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  1. #21
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    Sep 2008
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    Philadelphia
    Quote Originally Posted by JMarley50 View Post
    I wonder if these numbers can be misleading though. For example, if the bigs were instructed not to stray very far from Sullinger, there would be some plays that look like blown help assignments. When in reality they were doing what they were instructed to do. I'm not saying this is necessarily the case, just possible.
    I wonder the same thing. If the perimeter guy can't get through a screen and then the interior defender is slow to help, who should get "credited" with the blown D? You'd think the big guy, but it wouldn't have happened if the perimeter guy had successfully fought through the screen. In the same situation, if the interior defender steps up in time but the ball is dumped off for a layup, who gets tagged then? Let's say the perimeter guy switched onto the screener properly, so he did what he was supposed to do, and the big did what he was supposed to do, too. So in that case, is it the 2nd big who didn't rotate over quickly enough?

    As fans, most of what we can see is one-on-one D and opportunistic steals or blocks. It's a lot harder to notice solid help defense and good rotations and switches. Our team defense is pretty complicated, so it may not be so easy to assign "blame."

    Still, great analysis by tommy.

  2. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Kedsy View Post
    I agree with this, but so far I haven't seen any evidence that Quinn (or Seth or Austin, or Tyler for that matter) can stay in front of his man any more than Andre can. Combine that with the size disadvantage and it would appear as if a Quinn/Seth/Austin would be at a defensive disadvantage.
    Honestly, it can't be much worse. What we may lose in height on D we will more than make up for by

    1) Forcing a small forward to guard Austin. Good luck with that.
    2) Allowing Seth to play off the ball. It's his more natural position and he's shooting the hell out of the ball.
    3) Putting Quinn in the Point Guard spot will put a distributor in that lead guard role. He's better than anyone on our team this.

    I'm not saying this will happen, but if it does the pros outweigh the cons.

  3. #23
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    Sep 2008
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    Philadelphia
    Quote Originally Posted by airowe View Post
    Forcing a small forward to guard Austin. Good luck with that.
    Why would they be forced to do that? They could put the small forward on Seth. Make it a lot tougher for him to shoot and he won't blow by too many people. Possibly make him disappear the way people think Andre disappear. (And possibly not, if Seth moves more without the ball than Andre does.)

    And I disagree that the defense can't get much worse. Also, while I agree Quinn is the best distributor among our guards, if we assume Austin's usage rate stays where it is (meaning the ball is in his hands a LOT), I'm not convinced Quinn/Austin/Seth is any better than Seth/Austin/Andre on offense, either. If Austin learns to kick out to the shooters, then Andre would be better to have out there than Quinn. If Austin doesn't learn, then I don't think it matters either way. If Austin defers to Quinn and starts playing more off the ball, then it could be a better offensive configuration, but I think that's the least likely alternative.

    To me, the possible offensive pros of the Quinn/Seth/Austin backcourt would be outweighed by the defensive cons. But obviously that's just my opinion.

  4. #24
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    Mar 2007
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    Cambridge, MA
    Quote Originally Posted by airowe View Post
    Honestly, it can't be much worse. What we may lose in height on D we will more than make up for by

    1) Forcing a small forward to guard Austin. Good luck with that.
    2) Allowing Seth to play off the ball. It's his more natural position and he's shooting the hell out of the ball.
    3) Putting Quinn in the Point Guard spot will put a distributor in that lead guard role. He's better than anyone on our team this.

    I'm not saying this will happen, but if it does the pros outweigh the cons.
    This sounds good in a vacuum, but in context I'm not sure your benefits are that strong. Austin is already repeatedly beating his man off the dribble. Seth is already scoring well. We have other issues that are IMO more important to address. And while the defense isn't up to Duke standards right now, I think it most certainly can get worse.

  5. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by airowe View Post
    Honestly, it can't be much worse. What we may lose in height on D we will more than make up for by

    1) Forcing a small forward to guard Austin. Good luck with that.
    2) Allowing Seth to play off the ball. It's his more natural position and he's shooting the hell out of the ball.
    3) Putting Quinn in the Point Guard spot will put a distributor in that lead guard role. He's better than anyone on our team this.

    I'm not saying this will happen, but if it does the pros outweigh the cons.
    I absolutely agree with the 2nd and 3rd point as very big pros. One can go both ways with Austin possibly having to guard a bigger SF. But even there it's probably a pro more so than a con.

    The sample size is small, and Lord knows I really do love Andre, but I think from the little I've seen that Quinn can stay in front of his man better than Andre can. And of course the rotation would be different because we'd be talking about QC staying in front of a PG and AD staying in front of a SF or SG, but overall I think we'd be better off defensively. I'm still not trying to say I advocate this potential move, but I'm not going to be up in arms about it should we see it happen in the next game or two either.
    Reading and posting at DBR for over 19 years and loving every... well, almost every minute of it!

  6. #26
    Join Date
    May 2010
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    Myrtle Beach, SC
    Quote Originally Posted by Wander View Post
    This sounds good in a vacuum, but in context I'm not sure your benefits are that strong. Austin is already repeatedly beating his man off the dribble. Seth is already scoring well. We have other issues that are IMO more important to address. And while the defense isn't up to Duke standards right now, I think it most certainly can get worse.

    The good thing is, this is the perfect stretch of games to experiment. The Quinn/Seth/Austin lineup will do a couple things. I think it makes us more uptempo, and gives us a guard that knows how to distribute. If you get Austin out and running on the primary break he's going to be hard to stop from getting to the rim. Andre doesn't give us that threat. He gets out on the break and looks to spot up. If they do manage to head Austin off (it will probably take two) I'm sure Seth will do a really good job of trailing to the opposite wing and should get some good looks. Mason is fast enough to get out and run with them, then you'd have Ryan trailing to the top of the key.

    Defensively I think we would be ok against most teams. It would allow more 3/4 and full court pressure. The only problem is when we are going against someone with a bigger 3 like Prince Harry. I think Austin would be at a major disadvantage there. He just doesn't have the strength yet.
    “There are five fundamental qualities that make every team great: communication, trust, collective responsibility, caring and pride. I like to think of each as a separate finger on the fist. Any one individually is important. But all of them together are unbeatable.”

    -Coach K

  7. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by Kedsy View Post
    Why would they be forced to do that? They could put the small forward on Seth. Make it a lot tougher for him to shoot and he won't blow by too many people. Possibly make him disappear the way people think Andre disappear. (And possibly not, if Seth moves more without the ball than Andre does.)

    And I disagree that the defense can't get much worse. Also, while I agree Quinn is the best distributor among our guards, if we assume Austin's usage rate stays where it is (meaning the ball is in his hands a LOT), I'm not convinced Quinn/Austin/Seth is any better than Seth/Austin/Andre on offense, either. If Austin learns to kick out to the shooters, then Andre would be better to have out there than Quinn. If Austin doesn't learn, then I don't think it matters either way. If Austin defers to Quinn and starts playing more off the ball, then it could be a better offensive configuration, but I think that's the least likely alternative.

    To me, the possible offensive pros of the Quinn/Seth/Austin backcourt would be outweighed by the defensive cons. But obviously that's just my opinion.
    You put most small forwards on Seth and he will shot fake them right out of their Jordans. http://hoopspeak.com/coaches/2011/12...t-fake-attack/

    Seth, Andre nor Austin have done a good job of staying in front of their men. I don't see the detriment in replacing Seth with Quinn, Austin with Seth, and Andre with Austin and adjusting the defensive rotations to allow for more help on the perimeter (see packline defense: http://coachingbetterbball.blogspot....-packline.html).

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Just maybe we're forgetting just how good a team Thad has assembled. Don't lose sight of how much easier he has it when it comes to potential recruits being able to qualify as so called "student "athletes".

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Columbus OH 614
    Quote Originally Posted by airowe View Post
    You put most small forwards on Seth and he will shot fake them right out of their Jordans. http://hoopspeak.com/coaches/2011/12...t-fake-attack/
    Quote Originally Posted by airowe View Post
    Seth, Andre nor Austin have done a good job of staying in front of their men. I don't see the detriment in replacing Seth with Quinn, Austin with Seth, and Andre with Austin and adjusting the defensive rotations to allow for more help on the perimeter (see packline defense: http://coachingbetterbball.blogspot....-packline.html).
    That's as good as a blow by IMO....

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Cary, NC
    If we're making a change to the starting lineup for defensive purposes then why wouldn't Tyler start instead of Cook?

    Great analysis of the defense, and I too would love to see one that encompasses all possessions. It might appear that Mason made the most mistakes, but maybe he made three times as many "good" defensive plays as anyone else and that's not showing up. Also, once we got down big our guards had to gamble a little more and try to create some turnovers, so that could skew things too.

    My overall takeaway from this is that we need to fight through screens and hedge harder, or switch if it's another guard setting the screen. We should be able to switch a lot since our guards are fairly interchangeable. Once our guards get beat, either by a screen or a one-one-one blow-by, then everything breaks down. Average teams might still not make anything happen but good teams like OSU will find a way to score.

  11. #31
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Austin, TX
    I'm not sure that OSU could shoot that well again in an empty gym.

  12. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by UrinalCake View Post
    If we're making a change to the starting lineup for defensive purposes then why wouldn't Tyler start instead of Cook?
    I suspect that the CBS guy's editorialization of a potential change rather than an actual reason. I'd guess that if Cook got the start over Dawkins it would be for a different look rather than for defensive purposes. I agree that the defensive substitution would be Thornton.

    The team is clearly a work in progress on both ends. That much should have been expected from the beginning considering how many players are in new roles at the D-1 collegiate level.

  13. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by UrinalCake View Post
    If we're making a change to the starting lineup for defensive purposes then why wouldn't Tyler start instead of Cook?
    i wondered the same thing.

  14. #34
    Okay, I know Tyler hit the big 3s in Maui, and I also know Quinn hit all air on at least one 3 in Ohio the other night, but based on everything I've seen there's no question Quinn has a better outside shot than Tyler. Seems like a no-brainer to me on the offensive end. When Tyler is out there (other than the miracle in Maui) he just isn't an offensive threat at all. I think with Quinn you have a guy that merits the defense paying at least a little bit of attention to.

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

  15. #35
    Quote Originally Posted by Gary View Post
    Okay, I know Tyler hit the big 3s in Maui, and I also know Quinn hit all air on at least one 3 in Ohio the other night, but based on everything I've seen there's no question Quinn has a better outside shot than Tyler. Seems like a no-brainer to me on the offensive end. When Tyler is out there (other than the miracle in Maui) he just isn't an offensive threat at all. I think with Quinn you have a guy that merits the defense paying at least a little bit of attention to.

    Just my two cents.
    If Duke were worried about the offensive end, and outside shooting in particular, they wouldn't be making a change in the starting lineup.

  16. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by Duvall View Post
    If Duke were worried about the offensive end, and outside shooting in particular, they wouldn't be making a change in the starting lineup.
    Of course. I'm not arguing otherwise. But if you can insert a guy for defensive purposes who also happens to be at least somewhat of a threat on the offensive end then it's all the better, isn't it?
    Reading and posting at DBR for over 19 years and loving every... well, almost every minute of it!

  17. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by Gary View Post
    Of course. I'm not arguing otherwise. But if you can insert a guy for defensive purposes who also happens to be at least somewhat of a threat on the offensive end then it's all the better, isn't it?
    Sure, unless the guy are inserting is a worse defender than the guy he's replacing.

  18. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by Duvall View Post
    Sure, unless the guy are inserting is a worse defender than the guy he's replacing.
    Right. And that's the probably what the coaching staff is tinkering with right now.
    Reading and posting at DBR for over 19 years and loving every... well, almost every minute of it!

  19. #39
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Los Angeles
    Quote Originally Posted by wilko View Post
    Very interesting reading.
    I noticed some of the same stuff against our other opponents, only they would miss the shot. The opponent blowing shots makes the D look A LOT better. It would be interesting to see you similarly break down the KU or Michigan game looking at shot attempts vs made missed baskets to see if the Defensive trends were there all along, but hidden by poor shooting. Really esoteric.
    Yeah, I may try to do that if I can find the time. You're right - even for the OSU game, as you and other responders to my OP suggest, it would be helpful to look at ALL defensive possessions, not just those that resulted in an OSU basket, and do the same kind of analysis. That way, we would be able to see defensive lapses that did not result in baskets, but were nonetheless defensive lapses, as well as positive defensive actions. I'll see if I can get that done, but no promises!


    Quote Originally Posted by Kedsy View Post
    Great analysis. Although it's interesting you think Ryan was pulled for poor defense when his "blown D per minute" (4/15 = .267) was actually better than Mason's (9/31, taking last 4 mins out of the denominator = .290).

    It's interesting how our views can get skewed by scoring. Mason and Austin are the guys who came to score that night, certainly. But if tommy's stats are accurate, Mason led the team in blown defensive plays (by a large margin) as well as committing four turnovers (also leading the team).

    Having said that, I don't think Mason or Austin played significantly worse on D than anybody else. FWIW, using tommy's numbers, here are the "blown D per minute" stats (not counting last 4 minutes) for everyone on the team against Ohio State (worst to best):

    Code:
    Miles   .353
    Mason   .290
    Ryan    .267
    Andre   .158
    Seth    .154
    Austin  .151
    Tyler   .125
    Josh    .111
    Mike    .000
    Quinn   .000
    Which is interesting, because this makes it appears the defensive breakdown was mostly due to our bigs' mistakes, when my eyes told me during the game that the bigs played pretty well on D and the breakdowns were mostly due to poor perimeter D. Not sure if my eyes were wrong, or if tommy's analysis puts more emphasis on bigs' mistakes, but either way it provides food for thought.
    Thanks Kedsy. Love the way you synthesized the info and analyzed it on a per-minute basis. I should've done that -- I thought about it, but was just too tired last night!

    You're so right that our overall opinions tend to get skewed by scoring. That's why I engaged in this exercise -- to try to determine what was actually going on defensively, without it being affected by what was going on at the offensive end or by the score and overall flow of the game, the crowd, etc.

    Another point I should've made is that when you look at the "data," (and I know this is only one game, but if you were to generalize from it) if you're an opposing coach or scout, you'd have to say that one part of your game plan against Duke should be to draw our bigs out from under the hoop, and then put it on the floor and drive by them. Mason, Miles, and Ryan all had trouble with that. Opponents would probably want to exploit that more until either our bigs start to move their feet better, or our other guys learn to help better.

    Also, in terms of my analysis skewing towards the bigs' mistakes, I don't know but I tried to make sure I wasn't doing that. I really looked at each play, sometimes many times, and tried to make the best assessment I could as to who, if more than one guy was involved in a defensive play, who was really the one who either missed an assignment, which guy really didn't appear to give the effort he needed to, which guy was really the one caught out of position, etc. Maybe I failed sometimes. But I did try to assess it fairly.


    Quote Originally Posted by crimsondevil View Post
    I'll second these comments. This is the sort of analysis that coaches do, I imagine. One thing, though, is that the absolute numbers of breakdowns could give a little bit of a skewed picture. Charting the misses (ideally even each time any player had the ball) would add to it. If, in a theoretical world, Sullinger beat Mason inside 9 times, that would look bad in the analysis. But if OSU had passed it down low to Sullinger every time and Mason forced him into bad shots such that Sullinger went 9 for 30 and had the ball stripped a few times, that would be a good defensive effort, not a bad one. Not that I'm suggesting the OP has to spend that many more hours charting...
    Again, I agree that including the missed shots would give us a more complete picture. Obviously. Just a matter of me having time to do it.


    Quote Originally Posted by toooskies View Post
    I'd have to watch the game again and go through your breakdown to believe you; when I watched the game I didn't think the bigs were playing worse D than everyone else. Instead, I thought we did a terrible job rebounding.
    What I did was go through the whole game with remote in hand and rewinded and replayed (sometimes many times) each defensive play. It's not just "watching the game again." When you take the time to go back on each play again and again, pausing where necessary, moving it forward and back, forward and back, it's amazing what you see. You can really see what caused a breakdown, who was a step slow, who helped well on a play, who didn't help, who rotated properly and who didn't, who didn't hustle, who didn't fight through, who didn't hedge quite enough, who had his head turned and therefore missed something important going on, and so on. It really allows you to understand what happened to a much different extent than simply watching the game as we all do when the game is first on, you don't know the outcome, you're excited, etc.

    By the way, as to your point about the rebounding: based on my review of the game, in detail, I disagree. There were actually very few second chance opportunities that Ohio State enjoyed. One reason is that their first shot went in so often. But we did a pretty good job on the defensive boards.


    Quote Originally Posted by gam7 View Post
    Awesome work tommy. One comment that I'm sure you thought about when going through the game: just because OSU scored or got to the free throw line doesn't mean there was a culprit or breakdown of the defense. You can play great defense and the other team scores anyway.
    Very true. Which is why, in my summary, sometimes for "culprit" I indicated "none." These other guys are good -- very, very good. Sometimes they're going to make plays and score and it's nobody's fault. Of course!


    Quote Originally Posted by UrinalCake View Post
    Great analysis of the defense, and I too would love to see one that encompasses all possessions. It might appear that Mason made the most mistakes, but maybe he made three times as many "good" defensive plays as anyone else and that's not showing up. Also, once we got down big our guards had to gamble a little more and try to create some turnovers, so that could skew things too.
    "Upon further review" I actually saw very little gambling, at least little gambling in the passing lanes and that sort of thing, from our guards. Maybe that was due to fatigue, but even that wouldn't explain Cook and Thornton not playing the lanes more.

    Quote Originally Posted by UrinalCake View Post
    My overall takeaway from this is that we need to fight through screens and hedge harder, or switch if it's another guard setting the screen. We should be able to switch a lot since our guards are fairly interchangeable. Once our guards get beat, either by a screen or a one-one-one blow-by, then everything breaks down. Average teams might still not make anything happen but good teams like OSU will find a way to score.
    Agree with you that we have a lot of work to do to combat screens and screen/roll plays. What I saw though wasn't their guards setting screens for each other, necessitating our guards to switch with each other. It was their big men (especially Sullinger) setting the screens, and our having difficulty with switches between a guard and a big. Those are inherently difficult, especially with a screener as skilled and as big as Sullinger, but still, we didn't handle them well.



    I'd also say that, as poor a night as we had defensively, a close review of the game really does disclose what an excellent game Ohio State played. They took very, very few poor shots. They missed very, very few opportunities around the basket (contrary to our missing a number of close shots on our end). They are a very, very good screening team, and they pass the ball extremely well. Obviously not all of our opponents are going to be this skilled and have this good of a night against us. But still, playing a team of this caliber, playing its best, really does provide us a ton of learning opportunities, and should provide us motivation to improve in several important areas, both as a team and as individual players. I know we'll take advantage of those opportunities moving forward.

  20. #40
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Denver, CO
    A lot of work there. Interesting stuff. I do spot a flaw or two in the scoring, which may have already been mentioned by somebody else (I didn't have time to read the whole thread).

    Mason gets picked on a bit, because a primary goal of any defense is to make the other team take tough shots, and in that respect Mason did a better job than pretty much anyone else on Duke's side. Even some of the descriptions mention the difficulty of the shots made on Mason. Those kinds of mistakes (if they even are mistakes) are far less egregious than giving up open looks and/or letting a guard past you and into the lane (which forces Mason into a tough spot and also affects his perception). To get a truer picture, one would either need to ignore the tough shots or somehow discount how much you count for each breakdown.

    Also, on some plays, I would expect points to be ascribed to multiple players. It's not fair for the help defense to be expected to pitch a shutout when none of Duke's guards seemed to keep their players in front of them on the perimeter. Help defense is one thing, and bailing out the guards all night is another.

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