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Miller Too Much For Sixers

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bebopdeluxe on Jan 19 at 0:11
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At some point, Turner will be given the chance to be a closer...or at least to not be pulled from the lineup for the two most critical possessions of the game.

To juxtapose DC taking a TO, as you pointed out, only to get an Iguodala fadeaway...and then NOT to call a TO, and getting equally bad execution...well, that sucks. Coaches, like players, can have off nights...and this was not one of DC's better coaching nights, IMO.

Unfortunately this was consistent with the way Collins coached close games last year too. So I don't think it was an "off night," I think this is what he is. Remember last year when someone asked him why he kept doing Iggy isos on final possessions even though it wasn't working, Collins' answer was "Iggy gets the ball." Just dismissing the question, as if there's no reason to even think about it.

"He'd be the most efficient scorer in the league if he'd stop shooting jumpers, and that's not an exaggeration."

He'd also score about just 7 points a game. Whenever he gets to the basket he's very good, for reasons I don't fully appreciate (who else in the league converts at such a high rate around the basket?), but he's not LeBron, obviously (or even Ty Lawson for that matter, who's 4th in the league in attempts at the basket with 6.7, after Griffin, LeBron and, surprisingly, Greg Monroe*) so he's not going to get there all that often.

* Rated out per minute, Cousins is first in the league at attempts at the rim. Unfortunately, he's making less than half this year. Monroe and Blair are second and third, Lawson is fourth, Griffin is fifth, McGee and LeBron are tied for sixth.

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MCT reply to Tray on Jan 19 at 0:19
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So you just confirmed what we all know already, that Cousins is waste.

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Tray reply to MCT on Jan 19 at 0:26
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Well last year he made 63% of his shots at the rim. He doesn't appear to have become fat and out of shape, so I have to think he's just missing stuff or in some kind of mental funk.

Especially coming off the bench, he can get to the rim a lot more than he does. He's very good at using his dribble to get by guys, something he rarely showed last season. But that jumper, oh man. It may look better than last year, but it's just been awful. And no, I can't think of anyone who's ever finished at that high of a rate at the rim. It's just insane.

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MCT reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 0:25
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He was damn good in college around the rim too:

http://www.draftexpress.com/stats.php?q=shotselect&year=2009/10&league=NCAA&per=total&qual=prospects&sort2=DESC&pos=all&stage=all&min=20&conference=&sort=11

I would like to see 70% drives and 30% jump shots as far as his shot selection, at minimum. At least until he starts making some from outside.

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Tray reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 0:33
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Salmons is 14 for 15. Bill Walker's 10 for 11. Chalmers is 20 for 23. A lot of players have made all their layups, but the numbers are tiny. Ed Davis is 22 for 26, Gortat's 35-43, for 81%. Turner will level off about 25-30%, of course.

25-30%? What?

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Tray reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 0:39
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He's going to fall from 96% to 65-70%.

OK. 65-70% is kind of amazing for a guy who doesn't jump out of the gym, though. We're not talking about a bunch of dunks in transition, really. It's mostly stuff in the half court and contested shots.

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Tray reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 0:48
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Well let's see. Last year the league average at the rim was 64%. Turner made 65%. Now, to be fair, let's take the big men out of it. If you just look at guards, the average is 61%, so he's well above average. Is it amazing though? Some guys who converted at a higher rate - Ray Allen, Tony Parker, Aaron Brooks, Arenas, Jarrett Jack, Josh Childress, Andre Miller, Marcus Thornton, Dragic, Willie Green, Hamilton, Nash (.728), Udrih (.736), Garcia (.768). And they all took at least as many as Turner.

I think his jumper looked better last year. Remember him draining threes at the end of the season and in the Miami series? I'm hoping this is just natural growing pains from a complete transformation of the way he shot jumpers for 20 years.

Oh, and one thing I forgot to mention in the wrap: I hate Andre Miller.

And if this game was supposed to settle whether we should've taken Jrue or Lawson in that draft, it sort of did. Based on this game, we shouldn't have taken either, we should've re-signed Miller for four years.

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eddies' heady's reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 0:27
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LOL, good one. It judging on one night, I AGREE!

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eddies' heady's on Jan 19 at 0:21
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You know, on the Iguodala iso play you mentioned with 1:07 left, EB comes out high to set a screen for Jrue at the top of the key, then Jrue goes straight over to set a pick for Andre near the elbow-extended arc. Andre half uses it and then dribbles east-west, mostly gaining just a small amount of depth, and then just up and fires away that 18 foot fadeaway.

Do you think Andre freelanced any there? Like, why did they run those two screens up top like that? EB doesn't usually set a high screen and then that guy go set a high-ball screen just to get the ball handler some separation to fire up a perimeter jumper? Thoughts here?

I have no idea. What do you think the play could've been? Pick and Pop for Brand. When the game is up on synergy, I'll go back and watch it again, see if I can figure it out.

Andre Fucking Miller.

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eddies' heady's reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 0:48
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When it started out, ET inbounded the ball to Andre. Everyone then cleared out from the stack to the other side of the court except EB. Both EB and Andre sort of paused, I assume to let the shot clock run down some, and EB looked as if he wanted to set a pick himself for Andre by pointing with his right hand to Andre's defender's sideline side. I don't know if Andre verbally waved him off at that point or what, because EB then just darted toward the top of the key to screen Lawson to free up Jrue, who then went straight over to ball-screen for Dre. EB casually jogs down to the right block and started motioning over his head in a backwards motion to Thad (who's on the low right block at the baseline), like he wanted Thad to flash up top off of the screen he was getting ready to casually set. At that point Andre pulls the shot. EB looks back surprised, apparently that the shot just went up and isn't in rebounding position.

Jrue just hung out at the arc in front of Denver's bench like he knew the look wasn't for him, or probably in case there was a kickout. At least that's the way I remember seeing it, which is why I commented in the game thread something about that couldn't be what Doug drew up could it(?), cause it seemed weird like he freelanced, or maybe had been given options or the freedom to do what he so chose.

OK, so I went back over that Iguodala play w/ 1:07 left, and it was definitely called for him, but I don't think it was supposed to be the isolation it turned into.

- They ran the Brand screen to get the ball in to Iguodala near half court.
- Iguodala caught the ball and held it to let a little time run off the clock. Brand was at the near elbow, everyone else was on the weak side of the floor (turner in the corner, thad on the opposite low block, Jrue elbow extended, beyond the three-point line).
- Then Brand went over to set a screen on Lawson. The screen was half-assed, did nothing. Jrue cut across the floor and tried to set a screen on Afflalo. The screen was half-assed, didn't accomplish anything.
- Iguodala drove to the middle of the floor, Afflalo was pretty much with him. Brand was covered on the weak-side elbow. Jrue was covered at the three-point line. Iguodala pulled up for the jumper.

There were three options/objectives here. The first was Brand's first screen would open Jrue for a jumper at the foul line, something like that. A good screen may have made Denver switch, creating two mismatches. Then when Jrue went to pick Afflalo, the hope was the screen would cause either (a) a switch, giving Iguodala a huge advantage over Lawson or (b) a double team on Iguodala, leaving Jrue wide-open for the three.

Obviously, none of this materialized and Iguodala took the jumper. Better execution, and maybe you get the Jrue three, or the Brand elbow jumper, or Iguodala driving against Lawson, but the picks were really half-assed, and Iguodala didn't exact lead his man into Jrue's pick. The play looked pretty doomed right from the jump, so much so that I didn't even realize there was a play until I went back and re-watched it.

Just turned on the Kings/Pacers game. rooting for the Kings, so I should probably turn it off so I don't jinx Cousins. He just drew a charge on Granger.

heh, and then Granger pushes Garcia in the back on the next time down the floor. He's giving this game away.

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Tray reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 0:37
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Then Cousins gets a big deflection, lets out a primal scream. Then he makes an idiotic loose ball foul. He does care at least.

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Tray reply to Tray on Jan 19 at 0:40
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Then he played pretty good zone defense on a crucial possession, bothered Hill's shot, got his 19th rebound. A career high 12 offensive rebounds for him.

Wait, 12 o-boards and he's only 5/14 from the floor? How many layups did he miss tonight?

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Tray reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 0:52
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Probably a huge amount. What sites are good for shot charts? ESPN's doesn't work very well, you tell it to give you one player's shots and it gives you four or five at once. I tried to figure it out from there and as best as I could tell, he was 2-5 from 2 feet and in.

Yeah, that ESPN shot chart is useless. I don't know, maybe try NBA.com or Yahoo.

The only way to really do it would be to find the 'good' play by play site (I forget which one is the good one), it indicates shot distance and such for each one - and parse out cousins. I'm still working on figuring out how to do that

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Tray reply to GoSixers on Jan 19 at 18:22
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well when you remember, let us know.

It actually IS espn, their play by play game logs do indicate distance (but not location on the court in terms of which side of the basket), you'd have to parse it yourself to find whatever information you want, I'm still working on figuring out the right programming/sql to parse/regex the bastards to make them do what I want to.

But they are consistent in their descriptions so if you just use find on your browser it should get you want you want.

12 offensive rebounds

3 of 'owns' (including two missed tip ins off missed shots)

9 off of others

Wow. I actually agree with everything you just said. The biggest thing to take away from this game is what you mentioned: no more iso's to close out a game. Since we don't have a star, we should be calling plays just like we've done the entire game.

It's so frustrating to watch because there were a million different ways we could've won this game. The key shot for me was that long Miller 3 at the end of the shot clock that kept the Nuggets alive with a few minutes to go.

Hopefully this just makes the team more motivated to beat Atlanta and Miami to prove that they can beat the top dogs.

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Dwight reply to Dwight on Jan 19 at 0:32
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It is possible that end of game scenarios are Collins' fatal flaw. He could never get the Jordan led Bulls over the hump. Maybe that was the reason.

Dunno. I don't think it's just end-of-game. He rarely draws up plays that result in good looks out of timeouts as well.

It's one of his fatal flaws. Another is that he thinks it's a good idea to remove your hottest player from the game on the most important possession.

There were three empty possessions that were just bad luck late. One of them was an elbow jumper for EB off a down screen that he left short. Another was when Turner had Miller in the post and that like 5-footer just rimmed out. Can't remember what the third one was, but they were all good plays that got them good shots that just didn't fall. Kick in the junk.

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eddies' heady's reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 1:00
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The third one was the open Lou corner 3 off a pass from Jrue? Think Lou's man was cheating/confused on covering EB headed toward the post which gave Jrue the opening for the pass. Or maybe you're talking about the look they gave Thad on the left block where he spun left baseline and got up a decent shot off the backboard that just barely rimmed out and he got his own board and probably should have kicked it back out.

Heh, Granger just threw the ball at the rim to get it back on a free throw, called for the lane violation. At least Grannger's smiling on the bench while he hands the game the Kings.

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jswigga on Jan 19 at 0:40
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ya'll are lucky over there. After the game it's off to bed. If you're steaming over a loss like tonight you can sleep it off. No suck luck over here. In Japan we still got our whole day ahead of us. I think it's fair to say my students all know when the Sixers lose a game cause I'm usually a real grouch the entire day.

Bummer of a loss tonight. This was supposed to be a statement game... And can anyone butch Jalen Rose for calling us "pretenders, not contenders."

Japan must be amazing, do you teach English there?

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Dwight reply to jswigga on Jan 19 at 1:38
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Maybe the Sixers should move to Japan. Seems like we could get more people to show up to the games over there.

If traffic to this site is any indication, Australia is the biggest international market for the Sixers, followed by the UK, Germany, Italy, Poland and the list goes all the way down to Iran with 1 visit this month.

That's pretty awesome, thanks for that info Brian.

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HW reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 7:20
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very intersting numbers, Brian...
Just out of curiosity, how many visits did you get from Taiwan in December?

74 visits from Taiwan in December. 11 different cities.

WEll yeah - i figure all those 'buy new shoes' things are from there?:)

Well, i don't know about that...I'm from Taiwan and I actively promote this blog to my fellow sixer fans. they may not comment often, but they absolutely enjoy this site!

Salright, I was mostly teasing

The more popular a blog gets - the more 'polluted' it gets with the spammer advertisers - Brian does a good job of erasing those posts

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Rich reply to HW on Jan 19 at 15:30
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That's so cool, can't believe anyone in Taiwan has an interest in the Sixers. That's awesome.

How many of those australian visitors though are looking for the 'other' sixers :)

Very few, actually. 446 visits so far in January, with a 25% bounce rate. They'd be bouncing if they were looking for the Adelaide 36ers.

Impressive

(And for those who care and don't know, bounce rate is a web metric that indicates users who land on a given page and don't visit any other web page on the site)

If I get could a 36% bounce rate on the web site for the company I worked for I'd do back flips :)

Yeah, the site-wide bounce rate, time on site, page views/visit are all through the roof. You guys are a loyal crowd.

how did the pacers score 80 points in the frist 3 quarters then only score 8 in the 4th quarter vs the kings

Kings went small while I was watching. Went small and zoned up. Granger certainly didn't help.

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Tray reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 1:04
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They should just bench Granger, start Collison and Hill together with George as the three. I know that sounds like an extreme overreaction, and it would make them small in the backcourt, but Hill's always been a really efficient player and Granger's been pretty mediocre going back three years now. Alternatively, they should shop Granger to Otis Smith.

Did you see that the philadunkia guy was on TrueHoop TV?

http://espn.go.com/blog/truehoop/post/_/id/35748/truehoop-tv-the-philadunkia-76ers

I did not see that earlier, just watched it. I've read some of that guy's stuff, he's a wins produced devotee, which is neither here nor there, but everything is viewed through that lens. He's better than the guy who runs it.

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Dwight reply to Tray on Jan 19 at 3:09
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I turned it off the second he hesitated when asked if the Sixers are the best team in the NBA. Also the wire-rim glasses kind of pissed me off.

We should try to petition this website to become the official ESPN blog of the Sixers.

Well those are two rational intelligent reasons

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jkay reply to Dwight on Jan 19 at 10:20
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yeah i agree; i felt like I knew way more than that guy about the Sixers. Vague arguments. Few facts/stats.

Seriously, Miller was scoring on Iguodala down the stretch. That guy...

I found it pretty ballsy of the TrueHoop Nuggets blog to complain about Violet Palmer's last whistle to send Iguodala to the line.

Collins dropped the ball big time tonight, they couldn't execute on offence in the final minutes and Iguodala doinked the game winning freebie but the most shocking thing to me is how Miller torched Iguodala on Denver's last few positions in regulation. I would take that matchup any day of the week being a Sixers fan.

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6mauro4 on Jan 19 at 4:46
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I totaly agree but I have one more question: why the sixers didn't explored nene with brand during the 4th quarter? Nene was in foul trouble.

I usually watch the games later (not live), so here are my delayed thoughts about it:

- Evan Turner was great. I don't even have a problem with his jump shots, it feels like he is committed to learn how to shoot those so they will start dropping eventually. It's not like he was taking contested off the dribble shots. Anyway he deserves to get a bigger role for this team. He is ready.
- The Sixers really missed Hawes. I liked how Vucevic played in his very limited minutes (again), but they really have no quality size left on the bench. When Vucevic got into foul trouble, things went sideways. The Nuggets were capable of getting to the rim on each possesion and they were absolutely abusing the small Sixers frontcourt. Not sure why Vucevic never returned to the game after his 4th foul.
- I think Collins wanted a quick three point shot and a 2 for 1 possession when he put Meeks and Lou in there. He got out the two non 3 point shooters (Turner and Thad). It's a decent logic, except both Meeks and Lou were cold in this game and Turner and Thad were hot. This is a rare sighting of Collins going with statistical analysis ahead of guts and he was wrong. Not sure what to make of it. In theory if he was committed to that kind of play it's the right move. But i don't see the necessity to go for a 2for1 three.

All in all this is the game that hurts the most so far this season, but you know what, it's just one loss. Every game counts the same, i won't sweat about it.

Oh, yeah Andre Miller 3/4 from three point range. Unreal... An one of them was from way behind the three point line. But they were right to leave him fairly wide open.

Spencer Hawes wouldn't have stopped the nuggets getting to the basket

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Spencer for hire reply to GoSixers on Jan 19 at 10:14
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backs off so much maybe it would of worked.In spite of my new moniker, I think Hawes would of been eaten alive tonight with their pick n roll although he may have succeeded by backing off like he does because our hedging it sure wasn't effective.

If I had to teach the pick n roll I would ask Nene and A.Miller to show it because it was a thing of beauty tonight.

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gwadagibeht on Jan 19 at 7:07
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I'm not sure why you would be surprised by an isolation play for iguodala after a timeout. EVERY QUARTER ends with 4 players standing on the baseline and Lou Williams or occasionally Andre Iguodala pounding the crap out of the ball. Occasionally someone will wander up and pretend to set a screen but usually it's a terrible screen and just results in a double team on the isolationist, or better, the isolationist doesn't take the screen and just stands there dribbling.

Except of course when it doesn't, like in this game when thad ended up with the bad shot off the pass from lou

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gwadagibeht on Jan 19 at 7:07
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I'm not sure why you would be surprised by an isolation play for iguodala after a timeout. EVERY QUARTER ends with 4 players standing on the baseline and Lou Williams or occasionally Andre Iguodala pounding the crap out of the ball. Occasionally someone will wander up and pretend to set a screen but usually it's a terrible screen and just results in a double team on the isolationist, or better, the isolationist doesn't take the screen and just stands there dribbling.

What's with Andre Miller and his vendetta against the Sixers? Were the 2+ years he spent in a Sixers uniform really that bad?

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jkay reply to raro on Jan 19 at 10:17
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I doubt it. Maybe the fact that we didnt re-sign him and went with Jrue? But for some reason, he felt it necessary to prove himself and played us like we were the Heat.
We should get Brand to level him out on the head real good if he comes back to Philly again.

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Spencer for hire on Jan 19 at 9:38
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It was a great atmosphere at the game tonight and a loud crowd to boot. If it is going to be a different guy finishing for us every night at least put the ball in the hot guys hands. We had a mismatch on whoever wasn't guarded by Afflalo in the backcourt and should of continued to attack it at the end of the game.

If Battie is better against guys like Bogut because of his experience that is fine but against the pick-n-roll, Denver's bread n butter, Vuce's active defense and quicker feet would of helped late in the game.

I am tired of end of quarter iso's along with end of game ones also. And fed up with the dreaded 2 for 1's also. It is like a football team going for it on 4th down because they don't trust their defense. Run the offense, get a good shot, not 2 rushed ones, and trust your defense to stop the other team.

In the parking lot as we opened our 1st beer, I toasted A.Miller because he put on a Wade like performance and than I toasted #12 with an F.U. . Not Turner but V.Palmer, because she couldn't wait to blow her whistle every single time down the floor, while the other two refs tried to let both teams play. D.Stern please take note, a terrible job.

In the vein of 'every point counts the same' and people looking for reasons the sixers lost this game on one player or another or the coach.

If Jodie meeks could make a break away layup in the first quarter maybe the sixers win in regulation

Was that really Andre Miller or vintage Earl "the Pearl" Monroe? Iguodala, defensive ace, can't feel good this morning after being stuffed down the woodchipper chute by the game geezer in sky blue. Miller thought Sixers organization was cheesy; still does apparently.

Ms. Palmer is no shrinking Violet but she's not the reason Sixers lost. Too much individual play last night.


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Spencer for hire reply to Dollar Bill on Jan 19 at 10:08
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After shutting down Gallanari Iggy actually did a pretty good job on Miller, compared to the rest of our guys, including Jrue. I never said Palmer cost them the game but she sure prolonged it. She couldn't stop blowing the whistle.

I agree about the one on one play. A team that values spreading the ball around all game turns into a team that thinks it has a one on one finisher at the end of games. I thought a pick n roll between Jrue and Turner was a good option at the end but Turner was not even out there so I guess I was wrong.

Dre defended well, from where I was sitting. Especially since Miller is crafty with the pump fakes and quickness, so crowding him is not an option. It was just Miller time yesterday. See a guy like that draining 3s; I thought that last second shot before the OT was going in. Not sure why he was playing with a chip on his shoulder; the FO for the organization he knows is mostly gone anyway.
Good for him, sucks for us.

He's playing for another contract

Seriously when a career 3 point shooter like miller goes 3 for 4 - maybe it's just not your night

"Dre defended well"... only if one's assigned opponent scoring 12 pts. in the last 5:04 of regulation is considered defending well. [An individual scoring pace reminiscent of Hershey PA, 1962] Any way you slice it, Iggy was carved up. Bottom line: The hometown
'stopper' DID NOT stop his man when it most counted in Game 14. Happens. Won't often be matched against someone so thoroughly motivated, so canny and so white-hot.

No rest for the weary. Here come the perils of Willie G. at his apogee!

Iguodala has occasionally had trouble in his career defending guards who can get by him off the dribble. There was one game last year or the year before when he couldn't stop Rodney Stuckey at all. Iguodala's defense is at its best when he's challenging jump shots, which gives trouble to almost all small forwards in the NBA (Durant excepted).

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jkay reply to Statman on Jan 19 at 13:40
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he does very well on Wade though. strange.

Adrenaline. It augments quickness, sharpens focus. Stuckey, Miller and the like don't particularly amp him up. Iguodala likes the marquee names challenge and correlative glory (when he succeeds). Can be bested on ocasion by quick, smart lesser lights if he isn't fully buying into the job.

Yeah, he definitely wasn't engaged in the fourth quarter last night. That was the problem.

Really don't think he wasn't buying into stopping Miller down the stretch last night.

I'm talkin' about a defender's mental edge and physical positioning & aggressiveness (or its lack); Miller had him guessin', followin' - in effect, psyched out. Last half of Q4, #24 dictated, not #9.

41 long twos in the game last night for the Sixers, that's just shameful.

AI9: 1/6
Jrue: 2/9
Brand: 2/7
Thad: 4/8
Turner: 3/8

The Sixers shot 31.8% on those 41 attempts. 19/21 at the rim.

Our end of game plays could've been worse, apparently. Check this out.

Ah philly sports radio

Talk about the sixers game last night or talk about TO because he's in the news again for the 'IFL'

Gotta love em

I was left with one overriding question when deconstructing the game last night. When he was playing for the Sixers, how many games did Andre Miller have when he was that good? It certainly wasn't any this year: aside from the season opener (when he scored 18), he more than doubled his scoring output from any other game, set a season-high in rebounds and minutes, and reached double-figure assists.

We all remember what Miller was like when he was here. His jumper wasn't that consistent outside of 15 feet (he did have great ability to get his shot off from inside that range, like Turner), but he was always a "pure" point guard. While the Nuggets were on their big second-quarter run, I was impressed by how both he and Lawson were breaking down the Sixers' defense by penetrating and then making the right pass to players in scoring position. Miller didn't take it as deep as Lawson, but he made several "damaging" passes (damaging to the defense) during that run and throughout the game.

I mention this because it is one aspect that has been completely missing from Jrue's game this year, setting up others for easy baskets. This year, when Jrue penetrates, it's to get his own shot (to be fair, he's made some positive strides at finishing on those types of plays), almost never to set someone up for an easy basket. I know he's capable of it, too, because I remember specific plays last year where he set someone up for a dunk. If this "evolution" in Jrue's game is by design, it's a bad design (if it's not by design, it's up to the coaches to change it). I believe Jrue still has value if he becomes a Billups-like, score-first point guard who plays good (and this year, excellent) defense, but it isn't nearly as valuable to me as the "pure" point guard who makes everyone around him better.

(Note: by no means would I advocate getting Andre Miller back -- this was almost certainly the best game he is going to play all year.)

Completely agree on Jrue. We talked a bit about this last night, and I really don't know what it is. If this is Jrue doing it on his own, you'd have to think Collins would have something to say about it. If it's Collins doing it, I don't really get it. One possible reason is the turnovers. Maybe either he's become risk-averse to the point where he doesn't want to even try those interior passes off penetration. harder to turn the ball over when you just shoot it. Whatever the cause, they need to reverse the trend.

Though I do think it would be a bit easier to make those plays if you had a single big who could finish at the rim.

Though I do think it would be a bit easier to make those plays if you had a single big who could finish at the rim.

They may not have that, but they have two forwards (Iguodala and Thad) who are among the best wing finishers in the league (Thad doesn't even need a dunk to finish), plus Turner has been great this year around the rim too. Remember how DiLeo used to run the lob play from Miller to Iguodala? They probably connected on 40 of those in 08-09 (just guessing).

If Jrue has lost the "instinct" to drive and dish, it would be good for the team to practice some specific plays for that (like if Jrue beats his man from a certain spot, have someone like Thad make a specific cut behind the defense).

Yep, there's very little small-to-small action on the inside. The most common thing you see from Jrue is a high screen from Hawes on one elbow, then Brand kind of fading on the baseline on the opposite side of the floor for that little 12-foot jumper.

They may not have that, but they have two forwards (Iguodala and Thad) who are among the best wing finishers in the league

Eh. Iguodala has historically been above average in the half-court finishing at the rim, but not among the best.

If he's generating for himself, that's true. I was talking specifically about plays where the PG has drawn the defense and dished. If Iguodala is the recipient, the result is most likely a dunk.

gotcha. That makes sense in that context.

I think it's definitely the turnovers, it has to be. I don't think Jrue has developed the instincts where you can let him be creative. His turnovers aren't ever him trying to make a great or even good pass, they're usually errant tosses in somebodys general direction. My guess is Collins wants him operating exclusively within the offense without freelancing, looking for his shot or a drifting Brand or Hawes, or Jodie spotted up. Who else does he ever look for?

This season, to my recollection, when Jrue is headed towards the basket and has to change direction he usually doesn't do it very well in terms of a good pass, and if you double team him, he's just lost

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Spencer for hire reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 12:01
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I think Hawes's "ball friendlyness" isn't helping either.How can Jrue run the team with all the dribble handoffs and when people say the offense stalls with Hawes out I think it is a time for Jrue to shine than.

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FreeMattCord on Jan 19 at 11:15
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Would have been nice if Violet Palmer noticed the shot clock not moving on Denver's final possession of the 3rd quarter (it was the difference between a 3-pointer and a shot clock violation), or if she noticed Gallinari's foot out of bounds on the defensive rebound when the Sixers were leading 93-89. Instead of the Sixers getting the ball and a fresh 24, Denver got the ball and cut the lead to 1.

Subjective charge/block calls aside, those two plays are fucking inexcusable.

Yep. She also blew the call where Jodie dove for the ball on the sideline. He wasn't out of bounds.

And the funniest thing is she was right next to him.

They should expand instant replay usage to something like that

They can use it for plays like that, but only in the last two minutes and overtime, I believe.

Interesting, they probably need to expand it (they also need a replay official - it's only 15 more pay checks for goodness sake)...i guess it's better than baseball but it's still not good enough, i'd bet basketball has more 'wrong' calls than other sports just due to the nature of the game

So I assume everyone's going to be tuning in for the big game tonight...Hornets/Rockets.

Hey that's one of the games one of my two fantasy players are in tonight (Jarret Jack)

Can't win for trying - benched jack and billups and evan last night so they all have great games - especially two of them from the three :)

If Lebron doesn't play tonight I'll be bummed

Please post more about your fantasy team.

It seems like every sixer game I watch, at the end of the game, the last few possessions I see the ball in Iguodolas hands and he usually misses a bad/good shot. Ive been seeing this for the past few years--why do they consistently draw up plays for him in the last few possessions ? He rarely if ever steps up. Hes not that guy. Although Jrue didnt make much of a case for himself last night in OT either.

And yet maybe you have selective vision?

MAde a joke at the beginning of the game that Violet Palmer would screw either team out of a win....and it came true in the worst way. Not trying sexist, but can we agree she is the worst ref in the NBA? Maybe I notice her awful calls more more b/c she is a woman and thus stands out in a game of men, but I cringe every time I see she is reffing one of our games.

yeah, she's legitimately a terrible ref. Her gender has nothing to do with it.

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sfw reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 12:57
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I believe two women ref's entered the league together(around 7-10 years ago?). I thought Violet was the worst of the two and the other lost her job after a year or two and they kept Violet. She's been terrible from the jump.

NBA has film. Do you think its office grades Palmer on a curve? If she's as incompetent as some here say, how do you explain her continued employment? Fear of feminist attorney letterhead, battle and fallout?

So there was a rumor earlier today that the Celts might be willing to blow it up. Would you trade Lou/Nocioni and a pick for Ray Allen?

Hell yes, in a heartbeat

Of course there's the whole 'trade in your division' nonsense...

Of course by doing that you know you give up a team leader with great chemistry who is super clutch, i mean he's a boss and all, you'll totally screw up the locker room - much like getting dwight would be bad - this would backfire probably

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sfw reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 13:09
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Yes but what would it cost for Allen to finish his career in Philly? Would you want that?

Who says you have to re-sign him?

It would be a this year move for me. Basically, the question is whether Allen gives this team a better chance to win a round or two this season than Lou/Nocioni (and whether it's worth the draft pick you'd have to include to get it done).

Allen expires after this year, Lou will probably opt out and Noc expires as well. So Boston would be making the move assuming they'd re-up Lou, plus the pick (though they could probably get more for Allen than that).

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Spencer for hire reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 13:24
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After what guys like Jamal Crawford got paid do you still feel Lou opts out? He is do to get close to 7 million, right.

I'm not sure about Avery Bradley, but I think the Celts like E'Twaun Moore quite a bit. Still, a veteran like Ray Allen would be incredible between Jrue and Andre. Even Jermaine O'Neal would be a nice addition in a sub-20 minute role off the bench or as a token starter.

Yahoo is reporting that the Thunder and Westbrook have agreed to a 'max type' extension

I read something about Love's extension which really didn't make sense to me. They said it could be one of two "max" offers, 4 years/$61M or 5 years/$90M. I assume one of those is the new superstar extension, but wow, a $29M difference? That's insane.

Yeah, not sure how that superstar nonsense made it into the new CBA - but the owners did get jobbed there...I mean the new CBA is supposed to make it 'easier' to keep your stars, but if you have two (or more) like OKC - you're going to end up having to devote way more cap space to them...It's the complete opposite of what the CBA is supposed to do.

not to mention, basing it on awards voted on by the media is a bad idea anyway :)

Westbrook is being reported at 5 years/$80M. Which is inline w/ what the old max was (Rudy Gay got a similar deal).

Yeah, but couldn't he also qualify for the 'super max' (I'm calling it that cause it's also a prison type sentence that hamstrings your team for years) if he hits an all star game or 2nd team nba all team or something like that? I forget if he already has one?

I don't know what the exact criteria is.

I think the criteria is 2 of any of the following

All star games
MVP awards
All nba team selections (first second or third)

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raro reply to GoSixers on Jan 19 at 13:16
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Shoot - I was hoping the Sixers would sweep in and steal Westbrook after those 'rumours' of a rift between him and Durant started appearing. They were probably bogus anyway.

Still in a funk last night. There's so much easy stuff that just needs to happen for a win. Thad misses a five foot runner that he banks and goes in and out. Miller makes a legitimate 26 footer that Iguodala doesn't really challenge. Why would he either? A 26 footer from Andre Miller? That's just a killer. One more thing too, he made a nice move on that three point play, but CSN had the overhead camera: There was very little contact, pretty much none.

I do agree though that the long two shooting needs to stop. The shot selection even at the beginning of the 4th quarter was jumper off the dribble, jumper off the dribble, jumper off the dribble.

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Sharone Wright reply to Rich on Jan 19 at 14:03
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I'd like to see how the Sixers quantity of long 2 point shooting compares to others in the league. Reducing it is easier said than done. You can't get to the rim every time, and you also can't step back every time for a 3 either. The flow of the play just doesn't allow for it.

They take the fifth-most long twos, per game. Charlotte is #1, Washington is #2 (probably the two worst teams in the league). Then Atlanta and Memphis.

link

they also take the fifth-fewest shots at the rim.

This probably is due, in large part, to their soft big men who never play on the inside and like to shoot long twos. I disagree that it's out of the team's control, though. Yes, you have to take a certain number of long twos, but you don't have to take them early in the shot clock, which they did way too much last night. It shouldn't be a shot you look for, it should be a last resort if you're late in the clock and you couldn't get something closer, or a three.

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Sharone Wright reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 14:18
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It is also because we don't have as many good three point shooters.

We have four guys who are shooting it above-average to very well. And they're taking a decent number of them as well.

5th most in the league, 25 a game. There's no real indicator for the shot making a bad offense, but Denver is last with only 13 a game. The Sixers are shooting 40 percent from that distance, good for 8th in the league.

Yeah, reducing it is easier said than done, but the quality of them have to be better than last night. Plus, I think guys like Lou, Thad, and even Turner should just be putting their head down at moments when the offense is stagnant. They all get to the rim pretty easily.

And the Nuggets also have much better 'at the basket' big men than the sixers do :)

Be great if you could parse it by position :)

That split in last night's game is particularly unforgivable, though. Denver had two defensive liabilities on the floor for most of the game on the perimeter. Jrue took Lawson to the post once. Turner took Miller to the post once. There was no reason for them to settle for jumpers without even exploring those options, or just driving right past those guys.

It seems, consistently, that the sixers do not take advantage of the size advantages (like Jrue versus lawson) consistently, which to me is a coaching thing, he's not calling for the post play when the sixers have the advantage, but maybe I'm wrong.

One of the advantages of having 3 very good ball handlers is the ability to put one of them in the post when they have the advantage and either have them initiate it or have someone else make the entry pass.

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Rich reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 14:18
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I'd like Turner to consistently get deeper position on his post shots. Him posting up 12 feet from the hoop and shooting a fadeaway is a tough shot, as evidence by all of his rim outs.

If he can get it like 7-10 feet from the rim, then that shot will start falling more. It would be nice if he mixed in a quick spin and went hard to the hole. That would be an easy way to get to the line.

Anyone who is mad at Collins for last night, just watch this clip. It makes me feel better:

http://www.myfoxdc.com/dpp/sports/former-wizards-coach-eddie-jordan-leading-carroll-high-school-team-010512

Ugh. So the Sixers held Denver's 2 leading scorers to 16 points on 7/19 shooting and still lost. That must be what teams say about the Sixers when their bench carries them to a win. It sucks.

I'm trying to look at the upside

Andre miller going 3 for 4 from the three is a fluke
Spencer didn't play and he might have helped stop the offensive patheticness in the 2nd quarter
Jodie makes a bunnie (ignore the people behind you jodie - just finish - you're good at free throws) and it's a different conversation

Yes they should have won, but I'm less agitated about it then I was for the knicks game...the knicks just stink.

There were definitely some old devils popping up last night. That big run in the fourth quarter was accomplished, in large part, by pushing the ball up the floor mercilessly, and turning nearly every possession into a transition opportunity. The difference is they actually got good looks when they were forced into the half court over that stretch, but it was kind of the same thing as last year in that they didn't actually score any points. Those three plays (the Brand elbow jumper, Turner in the post on Miller, and Thad on the block), those were three shots they should've hit. Realistically, according to the percentages, two of them should've dropped. Argh. I'm not over this game yet.

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Rich reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 14:21
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Brand just shorted that one. He doesn't get a better look. The other two were just brutal breaks as they both went in and out. On the positive, Thad's footwork to just completely shake Miller was fantastic. I want to see more of that, maybe with him trying to dunk that ball next time.

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Sharone Wright on Jan 19 at 14:21
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Now we got to beat Atlanta. Got to.

I'm not a big believer in 'must wins' unless it's the difference between the season continuing and ending but a win tomorrow would be real good, cause I don't think they can beat Miami. I think it's 'important' to beat Atlanta tomorrow, not necessary but important :)

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Sharone Wright reply to GoSixers on Jan 19 at 14:28
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Very important. They really haven't beaten anybody, and I am concerned about their confidence against good teams. Lose Friday and then lose to LeWadeBosh Saturday, and suddenly we're the 2010-11 Sixers. Average again. Crap I hate being so negative. A win Friday and we're back, Baby!

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Court_visioN reply to GoSixers on Jan 19 at 14:32
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Both of the games going forward are very winnable with wade and horford out. Neither team really has quick guys who consistently get to the lane and both teams big men pretty much suck.

It also helps that neither team has Andre miller.

Wade might or might not play, but the Heat are pretty damn good without wade cause they have this guy named Lebron, who is stronger than anyone on the sixers, (including Iguodala in my opinion) and could back then Brand I bet if he wanted to.

The heat game isn't 'very winnable' if Wade doesn't play, it becomes more winnable but it's still not an easy win

The hawks is a different story

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Court_visioN reply to GoSixers on Jan 19 at 15:37
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Yeah you're right, im mostly sipping the koolaid. I'm just hoping Miami's insane comeback against san Antonio was more an aberration than what the norm will be going forward because before that point they weren't looking all that dominant lately.

Well they will also have the advantage of a day off and the home court - whether wade plays or not - if lebrons flu is more serious then we can talk :)

There have been lots of great points made about last nights game but bottom line, if Iguodala makes both free throws they win the game. Hell with the bad second quarter, Violet Palmer, Dre Miller and how bad Jrue played.

Make both free throws and they win!!

ANd if Jodie Meeks made a wide open lay up in the first quarter they might have won as well.

If Andre Miller shot his career average from the 3 point line they would have won

There is no one moment where the game is lost unless of course you want to blame a specific player - as you do

Two free to win the game with 4 seconds left definitely clasifies as a "single moment" that wins or loses a game to me. I can't blame him for every single instance that happened throughout but I can blame him for the things he has immediate control over. In that instance he didn't get it done. We all know he should have. HE DIDN'T.

Funny thing is, you probably new he want going to make both but you won't admit it.

What i 'new' or didn't 'no' is irrelevant. Am I anywhere saying it's ok he missed them - nope - I'm not - in fact you can't find it anywhere - but there were a lot of reasons the game came down to that moment - and you can lay blame anywhere (and you like to lay blame at Iguodalas feet for almost everything as you did last night in the game thread)

Does it sucked that he missed em - yup - it does - but show me someone who shoots a 100% free throw shooting in the NBA and I'll show you a guy who takes at most 10 free throws all year.

Iguodala is the best ALL AROUND basketball player on this team, but you have blinders/hatred for irrational reasons that make you resemble the sports radio folk more than anything else and you focus on one single moment - and you make the whole game about that moment when everything that LED to that moment is just as relevant.

You're like one of those people who thinks 'wins' are more important late in the season than early - or who says in baseball that teams need to 'save runs' instead of having blow outs.

We get it - you hate Iguodala - your opinions about him are quite clear (though irrational) and everything bad that happens to the sixers lies clearly at his feet

But there are a LOT of moments that win or lose a game not just one.

You probably think lebron sucks cause he misses 4th quarter free throws too?

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jkay reply to GoSixers on Jan 19 at 15:07
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Ugghh that Dwight Howard guy is useless; .450 FT%. What a loser.

Yup - I mean that's why the hack a dwight formula guarantees wins (and because it was requested, I will mention that I have dwight on my keeper league team and i just forfeit Ft's :)

Dwight, career FT% winner:

Dwight Howard .594
Bill Russell .561
Manute Bol .561
Shaquille O'Neal .527
Wilt Chamberlain .511

For the record I don't hate Iguodala, I hate most people on this blogs opinion of him. I hate that most on this blog give him a pass for not improving the small mental and physical aspects of his game. Saying he is the best whatever in this team is like saying I'm the tallest midget. Its kind of a big accomplishment on a very small scale.

I give Iguodala as much credit for playing good as much as I do when he plays bad. Some on this blog put more emphasis on his positives and ignore his glaring flaws. I'm gonna point out those flaws just to try and keep it balanced.

Case in point, after the Knicks lost I made a statement about Brian adding an "especially Iguodala" when commenting about how the team had played great defence that night. After last nights loss and Iguodala had missed the free throws he played it of as "you know how that went" or something to that effect. Be undiased and be just as critical as you are congratulatory. Till then I'm going to point out his bad play at every opportunity.

And I hate people who think they know other peoples opinions, many people who support Andre Iguodala also criticize him - but again - you miss it because of your hatred - you show no appreciation for anything he does and only focus on his negatives...you expect him to be something he never was in his entire basketball career - a common problem with Iguodala haters, they don't see 20PPG and they look at his salary and assume he's a failure.

I hate people who think that because a players salary suddenly changes the players game will suddenly change as well - it's a silly expectation

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jkay reply to KellyDad on Jan 19 at 14:45
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well FTs have never been Iguodala's strength at all. Moreso, this year. Even moreso, in the 4th qtr. I was just happy he didnt brick both, cos that's very possible with Dre. EVERYONE knows that.
That's why Brian said "I can't watch"
You are just looking for any excuse to hang it on your favorite goat. Troll.

I don't think it can be argued that those free throws were not more critical than say, Jodie's missing the bunny or Brand front-rimming that jumper. You never want a team to have it's final possession be game-deciding, but when it is, it is the singular most important possession despite the factors, including missed scoring opportunities, that brought them there.

Andre converted that possession into a scoring opportunity which is a victory in itself. He didn't make both free throws, only the bare minimum amout of points needed to say alive: one. But the expectation that he should make both is baseless. This isn't a game of guarantees. We're honestly lucky it got into OT considering the percentages were against them.

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Court_visioN reply to jkay on Jan 19 at 15:42
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I was actually surprised the second one went in. The pressure on you down one after you miss the first one i think puts enormous pressure on you.

And the first one was JUST short. Ugh, so close.

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Court_visioN reply to Court_visioN on Jan 19 at 15:44
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Wow, terrible grammar there. But you get my point I think?

yeah.
To me, it seems it's never even about pressure. It almost feels like a roll of the dice when he goes to the line. It just goes in sometimes, it just doesn't sometimes. This season, it looks like he has absolutely no control over it. You can see that he wants to get it in, but his hands have their own mind. It's as strange as it is sad; how a player that puts so much time into practice cannot hit FTs at a dependable rate. He's always streaky.

the way he shoots just leaves too little room for error.

If I had to guess, I'd say he's kind of muscle bound. Make him tight, so he's sort of shooting like a rubber band instead of a smooth motion throughout w/ a follow through. If that makes sense.

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eddies' heady's on Jan 19 at 16:03
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Hypothesis yet, on what in the world they were trying to do on that Andre iso with 1:07 left? Still beats the devil out of me..

And I saw a replay today of that last possession of the 3rd quarter where it was a clear shot clock violation. Almost 4 seconds clear. Pitiful. If the refs don't catch that, someone on staff sure should've considering it was easy to determine because of the stoppage in play for the jump ball. Can that be looked at between quarters if one of our coaches asked for it? Is it reviewable?

Don't think so, not in that situation. I didn't check on synergy for the 1:07 play last night, and can't access it from the office. will take a look tonight.

That SC violation, Gallo touching the ball out of bounds, the Meeks sideline play. All three really bad calls, just botched things. Plus that bogus charge on Turner, but whatever, that's subjective, the other three really aren't, they were bungled things by the refs. Bleh.

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Johnnylaptop on Jan 19 at 16:33
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This game made me sick. Jrue messing up the play towards the end of the game had me screaming at the TV, then my wife screaming at me. We all know that Jrue is going to have growing pains. Jrue needs to keep getting the ball at the of the games.I believe he could be a solid closer if given the chance, Jrue hold your head up, your upside is huge. Our other closer of the future is, Evan Turner. He should be out there at crunch time when he's hot. I don't think Lou will be around much longer with his contract option up at the end of the year.

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johnrosz on Jan 19 at 16:52
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I kinda kept away from here after last nights game because I didn't want to say anything silly that I'd regret about Dre, because I really do like him for 45 minutes a night. It's really just difficult to argue at this point that he doesn't turn into a different player when it gets into the guts of the game though, at least offensively. He's usually still stellar defensively in crunch time, which was why last night was even more surprising.

But offensively, his game just shrinks in crunch time, it's just disappointing that they continue to put him in a position to fail time after time and expect a different result. I don't even blame him for the failures anymore. It's gotten to the point where there's a collective groan from the crowd when he's got the ball on a must score possession. It has to stop

I'm not sure why you say he's a different player. If you give him an isolation without really running a play at any point, he's not very good. That's just not his game. On the free throws, he's shooting in the 60's, so it's more likely he's going to split the pair than make both.

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johnrosz reply to Brian on Jan 19 at 17:19
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Yeah, you're right. Sometimes he just seems tight at end of game situations, turnovers you'd never see otherwise, boneheaded fouls on occasion, some unusual shot selection (not really blaming him for this one if he has to force)

It really is to the point where I think a lot of people just see what they want to see with him late in games, his mistakes aren't abundant but they are absolutely magnified because he's kind of got that stigma of coming up small late in games...

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L. A. Steve on Jan 19 at 17:06
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I'm sorry, but I just can't see Jrue Holiday as a point guard. In my opinion, he really doesn't possess an aptitude for the position, He doesn't appear to have the court vision to see the floor and set up his teammates for easy buckets, and he always seems to be looking for his shot instead of looking for his teammates. Likewise, he seems more comfortable shooting long jumpers than driving the lane and making a play. All these traits are liabilities when it comes to playing the point.

If I was the coach, I'd start Evan at the 1, with Jrue playing off the ball, then have them switch on defense. Until Jody finds his shot on a consistent basis, he should be coming off the bench. Evan Turner possesses skills that are more suited for the point, the ball should be in his hands.

While I'm at it I might as well play GM too. I know Coach thinks Iguodala is a great all around player, but we need more consistent offense from the 2/3 position. We need to trade Dre for an offensive wing player, who can knock down shots on a consistent basis.

As a final thought, I don't know why Collins doesn't let Vucevic play longer, He's out there such a short amount of time, he's lucky if he gets 2 touches in the post, besides, I don't see Tony doing anything. Let the kid get comfortable, play him until he fouls out, what's the difference, he needs to learn. He needs to relax, and gets some touches, then he might surprise some people, don't forget, he has a lot of talent.

Jrue is playing a different game this year, and I'm not really sure why. If it continues, I'd at least explore Turner at the 1, but I'm hoping it doesn't continue this way.

As for trading Iguodala, we've been over this enough in the past. The thing that's making this team so good right now is their defense, without him, they're probably middle-of-the-road on that end, maybe worse. If you can trade him for a really great scoring wing who also plays defense at a high level, go ahead. But there aren't many of those guys, and they aren't really on the market.

Vucevic picked up 3 fouls early in the first half, then picked up his fourth on the first possession in the third quarter. that's why his minutes were limited last night. he could've and maybe should've gone back to him in the fourth, but it's kind of a lot to expect for him to get into that game in the final 10 minutes last night when the Sixers were in the middle of their comeback and playing extremely well.

Jrue is also only 21 years old and plays a position that, unless you're a savant like Rubio, is notoriously difficult to master at such a young age. He is a natural combo guard, but so are Derrick Rose and John Wall, and they are undoubtedly seen as point guards. Turner is a jack of all trades.

You can just as easily decide him to be a point guard as you can a point forward. His seamless transition between the 1-2-3 and the roles within them will be his calling card for the duration of his career. Subjugating him to the rigidity of role really limits him.

Also, if you trade Andre Iguodala then you may as well reverse the 76ers record. I don't know if there's anyone in the league that can have such a huge impact whether he shows up big on the box score or not. Forget the contract, he's the biggest reason behind Doug Collins for the teams current success.

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bebopdeluxe reply to L. A. Steve on Jan 19 at 20:49
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It may very well turn out that - on offense - that the best set is ET at the 1 and Jrue at the 2...with them flipping over on D.

I hope that DC, the rest of the coaching staff and, most of all, the players involved, are open to actively pursuing this if it turns out that it is best for all concerned. Turner is a great passer, finisher at the rim, and he generally makes excellent decisions with the ball in his hands on the break. As has been said in various posts lately, Jrue has done a less-than-optimal job of keeping his head up on the drive for options other than shooting the ball...perhaps he should stop trying to force the pass ( like he did on that last possession), and simply be a scorer.

I don't want to necessarily give up on Jrue at the PG position, but if the team is best served by having ET at the point and Jrue at the 2, then let's stop giving Meeks 30 minutes a game and just get on with it.

You need a backup three if that's your plan.


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