Usually, when an NBA team has a day off, there isn’t much to talk about, discuss or debate. However, this isn’t always the case with the Lakers simply because the team features one of the most talked about, discussed and debated athletes of the past 15 years. He’s the culmination of success and failure, he’s liked and disliked. This is why, on a down Wednesday, there were several stories about his most recent game winner, how to stop him, and how his fans are sensitive.
The Los Angeles Times has chronicled all of Bryant’s game winning shots, and TrueHoop’s Henry Abbot had a post yesterday arguing that Kobe Bryant, despite what some of the crunch time or clutch stats say, is the best clutch shooter in the NBA:
Through the years, there have been many different sets of data about clutch shooting. Any which way I have ever seen it sliced (last five minutes of close games to last ten seconds), as I have written on TrueHoop before, it has looked like Kobe Bryant has been a guy who shoots a ton in crunch time, and hits at a pretty good, but not elite, rate.
I’m open to the idea that he could still be the best clutch player in the NBA. At that time of the game, there’s value in being able to create scoring opportunities. Bryant may shoot those difficult fallaways that often miss, but he’d be a far worse player if he couldn’t get a shot off at all. And that’s the situation some lesser players would find themselves in.
Quite honestly, I think the real way to crown a crunch time king would be with video. Somebody should make a TV special where they string together every crunch time touch of the handful of elite end-game players (Bryant, LeBron James, Chris Paul, Carmelo Anthony etc.) If we want to tell the world that somebody is the most likely to succeed in a certain setting, let’s take an honest and complete look at how they do in that setting. Show me the turnovers, the misses and all that. Let everyone watch all of that video — not just the makes! — and at the end of that I think we’ll end up with a good sense of who’s the best.
Austin Burton of Dime Magazine had a recent post on how to stop Kobe in clutch situations, and made it sound incredibly easy. However, as Kobe has shown us six (or seven depending on who you ask) times, talking about stopping Kobe and actually doing it are two completely different things:
Watching Kobe Bryant plunge another spear into the heart of another seemingly helpless opponent the other night, what struck me most wasn’t the degree of difficulty on Kobe’s Jordan-esque corner fadeaway, nor the sunken shoulders of the Toronto Raptors the moment the ball touched the net — even though they technically still had a shot to win the game.
What struck me most was Kobe’s reaction. Or better yet, his non-reaction. While even the coolest young guns like Kevin Durant and Brandon Roy still punctuate their game-winners with Scarface sneers and enthusiastic jersey-popping, 31-year-old Kobe treats his game-winners like he just finished a round of pinochle. And more and more, it seems opposing coaches and defenders have resigned themselves to the idea that Kobe is going to get where he wants for the shot he wants; they can only pray he misses.
You’ve heard it from enough TV analysts and writers: “There’s nothing you can do” against Kobe and the NBA’s other elite clutch scorers when it comes to a last-shot situation. Too bad it isn’t true.
Also, Eddie Maisonet of Ed The Sports Fan had a post about the five most sensitive sports franchises. Teams like the Yankees and Cowboys made the list, but the Lakers were at the top of the list – as #1a to Kobe’s #1. At the end of his Lakers section, he decided to “make an amendment” and added Kobe fans as the most sensitive fans on the planet. Just know, that Ed doesn’t just hate the Lakers, he loathes them and every other storied franchise in any sport (just scroll down the list and read the names). Also, he once said he’d “like to jab Kobe in his sleep.”:
#1. Kobe Stans – There is no debate, its over. Kobe Stans are THE MOST SENSITIVE fans of all-time. From their desire to blasphemously say that Kobe’s better than Jordan, to making up any and every excuse in the world for all the dastardly deeds the man has done in the past can make Kobe’s fanbase as truculent as they come. Its hard to be a fan of Kobe’s, but if you are a fan you’ve got to go all in. Because its people like Kenny and myself who have a major dislike for Kobe that will pounce at every chance we can on Kobe. We shouldn’t, but we do. Would Kobe Stans be as sensitive if Kobe wasn’t THAT damned good? Of course not, but it comes with the territory. However, you don’t see that sensitivity when it comes to LeBron fans do you?
The point is this with all of these teams (and player) that I’ve listed, they are damned good. There’s a sense of envy, hate, jealously, and ignorance that is exchanged between folks when they speak ill will against your favorite team. Thus the defense mechanisms come up and the sensitivity eeks out.
Outside of Kobe, Lamar Odom has also been receiving a lot of attention after saying the Lakers “aura comes off like, soft,” is his post game interview after the Toronto game. It’s nice to see players outside of Kobe unhappy with their win over the Raptors and their overall play this season. From Land O’ Lakers:
“We’ve got dudes on the Raptors talking (trash),” he said, noting Toronto hasn’t exactly arrived as an NBA powerhouse. “But our disposition as a team gives some of these young cats, these dudes, the right. They feel like they got the right. A couple of dudes talking to me today, if I’d have talked to Charles Oakley like one of those dudes like that, I probably would have been smacked in my face.”
The smack talk happens because over the season’s first 65 games the Lakers played with too little focus, too cavalier an attitude. “It’s given these teams like a quiet confidence, where they think they can beat us,” Odom continued. “They start talking and carrying on. Extra animated, even when they come here. I don’t expect that. The respect level, it seems like we’ve got to take it from teams.”
“(They’re) way too confident against us.”
The season didn’t start this way, he noted. “I felt like we were [taking it to teams] at the beginning of the year,” he said. Odom then made a sound almost like a steam engine, driving and pushing relentlessly, demonstrating how they attacked teams. “(Opponents) are like, “Man, it’s too hard.”
Whatever it was the Lakers had, that extra edge of a champion causing the opposition to flinch at important times, Odom said it was gone. “Now, at this point of the season, teams watching are like “Yeah, we can beat (those guys.)”
Also, Lamar Odom sat down with um… lamarodom.com for a one on one interview about himself. As pretentious as it sounds, it’s actually a good, interesting read.
SLAMOnline’s Todd Spehr has a review of Roland Lazenby’s book about Jerry West. I think it’s about time for me to go pick up my copy.
Finally, I’ll leave you with this post from Knickerblogger on Magic Johnson, who they named the greatest point guard of the modern era.
Prior to his arrival the Lakers had been an average team, their last championship had been Wilt’s 1972 team. During Magic’s tenure the team averaged 59 wins per season, and he was critical to the team’s success. In his rookie season, Johnson stepped in at center for an injured Kareem in the Finals. He scored 42 points, grabbed 15 rebounds, and dished out 7 assists bringing home the Laker’s first title in 8 years. When Jordan retired the first time, the Bulls still won 55 games the year after. After Magic hung them up, the Lakers only managed 43 wins. While the Lakers of the 1980s were a deep team, without Magic Johnson they weren’t a title contender.
For those who are fortunate to witness Johnson play, it’s hard to believe he was so efficient given his flashy style. Magic featured no look passes, going behind his back, spin moves, and long bounce passes. Usually players of that sort suffer from falling in love with the spectacular move that they loose track of how inefficient these kinds of plays are. But not Johnson. He was seemingly omniscient in the half court and lethal in transition. Johnson always found a way to get the ball to the open man and was the engine that fueled the offense. Additionally Magic brought a million dollar smile and a joie de vivre to the game, which made him likable on a national level.
Jim C. says
Um…why did you trick me into reading a Henry Abbot article? I clicked it to find proof that he had finally abandoned his Kobe hating ways…and frankly it is the opposite.
He’s the master of the backhanded compliment. Never will you hear him give unqualified praise for Kobe. For every, “Kobe has hit 7 game winners this year” you’ll see a comment to the type of “but if you look closely at a broader set of statistics…” garbage.
Granted, this article was a little kinder than most. But what else can Abbot say without looking like the complete tool that he is?
Speaking of Magic (who unfortunately I never got to see play seeing as I didn’t start watching basketball till the late 90s and I was only 8 when he retired), did anyone watch HBO documentary about Magic and Bird. It was really good. It was fascinating to see how much they hated each other on the court and how they pushed each other to always be better. How Bird would always check Magic’s stat line to see how he stacked up. How after Magic retired, the game lost something for BIrd because their wasn’t that person he always had to be better than. Definitely worth watching.
chris h says
Ryan, I was fortunate enough to watch the Magic-Bird era, it was a great time to be a fan here in LA.
here is a great memory of mine-
my mom was in town, also a Lakers/Magic/Chick Hearn fan, (that combo was such a huge part of the allure) the Malone/Stockton Jazz were in town for a Sunday matinee game. On a whim, I called a ticket broker to see if he had any tickets, (it was the Fabulous Forum in those days) I was in luck, he had 3 floor seats under the basket, and I needed 3 seats, (I think 3 was a hard number to unload, my good luck!) I think we paid like $100/seat, a lot of money in those days, but worth every penny.
So, it’s near tip off, the Jazz were all at center court, the Lakers in a huddle near their bench, they break the huddle and walk out towards center court.
I had a great perspective on this, Malone looks over, and sees the Lakers walking out, and it was exactly like the scene in “Resevoir Dogs” walking out in slow-motion, Karl Malone, rolls his eyes, like he’s thinking “Oh man, we’ve gotta play ‘these’ guys?” it was over before it started, (even though those Jazz always played us tough), that Magic led team had an aura of invincability.
and yes, that was a good documentary, a must see for any laker or basketball fan, that truely was the turning point for a doomed NBA, they brought it back and to where it is today much of the recognition should go to those 2 guys.
#1. Jim C,
I’ve disagreed with Henry on a variety of things but he is by no means a “tool”. I understand that he often comes off as someone that doesn’t like Kobe and/or the Lakers, but in this instance he’s only using the facts/statistics to frame the argument that Kobe “may not be” the most clutch player. Is that really a harsh statement? Just last week, Henry wrote about Kobe’s performance in the Miami game (a game the Lakers lost) and essentially said that he was fantastic down the stretch and couldn’t have been better (even though the Lakers lost). So, while I understand that Henry can come off as bias, us Lakers fans can also have our blinders on when examining the people that don’t agree with our view on all things Lakers.
Renato Afonso says
Charles Oakley… It would be great to have him nowadays… Ron-Ron and Oak together on court? Who’s even thinking of driving to the hoop?
More seriously, Abbot is right. The best way to determine clutch is to watch a video with all the great “closers” when they make it and when they fail. Each shot is different and sometimes there are other options, sometimes there are not…
I think statistically quantifying “clutch” play is as meaningless as it is misleading. The clutch play often comes after a timeout, where teams throw different looks, defensive/offensive schemes, scoring needs, etc. If two players are 3/10 on clutch plays, but the first player had 3 very, very difficult scores, compared to the other players 3 moderately difficult plays, they aren’t the same. I can’t believe people allow this charade to continue.
@Darius – I agree, Henry is not a tool, but he’s at his condescending worst when he uses his blog to dish out lessons about how you and NBA players should behave, why you shouldn’t be so scared of statistics, and how it’s so admirable when a player can take criticism. He’s a schoolmarm talking down to his unsophisticated readers/students.
#6 – could not agree more. An intangible quality is by nature impossible to measure statistically.
Trying to prove one player is more “clutch” than another with numbers is like trying to prove one pitcher is more intimidating than another. You don’t need a listed number of brushback pitches to know what batters thought about facing Pedro Martinez, Bob Gibson, or Don Drysdale.
That “Kobe / Miami” Abbott article only helps to prove Jim’s point. Not trying to dump on Henry here, but he’s very smart with how he words things and sets things up for later. This is one of those times.
Calling Kobe’s play clutch in a loss proves nothing. It’s a bone to Lakers’ fans. The Lakers still lost. What do we get with wins? Articles about how Kobe isn’t as clutch as he seems.
What Abbott really wants us to know is that Kobe took 12 shots, made 9 and the Lakers still lost. It kind of also implies that Kobe isn’t always that efficient.
The only thing that really matter is the W. Kobe time and again has proved that he provides that best chance in close game.
Right on point. Clutch play involves so much more.
My two cents on Magic.
If I’m picking my all universe team, I would pick Magic first because every all universe player I picked after him would automatically play at their peak performance and in a 7 game series my team led by Magic will beat your team.
Magic Johnson – The greatest Laker in this fan’s eyes. I grew up watching the Magic-led 80’s Lakers and I gotta say their style of play was so much fun to watch. This fan’s eyes weren’t dry when Magic retired (too soon) in 1991.
the more i think about what odom said, the more it confuses me. why advertise how badass you’re gonna be? just do it. i don’t expect much fireworks in phoenix because the lakers will be too tired from running. and march looks pretty quiet in terms of teams that talk smack, but I didn’t think toronto was known for talking smack either. so maybe that’s what odom was getting at. I agree with odom though. just don’t know see the value in advertising it – the refs read the papers too!
april could be interesting with portland, utah, denver and san anton. everyone will be pretty chippy come the end of the year. and didn’t anyone see matt barnes twitter about odom? not bright. maybe that’s why matt barnes is matt barnes!
Chris J says
I grew up watching the 1980s Lakers and have followed them religiously ever since. Magic was amazing.
Not sure if time has deluded my memory, or if it’s something different, but the other day my wife asked me, “Who was better, Magic or Kobe? Who would you say was the greatest Laker?”
I really had to think about that, and I’m not sure I can answer that question still. That’s a testament to how good Kobe is, I suppose.
There’s no correct answer, and age will dictate people’s opinions. But I’m old enough to have watched both guys for their whole careers, and if there’s a gap, it’s getting more narrow with each season, especially if Kobe can land another ring before he calls it quits.
Fun idea to debate.
Henry Abbott is indeed a tool. He dishes one somewhat positive article about Kobe for every 15 negative ones. He has put out clutch statistics articles saying that Kobe isn’t clutch numerous times, especially after he makes a game winner. That not say say Abbott isn’t knowledgeable, but he obviously hates kobe. Otherwise everything he says wouldn’t be negative.
And it’s funny that Kobe fans are the most sensitive, when you have half of journalist are constantly trying to discredit everything he does, of course his fans are going to defend his play.
For example, many people believe Kevin Durant is the runner up for MVP. In 2006 and 2007, Kobe wasn’t even considered as MVP when the lakers had a similar record but kobe’s stats were off the charts. Instead they used the excuse he doesn’t make his teammates better, when he teammates pretty much sucked except for lamar and luke. Its not that Kobe fans are so sensitive, its that half of the American basketball world (fans, journalist and so on) hate kobe that much.
And its funny that abbotts say’s new clutch data, when its the same stats everyone has thrown out there for the past two years.
Craig W. says
The difference is Kobe will drag you along, while Magic would push you along – same destination.
If I had to start a team, however, I would definitely start with Magic (over any other NBA player) because of his ability to both dominate and drive everyone around him to their best.
P.S. I don’t see Magic being able to function well in the triangle offense — but why would you use it if you had him?
It cracks me up that people consider Kobe fans to be the most sensative in the world. Name me one other player in any sport who has played at the level Kobe has and endured so much criticism of his game. I am not talking about his personality – but just his game.
Part of that is due to the internet and round the clock sports coverage and that gives guys like Simmons and Abbot a national platform to express their ‘homer’ perceptions. But how many articles have you seen circicizing LeBron’s game, or Wade’s, or Melo’s.? There is something about Kobe that makes some people feel they have to tear him down and point out how flawed his game is. Or to write, “he’s good, but…..”
It is the same writers who have continued to put Kobe down in a way that they do not put anyone else down, that then point out how sensative Kobe fans are.
Jim C. says
Exactly what I was trying to say. Henry is a hater in the same way that Simmons is a hater. Spend nine articles criticizing and then, eventually, grudgingly, when you have ABSOLUTELY NO CHOICE but to say something nice or lose all credibility entirely even with your regular readers and fanbase…throw out some carefully worded backhanded compliments laced with caveats in the tenth article.
Then you can later claim, “I’m not a hater. I’m just telling it like it is. I’ve said some nice things about Kobe in the past. See? Here when he had that one fantastic game where he played PERFECTLY I complimented him. The fact that I spend 97% of my articles and time bashing the same guy/team proves nothing. NOTHING I say!”
I’m not blind to Kobe’s faults. He’s narcissistic and selfish. He has a tendency to act phony in front of the cameras because he’s very careful with his image. He’d throw his own mother under the bus if he felt it would help him win a preseason game. These things add up to Kobe being an all-around jerk of a guy. Of course Jordan was the same way.
What irritates me about someone like Abbot though is that Kobe is the only superstar who gets Abbot’s negative press, and almost always right after a win. “Sure it looks like Kobe just made a couple of huge, dumptruck-testicle sized plays to get the win…but let me spend a thousand words explaining why he’s not so great as he seems.”
You don’t see that sort of article when Lebron has a huge day. Or Wade. Or freaking Dwight Howard for that matter.
When was the last time you saw him write an article about how some other superstar “may not” be as great as conventional wisdom suggests? They seem pretty rare compared to his “Kobe may not be that great” articles.
While your right, its still a bit easier to push guys that don’t really need to be pushed. I don’t think Magic had to wake up worrying if AC Green was going to show up the games and play hard. And AC Green was the 7th or 8th best player. Thats why I hate the magic/kobe comparisons. Especially when it comes to leadership. For the simple fact Magic never played with scrubs. Kareem, Worthy, Scott, Cooper, Green, Rambis, Thompson, MacAdoo. Those guys didn’t need the same type of attention as Bynum, Pau, Odom, Farmar and Luke. Magic played with all time great players, while kobe without shaq has played with good players that don’t always have the right mentality.
RE Henry – I don’t begrudge people for thinking whatever they want about him. I think peoples opinions *come from somewhere* so when a lot of people say the same things about you, that perspective must be rooted in some sort of “truth” that is commonly agreed upon by those people that believe it. But from my end, I just don’t read into the things he says in the same way. So, when he says that Kobe was great in a game, I take that at face value. I’ve read too many things that Henry’s written where he just comes right out and says what he thinks on a subject, so I just don’t look for the hidden meaning with him. I do understand, though, that his status as a Blazers fan leads folks to believe he’s biased (not to mention that he’s written things that makes Lakers fans upset). I must say, though, that I don’t need media types to validate Kobe’s accomplishments for me, the fan. I watch the games. I know what his shot making means and also have my own opinions about what it means when he misses. So, while I respect writers’ opinions, I also have my own. I don’t think any are perfect, though.
That bit from Lamar is very, very interesting. It says so much about how other teams view the Lakers right now.
“The difference is Kobe will drag you along, while Magic would push you along – same destination.”
Quote of the day right there.
The thing with Abbott is he says kobe is great, but he’s not as clutch as we say he is. Kobe has 4 championships, but he only has one as the best player on the team. He won a championship without shaq, but he had to have a good team to do so (as if anyone in nba history won a championship with a sorry team).
Henry Abbott gives me the feeling I get when I hear this type of thing.. Some one asks a white guy if he hates black people and he replies “No, I knew a colored person once”. Sorry I had to use that example, but thats the feeling I get when I read Abbotts articles about Kobe.
While some things are rooted in some truth, as we know people can accept a reputation as truth more so than reality. It’s funny because thats what Henry is saying about Kobe’s clutchness its more of a reputation than reality. While thats Henry’s opinion, he rams that opinion down fans throats by posting the same thing numerous times throughout the year. This is about the 4th time Abbott has posted Kobe’s “clutch” stats to make a point that he isn’t clutch. Henry Abbotts are quite interesting, when he’s not talking about kobe because he’s biased and ends up saying the same thing,which is, Kobe isn’t as good as we think he is.
I think that Joel hit this one on the head. Although Abbott has his (Kobe) moments, he typically falls short of fair journalism. He is very prone to “…, but” statements about Kobe, more often than any other superstar. Yet other superstars are deserving of the same treatment. Dwight Howard can be a one trick pony. LeBron dominates the ball in a way that racks himself up stats while contributing to team failures (if we are to look historically). How often do you hear these critical articles from Abbott about other star players? Once a season? Kobe may receive 3 or 4 per season. Maybe market pressures are involved, maybe not. The reality is that Kobe gets a lot of criticism despite his prolific production. Something about the reality and the construction just don’t match up.
interesting take on the toronto game here. there’s also something here about pau and bynum that i haven’t read elsewhere.
Magic was my guy. Mike may have had the greatest career and I’ll give him the nod as the greatest player, Magic was the greatest winner in the NBA (Sorry Celtic fans, I can’t compate Russell and an 8 team NBA).
Magic was ultimate player that made anyone he played with better. My favorite player of all time.
That is an extremely interesting article…
What that article didn’t mention is how Pau and Odom often play that “7-11” defense without being in foul trouble. Bynum does but not nearly as much, he normally picks up his fouls trying to contest shots are guards. I’ve seen too many time this season where Odom and Pau get bumped twice in the post and automatically throw their hands right up and give up on the play.
The STD says
I don’t know why people take issue with Abbott being a Blazers fan, maybe the only issue is the perception that he pretends he doesn’t slant his writing
I feel that way at times. I mean maybe you could give him the benefit of the doubt but he’s written depreciating things about Kobe and Durant at an abnormal frequency and conversely sings the praises of Roy and Oden inordinately often as well.
Of course I could be reading too much into it, but I do get the feeling that he’s at least partially cognizant of it. When he writes Kobe praise I almost interpret it as “Look! I’m being unbiased!”
Craig W and I have one thing in common.
I, too, would pick Magic as the player to start a franchise, simply because he’s the most versatile, intelligent, and charismatic leader. His leadership style is simply off the charts, as proven even in the real world.
Just one play sums up Magic’s leadership for me. In 90 Finals against the Bulls, Divac made a three point play late in a game. He covered up his mouth with both hands and ran to Magic, who embraced him like a proud father. The facial expression on Vlade was that of a son who wanted to please his father, not an NBA player. No player in the history of game had that kind of charisma and affability. The difference between Jordan/Kobe and Magic was that Magic’s teammates not only respected Magic, but really liked playing with him because they liked him.
Thus, Magic didn’t need to “push” his teammates, but he simply led them and they followed WILLINGLY. Neither Jordan nor Kobe ever had that.
Abbott is just another fan who is afraid of jumping on the bandwagon.
Just as there are fans who like jumping on the bandwagon and being a fair-weather fan, there are fans who are scared of being branded such and try hard not to.
That fear gets amplified when there are a huge number of such fans on the bandwagon, and it turns into some sort of a crusade if the fans on the bandwagon are zealots.
Unfortunately, Kobe has a lot of bandwagon fans and a lot of zealots following him, so people like Abbot believe that it is their mission to rescue them from this cult.
That annoys the more rational Kobe fans, but when rational fans react, Abbot considers them zealots, not being able to take criticism of their idol, instead of realizing that it is his tone that offends even the more rational fans.
Henry Abbot’s post does nothing for me because:
1) He’s just posting an opinion on Kobe. Biased or not, it’s just one man talking and he’s entitled to that, so I can easily take it with a grain of salt.
2) He brings up the novel (sarcasm) idea of actually looking at the video of game winners to judge, as if observation isn’t the greatest tool for comparison. ALL stats come from observation, first.
3) He throws stats at us that most at this site have already seen that try to quantify something that can’t be quantified (but only qualified).
Now, here’s a scenario for everyone, including Abbot: 5 seconds left on the clock, down by one and YOU are inbounding the ball. Shawn Marion is open on one side and Kobe is open on the other. All things being equal, who do you pass the ball to? The guy with the higher “clutch” percentage or Kobe?
I have to say, Pat Riley is right “the disease of more” is a very real thing.
Who are the Lakers suffering from it?
Alot of the young ones, Shannon & Bynum especially.
Lamar should be inspiration to both of them that they need to not worry about scoring and play their role to help the team.
Shannon with his pull up jumpers and Bynum with his lack of focus if he doesn’t get his touches.
Great article on how Fisher hurts us offensively:
Kind of puts stats behind everything we’ve noted qualitatively for a while. That ‘veteran-experience’ thing certainly isn’t showing up in shot selection.
I don’t understand. NBA TV showed Kobe’s “six” game winners, including the one against Toronto. Last I checked, it’s a FACT that he has seven. Miami, Milwaukee, Sacramento, Dallas, Boston, Memphis, and now, Toronto. NBA TV and ESPN are both skipping the Dallas one, for whatever reason.
Did NBA TV just missed the Dallas one and ESPN stupidly followed, or is there a reason why the one against Dallas is excluded?
My only guess for why the Dallas shot is excluded by some would be how much time was left (almost 30sec), and how much actually happened afterwards (2 missed FTs by Dallas that would’ve tied it, Drew going 1-2 on FTs, then a missed triple by a Dallas player I can’t remember that would’ve tied it).
It was definitely the game-deciding shot, but not as much of a “winner” as the others. Some people have said similar things about the Boston shot, since the Celts had a clear chance afterwards. I’d definitely say the Boston one counts, but I can see the argument against the Dallas shot.
I’m inclined to believe we should count the shot that sent the Miami game into OT that we lost anyways
If he missed that we’d count it against him
Craig W. says
Even trying to describe a statistical box to put around that word to gives me a headache. The ONLY way to determine clutch is to watch games.
If you are talking about Kobe you just might want to include those games he took over in the 3rd qtr that were sure losses before he started scoring. That’s as clutch as any last-second shot. When we try to quantify everything the quality goes all to h*ll.
The same thing is true about being obsessed only with #1. This is something Kurt addressed when he talked about enjoying the ride.
Great article by Forum Blue and Golder Brian Tung, as linked by TrueHoop:
Demonstrates some great thought and ideas for understanding the context of mid-game and clutch performance.
Essentially the idea is that player performance can be assessed by the expected value that a player adds or subtracts to the successful outcome of a play, given the position/situation in which they receive the ball.
In a clutch situation, the outcome of the performance becomes magnified because the success or failure of a play is now linked completely to a Win or Loss. Higher praise should be given for turning a slim chance of victory into a win than the blame and shame that should be given for missing.
The Chris Paul-David West example makes it clear that it’s no wonder that Laker fans still have such frustration and disdain for Kwame “Mr -1.5” Brown.
Flip-great story you found. Boy is it right on. I wish Phil would tape that to Andrew and Pau locker and make them read it before every game.
The world is full of people who complain about their life results but are blind to how THEY created those results.
Less talk and more actions my 7 foot friends.
Snoopy thanks for that Fisher story. I haven’t spent the time to put togeateher all those stats. But i have been saying on this site and Laker reaio talk all year “Fisher is the worst starting point guard in the nBA”.
I have been blasted and told I don’t knew the game.
Well thanks Snoopy for showing that story. I feel that my 40 years of being a Laker fan, my playing and coaching the game and ability to believe my own eyes has been vindicated,
Abbott do not forget to watch ”fumbled” assists from Kobe for the last 5 years with your PER lovers.
While I don’t follow Abbot on a regular enough basis to have any opinion of him, I do unfortunately read Ball Don’t Lie [out of habit]. And Kelly Dwyer is exactly like, if not worse, than how some of you have described Abbot. Every single time, he absolutely MUST bring up the “Kobe is not as clutch as you people think, and I’ve been saying this for a long time, but hey, he’s been great this year” bit. Even if he is correct, it’s just really annoying and comes off as condescending to the readers (never mind fans of Kobe) considering he’s said that same thing consistently for the past two years now. We get it man. You know way more than everyone else. Could you stop shoving it down our collective throats?
Also, his recent article about Jordan was pathetic. Okay, KD rant over. Sorry about that. Needed to get it out.
PS – Long time reader, first time poster. Thank you for all the analysis and discussions. I live in India and we get just one NBA game a week on Saturday, so sites like this one and SSR really help me get my Laker fix.