Random thoughts on the random offense thread
Old 11-08-2012, 02:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Random thoughts on the random offense thread

First of all, there has been too much fuss about improving the offense going into this season. It sent the message that the defense was somewhat set, and it simply never has been, since they relied far too much on fouling last season. The defense was improved, but it needed to improve much more this season to give a team without an awful lot of offensive firepower a chance. I see no reason why they couldn't score much more off an improved defense, particularly with a guy like Lowry grabbing so many steals. But you have to keep the focus on defense in order to do that, including rebounding, and in many ways they've taken a step back, aside from a few really nice stretches.

But ok fine, let's worry about the offense anyhow. Is it working? It appears to lead to a lot of forced shots, enough so that it almost looks to be happening by design. There is less cohesion than we saw at the end of last season, so in some respects, even with Lowry adding so much, and DeMar much improved, they've taken a step back.

Do we have the personnel to operate a random offense, like Dallas does for instance? We have a lot of guys that are too happy to stand and watch when they don't have the ball. That doesn't leave much for the guy with the ball to do other than eventually force something. And defenses don't have so much to worry about. That's quite different from Dallas where players like Terry and Kidd and Dirk always looked to play off one another, and had a lot of experience doing so. Dallas was always really good at recognizing and exploiting mismatches, and seeing where the defense was breaking down. And they got the most that they could from within every role, just by always playing together, as experienced players are apt to do. We do not have the most experienced players. Still, I think they could manage to work off of each other enough if given a real chance within a rotation designed to get them there. We can't even get a group of 5 with any chemistry to start games, let alone figure out a rotation that goes from there.

The most random thing about the random offense is the combination of players that might be on the floor at any given time. That just has to stop. Jose and Andrea might need to take on smaller roles from what they are used to. Fields might need to work his way back into the lineup to any extent at all. And yet there we have three dudes that the coach needs to appease. It doesn't make for any sense of a strong team core, and without that there's no sense of what anybody's role should be, or could be. It doesn't surprise me that they are starting to look like a bunch of guys playing for themselves, and that would seem to be the opposite of what they are supposed to be doing in this offense.

Without the big weapons it's essential that there is cohesion and trust, and a lot of attention paid to detail, and instead the team's play seems to be structured as if they have the big weapons and that chemistry will develop as long as enough different combinations are thrown out there. Once Lowry comes back they better settle on a rotation, with much better role definition, and a sense of what they are going to try to do. Stand or fall on that together and put egos aside. And make improving the defense the number one priority once again. If that doesn't happen I don't see myself being very interested in this season. I think the players themselves could be in danger of losing interest. In this season that marks what Colangelo calls an acceleration phase of the building process, I could see the whole thing needing to be blown up. Yay. There really needed to be a little more foresight on the part of the beloved GM. Instead we got him pushing the need for offense and promising a competitive team that could be really special.
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Old 11-08-2012, 02:56 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Trim the rotation,it isn't preseason any more...guys like Lucas shouldn't see PT unless emergency(like the Lowry injury).

9 man...DD,KL,AA,AB,JV,JC,AJ,ED,TR
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Old 11-08-2012, 02:59 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by @BaileysBlitz View Post
Trim the rotation,it isn't preseason any more...guys like Lucas shouldn't see PT unless emergency(like the Lowry injury).

9 man...DD,KL,AA,AB,JV,JC,AJ,ED,TR
Lucas is another guy that needs to be appeased perhaps, depending on what was promised to him when he signed.

And once you have Jose playing with Lowry to any extent, the rotation falls to shit, because the other wings get a few minutes squeezed in here and there instead of getting the role they deserve. Lucas himself could be much improved if he had any sense of where he fit in the rotation. Instead he gets random minutes with unrealistic expectations placed on him, and nobody able to develop any chemistry.
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Old 11-08-2012, 03:05 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I see a lot of players getting blamed, and I'm not sure that is constructive. I really think that they might have gone into this season without a good sense of how to use what they have here.
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Old 11-08-2012, 03:05 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Lucas is another guy that needs to be appeased perhaps, depending on what was promised to him when he signed.

And once you have Jose playing with Lowry to any extent, the rotation falls to shit, because the other wings get a few minutes squeezed in here and there instead of getting the role they deserve. Lucas himself could be much improved if he had any sense of where he fit in the rotation. Instead he gets random minutes with unrealistic expectations placed on him, and nobody able to develop any chemistry.
I break it down into 3 groups

Front court - JV AB ED AJ
Wing - DD AA TR or LK
Back court - KL JC

Foul trouble,injuries and ejections alter things but I think if they follow this template,they'll be fine.
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Old 11-08-2012, 03:07 PM   #6 (permalink)
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We need more talent. Our depth is fools gold. We get outplayed by other teams' supposed weaker benches and we get outplayed by other teams' starting units.... it's a talent issue. We lack guys that can consistently step up and contribute. Trim the rotation? Not going to help. We have the weakest SF depth in the league... maybe, just maybe second weakest.
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Old 11-08-2012, 03:22 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Frankly, the biggest concern I have with the offense is the lack of pick and rolls. Why does Lowry carry the ball up the court, hand off to a big, then run around the court? Lowry is our PG - I want him initiating the offense, not our bigs. And with Bargs off the ball (especially when Fields is off the court) we have the spacing to have a killer Lowry-JV or Lowry-Amir PnR.

Lowry being taken off the ball in half or more of our offensive sets is a misuse of assets. Let the PnR be the first option on any play, then run some off ball stuff to get an open curl or deep post for DD, then at the 8 second mark reset to a pick and pop with Lowry driving to the rim. Sure, vary it sometimes, but this team seems built for that sort of offense and it bugs me that I haven't seen that sort of set run consistently (or at all, really).
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Old 11-08-2012, 03:30 PM   #8 (permalink)
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There is enough talent to at least define a rotation that stands or falls. Every different combination looks to find the right balance between this or that weakness, and each player has different expectations placed on them.

There is definitely enough talent to focus on improving defensively. If that isn't a demarkation line for every player then they are sunk, because they indeed do not have the big guns to just give up on possessions all too often.

And there is enough talent to be able to move without the ball, set good screens, and work off one another. But that takes a little more cohesion than what this constant mixing up of players can accomplish. A bunch of guys playing 5 to 15 minutes is never going to make a team, talent or no talent.

A lack of talent is a poor excuse. We have more talent than previous seasons. It's a matter of defining roles, setting base expectations that are relatively the same from one player to the next, and setting the proper overall expectations for each individual within a good team framework, instead of sending them out there to prove as much as they can on their own in limited minutes.

There might be a lack of talent to execute like this particular offense hopes to. In which case why is it the offense that is being implemented?
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