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#1 bfc1125roy

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Posted May 06, 2013 - 04:28 PM

Starters

PG: Rajon Rondo (12-13)

SG: Jeff Hornacek (89-90)

SF: Paul Pierce (01-02)

PF: Charles Barkley (86-87)

C: Hakeem Olajuwon (93-94)

 

Bench

PG: Ricky Rubio (12-13)

SG: Paul George (12-13)

SF: Adrian Dantley (81-82)

PF: Connie Hawkins (67-68)

C: Joakim Noah (12-13)

 

Free Agents

Raja Bell (05-06)

Ryan Anderson (11-12)


Edited by bfc1125roy, May 25, 2013 - 09:49 PM.


#2 bfc1125roy

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Posted May 12, 2013 - 02:36 PM

I figured now with the starting lineup complete I could start musing a bit about the roster I drafted. I ran across some interesting facts so I'll just be posting them here so I don't forget.

 

Offense

 

Really I had to keep reminding myself that there is only one basketball on the floor. While I was tempted to keep picking the big names, I had to remember that a team of ballhogs wasn't going to do anything on offense, so I tried to select players who were capable on that end of the floor while still being a good fit in the context of a couple of offenses I have in mind (but won't reveal just yet!). 

 

Post: 

 

1) We have Charles Barkley and Hakeem. The advantage here is that both can play the high and low post effectively. People often forget that while Hakeem had dominant back to the basket moves, he could often step out into midrange and kill you with drives and jumpshots all day. It was a bit more difficult to gather the data on Barkley since his shot chars aren't as available, but looking here, you can see he shot nearly 50% from midrange in the playoffs. People forget in his younger years he was a potent scorer from anywhere on the floor really, and even though he was a stocky build he still had that speed and quickness that came from his athleticism. This way, I don't always have to run a double post offense since their midrange games allow for good floor spacing while still maintaining the same offensive threat.

 

2) The second advantage here is rebounding and transition basketball. Hakeem was obviously a strong rebounder, who could average 10-14 rebounds easily in his prime. Barkley in his 86-87 season also had an insane 14.6 rebounds per game average. A big plus is that when you have two strong rebounders, it actually helps your teams overall rebounding averages since both of the post players can effectively box out their own man, making opportunities on the glass far easier. Also, this allows me to keep one of the two on the offensive boards while having the other get back in transition. With regards to transition basketball more specifically, we all know Hakeem is a quick center who can run the floor very well. However Barkley also had that ability in his younger years, he could go coast to coast and dunk the ball like a guard. That quickness is key because everyone knows how dangerous it is for a big man who can play in the post to come speeding down the floor with his hands up. It's over from there.

 

Wing:

 

1) My idea here with Pierce and Hornacek was to pick two players that were different in style but had one thing in common: their ability to space the floor effectively. Both Pierce and Hornacek have won multiple 3 point shootout competitions and are knockdown shooters from long distance, especially when open. This allows Hakeem and Barkley to operate down low without facing a threat of a strong double team. Hornacek was especially deadly from deep, he shot over 40% from 3pt range in 8 seasons, including one 47.8% season. Incredible really. 

 

2) The second advantage is that both players aren't limited to just standing and shooting, which gives me a perimeter offensive threat. We all know what Pierce can do, his strength allows him to drive the lane against most small forwards and be a strong threat from the midrange. There's ample pick and roll opportunities with him and Olajuwon as well. With regards to Hornacek, his strength was always moving off the ball, making it difficult for opposing players on defense. Of course, it's often overlooked that Hornacek had one of the best mid range games in NBA history. He could hit all the off balanced shots and one legged runners in the lane, so bigger players in the pain would not be an issue. 

 

Point Guard:

 

1) This was the toughest and most controversial decision for me. There are plenty of good pointguards in league history, many of whom can shoot, however I couldn't overlook the talent of Rajon Rondo. Although I had Hakeem in the post, i really needed a guard who I could run my offense through and someone who could get the ball where it needed to be. Rondo is the perfect fit, someone who can drive and penetrate the lane all day, opening up opportunities for the 3 point shooters I have and post players as well. He can make the pass into the post well and absolutely destroy teams in transition. The shooting is an issue, however with Pierce and Hornacek being deadly from deep, I can sacrifice some of that percentage and still have good floor spacing (there are some tricks I have to mask that), and in turn I gain the ability to blow by almost any guard in this league and someone who can both score and dish out 11+ assists a game no problem. He's the triple double threat that truly completes this team on the offensive end.

 

I'll post defense later. 



#3 Jackson

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Posted May 12, 2013 - 05:58 PM

Great analysis of your team.

 

But you have a glaring flaw which is going to be Rondo. Sure he can pass the ball, attack the rim, and is a decent defender, but he can't shoot.

 

I could just play off him; the way Kobe does each time the Lakers challenge the Celtics. It would be much easier for me to help Willis defending Hakeem, no?


Edited by Jackson, May 12, 2013 - 06:00 PM.


#4 L.A.K.E.R

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Posted May 12, 2013 - 08:22 PM

Great analysis of your team.

 

But you have a glaring flaw which is going to be Rondo. Sure he can pass the ball, attack the rim, and is a decent defender, but he can't shoot.

 

I could just play off him; the way Kobe does each time the Lakers challenge the Celtics. It would be much easier for me to help Willis defending Hakeem, no?

 

This is what the playoffs are for. If you match up against him, do you really want to point out any flaws here?

 

:shh:



#5 bfc1125roy

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Posted May 12, 2013 - 09:45 PM

Great analysis of your team.

 

But you have a glaring flaw which is going to be Rondo. Sure he can pass the ball, attack the rim, and is a decent defender, but he can't shoot.

 

I could just play off him; the way Kobe does each time the Lakers challenge the Celtics. It would be much easier for me to help Willis defending Hakeem, no?

 

It's definitely a hole, but it's a sacrifice I made for the other benefits Rondo brings (which I thought vastly outweighed the shooting issue). I think I can actually use that to my advantage, since I know everyone's going to be defending him in the same way, and I thought long and hard about how to attack that before I made the pick. I'm actually super glad I landed who I did in the later rounds, because now I can develop the right offense using the passing and scoring skills I have in each of the other players on the roster to counter the sagging  defense on him. 



#6 bfc1125roy

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Posted May 15, 2013 - 01:27 PM

Now that I finally have some time to sit down and think, I'll post a bit of defensive analysis so I don't forget.

 

 

Defense

 

I tried to keep in mind you don't need the greatest individual defenders as long as you have a few smart players and the right scheme. I love to use the 2011 Mavericks as an example of a team that had decent 1 on 1 defenders in some positions, but when they came together as a whole they could take out the offensive firepower of the Miami Heat. 

 

Post: 

 

1) Really the anchor here is Hakeem Olajuwon, and I'm happy to have him on the team because of his skills on both ends of the floor, meaning I can run my offense through him and have him lead the defense. As I noted earlier, Hakeem could easily average 10-14 rebounds per game in his prime, and of course is the NBA all time leader in blocked shots. The famous Michael Jordan quote also points out he was top 7 in steals, so he has that all around defensive game. His quickness gives him the same ability you see in Dwight Howard today to help and recover in time to stay on his own man. 

 

2) When it comes to Charles Barkley, I liked to view him as a rich man's Chuck Hayes. He has the strength to guard most power forwards and the tenacity to battle on the boards, remember he once averaged 14.6 rebounds per game in a season, which is beyond impressive for someone of his size. Additionally, people tend to forget how quick he was, and in his earlier years he was renowned for his chasedown blocking ability. With that in mind, stretch PFs shouldn't give him too much trouble, but if there's a player who's size is just too much, Hakeem is always there for the weakside help. 

 

Wing:

 

1) For Paul Pierce, I had to look at the 2008 Celtics and how Tom Thibodeau ran that amazing defensive scheme. Pierce actually wasn't the best defender on that team, as Garnett, Posey, Perkins, and Rondo were all very tough players who played hard nose defense. However, the advantage from Pierce is that he has a high basketball IQ. For example, he was smart enough to know when he could leave his man to double Kobe, and if he was ever guarding Kobe, he knew how to play the passing lanes and funnel him into Garnett/Perkins on the baseline to make things more difficult. With Hakeem being one of the best defensive players in NBA history, Pierce has the luxury of knowing that help his behind him and can react accordingly. 

 

2) Hornacek's defense wasn't as clear from my memory, so I had to go back to some of the old Jazz tape and watch how they played. The Jazz obviously had strong anchors in Malone and Ostertag, but while Hornacek wasn't the greatest individual defender, he was a smart enough player to lead the player he was guarding into the right help, and that's all that I need from him on that end of the floor.  

 

Point Guard:

 

1) This is a big reason why I picked Rondo as opposed to other PGs, even though Rondo's range is limited. He is one of the best defenders at the 1 in the league, so I get the luxury of having a player that can handle all sorts of various attacks coming from that position, whether its one in the post or a speedier pointguard. Obviously great offense beats great defense most times, but if Rondo can hold his own most of the time, he has the right help behind him to make up for any lapses. Many of us Laker fans didn't get to see the true extent of Rondo's abilities since he was handling Fisher, a non issue most of the time on offense, but if you look at other series (especially in 2010) you'll see that he along with Garnett played a huge role on that end of the floor to lead the Celtics to the finals. He's adept at playing the passing lanes, is up there every years in steals per game, and is also a very solid rebounder. Having someone who puts in that type of effort every time on the defensive end is definitely a plus. 

 

Ultimately, I feel I have a very strong defensive unit on the floor, with one outstanding perimeter and post defender, along with other tougher players that know how to play in a scheme. I'm not worried about being unable to stop any sort of offensive firepower in this league. 

 

I'll post some thoughts on the bench soon. 


Edited by bfc1125roy, May 15, 2013 - 01:28 PM.





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