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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Durham
    Quote Originally Posted by ice-9 View Post
    I didn't watch the game, but looking at the box score, I see zero steals and blocks. What happened? Zion got decent defensive stats while at Duke. Last year I attributed it to his coming back from injury, but he should be healthy right now.
    Williamson had 11 rebounds, and we all know rebounds are an important part of defense. And 285 lb. basketball players aren’t expected to be getting steals.

  2. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by ice-9 View Post
    I didn't watch the game, but looking at the box score, I see zero steals and blocks. What happened? Zion got decent defensive stats while at Duke. Last year I attributed it to his coming back from injury, but he should be healthy right now.
    I watched a decent bit of the game and thought his movement was noticeably improved on defense. Besides his quotes on the front page article that his body limited his ability to play instinctively on defense last year, I recall that NO management instructed him to pick his spots on defense. He did not score as much on lobs and deep post-ups yesterday, which certainly will be the focus of opposing defenses, but he also showed better movement facing up from farther away and attacking for layups or passes. I also though Ingram's defensive focus and effort looked improved. I recall in his rookie year the Lakers actually praised his defense as being ahead of his offense, but that was not a strength in what I saw last year. If Zion and Ingram improve significantly on defense, which they certainly have the tools to do, that would be huge. They also really need for Ball to make defenses respect his shot.

  3. #23
    A couple of highlights for the Dukies in the NBA last night.

    New Orleans vs Miami
    The "Devil Duo" of Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson shined in this matchup. Brandon Ingram had an all-around game, scoring 22 points to go along with 6 rebounds, 6 assists, 3 steals, and a block. After winning Most Improved Player, BI appears to have solidified his role as a primary scoring option and secondary ball handler for New Orleans. He had a very impressive drive and flush that should have resulted in a foul, too. The West is stacked, but it wouldn't surprise me to see Ingram become a perennial contender for All-Star games. He just turned 23 and is poised to average 20+ with his new shooting prowess for the next decade if his body holds up. Zion Williamson was the star, though, and collected 26 points and 11 rebounds on 10-11 FT shooting. The free throw shooting is a major thing for Zion. He shot just 64% from the charity stripe last year and still managed 22.5 points per game. If he's hitting closer to 75 or 80% from the line, the risk/reward for fouling him changes. He's going to live at the line throughout his career. But looks will become a little easier if defenses have to play a little more cautious around him.

    Indiana vs Cleveland
    Cassius Stanley had 5 points, 3 rebounds, and 2 assists in 12 minutes for the Pacers while Marques Bolden had 6 points and 3 rebounds in a little over 10 minutes.

    Memphis vs Minnesota
    Grayson Allen came off the bench and scored 13 points on 4-8 shooting from 3. Tyus Jones had 4 points, 2 rebounds, 4 assists, and 2 steals. Based on the early rotations, it appears both Allen and Jones are going to play significant roles for a team that will challenge for a playoff spot in Memphis this year.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Southbury, CT
    Quote Originally Posted by Duke79UNLV77 View Post
    I watched a decent bit of the game and thought his movement was noticeably improved on defense. Besides his quotes on the front page article that his body limited his ability to play instinctively on defense last year, I recall that NO management instructed him to pick his spots on defense. He did not score as much on lobs and deep post-ups yesterday, which certainly will be the focus of opposing defenses, but he also showed better movement facing up from farther away and attacking for layups or passes. I also though Ingram's defensive focus and effort looked improved. I recall in his rookie year the Lakers actually praised his defense as being ahead of his offense, but that was not a strength in what I saw last year. If Zion and Ingram improve significantly on defense, which they certainly have the tools to do, that would be huge. They also really need for Ball to make defenses respect his shot.
    I also watched the game and Zion and Ingram were impressive. Zion was really efficient - at the end of the 1st quarter he had 10 points and I hardly even noticed it. He could get to the rim at will and even if he missed the first shot, he often got his own rebound (padded his stats on a couple occasions by missing and rebounding a couple putbacks). He also did a nice job of driving to the lane and kicking out for 3's - it will be interesting to see if defenders going forward help off JJ like the Heat helped off shooters in this game. Either way Zion getting in the lane should make for lots of efficient shots.

    BI was very energetic on defense and on offense was definitely hunting his shot -- I was really impressed on both sides of the ball. I could see some nights where shots aren't falling for him he might end up forcing it, but I think New Orleans has other offensive options so hopefully BI keeps finding good shots and getting his teammates involved.

    Feels like the Pelicans should be better this year if Zion can stay healthy as they have upgraded personnel throughout the roster and with Van Gundy coaching. I'll definitely be watching when I can!
    Good people drink good beer. -Hunter S. Thompson

  5. #25
    Zion and Ingram are going to put on a show this year. Can't wait to watch Zion without a minutes restriction.

  6. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Gooch View Post
    I also watched the game and Zion and Ingram were impressive. Zion was really efficient - at the end of the 1st quarter he had 10 points and I hardly even noticed it. He could get to the rim at will and even if he missed the first shot, he often got his own rebound (padded his stats on a couple occasions by missing and rebounding a couple putbacks). He also did a nice job of driving to the lane and kicking out for 3's - it will be interesting to see if defenders going forward help off JJ like the Heat helped off shooters in this game. Either way Zion getting in the lane should make for lots of efficient shots.

    BI was very energetic on defense and on offense was definitely hunting his shot -- I was really impressed on both sides of the ball. I could see some nights where shots aren't falling for him he might end up forcing it, but I think New Orleans has other offensive options so hopefully BI keeps finding good shots and getting his teammates involved.

    Feels like the Pelicans should be better this year if Zion can stay healthy as they have upgraded personnel throughout the roster and with Van Gundy coaching. I'll definitely be watching when I can!
    I am still not a Lonzo Ball fan. He passes well but is poor from the line in critical situations. A point guard with a <50% career FT percentage is just unacceptable. He has to become a more reliable shooter from the stripe for New Orleans to really be a good team. To me, a professional PG should be able to shoot 80% from the line because that is just practice and putting in the work.
    dukelifer

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Boston, MA
    Quote Originally Posted by dukelifer View Post
    I am still not a Lonzo Ball fan. He passes well but is poor from the line in critical situations. A point guard with a <50% career FT percentage is just unacceptable. He has to become a more reliable shooter from the stripe for New Orleans to really be a good team. To me, a professional PG should be able to shoot 80% from the line because that is just practice and putting in the work.
    After getting rid of Jrue, Lonzo is the only + defensive guard on the roster. He's a really good passer and is developing great chemistry with Zion. His shooting, OTOH, is atrocious (like you mentioned). With Zion, Adams, and Lonzo, this is a really bad 3pt shooting team.

    They need Ingram to continue and they need to play JJ lots of minutes or else packing the paint is a fairly easy strategy for opposing teams.
    Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things. - Winston Churchill

    President of the "Nolan Smith Should Have His Jersey in The Rafters" Club

  8. #28
    I watched the entire Pelicans game last night and agree with everyone’s assessment that Ingram and Williamson are going to be a lot of fun to watch this year! I can already see strides in both of their games from last season. Lonzo, on the other hand, will be the undoing of this team if he doesn’t pick it up both on offense and defense. I thought he was terrible last night defensively. He did poke the ball away a few times, but he got beat off the dribble a lot as well. SVG well hopefully shore up the Pelicans’ defense, which was scrambling like crazy in the first quarter (and not in a good way). They left guys wide open for threes most of the first half. They’ll have to clean that up to make a solid push for the playoffs.

  9. #29
    Quote Originally Posted by ice-9 View Post
    I didn't watch the game, but looking at the box score, I see zero steals and blocks. What happened? Zion got decent defensive stats while at Duke. Last year I attributed it to his coming back from injury, but he should be healthy right now.
    A couple things. I think people forget that Zion is pretty short to be playing under the basket in the NBA. He often looked like he was surrounded by trees. I know he has the astounding leaping ability and can bully ball and use his quickness on offense and for rebounds. If given enough time to take a step or two we all know he can make the most amazing blocks in the world but things are moving a lot more quickly in the NBA. A lot of these 7 footers are very quick with smooth moves and high releases - it is going to be a challenge at 6'6". Note that a lot of his offensive rebounds last night were off his own misses. In fact last night, especially in the first half, Zion looked lost at times. He left his mark open for 3's several times but the Heat just couldn't hit. In the 2nd half Zion seemed to be reading the game better. It will come with time.

    But if Zion can hit 80+% of his ft's he's going to have a great year on offense. Defense, I don't know. Especially against the top teams.

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Richmond, VA
    Interesting write-up from Zach Lowe on his 5 most intriguing players for the upcoming season. Dukies make up 40%.

    In short, he's high on Carter with the new situation in Chicago. And he's high on Bagley if he can stay healthy all season...

    https://www.espn.com/nba/insider/sto...g-kevin-durant
    "That young man has an extra step on his ladder the rest of us just don't have."

  11. #31
    There were a few notable performances from Dukies in the NBA last night.

    New York Knicks vs Cleveland Cavaliers
    RJ Barrett help the Knicks come back for the win and scored 16 points to go along with 6 rebounds and 2 assists. Barrett has looked a lot more like a primary offensive player so far in the preseason under new head coach Tom Thibodeau. His jumper looks more balanced, although the shooting percentages aren't there yet. That's the skill that will take Barrett to the next level. Marques Bolden had a solid performance off the bench for Cleveland and poured in 8 points, 5 rebounds, and 3 blocks in 22 minutes. He just might earn his way onto the roster this year.

    Chicago Bulls vs Oklahoma City Thunder
    Wendell Carter, Jr. continued to show more playmaking skills and willingness to shoot the jumper. He had 6 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, and a block in the Chicago win. He was 0-3 from behind the arc, but that is notable as previous head coach Jim Boylen severely limited Carter's offensive role. Being free to take more shots and facilitate his teammates will be allowed under Billy Donovan this year. For OKC, Frank Jackson came off the bench and scored 15 points on 3-4 shooting from 3.

    Portland Trailblazers vs Denver Nuggets
    Harry Giles III had a more pedestrian outing against Denver, scoring 2 points, 4 rebounds, and assist in 12 and a half minutes. Neither Rodney Hood or Gary Trent, Jr. provided much, either, although all 3 should get plenty of opportunities during the regular season.

    Los Angeles Lakers vs Phoenix Suns
    Quinn Cook had a solid contribution off the bench in this one, scoring 10 points to go along with 4 rebounds and 4 assists without a turnover in 20 minutes.

  12. #32
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Hot'Lanta... home of the Falcons!
    Quote Originally Posted by DavidBenAkiva View Post
    Marques Bolden had a solid performance off the bench for Cleveland and poured in 8 points, 5 rebounds, and 3 blocks in 22 minutes. He just might earn his way onto the roster this year.
    I may be wrong, but I think the Cavs only have 13 players on guaranteed contracts right now (they have a 14th, PF Dean Wade, who is on a non-guaranteed deal). So, they have room for one more player on the active roster. The Cavs only have 4 players on the roster (including 2-way players and rule 10 camp invitees) who are younger than Marquis, so he may strike them as a guy who they could put some time into developing.

    That said, it is worth noting that they have a lot of money tied up in big men (Love, Drummond, and Nance are their three highest salaried players) and the team really needs to develop some guard play to go with their bigs.
    I don't know what you are doing right now, but if you aren't listening to the DBR Podcast, you're doing it wrong.

  13. #33
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Boston, MA

    Somewhat Dukie related

    On the NBA ESPN site, there is an interview/monologue with Barkley.

    He says he wants Harden traded to the Nets so he can play with Durant and Kyrie. Not because he thinks it'll work or make for entertaining basketball, but because he wants to see it implode.

    You gotta love Barkley. He's just like the rest of us!

    For the record, I like Durant and Kyrie together. I think Kyrie knows KD is alpha and will play 1b to KD's 1a. Harden in that scenario would be awful for KD and Kyrie.
    Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things. - Winston Churchill

    President of the "Nolan Smith Should Have His Jersey in The Rafters" Club

  14. #34
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Steamboat Springs, CO
    Quote Originally Posted by JasonEvans View Post
    I may be wrong, but I think the Cavs only have 13 players on guaranteed contracts right now (they have a 14th, PF Dean Wade, who is on a non-guaranteed deal). So, they have room for one more player on the active roster. The Cavs only have 4 players on the roster (including 2-way players and rule 10 camp invitees) who are younger than Marquis, so he may strike them as a guy who they could put some time into developing.

    That said, it is worth noting that they have a lot of money tied up in big men (Love, Drummond, and Nance are their three highest salaried players) and the team really needs to develop some guard play to go with their bigs.
    Random search revealed the following bits of data:

    Teams are obligated to carry a minimum of 14 players during the course of the regular season, although they are permitted to drop to 13 players for up to two weeks.
    Sage Grouse

    ---------------------------------------
    'When I got on the bus for my first road game at Duke, I saw that every player was carrying textbooks or laptops. I coached in the SEC for 25 years, and I had never seen that before, not even once.' - David Cutcliffe to Duke alumni in Washington, DC, June 2013

  15. #35
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Vermont
    Quote Originally Posted by flyingdutchdevil View Post
    On the NBA ESPN site, there is an interview/monologue with Barkley.

    He says he wants Harden traded to the Nets so he can play with Durant and Kyrie. Not because he thinks it'll work or make for entertaining basketball, but because he wants to see it implode.

    You gotta love Barkley. He's just like the rest of us!

    For the record, I like Durant and Kyrie together. I think Kyrie knows KD is alpha and will play 1b to KD's 1a. Harden in that scenario would be awful for KD and Kyrie.
    If Harden were to come, they should petition the league to allow them to play with two basketballs...that's the only way it could work.

  16. #36
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Mount Kisco, NY
    Quote Originally Posted by JasonEvans View Post
    I may be wrong, but I think the Cavs only have 13 players on guaranteed contracts right now (they have a 14th, PF Dean Wade, who is on a non-guaranteed deal)
    Scanning boxscores this week, I saw "D.Wade" for Cleveland and did a double take. To paraphrase Lloyd Bentsen:

    "My boy, I watched Dwayne Wade. I cheered for Dwayne Wade. Dwayne Wade was a Hall of Famer. My boy, you're no D.Wade!"

  17. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Dat View Post
    Scanning boxscores this week, I saw "D.Wade" for Cleveland and did a double take. To paraphrase Lloyd Bentsen:

    "My boy, I watched Dwayne Wade. I cheered for Dwayne Wade. Dwayne Wade was a Hall of Famer. My boy, you're no D.Wade!"
    sporks and all that, but that's a choice quote.

  18. #38
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New Orleans, Louisiana
    Quote Originally Posted by JasonEvans View Post
    (they have a 14th, PF Dean Wade, who is on a non-guaranteed deal)
    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Dat View Post
    Scanning boxscores this week, I saw "D.Wade" for Cleveland and did a double take.
    Dean Wade was injured and played sparingly on that Kansas State squad that made the Elite Eight of the 2018 NCAA Tournament. They beat Creighton, UMBC (!), and Kentucky before losing to Loyola. (Every time an announcer said "Dean Wade" I kept hearing "D. Wade" and hoping for a glimpse of Gabrielle Union.)

    Sort of related, but it was way worse for Duke fans when DeMaurice Smith was in the news for working on an NFL collective bargaining agreement. Reporters insisted on calling him by his nickname "De", so it sounded like Dean Smith had returned to haunt pro football.

  19. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by brevity View Post
    Dean Wade was injured and played sparingly on that Kansas State squad that made the Elite Eight of the 2018 NCAA Tournament. They beat Creighton, UMBC (!), and Kentucky before losing to Loyola. (Every time an announcer said "Dean Wade" I kept hearing "D. Wade" and hoping for a glimpse of Gabrielle Union.)

    Sort of related, but it was way worse for Duke fans when DeMaurice Smith was in the news for working on an NFL collective bargaining agreement. Reporters insisted on calling him by his nickname "De", so it sounded like Dean Smith had returned to haunt pro football.
    My boss at my actual job is named Dean Smith, but he's a plump, jovial Kris Kringle looking character.

  20. #40
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    New Orleans, Louisiana
    Quote Originally Posted by DukieInBrasil View Post
    My boss at my actual job is named Dean Smith, but he's a plump, jovial Kris Kringle looking character.
    Santa knew. Rudolph knew.

    Yeah, I had a dean at my (non-ACC) graduate school with the last name Smith, so... Dean Smith. Not as amusing as Ned Beatty’s character Dean Martin in Back to School.

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