NBA - 2014/15 Season.

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The Red Nosed Heifer
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby The Red Nosed Heifer » 24 Oct 2018, 05:04

Pels are looking good!
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby sloopjohnc » 24 Oct 2018, 16:44

The Red Heifer wrote:Pels are looking good!


When they got Julius Randle from the Lakers, I thought it was a great move. Randle does the dirty work under the boards, but has expanded his game. He lets Davis freestyle a bit. And don't forget Jrue Holliday was all first team defense. They're not deep at all, but they work and complement each other nicely. Elfrid Payton lost the hair, but got back a game.
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby sloopjohnc » 24 Oct 2018, 19:37

The Red Heifer wrote:Pels are looking good!


Pistons are 5-0 too.

Blake Griffin got 50 last night against Philly. And Embiid was so frustrated with Andre Drummond, he got him kicked out with a flop.
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby Diamond Dog » 25 Oct 2018, 08:21

Raptors are doing okay......
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby WG Kaspar » 25 Oct 2018, 10:11

There's 5 teams with a perfect record right now and not the ones I would have guessed before the season started.
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby sloopjohnc » 25 Oct 2018, 17:09

I've seen some insane Steph Curry scoring and shooting performances, but last night's took the cake. 51 points in three quarters. Here's highlight of one quarter.



Here's diagram of makes and misses.

Image
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby The Red Nosed Heifer » 26 Oct 2018, 07:24

I should have had a sneaky $5 on him for MVP when I had a look at the odds during the Jazz game when he was 17/1, but I was pretty set on Giannis for MVP so kept my powder dry. Into 10/1 now after yesterday.
Wadesmith wrote:Why is it that when there's a 'What do you think of this?' post, it's always absolute cobblers?

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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby sloopjohnc » 26 Oct 2018, 17:00

The Red Heifer wrote:I should have had a sneaky $5 on him for MVP when I had a look at the odds during the Jazz game when he was 17/1, but I was pretty set on Giannis for MVP so kept my powder dry. Into 10/1 now after yesterday.


Giannis is a better bet. He carries his team, Steph doesn't. While Steph got 51, KD got a quiet 30 points on 11-16 shooting.

Eventually, the Warriors will have five all-stars starting. That's a hard team to pluck an MVP from.
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby WG Kaspar » 26 Oct 2018, 22:32

I think Giannis will have a great year but the Bucks are better than last year so his impact will not be seemingly at least as great as AD who has come out reallt great and I hope he stays healthy because I reckon he will be the MVP
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby WG Kaspar » 27 Oct 2018, 13:17

I'm starting to feel a bit strange about the Bucks. They either have become very good or they have played only shit teams. Well Minny was last night.
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby WG Kaspar » 29 Oct 2018, 14:36

Bucks - Raptors tonight. Should be fun, last 2 undefeated teams still.
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby sloopjohnc » 29 Oct 2018, 15:58

Rick Pitino says he wants to get back into NBA coaching and said his player development skills can be an asset.

Cleveland?
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby WG Kaspar » 29 Oct 2018, 16:30

Wasn't he really shit at Boston?
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby sloopjohnc » 29 Oct 2018, 23:07

WG Kaspar wrote:Wasn't he really shit at Boston?


Yes.
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby WG Kaspar » 30 Oct 2018, 06:02

Told you Bucks were better than the Sixers
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby sloopjohnc » 30 Oct 2018, 16:09

Klay Thompson hit a record 14 three pointers last night on the way to 52 points. Steph had hit 13 last week to tie his own record. At halftime, Curry told Klay to go for it and said if someone was going to break his record, he wanted it to be a teammate so he could watch it. That's the Warriors in a nutshell.

By the way, the Warriors had 92 at the half.

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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby WG Kaspar » 30 Oct 2018, 18:04

Yeah that was awesome. Wasn't he something like 12% on 3's made before the game? Crazy.
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby sloopjohnc » 30 Oct 2018, 20:38

WG Kaspar wrote:Yeah that was awesome. Wasn't he something like 12% on 3's made before the game? Crazy.


He went from 12% to 38% after last night.
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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby sloopjohnc » 07 Nov 2018, 16:40

College basketball started last night. I'm all in. . .

Watched the second half of Kansas/Michigan St. and nearly the whole Duke/Kentucky game.

Duke have two freshmen, RJ Barrett and Zion Williamson, who are studs. Williamson is 6' 7", 285 lbs. and moves like a guard. His dunk highlights have been all over the web for a couple years.

Here are some highlights.

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Re: NBA - 2014/15 Season.

Postby sloopjohnc » 07 Nov 2018, 18:14

Good article in The Athletic on Warriors' defensive coach, Ron Adams.

Ron​ Adams crouches​ next to​ Jonas Jerebko pregame, Tetris​ slotted​ into the​ big Swede’s​ corner locker space.​​ Adams is doing what he so often does with players: Contorting himself at an odd angle while pointing at a MacBook screen, in a film breakdown. This happens all over the place, in WarriorsLand. You’ll see it at practice, where Adams is often splayed about on a table when giving out lessons. Of average height, with unusual dimensions (Adams appears to have Allen Iverson’s arm length and Jerry Sloan’s hand size), the 70-year-old keeps fitting his shape to the nooks and niches of this nomadic job.

Afterwards, Jerebko remarks that Adams has “a wonderful mind.” Jerebko praises Adams’ intelligence, adding, “It’s hard to describe unless you’re working with him but he sees the positive in things.”

It can be a reductive league. You’re a this, you can’t do that, etc. Adams spends hours on possibilities. He’s a radical about improvement, obsessed with finding a path towards something better. Those hours have added up. Adams’ career predates the advent of MacBooks just a bit. When he began as an assistant coach at Fresno Pacific University in 1969, the personal computer had yet to be invented. The Beatles were still together and Jimi Hendrix was still alive. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar had just won the NCAA championship, and was known to the world as Lew Alcindor.

Basketball is a lot different now. It’s a lot different from what it was just 10 years ago, and even sharply different from what it was five years ago. The evolution of the game can end careers. Coaches learn a whole methodology only to see rule changes or analytical progress erase the foundation of their teachings. Adams remarks on how he now coaches in an era where defenses must concede something, because the 3-point line stretches your ranks so thin.

“It’s very counterintuitive for me because in the old days, you just tried to stop everything,” he says.

Right now he’s between practice and a team meeting, taking some time to consider the NBA’s new “point of emphasis,” on allowing freedom of movement for offensive players.

“Players that played for 10 years where they’ve been allowed to grab the cutter,” Adams says. “It’s hard to break that habit. We do a lot of emphasis on our individual technique and hopefully that will help. As the game evolves, we have to adjust as coaches.”

A certain flexibility has allowed the elder statesman to get this far. Adams will talk of being “old school,” and there’s an obvious, technical truth to that. He’s aged 70 years, having coached professionally for the last 50. He has his system, his personal points of emphasis. But there’s something adroit about Adams, some ability to persevere through the vicissitudes of a sport wherein he seems out of place, prima facie.

Adams often flips his sweatshirt over his shoulders like a fancy scarf. He speaks with almost perfect diction, referring to sports as “sport.” In a team speech, he’ll make an erudite reference to European art. This is unusual, even in a league replete with iconoclasts. Somehow, in this world, it’s the least pretentious manner possible. Who in their right mind would act like this in the jock space if it wasn’t who they actually were? It’s often said that players instantly know if a coach is a fraud. NBA players are the rare cohort of people who’ve been pitched by fakers since childhood.

You don’t hear that assessment made of Adams and there’s an appreciation for the professorial aura, perhaps far more than for a coach who might try to hamfistedly mirror a culture he cannot quite grok. “He said I have rapier wit!” Andre Iguodala says with a grin, when asked for an Adams memory.

Adams is comfortable being himself, even if the players sometimes have fun with the phrases and mannerisms. “He has this wonderful ability to laugh at himself,” Steve Kerr says of Adams. “It’s why the players love him. They give him crap and he just laughs. I just felt like in the beginning he probably felt like an outsider.”

The Warriors culture was antithetical to much of what Adams had come to know when working for so many coaches but especially Tom Thibodeau. There was a certain looseness to the operation, what with fewer practices, no sprinting and blaring music during drills.

“To be perfectly honest, that first year he was our harshest critic about everything he was seeing,” Kerr says. “Then he saw something different and realized it could be done a different way.”

“Different” has helped the Warriors considerably. There’s a much remarked upon offensive revolution taking place that often gets attributed to the Warriors, the one that gets Steph Curry blamed for kids launching 30-footers. It’s possible that the Ron Adams-era Warriors’ impact on NBA defense might be more pronounced.

“Ron had a pretty unique take on our team,” Kerr says. “He said in our first year, ‘You know, we could be a pretty good red team.’ ‘Red’ meaning switch. He recognized that right away. We, without really knowing it in training camp, naturally evolved into this really big switching team. I thought that Ron saw it before anyone else did.”

Adams loves structure, but has a heterodox, contrarian streak. He wants things done his way, but his way won’t necessarily look like anything else. That perspective, combined with the efforts of all-world defensive talents like Draymond Green and Iguodala, has changed the league.

Switching screens, the trading of defensive assignments when a pick gets set, is increasingly the way NBA defense gets done. It’s easy to forget that, as recently as 2014, this was a radical choice for a team’s base defense. Warriors assistant coach Jarron Collins refers to his old Jazz teams under Sloan, whose old-school rejection of switching was explained as, “When I look at the stat sheet, I want to know who’s getting fucked up.”

When Adams made the “Red” suggestion, he was drawing as much off the past as looking to the future. Such a perspective was informed by his time as a head college coach back in the 1970s.

“The top coaches frowned on switching because they thought it was lazy defense,” Adams said. “I thought it was the only way you could get the consistent ball pressure that I, as a college coach, wanted. We did have good, uniform length.”

The Warriors might be a victim of their own success, as recent playoff foes have taken cues and decided on switching as the best means for containing Curry. It’s all had a domino effect in terms of team building. The great, big appeal of adding DeMarcus Cousins, for example, is his ability to crush a point guard in a switch. This aspect of the move is foregrounded, one of the first things Kerr brings up when asked about Cousins. Five years ago, it’s doubtful that anyone would mention “switching” in the context of a massive big.

The Ron Adams influence doesn’t just end at switching, though. You see it when other teams spring traps when down late, as opposed to simply fouling and hoping for free throw misses. The NBA playoffs now frequently showcase teams using a strategy that mirrors what the Warriors unleashed in the 2015 Western Conference semifinals. The Grizzlies had been mauling the Warriors and were up 2-1 in the series, as Phil Jackson and other pundits mocked the upstart contender’s 3-point reliance. The solution in that series, though, would seem to come from the defensive side.

In a coaches’ meeting before the series, Adams suggested that center Andrew Bogut “guard” Tony Allen, in the loosest possible meaning of the word. Not only was a center defending a shooting guard, he would do so in a way that openly dared Allen to shoot his balky jumper. It was just a suggestion, spitballing a plot idea in the NBA’s equivalent of a writer’s room. Kerr took notice and placed the radical idea in the team’s back pocket, in case such a significant change was necessary. Three games in, Kerr gave the go-ahead, not quite knowing how the risk would pan out. The results were immediate. Bogut-on-Allen crippled the Grizzlies’ offense, and restored the Warriors’ confidence. The night of their Game 3 win, one Warriors player declared, “It’s over. He can’t play in this series.” Rarely has a series so quickly and decisively turned on a choice.

“You look at patterns of how people play,” Adams said of the famous suggestion. “You have to look for these really small peculiarities that you can take advantage of. I can’t always tell you what they’re going to be but you have to look at the game, study it enough to take advantage of those things.”

The rest of the league has since taken advantage of the peculiarity Adams noticed. This is already a fixture of the modern postseason. Teams back way off a non-shooting threat like, say, Ben Simmons, and reap the benefits. “Open for a reason,” might be an old phrase, but to this degree, it’s a new reality. “Ron Adams” is a reason for that reality.

Adams seems only vaguely aware of his burgeoning legacy, perhaps because the job is so consuming in the present. “We were driving home after the game and I was laughing with my wife, Leah,” Adams starts. “I said, ‘Another Halloween missed.’ That’s kind of how you look at your life. Because I’ve been doing this 50 years. So many holidays are truncated or missed. No occupation is perfect and this occupation’s been great for me.” Whatever he’s missing in five decades of nomadic living is outweighed by the positive. “I’m one of those people who every so often have a small existential crisis. And then it passes.”

He sometimes grapples with something that Kerr and Bob Myers wrestle with as well: Though all are competitive and love the game, they also recognize that it’s just a game. Which begs the question, “To what are you devoting your life?”

“Well I think that’s one of the core burrs in the saddle, existentially,” Adams says to that question. “Every occupation has its irrelevancies, of course. The NBA exists because we’re an affluent culture and people are into sport. And that’s great. But in anything that we do, your core values as a human being can come into play.”

Irrelevancies aside, Adams’ soul is sated by the younger people he helps. The younger coaches credit him with being a mentor. Fringe players find careers, aided by his guidance. “I want them to become better, to become higher wage earners,” Adams says. “I want them to make it. When it’s a really great kid, you want the best for them. The guys who I’m the most happy for were the marginal pro players. The Kevin Ollies of the world. Darvin Ham. Rick Brunson. Adrian Griffin. Jason Hart. The guys that came in the league and scrapped for everything.”

As long as guys like that exist, Adams will have a desire to devote his life to this pursuit. Helping the young has continually driven the older man, fulfilled him while fueling him.

“I like it a lot,” Adams says, when asked much longer he can go. “Still love the guys, still love the people I work with. It’s great, the camaraderie is pretty much unbeatable.” Then he pauses. “My life has pretty much been lived. So the question is, what do you do with the number of years you have left?” He doesn’t answer that question, preferring to stay in the present. “A lot of things are happening for me because of sport and I recognize that and I recognize that these guys keep me young. This whole organization does. That’s a great value.”

Nobody knows how much longer an old man can stay on top of a young man’s game, but with Ron Adams, you’d err on the side of “in perpetuity.” He’s managed, through cunning and curiosity, to not just stay on top of this sport, but wholly alter it. He’s married five decades of experience to an obsession with progress. For now, the assumption is that Adams, a mere five decades into this job, will keep living in the present while defining the future.
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