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Thoughts On the Princeton Offense

Given that Eddie did talk about installing some regular NBA sets before, maybe this was an opportunity to do so in real game situation. That is the only positive I can pull from it.

I think the issue is pretty much like you said, they are not totally comfortable making the cuts, and they are not totally comfortable knowing if their teammate made the same read they did.

There are some football offenses(Run & Shoot, and some versions of WCO, if I recall), where the receivers have some level of autonomy to read the defense and make independent route adjustments. In those cases, the quarterbacks and receivers will initially struggle to get on the same page every time out. The PO(& the Triangle) for that matter, seem to operate on a similar principle.

That being said, I cannot think of any team that did not struggle putting in this style of offense initially. The Bulls mucked through, and would break away from the Triangle often to let MJ go to work, especially during the 1st couple years. Similarly, the Lakers did and do the same thing with Kobe. So, breaking away from the offense is not necessarily an unusual thing.

This actually reminds me of a screenwriting class I took in college. Essentially, there are rules to writing a screenplay. You don't always have to follow the rules, but you have to know what they are, inside and out, before you can break them.

The Sixers are at the point where they need to spend every available second (that doesn't count against your win/loss record) on learning the rules of the PO. At least that's what I think they should be doing. It doesn't take a whole lot of time to switch back to the one-four isos we all know and love from last season.

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Sean reply to Brian on Oct 14 at 15:05
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There is something to that. I agree. Although, from EJ's comments, he wanted to work on learning to directly exploit matchups, since the Knicks are such an odd bunch. I do agree that they need to work on the offense and get it down. I guess EJ felt it was more important to get the Big 3 in a rhythm, more so Thad & Brand, since Dre has the ball in his hands most of the time, and can create his own opportunities. The Princeton is more of an equal-opportunity offense where the reads and flow can allow for a tilt toward certain individuals. Once you master it, like the triangle, you can manipulate that flow to create touches and exploit matchups.

That being said, that offense they ran in the 2nd half certainly resembled more PO then Mo Cheeks, so it is nice to know that those lessons are seeming to stick

Good point about the offense in the second half, although, it was against the Knicks so who knows.

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Sean reply to Brian on Oct 14 at 16:34
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True. The Knicks are just a hard team to use as a gauge for your offense or defense, especially if(since it is preseason) you are not game-planning too much.

I don't know if anyone has read this yet but it would explain Jrue's DNPCD.Curious to know what everybody else thinks ? Brian brought up a good point. I am all for winning but the pre season is the time to work out the kinks.But hey if they can win games during the season at all costs then it doesn't matter.It is great to see though that it seems like we finally got a coach who seems to be a task master. He may be talking about the attitude of all players and getting that nipped in the bud before the season starts.Very strange but so far this season it seems the games the Sixers have been in the other teams seem to leave starters in the 4th qusrter.It seems like Jordan is trying to instill a winning mentality, something I feel has been lacking the past couple years vs."playing the right way", to use an LB Moniker. To me Brand and Iguodala are the epitome of a refuse to lose mentality. I think we have the right leaders on the court in the 4th quarter to win those close ones which has hurt them the last couple years. If you take the buzzer beater and close games lost and turn them around you can become a 50 win team.

http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/deep-sixer/Holidays_DNP.html

You beat me to the link. Good points.

I noticed that exchange between Green and Iguodala, didn't take it as an entitlement thing from Iguodala, took as him kind of saying, "We're on the same team, why are you fighting me for a rebound?"

I'd take it a step further and ask Willie why he never fights guys on the other team for a rebound :)

Don't buy Jordan's explanation of Jrue's DNPCD. If he sits him against Chris Duhon and Nate Robinson because they're just too intense defensively, Jrue will never be able to play against anyone.

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Jeff reply to Brian on Oct 14 at 20:48
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I think in the case of Nate Robinson it`s a bit different. Robinson is like a mosquito, and not just any mosquito, but the really obnoxious ones near the Chesapeake Bay.
If you recall last year against the knicks, he was really trying to get into Lou`s head the entire game. He does that to a lot of players. Of course we want our future PG to be able to man up in those situations, but he is only 19.

I don`t necessarily agree with this, but if Jordan`s excuse wasn`t a load of crap, then I can kind of see where he was coming from.

Fagan had some interesting info in her follow up article on her blog:
philly.com/philly/sports/Holidays_DNP.html

EJ said he felt his team was at a disadvantage since they only run parts of the offense, had to call out the plays and several of the opponents new what was being run (Hughes and Jeffries.)

Also, he commented on some bad attitude, teamwork issues taht he is addressing. Good to see him try and nip this in the bud. The team tends to be a reflection of Iguodala- often a good thing except when his competitiveness leads to frustration and pouting.

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Sean reply to tk76 on Oct 14 at 17:33
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I found both of those points to be such an interesting thought processes. They've discussed the fact that they have not installed all the necessary counters yet, so they given the Knicks actually had a bit of an advantage while also having major mismatches that even basic sets could exploit, it makes for a reasonable approach

I love the attitude thing too

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deepsixersuede on Oct 14 at 18:16
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I brought up to Danny [recliner g.m.] how there was no cutting for 3/4 of the nets game and how I thought somebody should of took it on themselves to "get the ball rolling" by being aggressive and cutting on their own but Dannie said useless cutting to cut isn!t the answer.My problem with what I!ve seen is if somebody [Sam for example] deoesn!t read a situation right does everybody stand around till he responds correctly because it seems ,like Brian said, they are spread out but gaining no advantage.

I'm not sure where the breakdown is coming. I suppose it could be that they're standing around waiting for someone else to move, but there needs to be something to spark the defensive reaction, which should lead to the proper movement. There's no initial push, whatever that should be. Maybe, say Iguodala has the ball at the top left of the key, Brand comes up to set a pick for him, Lou cycles through the lane, down to the baseline, and out to the corner for an open three. If the defense adjusts to Lou, that should leave the middle of the lane open for a dive to the hole by Brand, if they don't Lou should be open in the corner. If Iguoala's man gets caught on the screen and Brand's man is concerned with Lou cycling through, the lane should be open for Iguodala.

I think of the offense like a computer program: You start with a command, then a series if/then scenarios that everyone needs to run through. The program won't run, though, unless you initiate it. I just didn't see the initiation at all.

This offense is supposed to punish lazy teams, like the Knicks. I saw no indication of that.

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deepsixersuede on Oct 14 at 18:45
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I guess we have to find a book on the P.O. to fully understand it; from what I see of the triangle you definitely need certain guys to run it.

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eddies' heady's on Oct 14 at 21:09
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Man, isn't it great that Oct/Nov is finally here and there is some basketball discussion going on. Gotta love it.

With that said, this offense is very, very complex with an abundance of thinking going on. With that thinking comes delayed reactions. And some of our players are still of the college age (Lou, Thad of the starters). All of our guys have played the game, pretty much, a different way their whole lives. It's kind of like they are learning the game for the first time, in a sense. We all didn't ride a bike or drive a car as good the first time we attempted to either. They should in no way look like a polished group yet with this offense. And that isn't even considering, for lack of a better term, the chemistry shake-up with Lou becoming a starter, and EB being incorporated in again, and Iguodala and Thad moving to new positions.

There are too many variables to factor in to expect them to look fluid already which is why I think it is a good idea for Jordan to keep and mix in some traditional sets. This way, familiarity (basic sets) can lead to some interim success hopefully and not let the team get in to much of a hole within a game and especially at the start of the season.

I'm not overly worried about the P.O. right now. Partly because I have lower expectations for this season. I expect them to struggle initially, and am more interested in how they finish the season than W/L or seed.

i'm just glad they have committed to a system and their young players. And Jrue will get his chance.


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