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Friday, December 18, 2020

NBA 2020 Season kick-off thread

I estimate it would take 10-12 Primates to beat James Harden in a wing eating contest.

Moses Taylor hashes out the rumpus Posted: December 18, 2020 at 02:28 PM | 2692 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: best shape of his life, nba, off-topic

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   1901. tshipman Posted: March 05, 2021 at 01:16 PM (#6007769)
The Brooklyn Nets are believed to be leaders to sign six-time All-Star Blake Griffin, sources tell me and @JLEdwardsIII. Rival teams with interest are expecting Griffin to choose Nets as a title favorite for chance to win a championship.


This just seems like an awful idea for Brooklyn.
   1902. Crosseyed and Painless Posted: March 05, 2021 at 01:38 PM (#6007774)
This just seems like an awful idea for Brooklyn.


I'm a Blake homer at this point so I disagree. I think he's probably aware of his limitations at this point and is willing to play a role and knows that minutes aren't guaranteed for a contender if he can't cut it. So in that sense I think it's low/no risk and there's some reward.

Now maybe he doesn't have that attitude and he comes in and poisons the well, but I don't think that's the case.

I thought a team with less offense than Brooklyn would've been a team more in need of taking this flyer, though, so Brooklyn does feel weird. And maybe I'm talking myself into not disagreeing with you.
   1903. NJ in NJ Posted: March 05, 2021 at 01:56 PM (#6007776)
'21 Donovan Mitchell is not better than '21 Julius Randle...
   1904. tshipman Posted: March 05, 2021 at 01:57 PM (#6007777)
I thought a team with less offense than Brooklyn would've been a team more in need of taking this flyer, though, so Brooklyn does feel weird. And maybe I'm talking myself into not disagreeing with you.


Right, it's not that Blake doesn't have skills, it's that the only position they can play Blake at is a poor use of his skills. If you put him on the court with KD, Kyrie, Harden and Joe Harris, it makes the team worse.
   1905. Laser Man Posted: March 05, 2021 at 02:45 PM (#6007781)
If you put him on the court with KD, Kyrie, Harden and Joe Harris, it makes the team worse.
But what if his role is with the 2nd unit? He would be playing with Tyler Johnson, Andre Roberson, Landry Shamet, and Nic Claxton. Griffin might be useful with that group.
   1906. tshipman Posted: March 05, 2021 at 02:55 PM (#6007782)
But what if his role is with the 2nd unit? He would be playing with Tyler Johnson, Andre Roberson, Landry Shamet, and Nic Claxton. Griffin might be useful with that group.


The Nets should basically never play that lineup in the playoffs, so it's less relevant to me. In the playoffs, you should pretty much always have two of Harden/Durant/Kyrie/Harris on the court.

(I also think people kind of sleep on how important Joe Harris is to the Nets.)
   1907. aberg Posted: March 05, 2021 at 03:23 PM (#6007785)
(I also think people kind of sleep on how important Joe Harris is to the Nets.)


Teams with multiple high volume scorers definitely need these guys who can catch-and-shoot and play defense. Klay is the platonic ideal of that player. JR Smith and George Hill did it for Cleveland. Mike Miller in Miami, Rick Fox in LA, etc.
   1908. jmurph Posted: March 05, 2021 at 03:32 PM (#6007787)
JR Smith and George Hill did it for Cleveland. Mike Miller in Miami, Rick Fox in LA, etc.

Per thread policy, any list of players like this must also include Jahlil Okafor.
   1909. Moses Taylor hashes out the rumpus Posted: March 05, 2021 at 03:33 PM (#6007788)
'21 Donovan Mitchell is not better than '21 Julius Randle...

'21 Zach LaVine is better than both of them...
   1910. Fourth True Outcome Posted: March 05, 2021 at 03:59 PM (#6007794)
Zach LaVine is particularly more valuable in an all star context, where his defensive shortcomings aren't going to be an issue at all.
   1911. aberg Posted: March 05, 2021 at 04:26 PM (#6007797)
Per thread policy, any list of players like this must also include Jahlil Okafor.


Only the New Orleans vintage.
   1912. rr: cosmopolitan elite Posted: March 05, 2021 at 04:40 PM (#6007799)
Word is that the Lakers are looking at McGee and Whiteside in the buyout market, assuming that they are bought out. McGee would help Brooklyn.
   1913. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 06, 2021 at 01:49 PM (#6007834)
so, let's talk about the jazz:

1. their 3P shooting is ridiculously overperforming relative to expectations. every player in their rotation (besides gobbert and favers) is shooting above their career 3P%. they also take more 3PAs than anyone else in the league. they've made 200+ more 3Ps than the sixers.

2. they've been relatively healthy. 5 of their top 9 players (in MPG) have played every game, and the other 4 have combined to miss 15 total games out of 36.

3. their record at home, during this condensed season and where they play at altitude, is 15-2.

4. the core of their team has been together for years, and they had no major roster shakeups over the offseason. with practice time being limited by the condensed schedule, their continuity is a huge advantage.

5. most of their team is in/around their prime, so energy levels aren't an issue. as a bonus, "DNP-rest" has not been necessary.
   1914. asinwreck Posted: March 07, 2021 at 11:09 AM (#6007862)
@ShamsCharania
76ers All-Stars Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons are potentially ineligible to play tonight in the NBA All-Star Game due to contact tracing from exposure to a likely COVID-19 positive individual before they arrived to Atlanta, sources tell @TheAthletic @Stadium.
   1915. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 07, 2021 at 12:19 PM (#6007868)
Derek Bodner @DerekBodnerNBA
Doc Rivers jokes that, prior to the contact tracing news, his plan for tonight was to play Joel Embiid 30 seconds and Giannis 47 minutes.

   1916. tshipman Posted: March 07, 2021 at 02:20 PM (#6007874)
It's remarkable the extent to which all these NBA outbreaks are traced to barbers.
   1917. Fancy Pants Handle struck out swinging Posted: March 07, 2021 at 03:14 PM (#6007877)
Pretty sure that just like "flu-like symptoms" is used as a synonym for hangover, "barber" here is a synonym for mistress.
   1918. rr: cosmopolitan elite Posted: March 07, 2021 at 03:15 PM (#6007878)
I was in the "no ASG this year" camp.
   1919. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 07, 2021 at 03:41 PM (#6007880)
I was in the "no ASG this year" camp.
i think the only person who wasn't in the "no ASG this year" camp was adam silver.
   1920. tshipman Posted: March 07, 2021 at 04:18 PM (#6007885)
Pretty sure that just like "flu-like symptoms" is used as a synonym for hangover, "barber" here is a synonym for mistress.


I mean, maybe Joel and Ben double team on and off the court, but I think it's fairly plausible that it's actually barber.
   1921. rr: cosmopolitan elite Posted: March 07, 2021 at 04:53 PM (#6007888)
I mean, maybe Joel and Ben double team on and off the court, but I think it's fairly plausible that it's actually barber.

That would be the greatest double team since this.
   1922. PJ Martinez Posted: March 07, 2021 at 05:27 PM (#6007892)
Blake Griffin has cleared free agency waivers and the six-time NBA All-Star is expected to sign with the Brooklyn Nets, sources tell
@TheAthletic @Stadium.
   1923. rr: cosmopolitan elite Posted: March 07, 2021 at 06:07 PM (#6007893)
Brooklyn/Milwaukee/Philadelphia is a very interesting troika of contenders. And I am not totally counting out Boston and Indiana, either.
   1924. asinwreck Posted: March 07, 2021 at 07:18 PM (#6007900)

@wojespn
Free agent forward Blake Griffin has agreed to a deal with the Brooklyn Nets for the rest of the season, his agent Sam Goldfeder of @excelbasketball tells ESPN.


@wojespn
The Nets imagine Griffin as a small-ball center option off the bench.


   1925. Mike A Posted: March 07, 2021 at 08:29 PM (#6007905)
i think the only person who wasn't in the "no ASG this year" camp was adam silver.

It's been great for my city of Atlanta with numerous people being shot and many COVID-spreading parties. Thanks, Adam!
   1926. asinwreck Posted: March 07, 2021 at 08:39 PM (#6007906)
Jokic looks like he is having so much fun.
   1927. asinwreck Posted: March 07, 2021 at 08:48 PM (#6007907)
Curry just hit a 3 from the "T" near midcourt.
   1928. asinwreck Posted: March 07, 2021 at 09:06 PM (#6007908)
Non-zero chance Chris Paul fouls out.
   1929. . . . . . . Posted: March 07, 2021 at 09:23 PM (#6007909)
It's amazing how uninteresting this game always is.

Lebron's legs look heavy.
Luka looks like he's in worse shape than last year.
Lavine looks great, its amazing what they can do with ACLs now.
   1930. asinwreck Posted: March 07, 2021 at 09:30 PM (#6007910)
Am I crazy, or is LeBron's team just way better?

The first half confirmed that Moses is not crazy.
   1931. rr: cosmopolitan elite Posted: March 07, 2021 at 09:50 PM (#6007911)
More unnecessary:

2021 NBA ASG

or

Oprah Winfrey interviewing Prince Harry and Meghan Markle (who BTW are now living here in CA).

Given what seems to have gone down with The Royals, looks like the ASG.
   1932. asinwreck Posted: March 07, 2021 at 10:56 PM (#6007913)
Well, that was quite a way to end the rout. Dame from midcourt.
   1933. NJ in NJ Posted: March 08, 2021 at 01:42 AM (#6007919)
Pretty sure that just like "flu-like symptoms" is used as a synonym for hangover, "barber" here is a synonym for mistress.

Nope. Barber is the legitimate explanation in this case.
   1934. KronicFatigue Posted: March 08, 2021 at 08:33 AM (#6007923)
Would the Bulls' dynasty have existed if Pippen was paid a fair market value? I want the answer to be no, but I tried looking at contracts etc back then, and it's just wild. I can't make heads or tails of what was going on back then. Wildly different team payrolls, seemingly little correlation between highest contracts and talent, etc. Was it all based on the timing of contracts with increases in TV revenue / increase in cap?
   1935. spivey 2 Posted: March 08, 2021 at 10:56 AM (#6007926)
I think that's something that's true with a lot of dynasties, though maybe not to that extent.

Durant doesn't go to Golden State if Curry isn't way underpaid.

The Spurs top players took discounts throughout much of the Duncan era.

The Heatles all took slight discounts to come together.
   1936. jmurph Posted: March 08, 2021 at 11:15 AM (#6007929)
MJ also accounted for like 50% of the Bulls payroll in his final two years there, which is not a thing anymore.
   1937. asinwreck Posted: March 08, 2021 at 11:55 AM (#6007932)
I think the Bulls would have been fine had Reinsdorf paid Pippen in the 90s. Most of their key players were drafted and could be kept through Bird rights, with Rodman and Harper as the bigger outside acquisitions after Jordan and Pippen became stars. Even Rodman's value was down when they traded for him, so they never did anything like the Warriors luring Durant in free agency.

By the second threepeat, they could get cheap veterans interested in chasing a ring (Robert Parrish, John Salley, Bison Dele) to add depth. That model would have been the same had Pippen's salary been in line with similar stars c. 1997.
   1938. tshipman Posted: March 08, 2021 at 05:30 PM (#6007963)
Top prospects in the NBA per Dunc'd On:

(Tiers are a little messed up, as usual, they were all over the place in terms of actually describing who was in which tier)

S tier
1. Luka (Both)

A tier
2. Zion Williamson (Nate), Trae Young (Danny)
3. Ja Morant (Nate), Zion Williamson (Danny)
4. Trae Young (Nate), Ja Morant (Danny)

B Tier

5. Jayson Tatum (Both)
6. Bam Adebayo (Nate), Lamelo Ball (Danny)
7. Lamelo Ball (Nate), Bam Adebayo (Danny)

C Tier

8. Jamal Murray (Nate), OG Anunoby (Danny)
9. Shai (Nate), Shai (Danny)
10. DeAaron Fox (Nate), Jamal Murray (Danny)
11. Brandon Ingram (Nate), DeAaron Fox (Danny)
12. ??? (Nate didn't have 12 people listed), Brandon Ingram (Danny)

Players to watch:
Nate: Jaren Jackson, OG Anunoby, Michael Porter Jr, Tyrese Haliburton, DeAndre Hunter
Danny: Tyler Herro, DeAndre Ayton, Gary Trent Jr???, Isaac Okoro,

Guys not listed who had a case: Dennis Smith, Jr., Lonzo Ball (certainly, I'd prefer him to OG Anunoby), John Collins, Mitchell Robinson, Brandon Clarke, PJ Washington, Collin Sexton.

As usual, it was ####### impossible to tell who was on the ####### list and who was just being mentioned.
   1939. Crosseyed and Painless Posted: March 08, 2021 at 08:04 PM (#6007971)
Dennis Smith Jr? And no Bruce Brown?

Also is it just impossible for a low-usage guy like Mikal Bridges to crack this list? Tough thinking about where the Super Role Player fits compared to the Not Likely But Maybe There's a Chance Offensive Star.
   1940. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 08, 2021 at 09:18 PM (#6007975)
Space Jam: A New Legacy has “canceled” Pepé le Pew. You might assume a kids’ movie dropping a character whose sole characteristic is his desire to molest female characters without their consent is an unequivocally good thing, but it’s actually more complicated than you might think.
   1941. PJ Martinez Posted: March 08, 2021 at 10:18 PM (#6007980)
1938: Do I underrate Trae Young? I think I'd have him at the bottom of tier B, below Lamelo (who I might put in tier A), Tatum, and Bam. I'm particularly surprised that Leroux has him so high, though I haven't listened to the show in a while.


Edit: is the argument that a point guard's defense just doesn't matter that much? I tend to think that if a player is bad enough on that side, even as a point guard, there's a ceiling on how much he can help (this is based partly on watching Isaiah Thomas in Boston). Young has always struck me as that level of bad when it comes to defense.

Second edit: Seems weird that Jaylen Brown is not to be found anywhere on that list, says the Celtics fan. Third edit: is that an age cutoff thing? He's only a little older than Murray, but I see that basketball-reference has Brown in his "age 24" season and Murray in his "age 23" season.
   1942. tshipman Posted: March 08, 2021 at 10:31 PM (#6007981)
If I'm offering commentary:

I think Tatum is too low. Their thing is that all the guys in the A tier can pass the "he alone" test, where that one guy guarantees you a good offense when they're on the court. I think that's sort of the wrong way to look at it.

Trae Young is the same age as Tatum. While he does drive efficient offense, he also drives horrific defense. I'm not sure that there's a great example of a guy like that to have a ton of success in the playoffs.

I think there are a lot more examples of guys like Tatum, who drive +offense and +defense being successful than guys like Trae, who drive +++offense and -defense. If you want to use Curry as the comparison, Curry's never been that bad on defense. Even as a second or third year guy, he was a positive in the regular season.
I would have similar criticisms of Morant.

To me, after you get past guys like Luka, I'd rather have the guys who are a bit more balanced because it's so hard to win with a guy who is all offense and no defense.

Edit: Jaylen Brown is too old.
   1943. rr: cosmopolitan elite Posted: March 08, 2021 at 10:52 PM (#6007982)
One way I like to frame these macrovaluation of young guys questions is the old-school way: if you were starting a franchise, who would you take?

I am not a huge Tatum fan, but I would take him over Young. I also think I would take Ball over Young. And yeah, Doncic and Williamson would be the Top 2.
   1944. jmurph Posted: March 09, 2021 at 08:51 AM (#6007996)
I also would take Tatum over Young, and while I'm clearly biased, my reasoning is the same as tship's. I don't know that he'll ever make an All Defense team but he can guard, he can switch, he's a solid help defender at the rim, etc.

But listening yesterday, the biggest shocks to me were Danny having Young over Zion, and having Anunoby on the list at all. I like Anunoby but I don't see a path to stardom, while several of the guys below him have shown flashes of that already.

I think Morant was too high, for both of them? I love watching him play, but is there a reason to think he's going to be able to shoot?
   1945. spivey 2 Posted: March 09, 2021 at 08:53 AM (#6007997)
I agree Young is too high and Tatum too low. Also think Anunoby is too high. Looks like he's improved a decent amount this year, but he still strikes me as a role player that's closer to guys like Divincenzo and Bridges than someone like Jamal Murray, Shai, or Ingram. Top prospects who've played a few years should be showcasing pretty solid abilities to score unassisted at this point in their career, and it's an extremely valuable skill for the playoffs.
   1946. tshipman Posted: March 09, 2021 at 11:36 AM (#6008017)
Anunoby being on the list is ... not good. There's no evidence that he's better than other role players.

re: Tatum vs. Trae:

One thing I think about: how good of evidence is NBA history in predicting the current game? The game has changed a LOT in the last ten years. No one's won a championship with a sieve like Trae (or Ja) having to be on the court at the most important times. Is that a good predictor of NBA success going forward, though? If you put Trae in a Miami Zone system with a coach like Spo who is so good at hiding guys and covering for them, could he be part of a good defense?
   1947. JJ1986 Posted: March 09, 2021 at 12:31 PM (#6008022)
I used to listen to Dunc'd On 3-4 times a week and have entirely quit between their subscription model and trying to listen to more audiobooks as a New Year's resolution. They used to love Anunoby because they consider him a real 1-4 defender. I'm not sure how useful that is if you can't match him up against the biggest, strongest 4s or the smallest, fastest PGs in a playoff series. Like he can cover loads of different guys, but are LeBron James, Kawhi Leonard or Steph Curry on that list? I think he is a pretty good matchup with James Harden.
   1948. tshipman Posted: March 09, 2021 at 02:07 PM (#6008030)
Myers Leonard used "k*ke" on a video game stream, available on nba reddit if you want to see for yourself.

To put it mildly, not a good look. Should lead to suspension, not that he's really a good player. *particularly* not a good look since he was the only player who did not kneel for the anthem in the bubble.

Just kind of a garbage human being thing to do.
   1949. spivey 2 Posted: March 09, 2021 at 02:46 PM (#6008033)
The Spurs were an elite defensive team for a lot of years during Tony Parker's prime. Parker was still playing crunch time minutes in the playoffs for contenders as recently as like 5 years ago. Derek Fisher 10 years ago, and that was a very toasty Derek Fisher.

Ja Morant should easily be able to be better than Tony Parker and old Derek Fisher due to size and athleticism.

Trae Young, maybe not, but I'm still confident if you've got 2 good defensive wings and good rim protection, you'll be good defensively. You still have to worry about Young getting switched onto LeBron/Kawhi/KD/Harden types in the playoffs, but no team is ever going to have 5 guys on the court that can all guard superstar wings when they get switched onto them.
   1950. asinwreck Posted: March 09, 2021 at 03:47 PM (#6008035)
Oddly, "Myers, Leonard" is a name that wouldn't have sounded out of place in my temple.
   1951. Your favorite TFTIO, me! Posted: March 09, 2021 at 07:24 PM (#6008053)
I think Luka is #1, and I would put Ja #2 with a bullet. But then, I'm not assuming a principled approach here and just going on gut feel. I love Anunoby, but he's hilariously overvalued because he was a steal in the draft, IMO.
   1952. Mike A Posted: March 09, 2021 at 08:25 PM (#6008056)
Small sample size, but when the Hawks had Trae-Reddish-Hunter-Collins-Capela on the floor at the same time, their defense was among the best in the NBA according to PA/48. So there may be some truth to hiding Trae's defense with a rim protector (Capela) and an very good defensive wing (Hunter). But the Hawks have been so banged up we can't really say.

Trae seems to rank around 17-25th among most of the advanced stats this year in terms of value. A couple like RPM have him lower (40th), but RPM hates Luka (35th) too, so who knows. And it's not exactly kind to Morant and Zion's defense, either.

Perhaps the best comparison to Young historically is Nash (Trae's idol, incidentally). Nash never won a title but he did reach 4 Conference Finals. Other historical star players who weren't exactly known for their defense were English, Mullin, Richmond, Vandeweghe, and Dominique - none of which had great playoff success. But as noted, the game has certainly changed quite a bit from those days.

One weird name that popped up in my research was Joe Dumars. DRtg and DBPM have Dumars' defense as pretty mediocre. Yet some guy named Michael Jordan said Dumars was the toughest defender he ever played against. Go figure.
   1953. rr: cosmopolitan elite Posted: March 09, 2021 at 08:43 PM (#6008058)
Iverson is probably the best comp to Young, IMO. One key thing to remember about Nash's teams in PHX is how good the other guys were: Joe Johnson, Shawn Marion, and Amar'e Stoudemire were all ASG-level guys.
   1954. PJ Martinez Posted: March 09, 2021 at 10:17 PM (#6008062)
These graphs try to plot the difference in strength of schedule* for each team pre-ASB and post-ASB. Notably, a few teams that have underperformed expectations so far (Dallas, Boston, Miami) are set to have considerably easier schedules in the second half of the season, and a couple of teams overperforming expectations (New York, San Antonio) are set to have much tougher slates going forward. Also striking: Utah's schedule is supposed to get much *easier* in the second half.

*As far as I can tell, it doesn't incorporate injury information, which is perhaps an even larger factor than usual this year.
   1955. Your favorite TFTIO, me! Posted: March 09, 2021 at 10:47 PM (#6008063)
Britt Robson at the Athletic proposed: Sexton/Drummond/Allen/2021 1st for Towns/whatever, and uh, I'm sort of a fan?
   1956. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 10, 2021 at 04:27 AM (#6008068)
What is a TFTIO?
   1957. jmurph Posted: March 10, 2021 at 07:17 AM (#6008071)
Britt Robson at the Athletic proposed: Sexton/Drummond/Allen/2021 1st for Towns/whatever, and uh, I'm sort of a fan?

I would think more picks or swaps would need to be involved? But Sexton and Allen and a lottery pick this year is a pretty solid start.

Of course that would make getting rid of Russell pretty urgent, and that might be difficult.
   1958. tshipman Posted: March 10, 2021 at 01:08 PM (#6008099)
Dealing Towns at the trade deadline would be borderline malpractice. For guys like that, you should always wait until the offseason.
   1959. Moses Taylor hashes out the rumpus Posted: March 10, 2021 at 01:11 PM (#6008100)
This is a fascinating read on the Knicks. And that's coming from someone who's always hated the knicks and enjoys their failures.

“When Wes said ‘we,’ people weren’t sure if he was referring to the Knicks or Kentucky,” one NBA source said, referring to his longtime friendship with Kentucky coach John Calipari. Wesley would direct all sorts of conversations back to the school. Prospects from other programs — they weren’t tough enough to handle Kentucky. NBA stars who had played for Duke, like Jayson Tatum and Zion Williamson — Kentucky hadn’t actually wanted them. When conversations centered around players not connected to the school — or Creative Artists Agency, where he and Rose had worked — he’d often close his eyes.

Wesley participated in some calls while driving. He went on all sorts of tangents, once making the group listen to the Jay-Z song “Empire State of Mind” because he had played it during the private pre-draft workout for Kevin Knox. One time he changed his shirt on camera, revealing his bare chest to the group.


He did push for Quickly, and was right about that.
   1960. jmurph Posted: March 10, 2021 at 01:19 PM (#6008103)
Dealing Towns at the trade deadline would be borderline malpractice. For guys like that, you should always wait until the offseason.

Yeah that's right, I agree. Just thinking about the likely return.
   1961. aberg Posted: March 10, 2021 at 01:26 PM (#6008105)
I would think more picks or swaps would need to be involved? But Sexton and Allen and a lottery pick this year is a pretty solid start.


I'm not that high on Sexton, so that doesn't really do it for me. It would have to include soemthing like 2 unprotected picks and a sawp.
   1962. rr: cosmopolitan elite Posted: March 10, 2021 at 02:17 PM (#6008117)
Yeah, I don't think that's enough for Towns. As far as doing it at the deadline, depends on the offer OFC. But as noted, I don't think that trading Towns is Minnesota's best play anyway.
   1963. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 10, 2021 at 02:29 PM (#6008120)
a long-simmering discussion from this thread is nearing a final destination:
Tom Moore @TomMoorePhilly
Jay Wright on being named one of 14 finalists for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame: 'Very humbling, That's all I can say.' Says he found out via text message from Pat Chambers.

   1964. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: March 10, 2021 at 04:11 PM (#6008140)
Tom Moore @TomMoorePhilly
Jay Wright on being named one of 14 finalists for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame: 'Very humbling, That's all I can say.' Says he found out via text message from Pat Chambers.


600+ wins, 2 national titles, 2 Naismith coach of the year, 1 NABC coach of the year - doesn't really seem like he'd lower the bar at all. He'll be elected eventually.
   1965. Your favorite TFTIO, me! Posted: March 10, 2021 at 07:24 PM (#6008162)
What is a TFTIO?

A Twins Fan Trapped In Oakland, although these days I live in Toronto, so you could swap out “Ontario”.
   1966. Your favorite TFTIO, me! Posted: March 10, 2021 at 07:25 PM (#6008163)
Dealing Towns at the trade deadline would be borderline malpractice. For guys like that, you should always wait until the offseason

I mean, I would vastly prefer they not trade him. I expect him to blossom if he ends up in a decent organization.
   1967. Your favorite TFTIO, me! Posted: March 10, 2021 at 07:46 PM (#6008166)
Maybe I should hope they trade Towns, he seems like a good dude who deserves better than the Twolves.
   1968. JJ1986 Posted: March 10, 2021 at 08:31 PM (#6008170)
I think it's literally been years since I last saw Justise Winslow playing.
   1969. Mike A Posted: March 10, 2021 at 09:04 PM (#6008173)
Iverson is probably the best comp to Young, IMO.
Yeah, that's pretty good. Trae is probably a better passer/playmaker, but Iverson is a better scorer. Another Trae comparison that comes up quite a bit is Stephon Marbury.

In comparing Trae and Iverson, it's fascinating to see how much the game has changed. In Iverson's MVP year (2000), 39% of all shots taken were from 10 feet to the 3-point line, and 17% were 3-pointers. In 2021, those percentages have exactly flip-flopped, with 39% of shots 3-pointers and only 17% mid-rangers. Iverson's and Young's career shooting almost exactly mirror said percentages.

Why did it take the NBA so long to figure this out? I know it took a while for MLB to become 'swing for the fences' and the NFL to become 'throw lots of short passes,' but it seems like the math has always been kind of obvious in the NBA.

I wonder if we can do anything to bring back the mid-range jumper, which I do miss.
   1970. PJ Martinez Posted: March 10, 2021 at 09:21 PM (#6008177)
Wasn't Iverson at least a so-so defender, though? He led the league in steals multiple times. (He may have gambled too much.) He was small but very strong. Young looks wispy to me by comparison.

Young is a better and more eager passer than I remember Iverson being, and the assist numbers seem to bear this out. And obviously the basketball universe has shifted w/r/t three-point shot, as noted. It's worth noting that Iverson, in addition to not shooting nearly as many threes, didn't shoot them very well -- it's not exactly a Larry Bird situation with him.
   1971. tshipman Posted: March 10, 2021 at 09:29 PM (#6008179)
Why did it take the NBA so long to figure this out?


Well, the rules changed and the composition of players also changed.

The rules changed in 2003, allowing (almost) full zone defenses. While *some* zone had always been sort of unofficially tolerated, pure zones were forbidden, and in particular doubles were carefully watched. If you doubled a guy, you had to double hard.

There were three big innovators, along with follow-on changes.
1. The Minnesota Timberwolves went all in on Zone in 2004, going from 16th to 6th in defense.
2. The Phoenix Suns went all in on spread PnR in 2005, going from 21st in offense to #1 with a bullet.
3. In 2016, Steph Curry showed that the off the bounce 3 wasn't a bad shot if you were a good enough shooter.
   1972. Moeball Posted: March 11, 2021 at 01:19 AM (#6008204)
Re:#1971 - in 1980, the first year the NBA adopted the 3-pt shot, the Lakers won a title shooting 20% on their threes. The league as a whole wasn't much better. Now there are entire teams that make 40% beyond the arc. That's a huge change. Take a 10 shot sample - if they're all 3s and you only make 20% you get 6 points. Now,if you're shooting 2s instead of 3s, to get only 6 points out of 10 shots you'd have to shoot 30%, and even the worst team in the league shoots better than that. Thus, back in 1980, not only was the success percentage low, so was the number of 3-pt attempts per game. It was mostly considered a desperation shot, not legitimate strategy. But now, if you look at that same 10 shot sample, teams can get 12 points by shooting 40%. To match that in 2-pt shots a team has to shoot 60% and you'd be hard pressed to find a team that makes 60% of their 2s. So it actually makes sense to fire up a lot of 3s in today's game. Two things have radically changed the game. It's not just that the shooting % on 3s have gone up, but so has the volume by a massive amount. Just look at the ASG that just took place. Steph and Dame were throwing up half court shots like they were free throws and they still went in. The range of today's shooters is absolutely unprecedented in history.
   1973. Mike A Posted: March 11, 2021 at 01:30 AM (#6008205)
Wasn't Iverson at least a so-so defender, though?
At the start of his career, the numbers point to him being below average but not bad or anything - better than Trae for sure. At around age 28, Iverson's defense seemed to go into decline. Which makes some sense, as there were a lot of miles on that body and the injuries were starting to add up. He probably chose to exert more energy on the offensive end.

Iverson was a pretty bad 3-point shooter at 31%. Though I would guess in today's game he would be practicing that shot a lot more.

Thanks for the info, tshipman, I sometimes forget about how the rule changes affect the game. Back in my day, hand-checking was the norm and I'm not even sure I would know how to guard someone without it.
   1974. Thok Posted: March 11, 2021 at 07:09 AM (#6008210)
Though I would guess in today's game he would be practicing that shot a lot more.


That's a hilarious sentence in relation to Iverson.
   1975. jmurph Posted: March 11, 2021 at 08:53 AM (#6008220)
Not a game, not a game. Practice.
   1976. spivey 2 Posted: March 11, 2021 at 09:06 AM (#6008222)
In addition to the points in 1971, I'd add:

1. I think all of the major sports were relatively slow to really adopt analytics. I think multiple reasons for this. Leagues weren't capturing as much data, not as many people with the skills, these front offices seem like both old boys clubs and ex-player led where change is slow.
2. Also, it wasn't until some time in the 90s where the 3pt% was good enough to really warrant a massive shift. Of course, based on some of what we know now, you'd think some teams would may have tried to get their guys better, but that's a long and slow process.
3. Handchecking and defensive contact on the perimeter these days, at least in the regular season, is far less allowed than it used to be. This drives both where players and teams are going to focus practice on (#2), but also - most good NBA PGs and ball-dominant wings can get by their guy regularly, due to these rules. This creates the initial action that the defense is then scrambling on, and then leads to many of the 3s. Seth Partnow had a tweet yesterday or the day before where Dwayne Casey was talking about this, which I agree with, where he basically says this. A bunch of the 3s in today's game are all built on penetrate-and-kick type actions. How set you need to be for the pick and roll that many players shoot off the dribble 3s is also very sketchy.

Space on the court is inherently good. A ton of players are already showing 3pt shooting chops well behind the line. I think moving the line back, it'd have to be moved back a ton to drastically change the style of play.

I think Seth Partnow phrased it well: "Barring DRASTIC rule changes, which shots are "good" isn't going to change; it certainly hasn't much over the last 20+ years. But if it is considered too easy for teams to amass "good shots" the important question then becomes how they are doing it and what changes will address it".
   1977. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: March 11, 2021 at 10:24 AM (#6008227)
Also, it wasn't until some time in the 90s where the 3pt% was good enough to really warrant a massive shift. Of course, based on some of what we know now, you'd think some teams would may have tried to get their guys better, but that's a long and slow process.


Consider that we've had data for 50 years that suggests players could easily hit 80-90% of their free throws if that were something that they wanted to make a priority, but it hasn't caught on.
   1978. Moses Taylor hashes out the rumpus Posted: March 11, 2021 at 10:57 AM (#6008232)
Sounds like LMA is done with the Spurs, but they're trying to trade him instead of buying him out. I haven't watched them enough lately to know how much he could help someone this year, but I'd imagine he would.

I'm kinda surprised Boogie hasn't signed anywhere yet.
   1979. PJ Martinez Posted: March 11, 2021 at 12:11 PM (#6008247)
Lonzo Ball has made more threes this season than:

Trae Young
Luka Doncic
Jayson Tatum
Bradley Beal
Devin Booker
LeBron James

He also has a higher 3P% than all of the above players.
   1980. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 11, 2021 at 01:40 PM (#6008259)
March 11, 2020, was one of the great record scratches in sportswriting[sic] history. To find a decent comp, you’d have to go back to a spasm of terror at the Olympics or maybe a soccer riot. Three Jazz beat writers went to Oklahoma City to see whether the team could get a leg up on the 4-seed in the Western Conference. They wound up covering a league shutdown that signaled just how severe the pandemic would become in the United States. Personal fear became part of an NBA beat job in a way the writers had never experienced.

...In normal times, you can find at least six independent writers at Jazz home games, including three who work for outlets owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

...At 8:27 p.m. CT, The Athletic’s Shams Charania broke the news that Gobert had tested positive for COVID-19, a scoop some of the Jazz writers confirmed. At 8:31 p.m., ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted that the season had been suspended.

   1981. puck Posted: March 11, 2021 at 02:45 PM (#6008263)
#1980 is a good article. Hard to forget that night.

#1979: Wow, Lonzo is 31 for 40 from the free throw line, too.
   1982. Fancy Pants Handle struck out swinging Posted: March 11, 2021 at 05:20 PM (#6008291)
It's tough to find really good comparisons to the NBA shutdown going down. On the one hand, it had repercussions that reverberated far wider than just through the sport itself. But on the other hand, the pandemic at that point was inevitable, and in reality, it probably didn't change all that much.

The only sporting comps I can think of, involve massive direct loss of life. But don't really have a huge impact beyond the sport, except for Munich to some degree. So in a way, they are both much, much worse, and not nearly as bad at the same time. For the record, the instances that I would list off the top of my head would be Munich Olympics, Munich air disaster, Heysel, and Hillsborough. Maybe the Senna crash, but F1 has a much smaller global footprint than the Olympics or football.
   1983. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 11, 2021 at 07:22 PM (#6008321)
It's tough to find really good comparisons to the NBA shutdown going down. On the one hand, it had repercussions that reverberated far wider than just through the sport itself. But on the other hand, the pandemic at that point was inevitable, and in reality, it probably didn't change all that much.

The only sporting comps I can think of, involve massive direct loss of life. But don't really have a huge impact beyond the sport, except for Munich to some degree. So in a way, they are both much, much worse, and not nearly as bad at the same time. For the record, the instances that I would list off the top of my head would be Munich Olympics, Munich air disaster, Heysel, and Hillsborough. Maybe the Senna crash, but F1 has a much smaller global footprint than the Olympics or football.

what about the one where a plane crash on a mountain made a soccer team go full cannibal?
   1984. Athletic Supporter is USDA certified lean Posted: March 11, 2021 at 07:34 PM (#6008324)
Most of the things that you mention are before my time, but the one that immediately comes to mind is Magic announcing he had HIV, which felt like a seminal cultural moment to me.
   1985. Thok Posted: March 11, 2021 at 07:49 PM (#6008328)
I estimate that only 10-12 primates care about this example, but the Loma Prieta earthquake feels like a reasonable comparison point.
   1986. Your favorite TFTIO, me! Posted: March 11, 2021 at 08:32 PM (#6008335)
what about the one where a plane crash on a mountain made a soccer team go full cannibal?

Rugby team, wasn't it?
   1987. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 11, 2021 at 10:06 PM (#6008354)
Rugby team, wasn't it?
wait, don't they call rugby 'soccer' in europe?
   1988. Your favorite TFTIO, me! Posted: March 11, 2021 at 10:07 PM (#6008355)
wait, don't they call rugby 'soccer' in europe?

Uruguay is in Europe?
   1989. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 11, 2021 at 10:23 PM (#6008361)
Uruguay is in Europe?
uruguay is as european as manu ginobili.
   1990. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 11, 2021 at 10:33 PM (#6008365)
Rich Hoffman @rich_hofmann
Last month, playing without Ben Simmons, Sixers needed every one of Joel Embiid's 50 points to beat Chicago at home. The bench looked hopeless. Tonight, Sixers lead by 20 with three minutes left in Chicago without Embiid and Simmons. Great performance, critical win to bank.

Rich Hoffman @rich_hofmann
Doc Rivers just casually dropped that Tony Bradley has lost 25 pounds since the season started. #AntiMuscleWatch

Joel Embiid @JoelEmbiid
That’s it!!! I’ve seen enough. Build around Tony Bradley @Philadelphia 76ers
   1991. Your favorite TFTIO, me! Posted: March 11, 2021 at 11:07 PM (#6008374)
And the Wolves murderized the Pelicans tonight. How about that.
   1992. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 12, 2021 at 12:40 AM (#6008385)
Kellan Olson @KellanOlson
Monty credited assistant coach Willie Green with the Suns' tweaks defensively, specifically with the coverage differences between Ayton and Saric.
   1993. Moses Taylor hashes out the rumpus Posted: March 12, 2021 at 01:19 AM (#6008386)
Bulls get blown out by a Sixers team without Embiid/Simmons. That basically ruins all the good vibes from the first half. Buy out Otto Porter. Tony Bradley was a stud (and another nail in the coffin of my opinion of Wendell Carter).

---

PJ Tucker is done with the Rockets. Trade or buy out TBD...
   1994. Moses Taylor hashes out the rumpus Posted: March 12, 2021 at 01:28 AM (#6008388)
"I thought this was my building, and I feel terrible that I'm getting stopped, accosted, [people] asking for passes. Everybody in this building should know who the hell I am, and I'm getting stopped -- I can't move around this building. I was like, 'What the hell? Is this Madison Square Garden?'"
   1995. Mike A Posted: March 12, 2021 at 07:30 AM (#6008394)
That's a hilarious sentence in relation to Iverson.
Heh, good point. Iverson was asked once why he didn't lift weights. His response: "That **** was too heavy."

Was looking over some shot charts from 2000 and one shot that has really declined is the baseline 5-15 foot jumper. It was pretty common in a lot of those 90s/early 00s offenses (think Hakeem, Duncan, Jordan, etc) but now it's just not being taken anymore.

The Hawks won yesterday on a last-second three pointer from Tony Snell. 73% of Snell's shots this year have been threes, and he's hit an astounding 59% in 65 attempts. The game has changed indeed.
   1996. Dandy Little Glove Man Posted: March 12, 2021 at 09:57 AM (#6008409)
The Hawks won yesterday on a last-second three pointer from Tony Snell. 73% of Snell's shots this year have been threes, and he's hit an astounding 59% in 65 attempts. The game has changed indeed.

This season Tony Snell has made 37 3-pointers, he's made 6 2-pointers, and he's shot ZERO free throws. Last season he made all 32 of his free throw attempts, so I thought maybe he should be shooting technicals, but actually the Hawks almost always should have someone on the floor with a higher career FT% (Trae or Gallo).
Sounds like LMA is done with the Spurs, but they're trying to trade him instead of buying him out. I haven't watched them enough lately to know how much he could help someone this year, but I'd imagine he would.

I'd like to see something built around an Aldridge/Bertans swap. The Spurs could use an extreme floor spacer at the 4, the other guys are good enough defensively to cover for Bertans fairly well, and of course he has a productive history in San Antonio so he'd be easy to integrate. The Wizards may be having buyer's remorse about re-signing him for 5/$80M this past summer, considering that he comes off the bench, he's 28, and the team is so bad. On the other side, LMA's contract is expiring and he can either be the starting center the rest of the year in DC to try to prove his value or get bought out.
   1997. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 12, 2021 at 01:45 PM (#6008455)
Was looking over some shot charts from 2000 and one shot that has really declined is the baseline 5-15 foot jumper. It was pretty common in a lot of those 90s/early 00s offenses (think Hakeem, Duncan, Jordan, etc) but now it's just not being taken anymore.
matt geiger, jahlil okafor...
   1998. asinwreck Posted: March 12, 2021 at 01:50 PM (#6008457)
Working Blake Griffin into the rotation will be an interesting storyline for the Nets, especially now that more of their bench players are contributing productive minutes. Will he be paired with Nicolas Claxton on the second unit? Will he feed Landry Shamet at the perimeter?

These are nice, but relatively minor questions as a major one remains unanswered: Can Kevin Durant keep his legs healthy the rest of the year?
   1999. "bothsidesism" word 57i66135 Posted: March 12, 2021 at 08:52 PM (#6008489)
Rk             Player   MP  STL
1      T
.JMcConnell  810   63
2         LaMelo Ball 1040   58
3        Nikola Jokic 1293   58
4       Fred VanVleet 1249   58
5    Robert Covington 1089   55
6     Dejounte Murray 1027   53
7    Matisse Thybulle  624   51
8        Jrue Holiday  831   49
9        Terry Rozier 1137   49
10        Ben Simmons 1051   49 


   2000. rr: cosmopolitan elite Posted: March 13, 2021 at 02:02 AM (#6008505)
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