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Iguodala Gets Snubbed

Popularity contest plain and simple

Seriously, though. Who voted David Lee for first team?

Real and Speightacular on May 6 at 15:57


Man, that's depressing -- this from HEAD COACHES?! wth?!

Should D'Antoni really get a vote? I mean, he can't spell d.

Tom Moore on May 6 at 16:02

I don't think Iguodala is as good a defender as Paul Pierce. I really don't believe this is off the mark.

On another topic, did you see what Avery Johnson said on ESPN 950 in Philly? * “Andre Miller is a very experienced point guard, but his best days are behind him, so it’s probably best to move forward with Louis Williams at that spot.”

Yeah, I linked to that interview in the previous post. Avery is off his rocker.

As for Pierce, I think he may be capable of stepping up his defense (apparently not when he's guarding John Salmons, but occasionally), but on a night-in, night-out basis I don't think a SF in the league did a better job than Iguodala defensively. He took on the toughest perimeter player on the other team every night and shut them down with a few rare exceptions.

Real and Speightacular reply to Tom Moore on May 6 at 16:42

To give Avery a slight break, these guys really don't see that many games. He doesn't know Lou as well as we do, doesn't know his stats off-hand and probably played against Miller at some point. He's just yammerin off the top of his head as all these talking heads do. And that's why he hedged with "probably." Probably.

I am willing to bet a truckload that were he coaching Philly and got to see Lou's slack D for himself -- Avery's BIG on playing fundamental, sound defense -- he'd have a conniption or 30.

I'm still down with Collins for the short-to-mid term.

He specifically avoids commenting on some players who he hasn't seen enough but then singles out lou williams as a starter

he's either a moron or insane - either way - no thanks

Real and Speightacular reply to john on May 6 at 18:14

Alright, you forced me to go listen to the whole interview and now I don't know what you're on about. He's trying to sell himself while hedging a bit. My read is that he's presenting himself to Sixer mngmt as the guy who can (best?) coach Lou up. He's sideways taking some credit for Harris' development and the inplication is that if Sixer brass is antsy about spending again for a replacement for Miller, he can save you some dough by workin with what they already have. He repeated and stressed that Lou has the POTENTIAL to be an nba starting point based on what he's seen to date. He wasn't annoiting Louis saviour.

Let's face it, it was an interview where he was asked about the Sixer roster and he's making his best pitch. He spun his time out in Dallas and he's ready for his next gig with the right situation. I didn't hear anything moronic or insane in any of it.

Based on that bit, I'd actually be less anxious were he in fact to swing the gig.

Statman on May 6 at 16:58

I agree that the all-defensive teams are partly based on reputation, but I think Iguodala's position is about right. I'm actually a little surprised he got even five votes (last year he got two). If you believe the opponent production ratings at 82games.com, http://www.82games.com/0809/ROLRTG3.HTM, the small forwards who placed ahead of Iguodala (LeBron, Artest, Battier) were all slightly better. LeBron is the only SF I would say was clearly better than Iguodala defensively (he had more rebounds, blocks, and steals, and he held his opponents to lower production).

All that said, Iguodala had an excellent year defensively, magnified by the fact that the rest of the team was filled with poor defensive players. For the whole year, I can only remember two poor defensive efforts (first game against Joe Johnson, last game against Gerald Wallace). The last game against Pierce, Pierce was just red hot, not sure how much could be done then. In-between, there were excellent performances against Wade, Joe Johnson (2nd/3rd times), Kobe (11 points in LA), Pierce (first 3 games), and Roy, among others. He even held his own against LeBron a couple times.

At the beginning of the season, Iguodala was beaten a few times on backdoor plays, and people pointed to those as a sign he was slipping defensively. I pose this question to regular Sixer watchers: how many times was he beaten backdoor in the ENTIRE second half of the season? (I remember maybe once.) Overall, I would say it was his best defensive season since his rookie year, and this season was more impressive because he did it playing more minutes and having to do more on offense.

No particular play comes to mind. More than anything, though, I think Iguodala's fundamental defense was stifling. Can you remember him leaving his feet for a ball fake? Can you remember him biting on a jab step? Basically, he stuck to his man like glue, challenged jumpers when they were taken and cut off the easy driving lane or strong hand when his man tried to drive. I'd say this was his best defensive season under tough circumstances.

Those 82games ratings are getting to me. Don't know which to lend more credence to, the overall on the team page, or the by position on the player page.

He gets steals without gambling. As Dannie says, he gets in a guy's bubble, interfering with their jumper.

I also think the threat of him running out for a dunk on the other end effects shooters. they feel like they need to get back, which might effect their shot.

Either way, he is both effective and generates steals and helps turn defense into offense.

Statman reply to Brian on May 6 at 17:57

Brian, as I mentioned before, I've sent email to the guys at 82games.com, and they say the more reliable opponent ratings are the overall ones on the team page, not the by-position ratings on the player pages. Believe it or not, the reason why I asked them was Willie Green, who is well below-average on the team pages (fits my impression of him) while a complete stopper on the player pages.

Cool. Just wish I knew the methodology behind the stats.

Statman reply to Brian on May 6 at 18:52

Here's what Roland Beech wrote to me:
" the counterpart PER on the production by position pages is different than the one used in the player ratings on the team page (and 'roland ratings')...the player rating one uses more actual charted matchups data... "

The way I interpret that is that the one on the team pages takes more into account who the player is actually guarding, rather than the player who plays the same position. For example, Iguodala guards Joe Johnson while Miller guards Maurice Evans and Willie guards Bibby (whereas a by-position charting would match up Iguodala vs. Evans, Miller vs. Bibby, Green vs. Johnson).

I doubt they go into so much detail that they figure out who is guarding who on switches (which actually would make a big difference for a team with the Sixers' philosophy). That kind of detail would require someone to chart every game and record reverse stats.

I think Iguodala had a good bounce back year defensively. I though he was just an average defender the previous year, and is now back amongst the best at his position. Probably top 6 SF defender, which is very good. Also a top 6 SF overall. Not bad for a position that is stacked.

He should continue to improve. If he wants all-star births or All-defense selections he will need the team to be more successful.

Looks to me like he has to start cheating towards the passing lanes to get some cheap steals if he wants to crack this list.

For me, the one chink in his armor came in games 5 and 6 of the playoffs. When Lewis started regularly abusing Thad on the blocks, Iguodala should've switched the assignment. I know it's the coach's job to do that, but he could've TOLD DiLeo the he was taking Lewis because Lewis wasn't strong enough to back him down in the post.

Sean reply to Brian on May 6 at 21:13

Brian, The problem with that idea is the fact that the Sixers switch on everything. If Iggy defending onto Shard, then Van Gundy runs that screen-roll with Hedo and Shard and gets Thad back defending Lewis. Or he runs a Screen-Roll with Shard and Alston, which often put Green on Shard. Plus, Thad on Hedo is not a great match-up either. There is no good answer when the Sixers have decided to switch everything by default.

At a minimum, they at least have to run a play before they get the ball in to Rashard in the post, instead of just dribbling down and giving it to him down there.

Given the choice of Thad on Hedo, Iggy on Lewis or vice versa, I'm going to take the former.

You're absolutely right, though. They needed to rethink the switch everything philosophy by the fifth game or so, it just created way too many mismatches.

Sean reply to Brian on May 6 at 21:27

Yeah, I see your point. At least see how they would react first.

You know, I cannot remember if Mo was as Switch-happy as DiLeo was or not. It just seemed so obvious and obnoxious this year. Whatever happened to a simple hedge-and-recover on screens? Is that why every single Sixer seemed to run directly into the screen?

That is yet another reason I want DiLeo gone and a new defensive perspective in place

No one voted for Willie?

deepsixersuede on May 6 at 20:06

With his success this year does management hesitate with putting him on two guards defensively. Statman, you brought up a weakness in getting around screens, how much does the defensive end come into their thinking in the Iggy/ Thad experiment, or do they have Thad attempt to guard the 2!s according to matchups.

Joe pointed this out earlier, but it bares repeating. Check out the team's defensive rating with the lineup of Miller, Iguodala, Thad, Brand and Dalembert. It's 92, which unheard of. Defense was never the problem with Iggy at the 2, they just couldn't find a way to score the ball.

Statman reply to deepsixersuede on May 6 at 21:39

Suede: I'm not sold on Thad as a perimeter defender, but others have a higher opinion, and I'm certainly willing to be convinced. I do think if someone is going to chase 2 guards around screens, it might as well be Thad, who is probably no worse at it than Iguodala. That would then leave Iguodala to do what he does best, man up.

Ironically, Thad is probably even more suited for 2 guard on offense, though if he played on the perimeter, it would negate his excellent post skills.

I'm still a big fan of the size a lineup with Iguodala at the two and Thad at the three would give us. If there's one thing DiLeo failed at in his time as coach, it was finding a way to get that big lineup on the floor.

Tom Moore on May 6 at 21:07

Green would get a vote before Williams.

deepsixersuede on May 6 at 21:26

Brian, I don!t think it is a problem but E.S. was quoted as saying he didn!t want him chasing 2 guards around.

That bothers me.

Statman on May 6 at 21:43

Other oddities about the all-defensive team voting ... Camby and Bowen went from first team last year to not getting a single vote this year. In addition to David Lee's one vote (a first team vote for 2 points), J.R. Smith also got one first team vote for 2 points. I didn't see much of Denver this year, but J.R. has never had a reputation as someone who cared about defense. His first-team vote may be even more weird than Andre Miller getting a second-team vote ...

John reply to Statman on May 6 at 21:59

A. Denver plays more defense than they are given credit for (this year or last) if people would stop obsessing over PPG as a way to determine good defense.

B. Camby went to the clippers - the team stunk - thus how could he be an all defensive team player?

He didn't say anything about Denver's team defense, just that JR Smith never had a reputation for caring about defense at all.

I'm assuming the Camby question was sarcasm, right?

John reply to Brian on May 6 at 23:04

JR Smith underwent quite a few transformations this year - maybe someone noticed (I just got done arguing that maybe he's changed from being a 'thug' as well over at LB :)

And yes the camby was sarcasm but even if he played great defense - being on the clippers would discount him because it's a popularity and 'name' kind of thing...

deepsixersuede on May 6 at 22:22

Brian, Dannie said those exact words, it shouldn!t matter who your guarding. I!ll say this about Iggy, after A.I. left and he had to do more offensively his defense suffered but he grew, matured, whatever this year and gave great effort at both ends, an encouraging sign.John, what you just said about Camby makes me wonder if we are overrating the loss of Sam defensively. With a better defensive p.g. and more of a defensive game plan we may be able to do what Denver did this year with or without Sam.

Billups isn't just better defensively than Miller - he's better offensively - he's a very very good point guard in this league.

It's not as simple as sam. They have two pretty good defensive big men and a solid bench (sorry, i'll take birdman as back up PF over evans cause he doesn't ruin you defensively and has more offensive game than evans, but then again, so does a corpse)...The nuggets also have shooters, which the sixers don't.

Adding Chauncey BIllups to the current roster doesn't make the sixers contenders in my mind...it certain helps but the bench still sucks.

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