I mean I have a duty to root for the Raptors despite knowing how it’ll play out with the Cavs in the same way you might buy a bag of okra knowing you probably won’t get around to eating it.
Within a span of five minutes I just found out Dahntay Jones and Matt Barnes are both still in the league AND in the playoffs.
Can someone explain to me why Casey continues to give Jonas over 20 mins a night? He does not fit the the starting 5, and Powell has out performed him all playoffs?
Not to mention, that Ibaka at the 5 would force Tristan away from the paint on defense.
or, you know, maybe the rockets completely torch the spurs
Just straight dominance
was that the worst game of Lamarcus Aldridge’s career? because holy shit, was that underwhelming. He absolutely needs to step up if the Spurs are going to have even a small chance. He’s the one guy on the spurs with the size and skill necessary to punish them for going small and he absolutely evaporated under the pressure. That’s a real bad look for him and SAS.
I think it is pretty clear that Aldridge is on the end of his prime. Some might even say that he may not be worthy of a starting position at this rate.
So far he is at his lowest playoff usage rate (19.8%) in the 7 seasons he has reached the playoffs. His PER has declined from 25 last year to 13.1 in the span of a year. And to top it off Lamarcus has been been relaying solely on isolated midrange jumpers.
The only consistent trend from last years playoffs to this years has been his rebounding. Outside of that he has a drop off in every statistical category. Making that $21 million next year a hefty loss for the Spurs.
As a Rockets fan I remember Aldridge absolutely destroying us a few years ago, it’s weird to see him like this now. The Spurs bigs can’t keep up with the Rockets small guys so if they’re going to be out there they need to be able to punish them on the boards and in the post.
I haven’t watched much of the Spurs this year, do they have wing defenders on the bench they can go to? If not it just feels like a total mismatch if Leonard and Green are the only ones who can keep up with the Rockets’ perimeter.
It is a mismatch in terms of style, honestly. People always talk about how the Spurs are old and why that has probably been true for a long time, this year it’s not just their players but the way they play that seems somewhat outdated. They are lacking in explosive PG’s who can create for themselves, they don’t have enough wing defenders, their bigs are lumbering immobile behemoths who get lost on Pick n’ rolls.
They were able to counteract all this on the defensive end these past few years because you had Duncan in the middle who could coordinate the defense because he was god damn genius on that end of the floor, but now that they are without him and consequently with even more responsibility on Kawhi’s shoulders, they are looking very outdated.
On offense you would ideally be able to get some production from LMA, who as you said should be able to cause problems for a team as small as Houston, but he seems to have completely lost all confidence in himself as an offensive weapon. I think part of the problem could be that the Spurs offense has been centered around Kawhi for so long, that Lamarcus has simply grown accostumed to just playing the role of secondary or tertiary option.
Kawhi functions a lot like a spear tip in the Spurs offense in that, he isn’t necessarily what facilitates and sets up the basket, but he very often is the guy who ends up taking the shot. He is a spectacular off the ball scorer thanks in no small part to his physique but also just because of how disciplined he is. The problem with that is that you sort of end up taking away a huge part of LMA’s game and one of the biggest advantages they had against small ball teams going into the playoffs: The isolation post up.
LMA was a bit of a late bloomer, and as a result I know I was surprised when I realized he was turning 32 this year. It makes sense he’s not the same player he was when he was 29 tearing it up on the Blazers.
Part of it, and I don’t have stats to back this up as much as the eye test, is that he’s not the best passer out of the post so they kind of have to acommodate his game on top of the system as well as it fitting seamlessly. Maybe he’ll see an uptick when the Spurs sign CP3 this summer.
That would be a hell of a get and go a long way in revitalizing the Spurs in the post season. Paul gives them what they used to have with parker and them some and it gives them some much needed flexibility in terms of how they want to run their offense. The one thing I would be a little trepadatious with is wether or not Paul and Pop would be able to work together, in a sense that Paul would be a very different kind of personality compared to what Pop usually likes to coach. He is extremely vocal and very much an alpha type in the locker room, and I kinda wonder if he will be able to fall in line behind Pop. It’s not a major issue, I do think Paul is smart enough to realize that the right thing to do is follow pop’s lead and turn down the volume a bit. but I still do wonder about it.
I hope the Wizards win it all, but if they don’t, I just hope the Finals match up isn’t the same as the past two years.
Rooting for James Harden and crew. Enjoyed the Red Wedding last night
Jones was on our roster when we won last year but we dropped him during the season. We re-added him late in the year sometime after Bogut got injured. It’s funny because during the time he was off the team Richard Jefferson talked on his podcast about how much he sucked and how most of the team didn’t like him at all.
I’m pretty sure that was tongue in cheek. I could be wrong but almost every time they bring up players outside of the roster they make sure to be nice. I honestly can’t remember a single time they’ve truly badmouthed anyone on the podcast.
You are 100% correct about his assist numbers. His assist ratio, and the number of shots he scores of of an assist are the lower or on par with his rookie year.
I don’t think you have too much to worry about. I don’t think they (or anyone else for that matter) is going to be able to keep up with GS. Maybe the Cavs on the strength of rested LeBron but nobody before that.
Oh boy the Warriors came out strong! I feel bad for Hayward, but I get the feeling that he won’t have much impact in this series.
I mean, putting up 53 points in the NBA while only being 5’ 9" is one of the most impressive athletic accomplishments in recent memory.
mike prada at sb nation did a great video breakdown of IT a couple of months ago