have on that roster and explain to me why they should be any better than the Nets, 76ers, Timberwolves, Clippers, or any other bottom feeder in the league. My only explanation is Steve Nash. Oh, and Alvin Gentry can coach.

Utah (17-8 ) -- Jerry Sloan is a magician. Deron Williams is an all-star, but who else do they have? A bunch of solid players who work well together in a very good system. They're a good team I like to watch, but they're second tier.

Denver (14-9 ) -- They were already head cases, but now they have to deal with Carmelo's situation, K-Mart is pouting, and Chauncey is slowing down. It's a miracle they've won as much as they have so far. It's a safe bet that it's down from here.

Lakers (17-7 ) -- They'll be there come playoff time. Their bench is much better than last year. Blake is a major upgrade from Farmar, Barnes is a nice addition, Brown is much improved and playing with confidence, and Ratliff (assuming he recovers fully from knee surgery) is a solid improvement over Powell and Mbenga. Without Bynum, they're still contenders. With a healthy Bynum, they can be very good. We'll see how well Kobe holds up.

Houston (9-14 ) -- I like these guys, I really do. I see five playoff locks in the West -- Utah, OKC, Lakers, Spurs, and Mavs -- so the Rockets can grab a spot. They have to fight it out with Denver, Phoenix, New Orleans, and Memphis, and I actually like Houston as much as anyone in that group.

Clippers (5-19 ) -- Griffin is fun to watch, and Gordon is playing extremely well. If they can get Kaman back, you'd think they could play .500 ball, but they'll still be the Clippers.

Sacramento (5-16 ) -- I had hopes for this team. Alas.

Warriors (8-15 ) -- I wish I was saving the best for last. Ellis is doing his thing, Biedrins plays sometimes like more than a blip on the radar, Dorell Wright has been a nice addition, and getting David Lee back helps, but the success of this franchise for the next few years depends on how they manage Stephen Curry's ankle injury. Please shut him down long enough to heal properly, because if they bring him back too soon and he hurts it again, this could become a career-impeding (and franchise-dooming) injury.


Last edited by Outside on Mon Dec 13, 2010 12:13 am; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by Outside on Sun Dec 12, 2010 10:00 pm

steve3344 wrote:Kevin Love (with 18 tonight) now has nine straight games of at least 15 rebounds. Incredible.

And is averaging 17.5 rebs his last 14 games. Guess the kid can play in the NBA. There were a lot of doubters on draft day 2008.
Minnesota drafted OJ Mayo and traded him after the draft to Memphis for Kevin Love. (There were other players involved, but it was essentially a straight-up trade of Mayo for Love.)

At the time and during most of the next season, Timberwolves fans were VERY unhappy with the trade. I wonder what they'd say now.
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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by bobheckler on Mon Dec 13, 2010 11:45 am

Outside wrote:Here are my random thoughts about the league. We're a quarter of the way through the season, lots can still change, but it's far enough along that some things are taking shape.

Streaking is back in fashion

So far, it seems to be a season of streaks. Of the 13 teams with 14 or more wins, nine have had win streaks of at least seven games:

12 - Mavs (current)
12 - Spurs
10 - Celtics (current)
8 - Knicks (current)
8 - Heat (current)
8 - Hornets
8 - Lakers
7 - Jazz
7 - Nuggets

Two other teams (Magic and Hawks) have 6-game win streaks. Another team, the Bulls, has a chance to join the above list with a current 5-game win streak and Indiana, Toronto, the Nets, the 76ers, and the Clippers up next on the schedule (they play the toughest of that group, Indiana, at home).

Toughest division

Southwest, hands down. Runner up -- Northwest

What's up in the East

Records are as of Dec. 12. Order listed is basically arbitrary. I didn't include the Celtics since they're covered so well elsewhere, and I didn't include bottom-dwellers I didn't feel were worth the bother.

Atlanta (16-9 ) -- Their best wins are against Indiana and Orlando. Joe Johnson is out for months. Let me know when they beat somebody.

Charlotte (8-15 ) -- I hope Gerald Wallace liked his trip to the playoffs last year, because I don't think they're going back.

Chicago (14-8 ) -- Let's see how well Noah and Boozer play together. If they feed off each other instead of taking away from each other, this can be a very good team. Rose is a stud. They could use an outside shooter.

Indiana (11-11 ) -- I think they have a good chance to make the playoffs, but so far, they are the definition of a .500 team. Their longest streak, win or lose, is two.

Miami (17-8 ) -- Don't look now, but they're second in the Eastern conference. But they're still only 3-7 vs. winning teams.

Milwaukee (9-13 ) -- Might take a step back after seemingly coming out of nowhere last year. They're just not very deep. Bogut looks like he's going to feel the effects of that elbow injury for a long time.

Orlando (15-8 ) -- Dwight's better offensively, Brandon Bass is good, but everybody else is underperforming. They won't be serious challengers as long as they have Rashard Lewis and Vince Carter as millstones around their necks and Jameer Nelson doesn't get any better.

New York (16-9 ) -- One of the surprises of the season. Let's see if they can keep it up. Blake Griffin and John Wall get all the attention, but Landry Fields (10.3 pts, 7.5 reb) is the next-best rookie and doing a solid job.

What's up in the West

Spurs (20-3 ) -- I suppose I shouldn't be surprised, but I am. Odds are that they won't be winning at this pace by the end of the season since Pops will rest Duncan and Manu will get hurt along the way, because that's what Manu does. Tiago Splitter may become a contributor by the end of the season. They'll be dangerous come playoff time. What a solid franchise.

OKC (17-8 ) -- It's probably to their benefit that they're not meeting expectations and can lay low for a while. They'll still be a team everyone wants to avoid in the playoffs.

New Orleans (14-9 ) -- Nice start. I hope they enjoyed it.

Memphis (10-14 ) -- Poster child for why chemistry is important.

Portland (12-12 ) -- The most snakebit franchise. They showed so much promise, but now they'll be lucky to make the playoffs. How on earth did Brandon Roy lose all the cartilage in his knees by age 26? Not that I believe it's all gone, but still, there's not much doubt that he has knee issues.

Phoenix (11-12 ) -- If they make the playoffs, they should build a shrine to Steve Nash outside the arena. Look at who they have on that roster and explain to me why they should be any better than the Nets, 76ers, Timberwolves, Clippers, or any other bottom feeder in the league. My only explanation is Steve Nash. Oh, and Alvin Gentry can coach.

Utah (17-8 ) -- Jerry Sloan is a magician. Deron Williams is an all-star, but who else do they have? A bunch of solid players who work well together in a very good system. They're a good team I like to watch, but they're second tier.

Denver (14-9 ) -- They were already head cases, but now they have to deal with Carmelo's situation, K-Mart is pouting, and Chauncey is slowing down. It's a miracle they've won as much as they have so far. It's a safe bet that it's down from here.

Lakers (17-7 ) -- They'll be there come playoff time. Their bench is much better than last year. Blake is a major upgrade from Farmar, Barnes is a nice addition, Brown is much improved and playing with confidence, and Ratliff (assuming he recovers fully from knee surgery) is a solid improvement over Powell and Mbenga. Without Bynum, they're still contenders. With a healthy Bynum, they can be very good. We'll see how well Kobe holds up.

Houston (9-14 ) -- I like these guys, I really do. I see five playoff locks in the West -- Utah, OKC, Lakers, Spurs, and Mavs -- so the Rockets can grab a spot. They have to fight it out with Denver, Phoenix, New Orleans, and Memphis, and I actually like Houston as much as anyone in that group.

Clippers (5-19 ) -- Griffin is fun to watch, and Gordon is playing extremely well. If they can get Kaman back, you'd think they could play .500 ball, but they'll still be the Clippers.

Sacramento (5-16 ) -- I had hopes for this team. Alas.

Warriors (8-15 ) -- I wish I was saving the best for last. Ellis is doing his thing, Biedrins plays sometimes like more than a blip on the radar, Dorell Wright has been a nice addition, and getting David Lee back helps, but the success of this franchise for the next few years depends on how they manage Stephen Curry's ankle injury. Please shut him down long enough to heal properly, because if they bring him back too soon and he hurts it again, this could become a career-impeding (and franchise-dooming) injury.


outside,

Another well thought out opus. My thoughts, in no particular order:

1. The Lakers will be there in the playoffs. As they age it is clear they are now mirroring the design behind the Celtics. They are built for the playoffs. Everything before them is just noise. Barnes is a great addition, jury's out on Ratliffe. Is Blake really better than Farmar? Well, if you see Blake as doing Fisher's job (run to the corner and wait for the ball to shoot a 3) then yes, he is. If you're looking for a guard who can shake things up with a different tempo than your starter, then no he's not. One thing that took a hit with the replacement of Farmar with Blake is the Lakers' defense against opposing point guards. It was a weakness last year, it's a torpedo below the water line this year. My guess is that it will cost them games during the season because Phil won't want to burn Kobe out all year by putting him on the pg, but will save him for that task in the playoffs. I'd watch Pau's minutes carefully. I get browbeaten regularly by my Laker friends for saying this, but I still think he's the Lakers' MVP, not Kobe. If he wears out...

2. Rashard Lewis and Carter have their flaws, to be sure, but Dwight Howard's free throw shooting is the killer ESPECIALLY against a team whose frontcourt is as deep (read "fouls to give") as the Celtics.

3. I'm surprised by the Spurs too and I'm not ashamed to admit it. I'd like to watch more of their games to see how the hell they're doing it.

4. Jerry Sloan knows how to do it and his teams do it every year. One of the things Celtic fans crow about is how Red kept the Russell dynasty champions for 11 out of 13 years by constantly finding new talent that fit into his philosophy and system. His teams didn't have to take a few seasons to "rebuild", he was rebuilding them non-stop without having to come off the mountaintop to do it. That's Jerry Sloan. By far the best damn coach to never win a championship.

5. Back in the bad old days at BDC I used to hear posters talk about the young athleticism of Atlanta and Portland and how we traded our future for a couple of old men (Ray Allen and KG) and how those teams had a bright future. The future is now and Brandon Roy's knees (Bynum's too) are a good example of why building a team that is expected to be competitive 5 years from now is not such a hot idea. In the Lakers' case, they have so much talent they could lose a Bynum and still compete, most teams don't have that luxury (and be willing to pay the luxury tax for Bynum and for his replacement). The Hawks have not delivered on their hopes.

6. Steve Nash is living irrefutable proof of the almost irreplaceable value of a "pass first" point guard. They're doing shockingly well with nobody, just because they have Nash feeding them the ball where they like it. Gentry's doing his job well too, but it's Nash by a Canadian country mile.

7. I live in the bay area and it's hard for me to watch the Warriors. Biedrins is as soft as a grape. Ellis is a ME-baller. The success of the franchise rests on the ankle of a 2nd year player (Curry)? Yuck. I really like Reggie Williams. He's a D-league diamond-in-the-rough. Bottom line, we ain't goin' nowhere.

bob

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by steve3344 on Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:11 pm

Outside wrote:
steve3344 wrote:Kevin Love (with 18 tonight) now has nine straight games of at least 15 rebounds. Incredible.

And is averaging 17.5 rebs his last 14 games. Guess the kid can play in the NBA. There were a lot of doubters on draft day 2008.
Minnesota drafted OJ Mayo and traded him after the draft to Memphis for Kevin Love. (There were other players involved, but it was essentially a straight-up trade of Mayo for Love.)

At the time and during most of the next season, Timberwolves fans were VERY unhappy with the trade. I wonder what they'd say now.

Love now has 10 straight games of at least 15 rebounds. I'd love to know the last person to do that. I bet it's been awhile. And I bet it's probably Dennis Rodman.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by steve3344 on Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:31 pm

Knicks now highest scoring team in the league (108.5). Probably been decades (or maybe even never) since that has happened.

If we lay some defense on them tomorrow we should be allright. Hope Shaq can give us 25 minutes at least. Heard he sat out the Charlotte game so he'd be ready for this one.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by bobheckler on Mon Dec 13, 2010 7:01 pm

steve3344 wrote:Knicks now highest scoring team in the league (108.5). Probably been decades (or maybe even never) since that has happened.

If we lay some defense on them tomorrow we should be allright. Hope Shaq can give us 25 minutes at least. Heard he sat out the Charlotte game so he'd be ready for this one.

Steve,

The difference between their scoring and their defense is only 1.9 points. They have the 4th worst defense in the league, in terms of points allowed. Their rebounding differential (their rebounds/game - their opponents rebounds/game) is negative. In other words, their opponents outrebound them. Our diff is positive despite being shorthanded at center. Their fg% is worse than their opponents. We lead the league in fg%.

Welcome to Mike D'Antoni's world. The second coming of Don Nelson. The key is stopping them from running. If we can keep the fga down in the 70s-low 80s, we should win.

bob

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by Outside on Mon Dec 13, 2010 9:16 pm

bobheckler wrote:outside,

Another well thought out opus.
Actually, I just threw it together. It's mostly open-mike night at the improv with a few stats thrown in. Didn't take all that long to do. I think it's a perfect thread to add to the new "stickies" list where people can give their impressions of other teams around the league.

bobheckler wrote:Is Blake really better than Farmar?
To me, he is by a mile. I'm not a fan of Farmar, who seemed to plateau early and rely on his physical skills at the expense of the mental side of the game. He always seems a little out of control, makes too many mistakes, takes too many bad shots, and remembers his spectacular drives and thinks he's better than he really is. I've always liked Blake, back to his days in Portland. A backup should either bring energy into the game or be a steady performer, and Blake is steady (his biggest contrast to Farmar). He shoots the three and FTs better than Farmar, has a lower turnover rate per 36 minutes, and makes way fewer scratch-your-head turnovers. I like the second unit with Shannon Brown bringing the energy and Blake being steady. I haven't seen them enough, though, so I'll keep your points in mind as I watch them throughout the year. Defensively, Blake is relatively slow and doesn't keep up individually with the quicker guys, but my initial impression is that he "gets" their defensive scheme and plays good team defense. There just aren't many quick, good on-ball defenders like Rondo around the league.

bobheckler wrote:Rashard Lewis and Carter have their flaws, to be sure, but Dwight Howard's free throw shooting is the killer ESPECIALLY against a team whose frontcourt is as deep (read "fouls to give") as the Celtics.
There's no excuse for such poor free-throw shooting, but they could win despite that if they could count on their three-point shooting against elite opponents. Their whole system is built on a dominating big man who scores himself or kicks out to a shooter on the three line. Dwight's FTs are huge weakness, but to me, the one that kills them against elite opponents is that their shooters disappear under pressure. Lewis flat-out disappears. Carter throws up bricks or makes awful drives. Nelson hasn't stepped up to fill the void. Guys like Reddick and Pietrus are nice complementary players, but they need their main guys to perform, and they don't when the Celtics bring the pressure.

bobheckler wrote:Steve Nash is living irrefutable proof of the almost irreplaceable value of a "pass first" point guard. They're doing shockingly well with nobody, just because they have Nash feeding them the ball where they like it. Gentry's doing his job well too, but it's Nash by a Canadian country mile.
He's such a joy to watch. I wish more people could appreciate this guy. Watching him makes me love this game.

bobheckler wrote:I live in the bay area and it's hard for me to watch the Warriors. Biedrins is as soft as a grape. Ellis is a ME-baller. The success of the franchise rests on the ankle of a 2nd year player (Curry)? Yuck. I really like Reggie Williams. He's a D-league diamond-in-the-rough. Bottom line, we ain't goin' nowhere.
Sigh... I know. I hold out hope for the future, but for now it's bleak. Thanks for pointing out Reggie Williams -- I knew I was forgetting somebody. My hope is that Curry stays healthy and turns Monta from the dark side. I've seen times they can be quite a combo. Get a force in the middle (I know, Biedrins... sigh... ). They're the team I grew up with, so in dark times (decades?) like this, I downplay their flaws and look for hope where I realistically shouldn't. I can't help it.

Thanks Bob, as always. I hope others chime in with their viewpoints as well.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by Sam on Tue Dec 14, 2010 12:04 am

By all means, let's make it a sticky.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by bobheckler on Tue Dec 14, 2010 12:53 pm

Outside wrote:
bobheckler wrote:outside,

Another well thought out opus.
Actually, I just threw it together. It's mostly open-mike night at the improv with a few stats thrown in. Didn't take all that long to do. I think it's a perfect thread to add to the new "stickies" list where people can give their impressions of other teams around the league.

bobheckler wrote:Is Blake really better than Farmar?
To me, he is by a mile. I'm not a fan of Farmar, who seemed to plateau early and rely on his physical skills at the expense of the mental side of the game. He always seems a little out of control, makes too many mistakes, takes too many bad shots, and remembers his spectacular drives and thinks he's better than he really is. I've always liked Blake, back to his days in Portland. A backup should either bring energy into the game or be a steady performer, and Blake is steady (his biggest contrast to Farmar). He shoots the three and FTs better than Farmar, has a lower turnover rate per 36 minutes, and makes way fewer scratch-your-head turnovers. I like the second unit with Shannon Brown bringing the energy and Blake being steady. I haven't seen them enough, though, so I'll keep your points in mind as I watch them throughout the year. Defensively, Blake is relatively slow and doesn't keep up individually with the quicker guys, but my initial impression is that he "gets" their defensive scheme and plays good team defense. There just aren't many quick, good on-ball defenders like Rondo around the league.

bobheckler wrote:Rashard Lewis and Carter have their flaws, to be sure, but Dwight Howard's free throw shooting is the killer ESPECIALLY against a team whose frontcourt is as deep (read "fouls to give") as the Celtics.
There's no excuse for such poor free-throw shooting, but they could win despite that if they could count on their three-point shooting against elite opponents. Their whole system is built on a dominating big man who scores himself or kicks out to a shooter on the three line. Dwight's FTs are huge weakness, but to me, the one that kills them against elite opponents is that their shooters disappear under pressure. Lewis flat-out disappears. Carter throws up bricks or makes awful drives. Nelson hasn't stepped up to fill the void. Guys like Reddick and Pietrus are nice complementary players, but they need their main guys to perform, and they don't when the Celtics bring the pressure.

bobheckler wrote:Steve Nash is living irrefutable proof of the almost irreplaceable value of a "pass first" point guard. They're doing shockingly well with nobody, just because they have Nash feeding them the ball where they like it. Gentry's doing his job well too, but it's Nash by a Canadian country mile.
He's such a joy to watch. I wish more people could appreciate this guy. Watching him makes me love this game.

bobheckler wrote:I live in the bay area and it's hard for me to watch the Warriors. Biedrins is as soft as a grape. Ellis is a ME-baller. The success of the franchise rests on the ankle of a 2nd year player (Curry)? Yuck. I really like Reggie Williams. He's a D-league diamond-in-the-rough. Bottom line, we ain't goin' nowhere.
Sigh... I know. I hold out hope for the future, but for now it's bleak. Thanks for pointing out Reggie Williams -- I knew I was forgetting somebody. My hope is that Curry stays healthy and turns Monta from the dark side. I've seen times they can be quite a combo. Get a force in the middle (I know, Biedrins... sigh... ). They're the team I grew up with, so in dark times (decades?) like this, I downplay their flaws and look for hope where I realistically shouldn't. I can't help it.

Thanks Bob, as always. I hope others chime in with their viewpoints as well.

Outside

outside,

I'm sure I'll have plenty of opportunities to watch Blake and observe your points. On the TO side, per 36 minutes of play, Blake's assist-TO ratio is about 1.65:1 this year with LA and Farmar's is about 2.37:1 with NJ. With LA, however, Farmar's ratio was about 1.88:1. So, while Farmar's stats might have been slightly better in this area with LA, they're close. He is outperforming Blake, both in backup roles, with his current team, however. Blake's assist-turnover ratio for his career (minus this season) was 2.77:1. This year, he's tied with his lowest assists/36mpg production (he averaged 3.8 in his second year in the league too) and has his second highest turnovers in his career (he averaged 3.3 per 36 minutes in his rookie season vs 2.3 this season). His diminished assist totals can be attributed to the fact that he's not playing in a "point guard-centric" offense now, but his turnovers?

You dead right about the Orlando offense, but in crunch time, you foul Howard before the kickout (not that it matters that much since you're also dead right about the clutch shooting habits of their 3pt shooters too). That's what the Lakers did in their Finals series with the Magic and it produced a championship.

I think it'll take years before Monta comes back from the dark side. With very few exeptions, you don't get players coming straight out of high school that are complete players. Kobe wasn't, not for 10+ years. LeBust still isn't. I can't even remember the last time he actually moved without the ball on offense (I can't remember the first time either). Good luck trying to tell prodigy he "ain't all that". Don Nelson, who had seen it all as a player and as a coach, tried and failed.

bob

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by Outside on Tue Dec 14, 2010 2:38 pm

Bob,

I'll keep an eye on Blake with those stats in mind, but I think my preference for Blake over Farmar comes down to personal preference based on style more than stats.

With Monta... you guys here are so lucky to have grown up (or become adopted as) Celtic fans. As a SF/GS Warrior fan, I've been wandering the championship desert since that one glorious championship in 1975. I gotta have some shred of hope. LOL.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by bobheckler on Tue Dec 14, 2010 6:46 pm

Outside wrote:Bob,

I'll keep an eye on Blake with those stats in mind, but I think my preference for Blake over Farmar comes down to personal preference based on style more than stats.

With Monta... you guys here are so lucky to have grown up (or become adopted as) Celtic fans. As a SF/GS Warrior fan, I've been wandering the championship desert since that one glorious championship in 1975. I gotta have some shred of hope. LOL.

Outside

There's absolutely nothing wrong with liking a player just because you admire the cut of their jib. From a chemistry perspective picking up a player that fits well into your system is what most coaches want and Blake, by having a similar game to Fisher, is just that.

That might have something to do with what you prefer about him. He fits in, while Farmar is apparently fitting in well in New Jersey's non-triangle system.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by jeb on Tue Dec 14, 2010 8:56 pm

does it seem like the lakers play the nets or the wizards every night?
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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by steve3344 on Wed Dec 15, 2010 8:08 am

Latest foreclosure victim - Dr. J. Unbelievable.

http://www.tmz.com/2010/12/15/dr-j-julius-erving-foreclosure-house-utah-underwater-mortgage-nba/

Looks like losing his house is a slam dunk.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by bobheckler on Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:51 pm

Rip Hamilton of Detroit is unhappy and would like a trade.

He'll be 33 in February. What's he worth?

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by Outside on Tue Dec 21, 2010 8:52 pm

About $2.87? (Sorry, I couldn't resist.)

Bad joke aside, he's a quality veteran who could back up the 2 or 3 and fill in as a starter, if needed. I've always like the way he plays, which reminds me of Ray and Havlicek -- he gains an advantage because he never stops moving. Quick release on the curl off a screen, just like Ray. Willing to work, smart, and probably would gladly accept a diminished role to get a chance at another championship.

Two questions:

1. What do the Celtics want? If they make a move, what kind of player are they looking for? It seems to me that a backup for Ray and Pierce would be a good acquisition. But they will have limited moves available, and they may have something else in mind.

2. Who would Detroit take in return? The Celtics would have to part with someone. Hamilton's contract is for $12.6 million, and I don't know how it would work from a cap standpoint since these deals wind up being three-team, eight-player contortions that include draft picks and the towel boy mowing somebody's lawn on Saturdays. Purely from a basketball standpoint, who do the Celtics trade? Somehow, I don't think the Pistons will take Hamilton for Wafer. Perk? West? Harangody?

To me, Hamilton would be a great pickup. The dicey aspect is who you part with.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by jeb on Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:19 am

watchin the lakes struggle at home agin the bucks...boy do they remind me of us last year, lotta lazy 3's and bad body language.
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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by jeb on Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:29 am


the bucks have a total hospital squad out there missin a bunch of starters, lakers playing turble d.
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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by jeb on Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:48 am

the lakers are gettin housed at home by the bucks bench, kobe just got called for an obvious charge and walked OFF THE COURT TO THE LOCKER ROOM! Wow...there's alotta trouble in lakerland
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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

Post by steve3344 on Wed Dec 22, 2010 1:43 am

Lakers lose by 19 at home to a Bucks team minus Brandon Jennings? No Drew Gooden or Corey Maggette either. Bucks had only 9 healthy players. Yikes. Didn't see the game but when Earl Boykins (off the bench no less) outscores Kobe (22-21) you know you're in trouble.

Artest had another meltdown game: 4 points (2-7 shooting), 1 rebound, 0 assists in 23 1/2 minutes.

Fisher had one of his all-too-often 1 for 6 games. And no starter other than Odom had more than 2 assists.

Key to the game was Milwaukee hitting 8 of 14 threes while LA was 2 for 13. There's your 18 point difference in a 19 point loss.

You could understand a game like this on the road but it's a shock to see them do it at home.

Lakers now a rather pedestrian 8-6 their last 14 games.

First game at home after a long road trip bites another team in the ass.

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Re: Random thoughts from around the league (An Onging Thread)

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