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  1. #1
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    Feinstein on reference points

    John Feinstein's WaPo story is a great read.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...020702151.html

    It makes me wonder if John's personal reference point may have been his coverage and statements regarding Duke's lacrosse team.

  2. #2
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    Exclamation Not a bad article from Fienstein.

    Just the same, I'd never turn my back on him, bless his disgruntled heart.
    Love, Ima

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ima Facultiwyfe View Post
    Just the same, I'd never turn my back on him, bless his disgruntled heart.
    Love, Ima
    Agree. John spends a fair amount of this article describing how this Duke team is "not very good" and saying that our 3-point shooting is the determining factor in winning or losing much of the time. Uh, John, Miami is a pretty good team, had a large lead, and they shot 60% on their 3-pt shots. This is a good Duke team which can win in a number of ways.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by roywhite View Post
    Agree. John spends a fair amount of this article describing how this Duke team is "not very good" and saying that our 3-point shooting is the determining factor in winning or losing much of the time. Uh, John, Miami is a pretty good team, had a large lead, and they shot 60% on their 3-pt shots. This is a good Duke team which can win in a number of ways.
    I agree with you on this one. This team has several key wins this year against quality opponents where they absolutely did not rely on the 3. It is when they abandon the rest of the offense and only shoot 3's is when they get in trouble.

  5. #5
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    Greensboro, NC
    I'm certainly not forgetting his past. Wouldn't be prudent. At a time when Duke could have used an unbiased friend, Mr. Feinstein was busy echoing the sentiments of people like Wahneema Lubiano, Nancy Grace, and Mike Nifong.

  6. #6
    I know John Feinstein hasn't always been the best friend Duke basketball has ever had, but there wasn't one thing in that article that I disagreed with. And the article was certainly not a cheap shot at Duke. Not even close. Some may not want to believe this team is still too dependent on the outside shot, but I think John is spot on. Until we can learn to push on the fast break a little more and find a way to penetrate more, we will continue to be, more than anything else, an outside shooting team. There's no slam in that. It just is what it is right now. Earlier in the year I saw more balance, but right now we've regressed in that particular area, IMHO.
    Reading and posting at DBR for over 19 years and loving every... well, almost every minute of it!

  7. #7
    Two things:

    1) Whatever his opinion of any aspect of Duke outside the basketball program, he has always been as close to K as any writer. This article has the kind of inside information that you would almost never see in another article about K

    2) I can't believe John Feinstein wrote an article that didn't slam either Tiger Woods or Joe Alleva.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Gary View Post
    Some may not want to believe this team is still too dependent on the outside shot, but I think John is spot on. Until we can learn to push on the fast break a little more and find a way to penetrate more, we will continue to be, more than anything else, an outside shooting team.
    Just as a point of fact, Duke ranks 203rd (of 344) in the country in percent of points coming from three-pointers, vs. 77th last year. Whether or not Duke surpasses the last two seasons' postseason disappointments, it's simply not true that the team is playing just like last year's team.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by vick View Post
    Just as a point of fact, Duke ranks 203rd (of 344) in the country in percent of points coming from three-pointers, vs. 77th last year. Whether or not Duke surpasses the last two seasons' postseason disappointments, it's simply not true that the team is playing just like last year's team.
    Thank you for that! I knew I had seen a statistic like that somewhere but didn't know how to find it to counter what has become conventional wisdom about Duke.

    On the other hand, our opponents score 59.3% of their points on 2-pt FGs, which ranks 9th in the country, and perhaps that lends some credence to the other bit of conventional wisdom about Duke, that we're weak inside. Or maybe it's just a function of how good we are at defending the perimeter (our opponents score only 22.9% of their points on 3-pointers, ranking 310th).

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by vick View Post
    Just as a point of fact, Duke ranks 203rd (of 344) in the country in percent of points coming from three-pointers, vs. 77th last year. Whether or not Duke surpasses the last two seasons' postseason disappointments, it's simply not true that the team is playing just like last year's team.
    Did you fail to read my entire post? My last two sentences were:

    "It just is what it is right now."

    "Earlier in the year I saw more balance, but right now we've regressed in that particular area, IMHO."

    Cut me some slack, buddy. I never implied this team was just like last year's team. If you want to attack that point, fine. But don't misrepresent what I wrote in order to create a springboard for yourself.

    There's no doubt we aren't relying on the three as much as we did last year. But in the last few games I've seen a tendency to hoist up a fair number of outside shots before looking to penetrate. Settling for the outside shot is NOT what we need right now. If we hit them, all seems wonderful. But when we don't, it's going to kill us. I still don't see anything wrong with John's article, nor with what I wrote previously. If Greg is going to be our primary point for the rest of the way, I think a legit concern is about ball penetration versus swinging the ball around the perimeter and settling for more outside shots. And I love Greg and have no real gripes about him starting and playing a lot yesterday. But I'm not sure I want to see him play 3/4 of the time the rest of the way either. We need what Nolan brings on both sides of the ball. He just needs to regain some confidence and start being a little more aggressive.
    Reading and posting at DBR for over 19 years and loving every... well, almost every minute of it!

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by zingit View Post
    Thank you for that! I knew I had seen a statistic like that somewhere but didn't know how to find it to counter what has become conventional wisdom about Duke.

    On the other hand, our opponents score 59.3% of their points on 2-pt FGs, which ranks 9th in the country, and perhaps that lends some credence to the other bit of conventional wisdom about Duke, that we're weak inside. Or maybe it's just a function of how good we are at defending the perimeter (our opponents score only 22.9% of their points on 3-pointers, ranking 310th).
    Look at the defensive numbers through the years, and it's absolutely incredible how consistently Duke ranks very, very close to the bottom in percent of points allowed on threes: 2005, dead last. 2006, dead last. 2007, fourth from last. 2008, fifth from last. I actually have a pet theory, completely unprovable of course, that one of the reasons Duke fans (and Duke haters for that matter) are convinced (wrongly) that Duke is a wild three-point-chucking team is that, compared with the opponents we play, we are--historically Duke forces opponents into few three point attempts, and they make a low percentage of those. If your frame of reference is watching Duke games, it's easy to become convinced that Duke shoots a lot more threes than they actually do.

    Gary, I apologize if I "misrepresented" you--I actually agree that against zones like Miami play, we absolutely have been passing around the perimeter and then shooting threes too much. Look at the Clemson game, though, and in that awful performance, we only shot 13 threes--that's very, very low for the way this team is constructed. I just don't see how you can say you're seeing excessive three point shooting "in the last few games" when the team has shot 22, 27, 13, and 39 threes in the last four games--whatever Duke's offensive problems are (I would say very weak production in the interior vs. excessive three-point shooting), with regards to three point shooting, the team is playing radically different styles game in and game out. To me, it's mostly irrelevant whether Paulus is shooting threes or Nolan is penetrating to the basket, if we don't get quality offense in the post from Zoubek, Thomas, and Singler, then we're in trouble regardless.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Gary View Post
    Did you fail to read my entire post? My last two sentences were:

    "It just is what it is right now."

    "Earlier in the year I saw more balance, but right now we've regressed in that particular area, IMHO."

    Cut me some slack, buddy. I never implied this team was just like last year's team. If you want to attack that point, fine. But don't misrepresent what I wrote in order to create a springboard for yourself.

    There's no doubt we aren't relying on the three as much as we did last year. But in the last few games I've seen a tendency to hoist up a fair number of outside shots before looking to penetrate. Settling for the outside shot is NOT what we need right now. If we hit them, all seems wonderful. But when we don't, it's going to kill us. I still don't see anything wrong with John's article, nor with what I wrote previously. If Greg is going to be our primary point for the rest of the way, I think a legit concern is about ball penetration versus swinging the ball around the perimeter and settling for more outside shots. And I love Greg and have no real gripes about him starting and playing a lot yesterday. But I'm not sure I want to see him play 3/4 of the time the rest of the way either. We need what Nolan brings on both sides of the ball. He just needs to regain some confidence and start being a little more aggressive.
    Yeah the last few games have been more 3-point oriented but I personally am a little hesitant to declare Duke a live by the 3 die by the 3 type team like many in the media have. For much of the season they haven't relied on the 3. The last few games could be a mental lapse, it could be that they were playing very good ACC teams who knew how to defend Duke, or that those teams are just really good defensive teams. If this trend continues through the next Wake game I would be in agreement with you and Feinstein that this team needs to hit outside shots.

    IMO, Duke relies more on team play and defense than on 3's. When Duke is moving the ball well, finding the open man, and making "connecting plays" (as Coach K would say) they are very tough to beat. That was the difference between 1st half against Miami and the 2nd half, Duke was moving the ball and making the right pass way more in the 2nd half.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by vick View Post

    Gary, I apologize if I "misrepresented" you--I actually agree that against zones like Miami play, we absolutely have been passing around the perimeter and then shooting threes too much. Look at the Clemson game, though, and in that awful performance, we only shot 13 threes--that's very, very low for the way this team is constructed. I just don't see how you can say you're seeing excessive three point shooting "in the last few games" when the team has shot 22, 27, 13, and 39 threes in the last four games--whatever Duke's offensive problems are (I would say very weak production in the interior vs. excessive three-point shooting), with regards to three point shooting, the team is playing radically different styles game in and game out. To me, it's mostly irrelevant whether Paulus is shooting threes or Nolan is penetrating to the basket, if we don't get quality offense in the post from Zoubek, Thomas, and Singler, then we're in trouble regardless.
    I probably should have been more clear. When I talk about "outside shots" I'm not only talking about 3 point shots, but longer (outside of, let's say, 15 feet) shots in general. Just seems to me we've been settling more for those type of shots and have stopped seeing dribble penetration leading to short range floaters or pass offs for either other short range shots or wide open threes. Those type I don't mind, but I hate seeing us pass around the wings will little or no dribble penetration. I realize we've seen some zone the last couple of games but the great teams still have guys that can break that with a quick dribble drive that causes the zone to collapse and then opens things up. We just can't keep passing it around the perimeter and think that's going to get the job done. We also have to find a way to get easier buckets in transition.

    I'm probably the only one that feels this way, but for some reason after the last 3 years it just drives me crazy to see Greg walking, or at times backing, the ball up court over and over again. I know some of that is about "composure" and "calming things down" and "playing under control", but we need to find a way to get easier buckets, and one of those ways is to push the ball more (after makes and misses). But we can't push the ball if we are going to play the type of rotation we saw on Saturday. I hope that's an anomaly, because I can't see anyway this team is fresh come March if we fall into that pattern.

    Just my two cents.
    Reading and posting at DBR for over 19 years and loving every... well, almost every minute of it!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    New Bern, NC unless it's a home football game then I'm grilling on Devil's Alley
    I thought this was a great article. Here was my favorite line.
    "Here is a fact that Krzyzewski knows better than anyone: Duke is not that good. That might sound ridiculous about a team that is 20-3 and tied for first place in the ACC. But this Duke team, like the past two that didn't play the second weekend of the NCAA tournament -- is very fragile."

    Usually when I read "Duke is not that good" I'm thinking the writer is a jackass Duke-hater, but in this case Feinstein followed up his remark very well. It was good to read some history that I was not aware of, and Weldon Williams, wow, there is a name from the past I have not thought about in a long time. I'm thinking that "74-47" will be on a few blackboards in these current players' years.
    Mmmm, BBQ!

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by CameronBornAndBred View Post
    I thought this was a great article. Here was my favorite line.
    "Here is a fact that Krzyzewski knows better than anyone: Duke is not that good. That might sound ridiculous about a team that is 20-3 and tied for first place in the ACC. But this Duke team, like the past two that didn't play the second weekend of the NCAA tournament -- is very fragile."

    Usually when I read "Duke is not that good" I'm thinking the writer is a jackass Duke-hater, but in this case Feinstein followed up his remark very well. It was good to read some history that I was not aware of, and Weldon Williams, wow, there is a name from the past I have not thought about in a long time. I'm thinking that "74-47" will be on a few blackboards in these current players' years.
    Don't be too quick to discount your instincts.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Gary View Post
    I'm probably the only one that feels this way, but for some reason after the last 3 years it just drives me crazy to see Greg walking, or at times backing, the ball up court over and over again. I know some of that is about "composure" and "calming things down" and "playing under control", but we need to find a way to get easier buckets, and one of those ways is to push the ball more (after makes and misses). But we can't push the ball if we are going to play the type of rotation we saw on Saturday. I hope that's an anomaly, because I can't see anyway this team is fresh come March if we fall into that pattern.
    You're not the only one. It bother me too. Nolan does it as well, but to a lesser degree. What really kills me is Paulus' habit of handling the ball with his back to the basket. It's one thing to shield the ball while moving towards the basket, but another to turn your back on your teammates 40 feet from the basket.

    I thought the article was great. It contained information that wasn't regurgitated like 99 percent of the articles I've seen on Duke. I laughed at the part where it said that the players would sometimes walk into the locker room and see "109-66"... I'm sure Bilas has that burned into his brain to this day.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by roywhite View Post
    Agree. John spends a fair amount of this article describing how this Duke team is "not very good" and saying that our 3-point shooting is the determining factor in winning or losing much of the time. Uh, John, Miami is a pretty good team, had a large lead, and they shot 60% on their 3-pt shots. This is a good Duke team which can win in a number of ways.
    Now why let facts get in the way of a Feinstein diatribe.

  18. #18
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    Jun 2008
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    Winston Salem, NC

    3 point shots

    I agree that lately we have reverted to our old ways of jacking up 3's. I think that comes from the lack of inside out play that we were doing earlier when Zoubek was playing better. I know once ACC play began post play became tougher for him, but still it would be better for us if we atleast attempted to throw the ball inside. This helps by making the 3 point shot less guarded and let's us get into better rebounding position. Quick 3 point shots that miss often lead to fast breaks for the opposition. If that happens tonight we are in big trouble. Go Duke!

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary View Post
    I probably should have been more clear. When I talk about "outside shots" I'm not only talking about 3 point shots, but longer (outside of, let's say, 15 feet) shots in general. Just seems to me we've been settling more for those type of shots and have stopped seeing dribble penetration leading to short range floaters or pass offs for either other short range shots or wide open threes. Those type I don't mind, but I hate seeing us pass around the wings will little or no dribble penetration. I realize we've seen some zone the last couple of games but the great teams still have guys that can break that with a quick dribble drive that causes the zone to collapse and then opens things up. We just can't keep passing it around the perimeter and think that's going to get the job done. We also have to find a way to get easier buckets in transition.

    I'm probably the only one that feels this way, but for some reason after the last 3 years it just drives me crazy to see Greg walking, or at times backing, the ball up court over and over again. I know some of that is about "composure" and "calming things down" and "playing under control", but we need to find a way to get easier buckets, and one of those ways is to push the ball more (after makes and misses). But we can't push the ball if we are going to play the type of rotation we saw on Saturday. I hope that's an anomaly, because I can't see anyway this team is fresh come March if we fall into that pattern.

    Just my two cents.
    You're not the only one. Outside of Gerald Henderson, I see very little dribble penetration from anyone on this team. We tend to fall in love with jumpshots and it's the same trap we fell into in Ann Arbor earlier this year. We still haven't learned how to attack the basket when the shots aren't falling. Case in point: Despite the win (which we were extremely fortunate to get), Duke took 39 threes against Miami. While shooting 32.9% from the field. That just shouldn't be happening.

    Every Saturday Duke has a game, the ESPN Gameday crew lauds us...then it comes to Hubert Davis. For the past 3 weeks, Davis has basically said what Duke is doing it good enough to beat the Marylands, the Miamis, the Purdues and the Xaviers, but this trend is just not going to cut it come March. And I couldn't agree more.

    All in all, lately this team has relied too much on perimeter shooting. Because of that, I truly hope tonight is not the rude awakening it could potentially be. I'll leave it at that.

    GTHC

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