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Friday, June 01, 2012

OT: NBA Monthly Thread, June 2012

I estimate that only 10-12 Primates care about the NBA, but with our own thread, we won’t detract from what the site is really about: overwrought, acrimonious discussions about having where to put the site’s overwrought, acrimonious discussions.

Famous Original Joe C Posted: June 01, 2012 at 09:58 AM | 2704 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1001. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: June 08, 2012 at 07:58 PM (#4152064)
8 days into the month and we have broken 1K posts. Impressive work folks.
   1002. Athletic Supporter can feel the slow rot Posted: June 08, 2012 at 08:12 PM (#4152068)
Also, no basketball tonight :(
   1003. Into the Void Posted: June 08, 2012 at 08:20 PM (#4152076)
According to Woj, Bird is set to hire Pritchard as GM. Could be interesting.
   1004. NJ in DC (Now with temporary employment!) Posted: June 08, 2012 at 08:29 PM (#4152084)
I don't have a kid, but I liked Simmons' piece on his daughter and sports fandom (with some MIA-BOS at the end).
   1005. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 08, 2012 at 08:49 PM (#4152098)
These games all seem to feature huge swings, as do the series. I don't claim to know how to analyze basketball games, but I do know that the media doesn't either, since all they seem to do is to let the previous game's outcome drive 80% of their analysis. (They do this with the NFL also.) Boston got creamed last night, so Boston will lose the series. If only it were that simple.

I expect the Heat to win because they're at home on Saturday, but I still give Boston a 40% chance. And I'd give them a 60% chance if they were home. I still think people underrate Boston's core four.
   1006. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: June 08, 2012 at 08:53 PM (#4152104)

I don't have a kid, but I liked Simmons' piece on his daughter and sports fandom (with some MIA-BOS at the end).


Agreed. It's a really good story.
   1007. tshipman Posted: June 08, 2012 at 11:18 PM (#4152190)
These games all seem to feature huge swings, as do the series. I don't claim to know how to analyze basketball games, but I do know that the media doesn't either, since all they seem to do is to let the previous game's outcome drive 80% of their analysis. (They do this with the NFL also.) Boston got creamed last night, so Boston will lose the series. If only it were that simple.


Most analysis in the NBA involves overreacting to home court advantage and how well a team shot from 3. It's really dumb. At least it's better than football analysis.

I still think people underrate Boston's core four.


If anything, I think they're being significantly overrated. I've beaten this drum all playoffs, though. KG has turned back time and that is very impressive, but Boston's regular season indicated a team that was going to get rolled by Chicago in the second round. Instead, they almost lost to Philadelphia.
   1008. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 03:27 AM (#4152232)
Do the Celtics have the characteristics of a team that would tend to be inconsistent?

They have a very good defensive team, led by one of the better defensive anchors of the past 20 years. They also have an experienced, smart team led by a smart coach.

These characteristics would tend to lend themselves to consistent performance. On the other hand, the outstanding characteristics of the team are that they're old and hobbled, and probably can't maintain top performance level for 96 minutes over any 2-game stretch. At his best, Rondo is as dynamic a player as there is in the league, but he's not a consistent scorer or shooter. Their offense relies heavily on long jumpers and 3s. (I'm not convinced that teams that rely on 3s are inconsistent, but that seems to be the CW.) They don't get to the free-throw line and they're not a good rebounding team.

It doesn't help that they happened to play two of the more maddeningly inconsistent teams in the first two rounds and have already played 20 playoff games, which is probably more than many title winners. The Sixers' greatest attribute seems to be their ability to make you look terrible while simultaneously looking terrible.

******

I'd guess that James will have to be more of a facilitator in Game 7, and if he has a monster game, it'll be more along the lines of 25-15-10 than 45-15-5. I don't think there's any way Boston lets him just go off again. I'd be surprised if Bosh doesn't start, and he or Wade have to get involved early. If James has a big scoring night, he'll probably have to hit some free throws.
   1009. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 09, 2012 at 07:32 AM (#4152242)
Good take, baudib.
   1010. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:32 AM (#4152283)
Can James really go 12-14 again? I would seriously bet against it.
   1011. tshipman Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:56 AM (#4152316)
Can James really go 12-14 again? I would seriously bet against it.


? James was 19/26. Not sure what you mean. At any given point, though, yes, LeBron can go 12-14. As long as they're close to the rim, sure.


I'd guess that James will have to be more of a facilitator in Game 7, and if he has a monster game, it'll be more along the lines of 25-15-10 than 45-15-5. I don't think there's any way Boston lets him just go off again. I'd be surprised if Bosh doesn't start, and he or Wade have to get involved early. If James has a big scoring night, he'll probably have to hit some free throws.


Yeah, I agree. I can't imagine that he won't face a lot of doubles in the first half.
   1012. PJ Martinez Posted: June 09, 2012 at 12:56 PM (#4152359)
It'll be interesting to see if Boston doubles James. For six games, their m.o. has been to double Wade heavily, not James, and it worked until game six. I'm not sure you over-correct based on that one game, which was James at his absolute scoring best. On the other hand, he's certainly capable of doing something similar again, so... maybe.
   1013. AROM Posted: June 09, 2012 at 02:49 PM (#4152444)
Not much sports to select from on my TV this afternoon, so I turned to the high school dunk competition.

Some absolutely great names there. With no idea how good college prospects they are, I've seen Shaquille Johnson and Dalonte Dunklin.
   1014. Zipperholes Posted: June 09, 2012 at 03:46 PM (#4152507)
It'll be interesting to see if Boston doubles James. For six games, their m.o. has been to double Wade heavily, not James, and it worked until game six. I'm not sure you over-correct based on that one game, which was James at his absolute scoring best. On the other hand, he's certainly capable of doing something similar again, so... maybe.
Agreed. You don't change a game plan in Game 7 of a series, except to the extent personnel changes (e.g., Bosh getting more minutes) or injuries changes things. Doc Rivers has been using what he thought was the best strategy. He might've been wrong, but one game shouldn't cause him to change it.
   1015. booond Posted: June 09, 2012 at 04:08 PM (#4152524)
It'll be interesting to see if Boston doubles James.


If I'm the Celtics I discount what LBJ did Game 6 and keep the same strategy. If LBJ does it again they're screwed, better off to bet against it.
   1016. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 04:11 PM (#4152527)
Agree with Boond.

(Yeah, tshipman, I screwed up his shot/attempt numbers. But my point is that he's not going to do that again. And if he does, you tip your cap and head off to play golf.)
   1017. AROM Posted: June 09, 2012 at 04:37 PM (#4152565)
Doubling James the way they did to Wade is tough, because James is a better passer. Doubling either is tougher if Bosh is on the floor and playing well.
   1018. PJ Martinez Posted: June 09, 2012 at 05:20 PM (#4152587)
@AlexKennedyNBA Chris Bosh may start tonight. Erik Spoelstra wouldn't say one way or the other. It'll be a game-time decision.
   1019. Los Angeles El Hombre of Anaheim Posted: June 09, 2012 at 05:27 PM (#4152601)
@WindhorstESPN
Pierce shooting .336 in series. Only 2 players have shot less than 34% w/100+ FG att in a series. M. Finley in '01, Artest in '04
   1020. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 08:36 PM (#4152668)
I disagree, actually. If the Celtics decide to defend LeBron the same way they did in Game 6 and he goes after his points, there's absolutely zero reason to believe he won't score 40+ again.

   1021. tshipman Posted: June 09, 2012 at 08:55 PM (#4152670)
I disagree, actually. If the Celtics decide to defend LeBron the same way they did in Game 6 and he goes after his points, there's absolutely zero reason to believe he won't score 40+ again.


Yeah, I don't think you can get shredded like that and make zero adjustments. That seems bizarre. It wasn't like he shot a bunch of three's.
   1022. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:08 PM (#4152677)
I think Lebron just killed Rondo. God damn.
   1023. The Ghost's Tryin' to Reason with Hurricane Season Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:13 PM (#4152680)
I think Rondo was trying to sell something - to influence a future call.
   1024. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:16 PM (#4152682)
Loved the announcer saying James got away with a shove on Pierce when it was Garnett that shoved him into Pierce.
   1025. JJ1986 Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:16 PM (#4152683)
Chris Bosh is really feeling it.
   1026. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:18 PM (#4152685)
Old guys don't look old for Boston tonight.

If Miller and Jones are going to miss open-look 3s, they might as well be euthanized.
   1027. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:25 PM (#4152689)
I agree with Van Gundy 100%. I've always thought Garnett looked more like a pulling guard than a power forward on those screens but he's been getting away with it for 17 years.
   1028. booond Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:28 PM (#4152691)
I agree with Van Gundy 100%. I've always thought Garnett looked more like a pulling guard than a power forward on those screens but he's been getting away with it for 17 years.


They're fouls but it's a funny time to start calling them.
   1029. Zipperholes Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:29 PM (#4152693)
I disagree, actually. If the Celtics decide to defend LeBron the same way they did in Game 6 and he goes after his points, there's absolutely zero reason to believe he won't score 40+ again.
Yes there is. What was he, 15-19 on jumpers? He can't be expected to do that again.
   1030. The Ghost's Tryin' to Reason with Hurricane Season Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:36 PM (#4152696)
They're fouls but it's a funny time to start calling them.


Agree on both points.

Does David Stern want the Heat in the finals?
   1031. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:45 PM (#4152699)
I don't think there's anything more beautiful in the NBA than a Wade-James fastbreak.
   1032. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:46 PM (#4152700)
Does David Stern want the Heat in the finals?


Don't know, but I know if I ran NBA Marketing I would have a fairly strong preference for OKC-Miami. Durant-versus-LeBron is a terrific storyline to sell.
   1033. booond Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:49 PM (#4152702)
Does David Stern want the Heat in the finals?


13-7 Boston leading in fouls, including three on Garnett.
   1034. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:55 PM (#4152703)
Great first half by Bass.

   1035. Yardape Posted: June 09, 2012 at 09:55 PM (#4152704)
13-7 Boston leading in fouls, including three on Garnett.


And yet the Heat fans angry at the refs...
   1036. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:09 PM (#4152707)
Refs have been fair so far, IMO. Boston has committed far more fouls because they've been hammering James when he drives to the basket.
   1037. Der-K and the statistical werewolves. Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:28 PM (#4152711)
i'm working, not watching tonight - what's been the narrative, refs aside. also, does it look like a game where lebron has no assists - 'cause he does.
   1038. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:35 PM (#4152712)
Refs have been fair so far, IMO. Boston has committed far more fouls because they've been hammering James when he drives to the basket.


I like that strategy, but you sure as #### don't want Garnett fouling out doing it. The game's in Miami, the Celtics should be fully aware the officials are going to do them no favors.
   1039. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:38 PM (#4152714)
Miami is actually getting good contributions from Battier (4 3-pointers) and Chalmers (4-for-6, some nice drives/finishes) and Bosh (5-for-7). Despite this, it actually looks like Boston has about 5 of the 6 best players in this game, including Bass tonight. Miami had a bunch of turnovers early. LeBron's been at the line all game.
   1040. President of the David Eckstein Fan Club Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:40 PM (#4152715)
Boston's hanging in well.

Lebron and Wade haven't really put their stamp on the game, but Bosh has been really good for the Heat.
   1041. Squash Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:44 PM (#4152717)
Miami seems to think they always have to answer a Boston 3 with a 3 of their own. And since they don't have any players who are good at shooting threes that's a bad strategy for them.

EDIT: Well, except for Bosh, apparently.
   1042. Tom Cervo, backup catcher Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:45 PM (#4152718)
I like that strategy, but you sure as #### don't want Garnett fouling out doing it. The game's in Miami, the Celtics should be fully aware the officials are going to do them no favors.


Definitely, though only his first foul fits. Garnett's problem was getting called for obvious offensive fouls (and he's still gotten away with quite a few tonight).

i'm working, not watching tonight - what's been the narrative, refs aside. also, does it look like a game where lebron has no assists - 'cause he does.


Lebron has dished to quite a few wide open teammates but none have been able to hit. I'd say first half biggest difference was Miami could not control the ball and Battier was the only role player contributing. 2nd half Chalmers and even Haslem have contributed.
   1043. JC in DC Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:47 PM (#4152719)
Boston looks gassed.
   1044. The Ghost's Tryin' to Reason with Hurricane Season Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:53 PM (#4152722)
Van Gundy has it right - can't let LBJ drive like that with Garnet watching bosh outside
   1045. GregD Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:54 PM (#4152723)
Bosh earning his stripes tonight.
   1046. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:54 PM (#4152724)
LeBron drove and dished to wide-open Battier for 3 that would have been a real dagger, he missed. LeBron could easily have 4-5 assists tonight.

Edit: And there's LeBron with a LOOONG 3. Falling apart for Celtics.
   1047. JJ1986 Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:55 PM (#4152725)
Can't defend that.
   1048. President of the David Eckstein Fan Club Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:55 PM (#4152726)
That one screaming female fan that ESPN's audio keeps picking up is really annoying
   1049. JJ1986 Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:57 PM (#4152727)
Who isn't bodying up on Wade? Rondo?
   1050. The District Attorney Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:58 PM (#4152728)
@freedarko: Is Rondo the mythical trickster figure?
   1051. Squash Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:59 PM (#4152729)
Whoosh.
   1052. JC in DC Posted: June 09, 2012 at 10:59 PM (#4152730)
Can they remove that woman?

And, yeah, Bosh has been a difference maker.
   1053. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:02 PM (#4152732)
It feels like it could have been another James Disappointment Game, but Miami's been hitting jumpers all night. I don't know, I'm starting to suspect the officials might have to work pretty hard to prevent OKC from making short work of Miami.
   1054. President of the David Eckstein Fan Club Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:03 PM (#4152733)
Boston's offense has just disappeared, and their defense has fallen apart too. Wade with a huge shot there.
   1055. JC in DC Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:03 PM (#4152734)
And Rondo's inability/lack of willingness to shoot really hurt Boston tonight. What a liability.
   1056. robinred Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:03 PM (#4152736)
Wade, James and Bosh have scored the last 27 for Miami.
   1057. nick swisher hygiene Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:04 PM (#4152738)
I'm gonna overreact to how well Bosh shot from three and predict the Heat in 5!
   1058. JC in DC Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:05 PM (#4152739)
I don't know, I'm starting to suspect the officials might have to work pretty hard to prevent OKC from making short work of Miami.


Nonsense. I fully expect Miami to take the 1st game in that Series.

Prediction: Miami in 5.
   1059. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:07 PM (#4152741)
Nonsense. I fully expect Miami to take the 1st game in that Series.

Prediction: Miami in 5.


You almost certainly know more about the NBA than I do, so I'm interested to hear your reasoning for that.

As for the Celtics, is this summer is the correct time to blow them up?
   1060. steagles Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:08 PM (#4152743)
They're fouls but it's a funny time to start calling them.
i didn't catch much (any) of the hawks series, but garnett was getting called for multiple offensive fouls throughout the sixers series. i think this is the kind of thing that, once it starts getting called, the officials start looking to call it.
   1061. Squash Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:08 PM (#4152744)
You almost certainly know more about the NBA than I do, so I'm interested to hear your reasoning for that.

Not directed to me, but matchups.
   1062. Squash Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:09 PM (#4152745)
LeBron might want to shoot 500 free throws a day in between now and the Finals.
   1063. JC in DC Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:11 PM (#4152746)
I'm just being a little bold. I think Miami will win b/c they're the best team. It's not about Bosh making 3s, but about being in the lineup. It changes a lot for them, from their offensive spacing and the PnR to the length of their defense. I think this is Miami's year.
   1064. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:11 PM (#4152747)
Not directed to me, but matchups.


I figure that much, but where's the critical mismatch? The Heat can defend Durant but OKC can't defend James? Neither team can do that but Wade has a better matchup than Westbrook? OKC has no one to contain Bosh down low and/or keep him off the boards? I'm an NBA idiot, I'm genuinely interested to know. Just by glancing around at stats and reading a few things on the internet I didn't arrive at the conclusion that this is a bad matchup for OKC.
   1065. The District Attorney Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:12 PM (#4152748)
As for the Celtics, is this summer is the correct time to blow them up?
Nah, although of course the Ray Allen part of the equation is not looking too essential.
   1066. robinred Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:12 PM (#4152749)
OKC has HCA, BTW.
   1067. JC in DC Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:14 PM (#4152750)
Actually, I'd like to hear the Boston guys' take on whether you keep Rondo. I know you don't base a judgment on one game, but as I've said before, I'm not a fan of his. He's got incredible gifts and really carries the team at times, but, man, I can't take a PG who can't shoot.
   1068. robinred Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:15 PM (#4152751)
whether you keep Rondo


I don't think that is really a question.
   1069. JC in DC Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:16 PM (#4152752)
OKC has HCA, BTW.


Assuming this is directed at my bold prediction, yeah, I know that. I'm kinda predicting bold for sure, but also that LBJ plays like he has the past few games.
   1070. JC in DC Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:16 PM (#4152753)


I don't think that is really a question.


Really? I thought there was talk Ainge wanted to move him.
   1071. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:18 PM (#4152755)
Rondo takes over the game sometimes, but I'm glad he's not on a team I'm rooting for. Watching every opponent play ten feet off of him and invite him to shoot as he pleases, then immediately fouling him if he drives, would drive me batty.

Not sure what to do about that. Do the Celtics have any good young(ish) talent besides Rondo? If not I feel like they pretty much should either keep the band together another year or blow it all the way up, trade Rondo for a draft pick haul and write 2013 off. But that's easy for me to sit here on my laptop in Nowhere, Pennsylvania to say. I don't have to try to sell it to the Boston fan base.
   1072. JC in DC Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:19 PM (#4152757)
I've driven through Nowhere, Pennsylvania.
   1073. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:21 PM (#4152758)
I've driven through Nowhere, Pennsylvania.


You have my sympathy.
   1074. Squash Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:24 PM (#4152760)
I figure that much, but where's the critical mismatch? The Heat can defend Durant but OKC can't defend James? Neither team can do that but Wade has a better matchup than Westbrook? OKC has no one to contain Bosh down low and/or keep him off the boards? I'm an NBA idiot, I'm genuinely interested to know. Just by glancing around at stats and reading a few things on the internet I didn't arrive at the conclusion that this is a bad matchup for OKC.

It's just a completely different matchup scenario from the Boston series. Boston has a big man who can score (Garnett), and who turned back the clock to 5 years ago Garnett for a lot of the series. Miami's strength is perimeter defense and suddenly LeBron is back where he should be, which is hounding 2s/3s, i.e. Harden or Durant, rather than banging down low with Garnett as when Bosh was out. Wade is a good defensive matchup for Wesbrook. On the flipside, no one on OKC can guard LeBron. He'll probably draw Harden or Ibaka, but if it's Ibaka that means Kendrick Perkins's ghost is guarding Bosh. That's not good.

I'm not saying it's going to be easy, or that Miami is going to route them - just that Miami matches up in a significantly different way with OKC than they do with Boston, and that that matchup plays better to Miami's strengths.

Of course, that's why they play the games - OKC could absolutely win the series - I just think Miami probably will. Though in the end who knows.
   1075. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:26 PM (#4152761)
966. Jolly Old St. Neck Wound, Moral Idiot Posted: June 08, 2012 at 11:59 AM (#4151633)

Boston's obviously a much better team than they looked like last night, and I don't think they'll cave. But I do think that towards the end of the 3rd quarter they'll be playing catchup ball until the final buzzer. If I had to guess I'd say it'll wind up Miami by about 10 to 15.


Thank you very much.
   1076. tshipman Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:26 PM (#4152762)
Do the Celtics have any good young(ish) talent besides Rondo?


There's Bass, depending on what you think about him. He's more "average to slightly above average starter" than "potential All-star" though.

I guess it depends on how many years KG wants. If it's two or fewer, they'll probably keep things together. Otherwise, they'll blow it up.


Honestly though, I don't see the point. This year they got extremely lucky with injuries (both opponents and their own) and they weren't really that close to winning it all (I saw them as a grease-smear for OKC). I don't think you trade Rondo, and obviously you won't be able to get anything for Pierce, but this team is pretty much done. I'll say this for them: it was a good last stand.
   1077. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:26 PM (#4152763)
I'd guess that James will have to be more of a facilitator in Game 7, and if he has a monster game, it'll be more along the lines of 25-15-10 than 45-15-5. I don't think there's any way Boston lets him just go off again. I'd be surprised if Bosh doesn't start, and he or Wade have to get involved early. If James has a big scoring night, he'll probably have to hit some free throws.


Well I guess I was about half-right. James had a workmanlike 30 points on 19 shots. Celtics played aggressively against him and he made 12 of 17 free throws. 12 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal, 1 monstrous block on Rondo. A normal "best player in the game" effort, but nothing out of the ordinary. Didn't notice if he had "The Look" or "Ugly Face."

Bosh made a huge difference and Wade turned it on at the end. Battier, Haslem and Chalmers made contributions. The non-Lebron/non-Wade portions of the Heat shot 19-for-32 for 48 points, including 8 3-pointers. The Heat won by 13. In Game 5, the rest of the Heat only had 33, and they lost by 4.

Can't really point to anything Boston did wrong. Pierce and Allen looked great in the first half. Rondo had a triple double. They lost their legs in the fourth and it went downhill quickly.

   1078. nick swisher hygiene Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:27 PM (#4152764)
Well, James guards Durant, and guys with bulk can give Durant trouble, which puts more pressure on Westbrook to have success against Wade, and maybe he reverts?

But this is bullshitting, obviously. I myself prefer only to discuss matchups after the fact--that way I can't be wrong!
   1079. robinred Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:28 PM (#4152766)
Assuming this is directed at my bold prediction, yeah, I know that


Wasn't directed at you. We have a few non-regulars here, and I thought that they might not know and it should be noted if people are tossing out predictions. MIA went 46-20; OKC went 47-19.

Ainge was supposedly looking to move Rondo at the deadline, when Boston was around .500. Things are quite a bit different now. Rose's timetable and status are uncertain; Miami is Miami, but they will have a hard time adding talent with the new CBA. Pierce is under contract for two more years, anyway. But even if they do it, I think they will keep Rondo.

   1080. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:30 PM (#4152767)
I'm not the type to look up in June and see my team, which had low expectations anyway, is 21-34 and say 'screw it, we should trade away whatever decent veterans we have for prospects, tank out the season and draft high'. I used to be, but then I realized it's a pretty stupid thing to do.

But I do think that, in all sports, from time to time there are owners/GMs/front offices that hold on to an old, once great team too long when blowing it up and bottoming out would be a significantly better medium-term (to say nothing of long term) tactic. Sometimes a team is held together for years but passes the point where it's just too old, too thin, too banged up to be a serious title contender anymore, and at that point it's better to rip the Band-Aid off fast. More pain now, less pain three minutes from now.

The Celtics might be at that point. I think the Steelers probably reached that point last year. The Phillies may be just now reaching that point. The Red Wings are probably going to reach it at the end of next year. In a case like the Celtics--again with the caveat that I don't actually know much about the NBA--it seems to me a very reasonable tactic to trade your aging stars (Garnett and Pierce), clear cap space, trade Rondo (for whom you could get a pretty big haul) and go ahead and bottom out in 2012-2013. With a strong winning tradition, plenty of cap space and a high pick (or two) in the 2013 draft, you could put together another title contender very quickly if you play it right and have a little luck.
   1081. nick swisher hygiene Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:32 PM (#4152768)
1074--Thabo will get a lot of court time guarding LeBron, I imagine...
   1082. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:33 PM (#4152769)
I don't see how you can trade Rondo. It's not like you're going to get Dwight Howard for him. You're not going to get Chris Paul, either. I don't know how hard it will be to find a scoring option to replace Allen, but someone with fresh legs who can create will make Boston look a lot better. The Celtics need to get younger and I don't see what trading Rondo really accomplishes in that regard.
   1083. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:39 PM (#4152773)
A fine point, baudib. I don't even really think about what kind of veteran talent you would get for Rondo; to me it seems pretty obvious that if you trade Rondo at all it would be because you're pretty much doing what I described in #1080. It seems daft to me to trade Rondo but keep Pierce and Garnett.

I think the absolute worst thing the Celtics can do is play it halfway. Selling the farm and loading up for one last run at it are both better ideas, I'm pretty sure.
   1084. robinred Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:39 PM (#4152774)
As to Game 7, the safe, obvious pick is that Boston will can more 3s, Pierce will shoot better, James will play (for him) a "normal" game, and the game will be competitive, but Miami will prevail by 5-10 points--90-83, something like that.


Didn't see the barrage of 3s from Bosh and Battier coming. In terms of "narratives", this game will help Bosh's image a lot. It's funny, though--I thought Game 7 in 2010 would solve that for Pau. Hasn't happened.

In terms of "guys getting rings" narratives, I would think that a lot of people (not here necessarily but in the media and maybe in general) like the idea of Battier's getting a ring. Obviously, a lot of people are opposed to Fisher's getting his 6th, and I think a fair number of people (mostly Lakers fans but a few others) will not like the idea of Kendrick Perkins' getting #2.

This series will be one of the few that unites the rooting interest of Boston and Lakers fans, though.
   1085. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:46 PM (#4152776)
A fine point, baudib. I don't even really think about what kind of veteran talent you would get for Rondo; to me it seems pretty obvious that if you trade Rondo at all it would be because you're pretty much doing what I described in #1080. It seems daft to me to trade Rondo but keep Pierce and Garnett.

I think the absolute worst thing the Celtics can do is play it halfway. Selling the farm and loading up for one last run at it are both better ideas, I'm pretty sure.


Personally, I felt that Boston needed to retool after 2010, when chasing Kobe around had Allen dragging with his tongue hanging out of his mouth. No offense to Ray, who's an all-time classy guy and cold-blooded assassin, but when you're his age, the deeper you get into the playoffs, the guys you're facing tend to be younger and more athletic. I will mention here that losing Bradley hurt them quite a bit.

It was alluded to in this thread by someone else (who I believe was paraphrasing an analyst): the Celtics were in year 5 of a 3-year plan. This was a really nice run for them but they appear to be moving further away from winning a title.
   1086. Manny Coon Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:47 PM (#4152777)
Garnett and Pierce are old but they are still good, given Pierce has two years left it might be reasonable to extend Garnett for two years, replace Allen and be a second tier team a couple more years, while trying to stockpile more assets for later. Garnett could probably return a good young player in a sign and trade though, so depending on who they could get there they need to keep their options open. I don't think there is any obvious answer until we know what they can actually get for Garnett. He's too valuable of an asset to just let walk as a free agent though.
   1087. robinred Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:48 PM (#4152778)
year 5 of a 3-year plan.


I think it was actually Ainge who said that.
   1088. tshipman Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:50 PM (#4152780)
Garnett and Pierce are old but they are still good, given Pierce has two years left it might be reasonable to extend Garnett for two years, replace Allen and be a second tier team a couple more years, while trying to stockpile more assets for later.


What's your goal, though? Are you trying to win a championship?

If you just want to print tickets, then keep Garnett, hope you don't get injuries and you'll manage to make it to the first or second round. Is that a success?

(these are serious questions. I struggle with understanding what the "correct" FO decision is in hoops, given that far fewer teams have a chance to win it all.)
   1089. Marcel Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:52 PM (#4152781)
Do the Celtics have any good young(ish) talent besides Rondo?

There's Bass, depending on what you think about him. He's more "average to slightly above average starter" than "potential All-star" though.

I guess it depends on how many years KG wants. If it's two or fewer, they'll probably keep things together. Otherwise, they'll blow it up.


Honestly though, I don't see the point. This year they got extremely lucky with injuries (both opponents and their own) and they weren't really that close to winning it all (I saw them as a grease-smear for OKC). I don't think you trade Rondo, and obviously you won't be able to get anything for Pierce, but this team is pretty much done. I'll say this for them: it was a good last stand.


Avery Bradley certainly seems to be turning into a very nice young player, excellent defense and a fast developing offensive game. Steimsma also has a chance to become a solid role player; his defense improved dramatically as the year went on.

As far as the C's getting lucky with injuries, what Celtics team were you watching? The Celtics that I was watching had two important bench players out with heart ailments, their starting SG dealing with bone spurs in his ankle, their sixth man's shoulder wouldn't stay in it's socket, and both Pierce and Pietrus dealing with knee ailments. That's lucky?
   1090. baudib Posted: June 09, 2012 at 11:53 PM (#4152782)
As for Finals, I don;t really have a good feel for what will happen. I think OKC is a better matchup for Miami than SA. Miami's a remarkable perimeter defense and LeBron is one of the game's greatest transition defenders, but Durant is basically unguardable. It's definitely a series where Ibaka could be a huge difference maker.

I could care less about Perkins and Fish ain't even a pimple on Robert Horry's ass.
   1091. tshipman Posted: June 10, 2012 at 12:02 AM (#4152786)
As far as the C's getting lucky with injuries, what Celtics team were you watching? The Celtics that I was watching had two important bench players out with heart ailments, their starting SG dealing with bone spurs in his ankle, their sixth man's shoulder wouldn't stay in it's socket, and both Pierce and Pietrus dealing with knee ailments. That's lucky?


Yes.
The Celtics had one guy out due to injury: Avery Bradley. Everyone else was more or less healthy. KG played like it was 2008, and their opponents had the following guys injured: Derrick Rose, Al Horford, Josh Smith, Chris Bosh, etc.

I'm not certain who all the guys you're talking about are. I am certain that the Celtics had significantly greater injury luck than their opponents, given the age differentials. They probably don't make it out of the first round if Horford/Smith were healthy for that whole series.
   1092. baudib Posted: June 10, 2012 at 12:33 AM (#4152796)
BTW, has Wade slipped below the Drexler line? That is, a guy who could be good enough to win it all with an equally talented big man but would otherwise be the best player on a team that could lose to Michael Jordan?

Wade is still a phenomenal player obviously, but in Year 1 of the Super Friends, LeBron and Bosh took a backseat and basically acted as if it was Wade's team. This year, LeBron is averaging 31/10 or so, which we've basically never seen from a non-big before, and you never really get the feeling that Wade is going to win a game all by himself.

Wade is 30, and given his style of play and the fact that he's been injury prone throughout his career, it's hard to envision still going strong at this level at age 32+. He's also not as good a Pippen as Pippen.
   1093. robinred Posted: June 10, 2012 at 12:35 AM (#4152797)
I could care less about Perkins and Fish ain't even a pimple on Robert Horry's ass.


Wasn't thinking about you when I wrote that. 3 or 4 guys here have mentioned Fisher, however, and I have seen it brought up elsewhere. Fisher will of course be a media angle in the series, particularly with Boston out and the Perkins vs. his old buddies angle gone. I expect that Magic Johnson will have a little face time with Fisher on one of the halftime features.
   1094. baudib Posted: June 10, 2012 at 12:37 AM (#4152798)

Wasn't thinking about you when I wrote that.


Oh yeah, I know. I just find it amusing how Lakers/Celtics fans are obsessed over these guys. I may be wrong but I'm pretty sure the rest of us won't lose any sleep over those guys winning rings.

   1095. JJ1986 Posted: June 10, 2012 at 12:43 AM (#4152801)
I'm not certain who all the guys you're talking about are.


Jeff Green and Chris Wilcox.
   1096. robinred Posted: June 10, 2012 at 12:46 AM (#4152802)
I just find it amusing how Lakers/Celtics fans are obsessed over these guys.


I don't think anyone is "obsessed" or saying you "are going to lose any sleep over it." Like I pointed out, it has been brought up here--not by me until now--a few times.

As I say above, the media will talk about them, particularly with ABC taking over the coverage. There will no doubt be a lot of secondary stuff about Perkins and Fisher bringing championship grittiness to the young Thunder, as guys who have been there before etc. And as discussed on the recent pages, inaccurate or disproportionate media narratives--like, say, those about LeBron James--tend to be an issue for people in the internet age, depending on how they feel about the players in question.

James is of course an infinitely bigger story than Fisher and Perkins, but "Clutchy McClutch" and "Veteran Toughness" storylines will always find some critics--especially when they are tied to the Lakers and the Celtics.
   1097. baudib Posted: June 10, 2012 at 12:55 AM (#4152804)
From a human angle, Fish vs. Kobe and the Lakers was interesting, and sure, Perkins vs. the Celtics would have been a good angle.

From a basketball standpoint, Fish is a non-entity. If anything, any minutes he spends on the court is a big negative. I realize the story around the Thunder is that he's calmed Westbrook down, but that's not really evident in the stats or to the eye (in the games I've seen). He looks like the same player as he was last year, although I think he's probably better defensively. A quick stat check notes that his assists are way down this year.

Perkins is a viable contributor.
   1098. The District Attorney Posted: June 10, 2012 at 12:57 AM (#4152805)
has Wade slipped below the Drexler line? That is, a guy who could be good enough to win it all with an equally talented big man but would otherwise be the best player on a team that could lose to Michael Jordan?
He sure hasn't been a great second banana in this postseason. Not only with the occasional crap performance (that game against Indiana was as bad as a star could possibly play), but yelling at Spo, constantly not getting back on defense... he has not been himself at all.

Maybe he doesn't want to be the second banana (can he really be that dumb?), maybe he's just hurt, I dunno but it's weird. It would have been real interesting to see what the reaction would have been if LeBron had had a good Game 7 but Miami lost. The obvious thing would be to say LBJ would take the blame anyway, but maybe not. I think Wade's Teflon has taken a beating that perhaps would have manifested itself at that point.
   1099. The District Attorney Posted: June 10, 2012 at 01:02 AM (#4152806)
Do the Celtics have any good young(ish) talent besides Rondo?
Bradley.

Bradley.

BRADLEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
   1100. robinred Posted: June 10, 2012 at 01:09 AM (#4152808)
From a basketball standpoint, Fish is a non-entity.


Pretty much, and that, along with his history and personality, is precisely why it will annoy quite a few people (in general) a little bit--which is all I was trying to say--if he gets another ring. The media won't treat it like they will James Jones and Mike Miller getting one if Miami wins, particularly if Fisher hits a couple of big shots along the way, as he often has.

Pruiti IIRC (it may have been another guy) made a good point about his corner 3 late in Game 6 of the SA series, pointing out that Fisher is 18/40 on those shots this year, or as Pruiti put it, 135 points per 100 possessions. So although intuitively getting the ball into Fisher's hands on a late-game possession against OKC seems like a win for the D, in that case, it may not always be.

As to Perkins, I have stuck up for him as a player a few times, as I feel he helps more than his stats show in spite of the TOVs and other offensive limitations. But there have been a fair number of "Perkins pretty much sucks" and "I don't like him" posts along the long road of the thread, and someone brought him up just a page or two ago, in addition to FTO's post about him.
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