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Video Review: Meeks and Thad

really well done man

Great stuff Rich!!! Keep these X's and O's editions coming.

Great post, the video examples really help with understanding the offense.

great post.

Really great to get such in depth analysis, helps see things we normally wouldn't be able to spot.

Indeed Meeks has done a great job spacing the floor. That would be a great effect if he could make one or two shots per game, but he has shot really much better than expected over the past few games. If he even produces half that output that's really enough for me.

It has to be said, trading for Meeks has turned out to be not a bad move after all.

Thanks for a thought-provoking analysis!

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deepsixersuede on Dec 10 at 8:16
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Rich, good stuff!!! I have 3 questions;

1] will it get to the point where a resigned Thad and Lou will always finish close games for this team and become a go to tandem?

2] can Lou back off his scoring mode a bit and split that role with Thad; it seems he is starting to look for him more.

3] can Turner be a glue guy, like Iggy, if we suddenly get scoring from 3 other places [Lou,Thad and Meeks] and can we resume the Piston comparisons if we add a couple defensive bigs?

Suede, I have my doubts about all three of those things. I still don't know if Meeks is anywhere close to a starter in this league. Yeah, if he's close to a 50 percent three point shooter and his defense improves a little, why not? Still that doesn't seem realistic. Regardless, he's definitely a rotation guy, and a valuable piece with his shooting. Right now, he's the best guy to start too.

I'm getting to the point where resigning Thad to a reasonable deal would be great. We now have the whole season to judge, but his rebounding is getting better, and it continued last night. That's encouraging. My big problem with last night's game is that Thad didn't get the ball enough towards the end of the game (especially in the 3rd quarter). While Hawes (who was pretty good besides this) was jacking 15 footers, Thad had Big Baby on him. How does he not get a touch every time? Is that on him or Collins?

As for Lou, I'm not really crazy about his play.

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bebopdeluxe on Dec 10 at 9:07
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On January 18, 1998, the Sixers traded a 2nd round pick for a little-used guard named Eric Snow, who was languishing as a deep reserve for the Seattle Supersonics.

On February 10, 2010, the Sixers traded a 2nd round pick for a little-used guard named Jodie Meeks, who was languishing as a deep reserve for the Milwaukee Bucks.

Even though Snow got more playing time with the Sixers during the balance of the 1997-98 season, the Sixers decided to use their lottery pick in the 1998 NBA draft on Larry Hughes (with Dirk Nowitzki and Paul Pierce still on the board) - thinking that he could be the guy that they could pair with Allen Iverson as their backcourt of the future...even though the position that they envisioned for him was a position that he never played in college.

Even though Meeks got more playing time with the Sixers during the balance of the 2009-10 season, the Sixers decided to use their lottery pick in the 2010 NBA draft on Evan Turner - thinking that he could be the guy that they could pair with Jrue Holiday as their backcourt of the future....even though the position that they envisioned for him was a position that he never played in college.

I don't want to get too far ahead of myself here...and I am not second-guessing the decision to take Turner. Obviously, Evan Turner may still turn out to be an excellent basketball player. I only pray that we do not look back 2-3 years from now and see Jodie Meeks as our starting SG...and forever link Turner's name with Favors or Cousins the way we like Hughes' name with Pierce and Nowitzki.

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eddies' heady's reply to bebopdeluxe on Dec 10 at 10:34
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Someone told me to always remember this statement: "The truth shall set you free, but first, it will piss you off."

even though the position that they envisioned for him was a position that he never played in college.

that's not true. He played SG his freshman year and quite a bit his sophomore year, where he played both.

Haha, my obvious question is who is today's representation of Iverson, Jrue or Iguodala?

As for Turner if he can become what Hughes should've been (without the injuries that hampered his career), we'll be fine...

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Tray reply to Xsago on Dec 10 at 12:27
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Oh I don't know, even when he was healthy there were big problems in his game.

True, but if it wasn't for the injuries who's to say he wouldn't have improved even more. And my point was more towards Turner not being a bust, rather then saying Hughes was a very good player. Hughes wasn't a bust even though there were players drafted after him that turned out better.

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Tom Moore on Dec 10 at 10:29
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Playing well isn't enough for the Sixers:

http://ow.ly/3na3q

Great post!
I think Meeks 3pt percentage will be good on the long term. So, all along we have been talking about a pure sg and a phisical C, defenvise minded to upgrade this roster. I think that the sg is here, and will even be better if we get the C, because a shot blocker will help Meeks if he canĀ“t keep up with his man in the defensive end. Hawes is playing better but he is not a blocker. Can we get a decent C who intimidates without giving away Iguodala? O can we pull the trigger, get this (young) C and may be some thing else for Iggy and focus in developing Turner?

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sfw reply to Juan on Dec 10 at 11:51
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Yes, maybe for Lou W. Could accomplish both. Acquire a young center/PF(Thompson?) and therefore provide add'l minutes for Turner. I can only wish..............

Yeah, may be using Lou and the expiring of Kapono we can get a big body with atletism. If the chemistry develop the team can compete even before Brand get off the book

Great post, Rich, as always. From what you've seen, what do you think is Turner's preferred spot on the floor, and can Collins run sets to get him the ball in those spots?

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Rich reply to Statman on Dec 10 at 14:04
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Yeah I think he can. My thing is if it's even worth it right now. Turner has not showed us that he can be effective playing off the ball, nor that he really wants to touch the ball if he doesn't bring it up. Way too passive.

The trouble with Turner is as Brian said in the Summer, he can't shoot threes. His off-the-ball game would develop immensely if he could shoot threes. Right now that's a problem because Jodie probably makes more threes than Turner's long twos, and it's easier to isolate a guy when your wing is parked out at the three. If your guards can blow by their man, you are forcing the help guy to make a decision if the guy is in the corner for the three. He either has to help with the driver or just let him go. With Turner not being able to do that, he might be able to help and recover to contest the shot.

Three point shooting is something Turner needs to work on a ton in the Summer.

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Tray reply to Rich on Dec 10 at 14:45
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Plenty of shooting guards have succeeded without being able to shoot threes. Even a non-explosive player like Hamilton was able to get by for a very long time without range. I mean, his inability to shoot threes is a problem as far as spacing, but I don't think it can be used to excuse his not being able to get to the basket.

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Rich reply to Tray on Dec 10 at 15:00
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Who is using it as an excuse? I have no idea why he can't get off a good shot either. For playing with this current lineup, it looks obvious that the 2 needs to be able to shoot it, that's all. If AI9 gets traded then it's a different story.

Shooting guards need to be explosive athletes if they can't shoot a lick from deep. Rip Hamilton was a great midrange shooter too, if Turner develops his game I don't think anyone will complain.

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Tray reply to Rich on Dec 10 at 15:02
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Oh, I thought you were saying that the reason he struggles is that he can't shoot, not just that the reason he causes us spacing problems is that he can't shoot.

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Rich reply to Tray on Dec 10 at 15:05
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Talking about Turner has become a painful subject.

good post. this blog is getting better and better with the analysis.

Back to last night for anyone who can stomach it, I can't believe Collins brought Lou in and told them to switch everything. Simply put, we win that game if Jrue goes under that Rondo screen. Rondo has three seconds to make a play, and Jrue would have already been ready to take away his drive. Damn.

Yup. Rondo would've been moving toward the corner w/ another guy camped out there (and another defender in the area) with no shot and no time. Ugh.

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Rich reply to Brian on Dec 10 at 14:38
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The NBA Playbook guy blames Thad because Jrue looked to be going under the screen. I can't tell because it looks like Jrue is going to switch too.

I just think Collins would tell them to help off Rondo at all costs of giving up a wide open layup to him. This really was the perfect storm to do that because they put the ball in his hands. Damn, again.

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Rich reply to Brian on Dec 10 at 14:40
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Also worth mentioning in this is Jodie leaving Ray Allen for a quarter century to help on Rondo, which is absolutely inexcusable. I know they are a young team, but could they get it right once?

That play was such a back breaker. Jodie left Allen to stop a pass to Rondo at the three point line. Rondo.

I think if Jrue had gone under the screen, Rondo would have blown past him (as he did all night), Thad would have helped, and Rondo would have kicked it back to Garnett for an open 17-footer for the win. As it was (if I'm remembering correctly), Garnett made a semi-difficult play look easy, catching the pass, turning, and laying it in in one motion. He missed on a play just like that last year (in the Sixers' one win in Boston). Of course, the big problem was that even if Garnett had missed, the Sixers had no one to rebound.

The thing is, if Brand had stayed in, the Sixers would have been left with something like Thad on Ray Allen again and even less help on a Rondo P/R. Honestly, I'm not sure the Sixers have enough personnel to defend well on a last-second play. The best the Sixers could have hoped for was a Pierce isolation vs. Iguodala, which is the way the Sixers got the stop last year in their win vs. the Celtics. Rivers was smart enough to go away from that this time.

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Rich reply to Statman on Dec 10 at 15:04
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Rondo blowing by him would be very possible, but I'd take a crazy Rondo floater than what we gave up. Obviously we would have taken anything rather than what they gave up.

I don't think Rondo gets to the hoop there. The way the play was set up, he was moving laterally, toward the sideline, away from the middle of the floor, so going under would've cut off any kind of drive. If he was moving toward the middle of the floor, then yeah, he probably would've just gone to the hole.

Man, I don't want to see that play ever again.

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Rich reply to Brian on Dec 10 at 15:08
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Yeah I tend to agree with you on that Rondo point. Statman may be right though with not enough personnel to defend at the end of the games. Sammy's absence seemed big there.

Man, I don't want to see that play ever again.

I'm going to be watching it at least one more time while I do the reverse boxscore for this game, so I'll let you know what I see. You might be right.

As far as daggers go, was this worse than the Ray Allen shot? To me, the Allen shot was worse, because they had a 2-point lead and it was a preventable error with the personnel they had on the floor.

Yeah, the Ray Allen shot was worse. Up two, you're thinking worst-case, it goes to overtime. Just don't allow any open threes. Then Ray freaking Allen gets open for one?

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Rob_STC reply to Brian on Dec 10 at 15:43
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Yes the Ray Allen shot was worse. I have seen this for the last 3 years since I sit caddy corner to the Sixers bench. It is not like defenders shouldn't be aware of Allen. They should stick to him like glue. However it seemed like the Sixers were giving Garnett that jump shot all night which is better then him getting to the rim. If Garnett was wide open for a 17 foot jumper and it went in I would have said nice job Boston but this play was hard to stomach.

The worst buzzer beater of the past couple years was the Devin Harris shot, though. I still swear they got like an extra full second on the clock, then Iguodala knocks the ball out of his hands on the way up, he regroups and hits a 50-foot runner from his chest. I still can't believe that crap.

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Rob_STC reply to Brian on Dec 10 at 15:52
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NO doubt....If anyone has any doubts about the blog name. You and I were both at that away game....Still haunts me. That shot should not have counted.

I can't stomach listening to this entire thing, it sounds like it was recorded in an S&M dungeon, but Stephen A. Smith has a podcast now, and he talks about the Sixers.

The funny thing is that he's a Philly guy, in name, right? Well, early on he says, "I watched some of the Sixers/Celtics game." Some of it? And now you're giving me your expert, paid opinion on the team, huh? Ugh. OK, maybe I haven't settled down yet.

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Tray reply to Brian on Dec 10 at 15:10
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He says we should trade Iguodala for Carmelo so we can trade Carmelo and use him as sign-and-trade bait. Once we have Carmelo... we can trade Carmelo, and then "everybody will be coming to you." This is like listening to the rantings of a homeless man.

Did he really open it up by saying watch out for pickpockets?

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Tray reply to Brian on Dec 10 at 15:19
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Yeah, well you know, most people have lovely hearts out there on Philly's mean streets, but a pernicious few are out to spoil your holiday cheer. The best part was when he was like, "soooo, Carmelo won't sign with Philadelphia. Some say that means we shouldn't trade for Carmelo. But I say no! Because if you trade for Carmelo, then you move your stature up in the Atlantic Division, and then all the free agents will come to you, and then maybe an orLANDO will come to YOU and you can use him as SIGN AND TRADE BAIT. And if you're the 76ers you want to be IN THE MIDST OF THAT."

OK, so if you get Melo, and he won't sign, that means other free agents will want to sign here, and then you can sign-and-trade Melo (forget that the sign-and-trade may not even be available in the new CBA) to orlando. Maybe I should listen to this.

I think he really wants the Sixers to get Melo because it'll make it easier for him to write nonsense about the team without actually watching any of their games.

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Tray reply to Brian on Dec 10 at 15:40
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Actually he might be trying to say that we're trading for him to keep him away from New York. I should just transcribe this for the commenters' amusement because it's really brilliant. "The more you see the Knicks playing WELL, the more you see them doing what they been doing in New YAWK, the more you know that Carmelo Anthony wants to end UP in New York. But at the same time, they're not the only team that WANTS Carmelo Anthony. The 76ERS would like to get their hands on Carmelo Anthony! The New Jersey NETS would like to get their hands on Carmelo Anthony! That's three teams within the ATLANTIC DIVISION that want Carmelo Anthony, if they could somehow get him. The reason that's relevant as it pertains to Andre Iguodala is that the more Carmelo Anthony is coveted the more other teams will be willing to help those guys out because they're going to sense the level of desperation. They're going to KNOW that the New Jersey Nets are willing to let go of Derrick Favors, along with a couple first-round picks, in order to get THEY HANDS on Carmelo Anthony. They KNOW that the New Yawk Knicks are desperate to get him to pair with Amare Stoudemire because that would be a FAWCE. OBVIOUSLY if you're the 76ers you already have the Boston Celtics within the Atlantic Division to look up at. The last thing you need is another team to get a player of the caliber of a CARMELO ANTHONY because that just DWINDLES your prospects of a brighter future when you have two teams in your division with better talent than yourself. So that means the 76ers have to get on the BALL. You have a guy with Andre Iguodala, the PERFECT WORLD would be to pair him with Carmelo Anthony. But Carmelo Anthony doesn't want to RE-SIGN with Philadelphia, he's not coming. So if you're the 76ers the obvious thought process would be to give up hope and find a different direction to move in. I SAY NO!! I say you want to get rid of Andre Iguodala anyway [because he won't win us a championship and is not "a one man wrecking crew that can average 30 a night for you"]. So if you're the 76ers, you have to think, how can I get my hands on a better option? If you get Carmelo Anthony and move Andre Iguodala to Denver, what you THEN do is elevate YOUR PROFILE within the Eastern Conference, and then you position yourself for the FUUUUUTURE, so that everybody comes your way when free agency arrives for Carmelo Anthony in the summer. What you do is you find yourself in position to use Carmelo Anthony as a SIGN AND TRADE BAIT. That will ultimately have everybody CLAMORING TOWARDS YOU, and you can then manipulate the balance of power in the Eastern Conference, because it's clear, that's where Carmelo Anthony will end up. He's PROLLY not going to end up in the WESTERN Conference. [But wait - once Denver's not doing the trading, wouldn't we want to send him back West? Since Carmelo is capable of turning any team into a "FAWCE"??] If you're the 76ers you want to be in the midst of all of that. I'm going to keep reiterating that until that point hits home!"

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Rich reply to Tray on Dec 10 at 15:41
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I didn't want to read that, but my guess is a Stephen A impression.

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Tray reply to Rich on Dec 10 at 15:44
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Not an impression, Stephen A's actual plan, verbatim, for rebuilding this team. One which he will keep reiterating until the point hits home with our management!

So by this logic, Toronto and Cleveland were in the driver's seat last summer. And they decided that Miami was the best place to send LeBron and Bosh, right? And both Miami and Toronto got a ton of value in return for their departing All Stars.

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Tray reply to Brian on Dec 10 at 15:47
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Stephen A. actually acknowledges that we might send Carmelo to New Jersey or New York anyway, since, you know, it's ultimately sort of his decision, but it's all to the good because we'll still have everybody "CLAMORING TOWARDS YOU." Besides, it's not about the value we get back in this sign-and-trade, it's all about the cap space from clearing Iguodala, plus the great boon this would be to our "PROFILE in the Eastern Conference."

Thanks, Tray, for transcribing that. Reading it gave me the impression that the universe was being bathed in sunshine.

There's lots of guys in my neighborhood who stand on the corner all day and talk for hours to anyone who'll listen. Except they don't talk basketball but about things like "how to make a mustang haul ass."

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johnrosz on Dec 10 at 16:01
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I remember when that happened and there was nothing going on in the game. I still think he was saying fuck you to a celtics fan.

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johnrosz reply to Brian on Dec 10 at 18:33
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I thought it was because Doug put in Lou for Elton. He reacted that way right as it became clear who Doug intended to put on the floor in the final 5 seconds.

It's nice to know at least somebody in the organization genuinely cares. Snider probably didn't even know that the Sixers were playing Boston last night.

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TruePhan on Dec 10 at 17:41
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It's articles like this that are a big reason why I love reading this blog. No subjectivity, no player-bashing, just in-depth analysis with video clips to back it up. It's funny because you're pointing out things that have been a problem for the Sixers ever since Larry Brown left really. I think Meeks will be at the very least an adequate defender at the 2. I don't think he'll shut anybody down but he's a guy who can disappear into the defense, as in he doesn't stand out with bad play. He's still learning and makes a few mistakes but I think he'll be solid. He's never going to be on Evan Turner's level once Turner has transitioned fully and is shooting like he did in college but I think Meeks, Thad, Brackins, Speights, and either Lou or hopefully a backup point guard as your second-unit of the future is pretty damn nice.


I saw somebody compare the Eric Snow situation to the Meeks situation. You can't do that. Eric Snow was a role-playing point guard, which is exactly what the Sixers needed at the time with AI playing AI-ball. Meeks is a guy the Sixers liked but I doubt they saw him as anything but a project. I remember Stefanski saying he could be a shooter for them. Also, Evan Turner is definitely not Larry Hughes. Larry Hughes was a typical "hip hop generation" player. Evan Turner is a true star, and him being an off-the-ball scorer for this team is exactly what they need to put them over the top(well, once they have a shot-blocker that is).


Say what you want about Stefanski but look at some of the moves he has made. He drafted Jrue 17th, Speights 16th, traded bench players and a 2nd rounder for a rookie with pretty good upside, and then traded two guys who were clogging up the rotation for another promising rookie and an expiring contract. Yes he signed Elton over Josh Smith but for what the Sixers needed at the time, it was the right move. If Dalembert had ever realized his potential as a consistent defensive force, nobody would have had a problem with Brand's contract. Speaking of Sammy, look at what he got for him: a young big man with an expiring contract who was highly regarded coming out of both HS and college, and a solid energy player who's more talented than he gets credit for. He's also added some pretty solid backup players over the years in Ivey, Rush, Kapono, Ratliff, Brezec and Battie this year. I think what will make or break Stefanski's legacy here will be Iguodala and his own legacy.

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Tray reply to TruePhan on Dec 10 at 18:18
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"Evan Turner is a true star"

Well maybe. He could just be a guy who dominated a weak conference in his junior year. People can talk about how he struggles when moving to another level, but he struggled in the summer league too, which isn't quite as much of a huge change in talent. I kind of need to see at least a couple games out of him where he looks like a star, or at least a good player, before I think there's any real chance of his ever being a star. Right now I would tend to think that he may turn out to be a John Salmons type of player, or he might not even be that.

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TruePhan reply to Tray on Dec 10 at 20:03
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He's nothing like Salmons. Don't get me wrong, I love Salmons but Turner is head and shoulders above Salmons. Salmons is a streetball star.

Turner is a lot like Jrue was last year. He's still figuring things out and in the meantime he's feeling his game out the way Jrue was last year. He's probably teaching himself those moves he's working on in games. He's just continuing to build his offensive repetiore, the way you want a guy who's going to be your #1 scorer to do. The fact that he has the feel for the game to do what he's doing in games(seeing what works, making adjustments, learning by doing) shows you how talented and intelligent of a player he really is. That seems to be the type of player Stefanski tries to draft or add in another way, a guy who can improvise and just "play ball" instead of one who has to practice moves outside of the game or have a go-to move. That's really the difference between Billy King's regime and Stefanski's. He drafts based on intangibles and basketball IQ versus current skills or athleticism.

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TruePhan on Dec 10 at 17:57
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Oh right, and Thad's been playing great. I was skeptical at first about the way Collins kept playing him at the 4 so much but the way he's both not trying to make him play like a post-up player and also not having him shooting a lot of perimeter shots is really getting the best out of him. I'm glad to see him finally being used properly, as a 4 when he has the speed/quickness advantage and as a 3 when he has the height advantage, and not trying to force him to play either role because of a need. I really hope the Sixers can re-sign him because he's an asset off the bench when used correctly.


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