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Deconstructing Thad

Great analysis, as usual.

I agree about the indecisive bit. In response to Thad's recent quotes in the press, there was a discussion about IQ vs Hoops IQ. I think what your analysis shows is that Thad is actually overthinking things, its paralysis by analysis. He's become something of the proverbial centipede that can't walk straight anymore. As you've said, its simply a matter of time. But here's hoping Jordan doesn't try to fix a problem by making it worse.

Leave him at the 3, period. He'll figure it out.

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deepsixersuede reply to Sean on Nov 23 at 8:21
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Last time I heard that was M. Schmidt overthinking at the plate. The biggest strength in Thad!s game is quickness, in my opinion, and the fact quicker players are guarding him HAS to figure into the equation. He has guys getting to a spot quicker than before so his whirling dirvish moves are more likely going to result in turnovers or offensive fouls,something he needs to adjust to.Using his size more, backdowns, may become part of his arsenal, along with a better J.

I agree with Sean. Leave Thad at the SF (most of the time.)

Going against smaller players will only help him in the post. As for his jumper, he has good form but a slow release. he also has a hard time keeping his balance on his jumper I think he bends to much.) But with more reps his outside shot should improve over his career (but it might take 2-3 years.)

Playing the wing is really outside Young's comfort zone, and it shows. Sort of like moving a 2nd baseman to LF. It requires patience, but we need to give him the 1-2 years to adjust to the wing. Its not they type of thing you pick up in one summer. And I think the patience will pay off.

agree with tk. disagree with deepsixersuede. I still see Young getting to his spots, he's just not finishing when he does. Young's a great matchup for small forwards and his post game is an incredibly tough guard for people his size and smaller. that left handed hook is unblock-able by SF's.

His jumper will come. His handle will improve to where it's not a huge liability. And then he'll be an efficient 20 ppg guy. I have very little doublt.

If we were one piece away from contending, I'd consider trading Thad. But we're not, and I'm not giving up on a 21 year old future 20 ppg scorer to shuffle the chairs on the titanic and maybe squeak out 45 wins.

I agree with both Suede and Derek.

While I think Thad is still getting to spots, he isn't getting to them as cleanly as he has against slower, less athletic defenders.

That added pressure/contest along with him having to speed up his moves a bit are the contributing factors to his lower finishing rate AND the increased regularity of traveling calls.

His increased turnover rate can be directly attributed to more travel calls on his initial moves. He has to be quicker to get by SFs on the perimeter than he does PFs. He is trying to go quicker in games before his skills (handle and footwork) have caught up.

And that's on top of my belief that he's just soft in general and tends to avoid/shy away from contact.

"While I think Thad is still getting to spots, he isn't getting to them as cleanly as he has against slower, less athletic defenders.

That added pressure/contest along with him having to speed up his moves a bit are the contributing factors to his lower finishing rate AND the increased regularity of traveling calls."


Except that he really hasn't been less efficient on either post-ups or isolation plays. He's shooting 52.9% off post-ups and 46.7% off isolations.

(those are from 47.4% and 43.8% last year, respectively).

There's two reasons he's not scoring as much / not as efficient:
- Jump shots. He's shooting 37.4% on jump shots this year, only 28.6% on short jump shots ( - Less transition opportunities. Last year Young got 17% of his field goal attempts in transition, in which he shot 63.3%. So far this year he's only getting 9% of his field goal attempts in transition.

In the half court he's actually only slightly less efficient this year than last year. He shot 46.1% in the half court and turned the ball over 10.2% of the time last year. This year he's shooting 44.2% in the half court and turning the ball over 7.6% of the time.

He's mainly turning the ball over more because he's trying to do more (his assists have also nearly doubled) and because more of his attempts are in the half court. His % of possessions where he commits a turnover is actually down, and his half court efficiency is nearly equal to what it was last year, the majority of the difference in jump shots, not off isolations or post moves.

If it were a drop in efficiency on those plays, I would be concerned that the move to the 3 is the major factor, but it's not. It's on spot-up jump shots that's decreasing his half-court efficiency, and I expect that to return to his career norms. I don't think his decrease in spot-up efficiency is going to stay as bad as it is, nor do I think it's a result of moving to the 3 (he's not taking more jump shot attempts).

More stats. His offensive shot distribution hasn't really changed all that much.

Broken down into 3 categories of shot attempts: jump shots, finishes at rim (non post-ups), post-ups.
post-ups:
Last year 9% of his fga's in the half court were on post-ups. He converted on 47.4%.
This year 12% of his fga's in the half court are on post-ups. He's shooting 46.7%

finishes at rim (non post-ups):
Last year 41% of his half-court fga's were on finishes at the rim (non-pu). He shot 56%.
This year 47% of his attempts are on finishes around the rim, and he's shooting 52.6%.

jump shots:
Last year 49% of his half court attempts were jump shots. He shot 38%.
this year 41% of his half court attempts are on jump shots, and he's shooting 26%.

So he's shooting LESS jump shots and is finishing at the rim MORE and at virtually the same efficiency.

Jump shot breakdown:
2008-2009:
Short (less than 17'): 39%
Medium (17' to 3pt line): 40.7%
3pt: 34.9%

2009-2010:
Short: 27%
Medium: 21.4%
Long: 25.9%

"In the half court he's actually only slightly less efficient this year than last year. He shot 46.1% in the half court and turned the ball over 10.2% of the time last year. This year he's shooting 44.2% in the half court and turning the ball over 7.6% of the time."

Can you break this down further, I'm not sure I'm understanding the stat. So of the half-court possessions he uses (half court defined as 17 seconds or fewer left on the shot clock?), he turns the ball over only 7.2% of the time. The rest of his turnover happen in transition?

"Can you break this down further, I'm not sure I'm understanding the stat. So of the half-court possessions he uses (half court defined as 17 seconds or fewer left on the shot clock?), he turns the ball over only 7.2% of the time. The rest of his turnover happen in transition?"


He turns the ball over 19% of his transition opportunities.

Yikes.

(last year was only 9.2%)

Man, that's horrible.

Probably a little too early for the hotspots chart but it's something I would keep an eye on. Particularly, which side of the floor his shots come from. I envision teams forcing him to his weak right side much more and really jumping on his left to take it away.

He will need to adapt. He is the definition of a left-hand bandit. And if I were him I would watch some film of Ginobili the king of the left-hand bandits for how to adjust while playing with a less adroit off hand.

Ginobili is still much, much weaker going right BUT what he has done is go right and then find creative ways to get back left and middle to finish strong comfortably with his dominant scoring hand. That helps him tremendously on the perimeter too because he can mix up his moves more, confident he can return to his strong side for higher percentage finishes.

Hopefully Thad develop a better right hand but even if he doesn't he can be more effective if he takes some notes from Ginobili's offensive repertoire.

One concern I have is that for all of his efficiency, Thad has always looked off balance and sometimes sloppy and out of control. He is great when put in his comfort zone. He also seems to have a knack of finishing despite spinning and falling.

I wonder if all of his off balance moves will result in injuries. And I wonder how much more under control he will be as he cleans up his handle.

Ginobli is a perfect comparison, becasue he also sometimes seems to be spinning out of control- but less so as he has matured and adapted to the NBA game. Hopefully Thad will make as good of a progression over the next few years.

And also you have to hope he'll be able to stay on the court better than Ginobili.

Agree. Thad always seems off balance and that can lead to injuries.

I totally agree with him looking off-balance and to me, that's the key. The real area of concern is when he's making eight different moves (spin, cross, step-back, etc.) to try and score. There are players who can get away with that, Kobe and even Iguodala on some of his jumpers come to mind, and players who don't because of a deficiency going 1 on 1.
Thad's obvious deficiency is his right hand, because he is a dominant lefty, which is fine. My crazy theory is that he needs to play on the left side more than he has been. Look at 2008-2009 and 3/4 of Thad's hot zones outside of the dunk circle are on the left side. There are also no cold zones on the left. Also, he has more shots in every left zone than the one that corresponds on the right, so he probably developed a comfort zone there. This year every one is pretty much the same and for a guy like Thad, who is a crafty finisher, there needs to be a comfort zone out there. I remember one play at the end of the Memphis game where he spun out of control and lost the ball while trying to get to the left side of the rim from the right wing. I know it may not be definitive, but maybe as a dominant lefty, the left side gets him in a groove.

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jameskent582 on Mar 12 at 5:34
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curt
jordan-classic-87

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jameskent582 on Mar 12 at 5:34
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I will make effort to make up an article on how best selling school is and perhaps some resources were people can pursue their dreams and get superior
curt
jordan-classic-87

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jameskent582 on Mar 12 at 5:35
+/-

I will make effort to make up an article on how best selling school is and perhaps some resources were people can pursue their dreams and get superior
curt
jordan-classic-87


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