fossil fool: Are We There Yet?
Old 01-11-2011, 06:40 PM   #1 (permalink)
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from the blog page. Here's just a taste. Get the whole thing here -fossil fool

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It’s not just about tanking for that pick or picks yet to come. We have some good picks right now that need to find their way a little. The kid from LA is starting to break out, and that’s good. But if he is really going to have the necessary impact for success in the future, he is going to need to become an important part of the team’s defense, and in that area he is breaking down more than he is breaking out. Which is fine. He’s young and the offense is going to come before the defense does. But it’s not too early to get at it on the other end, instead of just becoming comfortable scoring alongside Bargnani. In fact, if DeMar put in the work defensively, I could see Bargnani’s defense, which hasn’t been as abysmal as usual, perhaps becoming a net positive overall. These are the things we can dream of while we count the losses and the increase in the number of ping pong balls.

The most recent draft pick can only help in that area. He needs to get bigger, but he also needs more time on the court. It would be wonderful, if we could see this guy be able to lead guys like DeMar and Bargnani in pushing for improvement on the defensive end. This guy has what it takes to do so. He can be one of the main contributors to proper communication out there, because he has the ability to see the play develop and stay a little ahead of it, rather than scrambling to recover. One early possession that sticks with me, took place in Washington: John Wall had the ball on the perimeter, and Davis came out quickly and effortlessly to trap hard and stop the ball, forcing a bad shot from the elbow, which Davis contested, and then as the shot was in flight, fluidly backpedalled to his original cover in order to box him out under the basket. It was a beautiful thing - a guy that could do so much more than just try to guard his own man, and without batting an eyelid. He showed the ability to play defense in the same sort of way a young Vince could finish around the rim. It’s just a form of expression that comes naturally. It’s the kind of thing a team needs to build defensive schemes that stand a chance.

This kid Ed went on to show me he could be pretty imposing in the lane with that length, changing a good number of shots when not blocking them outright. He was able to handle some bigger bigs like Brendan Hayward, while finding his hands full with high-octane players like Verajao. And he’s surely made some mistakes. But here is what I like - when he gets beat, he fouls, and he makes it count for something. It’s not hard to extrapolate where he could end up as a player with a little more bulk and some solid experience. And the experience can be had now, can’t it? Let’s see how much his instincts can rub off on other players, and how much chemistry can be developed on the defensive end before this team finds itself in training camp next fall still looking for the right way to play this game. I would rather see this team lose now while being able to see the way to win consistently, than to keep pretending that they will find a way to shoot themselves out of any hole. The offense will take care of itself on too many nights, because there just aren’t enough guys like Ed Davis in this whole league. But scoring is not going to give this team any distinct advantages.
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Old 01-11-2011, 06:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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not bad.... I like the positive feel
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