Defense. It’s All About Defense.

Kurt —  December 10, 2009

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The Jazz scored just six points in the fourth quarter last night. The Lakers went on a 20-point run and the Jazz couldn’t buy a basket. How does that happen?

First, the big key was rebounding. In the first half the Jazz grabbed 50% of their missed shots for an offensive rebound, the Lakers were complacent and on the glass was where it showed. When things got going in the fourth quarter, the Lakers took care of the boards.

But there was more to it. Here is a breakdown of the first 14 possessions the Jazz had in the fourth quarter, which culminated in two points. As you will see, it was a variety of factors.

• Eric Maynor is being hounded by Farmar out high, but he drives to his left (Farmar sticks with him) then kicks out to Boozer for a wide open 15 footer on the baseline, which barely hits the rim. Boozer just flat out missed that one.

• The Jazz work the ball through some options but the Lakers don’t allow anything to develop, so it ends out up at the top of the key with Farmar switched onto CJ Miles, who decides to attack the mismatch and drive. He gets an okay look but misses a 12-foot runner late in the clock.

• The Jazz run on a Lakers miss and get the ball to Boozer down low (who had pulled a Bynum and ran down to get early deep position), Odom defends it well so Boozer passes to Milsap cutting through the lane, who is fouled by Bynum. He hits both free throws, so there are your two points.

• CJ Miles tries to isolate on Sasha, does a good job driving and gets a 10-foot runner but misses again. At this point maybe CJ should stop with the runners.

• The Jazz pass the ball to Boozer at the elbow and he makes a beautiful bounce pass to Mathews who is cutting the baseline. Bynum rotates quickly and his length causes Mathews to switch to a reverse layup, which he misses. This is why it is good to have a guy with a 7’6” wingspan protecting the rim.

• Eric Maynor comes off the top of the key pick from Boozer and gets to the elbow wide open the misses the pull up jumper from 15. That was about Maynor not yet finding his shot in the NBA.

• After a time out, Maynor has the ball on the wing and passes to Mathews coming off a weakside pick, and he has a wide open17 footer, which he misses. The Jazz youngsters are crumbling, so they stop going to them and rely on the guys that count from here on.

• D-Will gets some room to operate after Farmar gambles on a steal, but he has so many options he stops and starts his dribble while deciding and gets the carry-over call.

• No hesitation this time, D-Will drives on Farmar, who defends it well so there’s a kick-out pass to an open Millsap just past the free throw line, who misses the open 16-footer. We need to say here what a great job Farmar did defending the very strong Williams, a guy who gave him trouble in the past. This was maybe Farmar’s best defensive game as a Laker.

• Boozer gets the ball 10-feet out off the right block with Bynum on him, he faces up and tries to shoot a jumper over Bynum but has to adjust the shot with so much arc he airballs it. When it mattered the Lakers went with Bynum on Boozer and Odom/Gasol on Okur, and that matchup really worked.

• The Jazz post up Deron on Farmar on the block, but when Deron goes for a little step-back shot Farmar makes a great play and blocks it. The Jazz recover and try to reset, but they never really get going under some pressure defense and it’s a shot clock violation.

• Boozer gets the ball at the free throw line and again tries the face up jumper over Bynum. He misses again. But the Lakers throw the ball out of bounds trying to run off a rebound they never really controlled. On the reset Okur gets the ball on the low block and kicks out to a wide-open Brewer 17 footer that rims out.

• The Jazz are being harassed and can’t get set up, so D-Will drives and once inside hands off to Okur, who is surrounded, can’t get the handle, tries to go up but drops the ball, grabs it, and by that time we have another 24 second violation. Great defense from the Lakers.

• The Jazz again are having a hard time getting set up, so they go to Brewer coming off a high pick from Okur, but Odom steps out and the Lakers trap him, so Brewer throws a late, desperation pass back out of it that Farmar easily picks off.

Kurt

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55 responses to Defense. It’s All About Defense.

  1. So everyone knows, there seems to be a glitch with the new comment editing software, so when we get to about 200 comments in a thread it freaks out (I think that is the tech term). I’m trying to find a fix, and in the short term will start new comment threads when needed.

  2. That defense yesterday was so smothering yet beautiful. I was so giddy the whole time i was watching..

    OT – Nothing Shaq says should be taken seriously, the “star” he is playing with at the moment is always the best. – http://sports.espn.go.com/nba/news/story?id=4731136

  3. I went to bed towards the end of the 3rd quarter last night (I was tired from shoveling out of my driveway which took 3 hrs. I need to move somewhere warm after I finish my Ph.D), too bad because I missed some good basketball by the Lakers apparently.

  4. Earlier in the game Stu talked about how disciplined Jerry Sloan teams are in running their offensive sets and not breaking out of them. This makes the 3 shot clock violations in the fourth that much more special.

    Missing shots is one thing, shot clock violations are just hard to get in the NBA.

  5. Totally agee with you Gathinho. 3, count ‘em, THREE shot clock violations forced in crunch time. Man oh man that was awesome to watch.

    We seem to be doing to teams what the C’s did to us in the finals a couple of years ago. (Which they also did to many other teams on their title run). Turn 10 point leads into 20 point leads in the blink of an eye. I find myself going “whoa, what just happened” and rewinding the DVR a bit to digest it. This has been fun to watch!

  6. i’m not too giddy about the game. although the laker defense contributed to the win in a real and meaningful way, so did utah’s preference for jumpshots.

    hopefully the jazz will be healthier and more determined to attack on saturday night. the earlier the Lakers realize their vulnerabilities, the more time there is to address them.

    how about lamar? -11 at the close of the 1st half, +21 at the close of the 2nd.

  7. 6. – I agree – credit a great suffocating defense, but I saw the Jazz take some pretty horrible shots. Now, it can be argued that they were forced to take those shots, but in my humble opinion, at least part of them seemed like plain old poor decisions.

    Lakergirl- I read that story earlier and had the exact same thoughts. Nothing to see there, move along.

    I’ll leave you guys with this gem from David Thorpe – “If Gallo was a Cav, Cleveland would be the best team in basketball.” You know, between him and Hollinger, I wonder if I will ever understand basketball as an “expert.”

  8. I think part of the point of this exercise was that in addition to good Lakers defense, the Jazz took some bad shots and missed some wide open ones. They helped out.

  9. I love the attention Ron-Ron gets for his D, as it is a pleasure to watch the man utterly frustrate his man with his strength and smarts, but dang, the pic up top highlights the difference. We saw it last year. When Bynum is healthy we have an elite defense.

    If I can make a request for one of the basketball intellectuals here, I’m noticing that the perimeter players are feeling much more comfortable pressuring ball handlers and seem to be even more blatant in taking away one side or the other of the drive. Having Gasol and Bynum behind them permits this aggression to stand (shout out to the Dude Abides). It must feel like you’re being ambushed out there with a perfectly huge lane open to you and once that path is taken being enveloped by the perimeter player bodying up and attacking the ball down low and at least one 7-footer forcing you to put extra arch on a shot, or jumping to pass. Could somebody perhaps discuss what defense is being played as it looks quite different from last season’s. Could this season’s defense (in terms of style and numbers) be compared to last season and then perhaps the defense played in front of Shaq in the first two season of the 3-Peats? One difference I can easily see is that both Pau and Drew are more willing to extend their defensive responsibilities further from the basket and Pau looks relatively comfortable covering a little guy up top as well.

    One last observation. Is there a better post feeder on the team then Pau? He is just so long, uses his wrist with such dexterity and changes rhythm so subtly that there seems to be no angle he’s unable to take advantage of when he’s getting the ball to a man on the block. This is a team of Swiss Army Swords.

  10. funny thing to me was that it seemed to turn around near the end of the third when we had some bench on the floor, and we expanded this at the start of the 4th and Kobe was still on the bench.

    also, I was pretty surprised at how soon Sloan threw in the towel, says something about how tough the D was last night.

  11. @chris h: I’m not surprised, the Lakers were up something like 18 points with four minutes to go, and Utah’s playing Orlando (at home) tonight–at a certain point, you have to concede the loss and rest your starters for a night of travel and a game in 21 hours’ time, or you might as well concede tonight’s game too.

    That being said, I’d rather see competition for 48 minutes, but don’t have any problems with blowout wins. :)

    The Jazz may look back on a game like this as a serious missed opportunity at the end of the season, if the West is bunched like it was a few seasons ago–one game separating the 3-6 seeds.

  12. on the last theread there was some talk about this years squad vs. the 2001 squad. comment 9 touched on something that made me think a little.

    Drew and Pau as compared to Shaq are more mobile and willing extend their defensive range. In today’s game with all the hand check rules, they have to be. Which makes me think that today’s Laker squad is better built for todays rules than the 2001 squad would have been. Fox and Fisher (even Kobe) are at their best defensively when they can get physical on the perimeter, which made them suffocating. All Shaq had to do was protect the paint and scare people away from the rim.

    With the new rules, Fish gets burned, Kobe has to work extra hard, even Artest is at a disadvantage with quicker guards. That makes the length and mobility of our big men so critical to our success. Kupchak built one heck of a team, man.

    Also, in relation to last night’s game, aside from the defensive lockdown, I loved what Kobe did toward the end of the 3rd quarter in the paint. Drew and Pau were struggling down low and had turned the ball over on successive poseesions, so Kobe took over and made some baskets that looked soooo easy. Then, the doubles started coming and he began dishing to LO and Farmar for easy looks. From there we just took off. Its moments like that when Kobe shows that he is a legendary player. A guy who can change the game at any moment.

  13. Thanks P. Ami, for that post. I’ve been wondering the same thing about our defense this year. Obviously I expected it to change with Ron Artest walking into the line-up, and being able to lock onto a player on the opposing team. I also expected changes from the fact that Kobe would be able to roam and help other defenders more, but it seems there are more changes happening that I don’t quite understand. Either everyone else on the team has become better at playing defense as a result of practicing with Artest every day, or they’ve switched to some sort of secret defense-increasing vitamin water formula.

    I think Sloan threw in the towel the way he did because he knew that he and his team have to go back home to face the Magic tonight. He decided after watching the start of the 4th quarter last night, that yesterday’s game was not a winnable one and made the decision to rest the starters early, to save their legs for tonight’s home game.

    Just speculation, but it makes sense to me.

  14. Jazz fan here. Great analysis in the OP and comments. I concur that it was a combination of very good defense by the Lakers and the Jazz settling for low-percentage 2-pt FGs.

    The Jazz really need some leadership from someone in situations like that. A more experienced team would look to drive to the basket, make some contact and force the officials to call *something* rather than just settle for outside shots.

    The Jazz coaches and players talk a lot about “executing the offense” — and you can see why: this isn’t a team of jump shooters.

    I for one am actually glad Sloan threw in the towel when he did. We’re too used to seeing him play his starters in games like this until the 45 second mark.

  15. Bynum seems to have a greater grasp of where he needs to be on defense, and that’s made a huge difference. There was one play last night where he was forced to close out on a guard outside and he just ran toward the player (I forget which Jazz it was) with both arms straight up. Totally altered the shot, thanks to the hustle.

    That’s just one example of how he’s closing out more. He’s showing more on the pick and roll D, too.

    And most importantly, thanks to his newfound status as a burgeoning All-Star he’s getting the veterans’ treatment from the refs — they respect him, realize fans pay to see him play, so he seems to get the benefit of the doubt, as opposed to in the past when seemingly anything he did was whistled.

    Artest has helped a lot, but Bynum’s progress has been the key.

  16. In case you haven’t seen it: Kobe leads all players so far in All Star votes. He would be one starting West guard, the other would be…. TMac. Seriously.

    Bynum is in second among West centers behind Amare. Gasol is third in forward voting.

  17. T Mac as a starter shows that the NBA All-Star game/ weekend continues its free fall into absurdity.

  18. the fan vote should be reduced to 2 players per conference. and TMac should give his spot up if voted in, to a coach’s decision pick.

  19. Out of curiosity — why, exactly, do we bother to discuss the All-Star voting?

    We know the issue here.

  20. I’m seriously tempted to start votetmac.com or something like that. Nothing would be more awesome than TMac being an All-Star game starter while having played as many NBA games this season as I have.

  21. blame it on the chinese

  22. TMac? When was the last time he was healthy for more than a month? I think Nash deserves the second guard spot. The guy has been playing great so far this year and the Suns have a better record than the Hornets, Jazz or Blazers. The forwards should be Nowitzki and Camello (they probably will get voted in, though you can make strong case for Pau) and the center should be Drew I guess (are there any other worthy center West? Maybe Amare if you consider him a C).

  23. Sigh, the China effect. So T-Mac could be the starting guard along with Kobe although he has not played at all this season, and Amare could start at center although he has played zero games at center this season.

    Can we write in a name? votekurthelin.com anyone? He’s averaging the same as Tmac at guard and Amare at center. How’s your game looking these days Kurt?

  24. I don’t understand why they have injured players (Tmac) that haven’t even played one game this season on the Allstar ballot.

    Regarding the Laker’s defense: Last night in the 4th quarter it was pretty fun to watch. But overall they have played alot of home games and teams just play better at home. Don’t get me wrong they are a strong road team and I expect them to do well, but there will be some drop off there.

    IMO I think the major thing they need to work on right now is defensive rebounding. It’s nice to see Andrew beat his man on the break on offense but they really need to make sure to secure the basketball. Drew had ZERO rebounds for far too long last night. With the lakers length they should be killing other teams on the glass, but really haven’t been doing so. Not sure with all the switching on defense they do if it gets them out of position for rebounds but something needs to be worked on there.

  25. speaking of controversies, how about the top chef finale? i was pleased kevin was recognized for staying true to himself, and i was pleased michael was recognized for his imaginative, gutty cooking.

    i thought Brian should have won, though. He challenged himself and went outside his comfort zone(unlike Kevin) and he executed down the stretch(unlike his brother) while displaying a little creativity.

  26. TMAC! OMG. There’s either 200k+ morons out there who have no idea that T-MAC has played 0 games all year OR somebody’s getting paid to vote.

    What a joke. This online voting and texting is ruining the game. I mean, c’mon. Are fans just voting on names they recognize?

    Also, why in the world is T-Mac on the list in the first place? When was the last time he played a game?

  27. Pau and Andrew are not true rebounders. They wait for the ball instead of going and getting it. I sometimes see LO doing this too, but he seems more attuned to movement. Drew picks up rebounds because of his length and soft hands, not any hard nosed effort on the glass.

  28. Is T-Mac expected to still be out by AllStar Weekend? If not, it seems only fair to put him on the ballot.

    And yes Manny,fans vote for the listed players that play on their teams, and then they start voting for familiar names. :)

  29. I’m not so sure about Amar’e being a center, but I know that Channing Frye is not a center. So yea, with a starting lineup of Steve Nash, Jason Richardson, Grant Hill, Amar’e Stoudemire, and Channing Frye, I’m gonna have to go with Amar’e at center.

    The thing is, I’m not so sure that Bynum isn’t already better than Amar’e.

    Amar’e – 19 pts, 7.6 boards, 1 assist, 1 block per game
    TBH – 18 pts, 9.4 rebounds, 1.3 assists, 1.5 blocks per game

    1 more point, 2 less rebounds, and less assists than The friggin Black Hole? Plus Phoenix plays at a faster pace. Can’t really say that Amar’e is clearly better than TBH.

  30. Kurt, I need a funny favor. I am a faculty member at Stanford, and a long-standing Laker fan from my time as a Professor at USC. I am currently on sabbatical, helping twitter with their algorithmic/monetization strategy. Both Jeannie’s account and letshannondunk are beautifully run, and I would love to understand how they run letshannondunk in particular — how many people, use if any automated tools etc. Is there any way you could introduce me? My email address is on my home page, and my twitter account is ashishgoel. I follow Jeannie, letshannondunk, and forumblueandgold so you can also DM me.

  31. T Mac won’t start. The same thing happened recently – was it last year with Gilbert Arenas? I don’t recall. Fans will eventually recognize what’s going on.

    Also, TBH and Pau will definitely play as all-star reserves.

  32. Great Defense last night. A lot of people ask what the defense that seemed different last night, but I don’t know if it is a completely different defensive scheme this year. From the games I’ve watched, they still do the overload defender on the strong side of the ball and rotate out. The weaknesses usually were usually in pick and roll defense, but this year seems to be better.
    I will say that the Jazz’s inability to make shots in the second half really made the defense scramble harder. The Jazz did a lot of the same pick and roll in the first half and a wing player, usually Gasol, would leave Okur to help in the middle, leaving Okur or another Jazz player open in the corner. In the first half, Jazz players hit those shots (prompting fans a few rows above me yelling “Don’t leave him open in the corner!” “I’m telling you, don’t leave that man open in the corner.” In the second half those shots were not going down for the Jazz and that fan was no longer yelling.
    The defense was great last night and the game plan was consistent for the game. The difference from the first half and the second half was the rebounding. Way too many offensive rebounds for the Jazz in the first half.

  33. You know there’s been a lot of talk about Lakers soft schedule with home games. Let’s just use Boston as an comparison since they’ve played 10 games on the road. But 3 of their 4 losses have come at home. The other loss came on the second night of a B2B at Indy.

    A quick look at their schedule shows that out of their 17 wins, 10 have come from. 4 wins agains Phi and Char. 1 each against NO, Chi, MN, NJ, NY and GS. All those wins when those bad teams were playing even worse.

    In contrast, Lakers “soft” wins are NO twice, GS, NY, NJ and Chi.

    I’m not even including common opponents. Such as Phx and Memph.

    I’m not completely buying that Boston has had a tremendously tougher schedule. Tougher on the road and they’ve had more. But overall, is it exponentially tougher?

  34. I think the Shaq comments on Lebron are funny. I’m pretty sure that for all intents and purposes Lebron already is the coach.

    Mike Brown takes constant flak for the lack of an offense on that team, and Lebron lets him take that flack, but according to other scouts and former players (Eric Snow on ESPN’s NBA Podcast the other day confirmed this) the Cavs run a lot of plays that all end up with Lebron with the ball in his hands 30 feet from the basket.

    If Lebron is such a brilliant basketball mind, why is this the case?

  35. Speaking of defense, how the hell did I not hear about this?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H2PfKvQwehk&feature=player_embedded

    @35 couple that with all we glean from the Eric Snow interview on Monday’s NBA Today and we might argue that the media might do a little more hyping of the NBA then covering the NBA. Maybe? That btw, does not apply to the podcast I spoke of.

  36. @P.Ami
    You can’t see it from that angle but there was definitely a little off arm shove by Stucky, and Iverson tried to exaggerate it. He got crossed up but it wasn’t as brutal as it looks in that clip.

  37. 35, 36
    It look like AI was hit by a sniper. Geez

  38. The Lakers rebound with the length and fundamental box outs of Gasol and Bynum plus Lamar who can go and get rebounds but doesn’t box out well. But those three together on the same team equals the best rebounding team in the NBA. I mean you have 3 guys avg almost 10 rpg. I wouldn’t complain too much about our rebounding.

  39. @ j.d hastings

    I think you might even be too generous saying that LeBron ends up with the ball 30 feet from the basket, maybe closer to 45 feet away.

    He seems to regularly backpedal all the way out to the halfway line corners to rev up for a cannonball crusade to the rim.

  40. Regarding the Cavs.. I’m starting to wonder if Mike Brown is allowed to run anything but LeBron-initiated plays. LeBron is a God in that city, I’m not sure if Mike Brown has the freedom to truly coach there.

  41. A fine example of how bad the Cavs offense is run, Charles would say it’s “turrible”, was during the Houston game where Lebron backed up within inches of mid court to set up a play. I even thought the ref was shocked to see so far back there.

  42. I’m liking LeBron less and less with each passing day.

    That “camera” crap last year was bush league, as was his tantrum after the Magic toppled the Cavs in the playoffs.

    Over the summer the world was subjected to a movie about how great he was in high school. Spare us.

    Then he did that Nike-driven “No one should wear 23 because of MJ” press stunt, followed by the infamous classless dance act against the Bulls the other day.

    That little fake riot the did in the tunnel before taking the court vs. the Bulls was awful too. What better way to bolster the NBA’s image than to have a guy pretending to kick someone in the head as he lay sprawled out on the ground, a la that classic shot of DeNiro kicking Billy Batts in “GoodFellas”?

    The Cavs carry on like their in ninth-grade, with LeBron as their ringleader.

    (Cue a Bill Simmons column on how LeBron’s better than Kobe because his teammates like him and goof around with him, while Kobe’s teammates all secretly hate him, because the voices in Bill’s head say so.)

  43. hahaha “cannonball crusade” ftw

  44. As much grief as we give Hollinger, I’ve always respected his statistical evaluation of teams and players (his early acknowledgement of pace, etc.) , although I do believe he tends to exaggerate the importance of his stats when evaluating teams. There are factors that don’t get included in the evaluations that limit their effectiveness (head-to-head matchups, garbage-time point differential, etc.). That being said, he rates the Top 12 young big men (age 25 & under) in the NBA. Dwight Howard is #1, Al Jefferson #3, Brook Lopez #4, Marc Gasol #5. Guess who’s #2…our friend Andrew Bynum.

    “Injuries are the only lingering concern with Bynum; he missed big chunks of the past two seasons with knee problems. Nonetheless, he’s such a factor when he’s on the court that it’s impossible to place him lower than second. Bynum owns a soft touch around the rim, shooting 56.7 percent for his career while averaging a point every two minutes this season and last. That makes him one of the league’s top low-post threats. Additionally, he’s a deft passer from the block who can burn double-teams.

    Bynum, 22, may provide even more value at the defensive end, where his size and mobility transform the Lakers from a decent defensive squad into a dominant one. L.A. was an elite unit prior to his injury a season ago. With him back in the lineup, the Lakers are doing it again, ranking second in the NBA in defensive efficiency.”

    I’d have to agree with Hollinger on this one, although Andrew isn’t quite the passer that Hollinger says he is. Andrew’s defense on pick and rolls and his close-outs on jump shooters have really improved this season. He still needs to defend the rim better, but that will come with continued experience.

  45. Have not been able to watch many games this season due to work so I am hoping to get some help on this. I looked up the PER numbers for the Laker point guards this year and based on that STAT is looks like Farmer is much improved this year. Is that truly the case? If thoughts on what the difference is?

  46. Jeremy, this piece in the times explains a lot about Jordy’s improvement this season and of course it being a contract year is a great motivator for anyone (see Sasha).

    http://lakersblog.latimes.com/lakersblog/2009/12/jordan-farmar-whose-solid-play-of-late-is-undoubtedly-the-result-of-mental-adjustments-and-acceptance-of-his-role-which-has.html

    I’m glad for Farmar’s improvement though this piece confirms for me that he’s not the right pg for this team moving forward, especially if the Lakers continue playing the Tri.

    I suspect that he’ll probably revert back to the over-confident stubborn player that he was last year where he insisted on playing his game and refused to play his role in the tri. He’s pretty strong headed and would probably revert back to complaining if he got a contract deal with the Lakers. It’s one thing if you’re Kobe Bryant wondering about your role, it’s another when you’re a young inconsistent non-all star pg. We don’t need another stubborn player who won’t play within the system unless it’s a contract year.

    I do hope that he continues his strong play so that he helps the team overall, but also so that he increases his value when the trade deadline comes around. I think it’ll benefit both the team and Farmar to move him for someone that fits better.

  47. I’m not complaining, but when A-Ron goes to the rim, he sure has Herman Munster feet.

  48. Lakers&DodgersFan December 10, 2009 at 6:03 pm

    You’re correct about Farmar, magic. His playing has been consistently good every night. I don’t think we could get much out of trading Jordy, though. Who do you think we could trade him for?

  49. #38 Aaron

    I think the Lakers have the potential to be much better than they are at rebounding. But right now they aren’t. According to Hollinger’s stats the Lakers are 21st overall in Defensive rebounding rate. Just using last night as an example even if the Lakers shoot over 50% and hold their opponents to 40% or below the other team can still be in the game if they give up countless offensive rebounds. As was shown last night in the first half.

    Just nitpicking I guess since this team has so few flaws.

  50. I must say that Yung Farmar’s play has improved this year. But time will ony tell if he has truly turned the corner on being a team player, and not auditioning for a new team next year. A contract year can skew the worth of a player(ex. Sasha), so it would be wise to view this situation as a wait and see. If LA wins it all this year, Farmar will have two rings and will be wanting to find his place in the league as a starting top point in the show.

  51. 48. Trade speculations aren’t allowed according to Kurt’s rules and he does rule this site. But come January Kurt may just allow us to do a little armchair gm play. Till then, let’s just hope Farmar keeps playing well. Maybe it’ll rub off on Sasha.

  52. Just a note, you can catch about 30 seconds of me talking Lakers defense tonight on the ESPN Radio NBA Night Broadcast. The pregame show starts at 7, I have no idea where my segment falls in that. But if you’re bored. (There’s also a new post to promo it, but you can keep the discussion going here.)

  53. 44, Dude….

    “…although Andrew isn’t quite the passer that Hollinger says he is.”

    Understatement.

    And none of our guys are truly great position rebounders. Pau, Andrew, and Lamar all rely on their length and athleticism to get rebounds. How many times have we seen Andrew/Pau rebound a ball when completely out of position just because of their height. Guys like Dennis Rodman and Ben Wallace were great position rebounders, because they didn’t have the size and athleticism. Offensive rebounding is mostly about athleticism; defensive rebounding is mostly about positioning. The fact that our defensive rebound rate is so poor indicates that we are a poor position rebounding team. Luckily, our guys are so athletic, our defense has been so good, that it hasn’t come back to kill us yet.

  54. Rebounding will take care of itself soon, I think we’re at the stage where we are more concerned that the shot doesn’t fall in the first place, chasing people outside and all.

    Also, some of those rebounds are those that were blocked and picked up, although only a tiny tiny portion ;) In a way, the fact that our bigs get so little rebounds kinda make me think they’re sacrificing individual stats for team defense.

    Okay, maybe not.

    Still, if they can force a miss, I’m much more lenient about not getting the ensuing rebound, even if it ends up being put-back, since with our offensive firepower, eating clock can’t be bad for us.

  55. “Herman Munster feet”- hilarious, and I agree.