Saturday, November 12, 2005

BEYOND THE BOX SCORE - November 12

Wizards 110 San Antonio 95 – Impressive Washington win … Eddie Jordan is the best unknown coach in the NBA …. I have never been a Larry Hughes fan so I am not convinced they really lost that much in the off-season … Arenas is ready to be the best point guard in the NBA, 43 points on 15 of 20 shooting against the Spurs is about as big as you can get … Tim Duncan went just 3 of 18 …. It is really shocking anytime a team shots 55% against the Spurs. Plus, they hit 7 of 14 from 3 and the Spurs are the best 3 point defensive team in the NBA,

Phoenix 101 Golden State 86
– Have you been watching Boris Diaw. This guys is becoming a stud in the Phoenix system after tooling in Atlanta doing nothing. He was right on a triple double the other night and tonight he had 8-12-5 …. Barbosa has exploded in the last week and started next to Nash. He is averaging 20 in his last 3 games. He is the replacement to Q. Richardson.

Memphis 85 Atlanta 84
– Memphis wins on a buzzer beating tip in by Gasol … Bobby Jackson started in place of Damon Stoudamire who is hurt … Atlanta closed with Marvin Williams and Salim Stoudamire on the floor …. Atlanta is 0-6 … Shane Battier had 22 points I never thought he could score consistently in this league. If he has added that to his game he becomes one of the better players in the game, because he is so terrific with every intangible.

Miami 108 Charlotte 99
– Miami lead by 26 going into the 4th quarter. In other words this was a blow out …. Emeka Okafor went 0 for 7. He got a free pass last year on how bad his offensive game was and probably won a rookie of the year he didn’t deserve. It is becoming time to really analyze how bad his offensive game is. His points per shot attempt rate is awful. His amount of shots considering how poor his efficiency is makes him one of the worst in the league. For a first pick of a draft and a cornerstone to a franchise his game should be much better… He only goes to the free throw line about 4 times a game and shoots only 44%. It is hard to find power forwards with numbers that poor.

Dallas 109 NOK 103
– Defense was optional both team shot over 50% ….. Chris Paul had a great game shooting 10 of 14 from the field … It is worth watching what opposing point guards do to Jason Terry. I am not sure if there is a trend but let’s keep an eye on it …. I am still really curious about Dallas they are getting lots of minutes from non-scorers.

Houston 99 New Jersey 91
– Look at Houston now that McGrady is back. Nothing quite like having 35 points re-inserted into the line-up …. Yao Ming had 2 rebounds in 22 minutes. How is that possible? …. Luther Head is getting more and more minutes for Houston …. A bad two game stretch for the New Jersey Nets …. The Nets slip to 3-4 and I really thought they were going to be good this year. At this rate they will still win the Atlantic division …. Is this the Vince Carter factor kicking in.

Chicago 103 Utah 98
– Is any team more dependent on one player then Utah on Kirilenko Last season, when he got hurt they fell apart and they fell apart defensively. They literally went from one of the best to one of the worst. Thus, far this year they have been very good defensively until tonight when Kirilenko gets hurt and they let Chicago shoot 55% and hit 10 of 19 from 3. It is hard to fathom that one player makes this big a defensive issue, but Kirilenko seems to. …. Utah’s guards suck … Kirk Henrich, one of my favorites had a great night, 19-2-1 …. Chicago’s bench shot 20 of 28.

Milwaukee 103 Indiana 102
– Another good win for the Bucks …. Bobby Simmons went just 5 of 16. It is the nightly who did Ron Artest shut down tonight stat. Artest kils the other team’s small forward every night …. The Pacers are a totally different team when Jamal Tinsley is hurt and doesn’t play. The problem is he never stays healthy …. The game had 45 free throws attempted in the 4th quarter. The Pacers hit just 15 of 26 … Mo Williams hit a 3 pointer to win it … Pacers were up 11 …

Friday, November 11, 2005

SIMULBLOG OF SONICS V. WIZ

Wizard a lot Sonics not very much at all points in the game
My mother told me if I nothing nice to say nothing at all. For the first time in my life I will take that advice. I am speechless at what is taking place on the floor.

Wizards 71 Soncis 49 at end of the half
The play to end the half when Arenas got the layup is one of the worst plays I have ever seen by a team. I hate to say this but that looks like a team that quit early on the half.
They allowed Arenas to dribble the length of the floor never turned him or affected him at all. He hesitated at the three point line and then went to the basket for a layup and a foul all with just :6 seconds on the clock.
IT CAN’T HAPPEN.


Wizards 61 Sonics 39 with 2:58 left in the 2nd Quarter
Holy smokes it 61-39 what is going on.
I am surprised now as I was last year at this time
The Sonics are panicking. Instead of setting up for good offensive possessions they are going quicker and quicker and quicker. They are shooting after the first pass too often. They look like they lose confidence and then press.
When you shoot early in possession before the floor balance you give up transition.


Wizards 53 Sonics 33 With 5:35 left in the 2nd Quarter
The Wizards have scored on 8 of their first 10 possessions of the 2nd quarter
This is terrible.
The Sonics have freaked out again. They have no confidence.
They are playing no transition defense.
They have only 3 field goals in the Quarter and only 1 out of the offense.
It is make everyone an all-star week for the Sonics defense.
Sonics are not defensive rebounding at all again.

Wizards 43 Sonics 29 with 8:25 left in the 2nd Quarter
In the last few games when the Sonics have gotten behind they hit the panic button let's see if they do it tongiht.
Mikki Moore makes his first appearance
AD just got Ray on a flop. That has to piss you off when you know what a flopper AD is and the ref falls for it. I used to talk with AD in the lockerroom about the art of flopping and he would get really in to it.
The bad Danny Fortson showed up tonight.
Bob Weiss just got his first T from a rookie official.
Nick and Danny both have three fouls


Wizards 39 Sonics 27 with 9:25 left n the 2nd Quarter
13-2 run by the Wizards
The Sonics can’t have Wilkins and Murray on the floor at the same time.
This has been a disaster all season when it happens.
When on the floor together they were a negative 27 in the last game
This group is playing no transition defense
Wilkins is getting crushed back door in the Princeton offense.



Wizards 29 Sonics 25 after 1 Quarter
Ray Allen left the game with the Sonics trailing by 1 by the time he re-entered with just 2 minutes passed the Sups were down 6.
It might seem like Arenas is killing Luke but if you watch Arenas has gotten his points when Luke is either on the bench or guarding some one else.
Offensively the Sonics looked more in synch in the first quarter.
The Sonics are doing a nice job of taking advantage of the poor defensive rebounding of the Wizards, last in the NBA

BEYOND THE BOX SCORE - November 10

LA Clippers 102 Atlanta 95 – Atlanta Sucks … with that established let’s analyze if the Clippers are for real … Last year the Clippers ranked 19th in offensive efficiency and 16th in defensive efficiency. Their efficiency differential was 18th in the NBA. They were average in every category expect they ranked 25th in the league in turnover % and they ranked 24th in the NBA in forcing turnovers. In addition, they were even at every position but they got killed at point guard … How does this year compare? … Through 6 games they rank 14th in offense (with a low rating then last season) and they rank 12th on defense (dropping from 105.5 to 98.9). That won’t last. In the early season defense is ahead of offense because players haven’t got tired yet … Even their turnover % hasn’t changed they are 15.7 compared to 15.8 last year …. Therefore, my conclusion is the Clippers are not for real. They have beaten Atlanta twice and Seattle. They may gain momentum and believe in themselves and gets some wins there, but they are not dramatically better then last year.

Miami 88 Houston 84
– Tracy we miss you …. The Heat closed with Jason Williams, Gary Payton, Dwayne Wade, Udonis Haslem and Alonzo Mourning. Interesting how small that is ….. Payton played the final 15 minutes and bounced back from an awful night last night to a +10 +/- in this game ….. Houston has terrible guards …. Stromile Swift continues to struggle he was a –10 …. Wayne Simien a player many Sonics fans wanted drafted, because this team needs another power forward, is getting minutes but is struggling mainly on the defensive end .

Detroit 111 Phoenix 104
– I guess Detroit is ok without Larry Brown …. Amazingly, Detroit is the #1 offensive efficiency team in the NBA so far this season. Can you imagine how good they will be if they can score. Defensively, they are 10th but their differential is far and way the best …. Saunders has always been one of the best offensive coaches in the NBA …. Tayshawn Prince is elevating his game to one of the elite in the NBA. Does he remind anyone of a Scottie Pippen? …. Dale Davis is on the Pistons bench not playing, how much could he help the Sonics .

Thursday, November 10, 2005

THE SONICS HAVE A FLIP MURRAY PROBLEM


The Sonics have a Flip problem. This roster is built in a fashion where Flip Murray has to be a part of the team. For this team to win he has to play an active scoring and distributing role in the back-court.

The problem is that the Sonics have been awful when Flip is on the floor. +/- is a stat that has become very popular in the NBA. It is no different then the hockey stat. If is how your team does when you are on the floor. If your team goes on an 8-0 run you get a +8 if you team is outscored 8-0 you get a –8.

Thus far this season is the 62 minutes that Flip Murray has been on the floor the Sonics have been outscored by 56 points. That is correct in 62 minutes Flip Murray is a –56. In other words over 48 minutes with Flip on the floor the Sonics would be outscored by 43 points. Offensively and defensively the Sonics have the worst ratings when Flip is on the floor. Both offensively and defensively.

Now this could be a one year issue and an early season issue if the same thing hadn’t happened both of the last two years. Last season the Sonics were –128 when Flip was on the floor the worst on the team. In fairness last year was tough with the injury and never having a set role.

However, in 2003-04 the year which every sites as Flip’s great year the Sonics were –141 when Flip was on the floor second worst on the team.

The concern is that this year is not an anomaly. Over the past three years when Flip Murray has been on the floor the Sonics have been outscored by 325 points. 325 points.

Do you want more. There is a stat called the Roland Rating. It measures how your team performs when you are on the floor compared to when you are on the bench.
In 2003-04, Flip was second to last on the team in Roland Rating, in 2004-05, Flip was last on the team in Roland Rating and this year Flip Murray is last on the team in Roland Rating.

Speedskater breaks silence about abuse | TheNewsTribune.com | Tacoma, WA

Dave Boling has written another amazing article. I was in Salt Lake and say Chris Witty win her gold. This article tells of how she has dealt with childhood sexual abuse.

Speedskater breaks silence about abuse | TheNewsTribune.com | Tacoma, WA: "Witty captured a gold medal in long-track speedskating in Salt Lake City in 2002 to add to the silver and bronze she collected in Nagano, Japan, in 1998. A rare crossover athlete, she also competed in the Sydney Games in 2000 as a cyclist.

It was shortly before the Salt Lake City Games that Witty revealed her troubled history to a sports psychologist, who initiated the regimen of counseling that has allowed her, now, to exploit her platform as an international athlete to speak out about the problems that led to so many years of emotional turmoil.

“I felt the need to talk about it,” Witty said. “Abuse of any kind thrives off secrecy. That’s why it continues. If I started talking about it, other people can talk about it. Or if it’s started with someone, maybe I can inspire them to go tell somebody about it and they can get help. I just wanted to break the silence.”"

BEYOND THE BOX SCORE - November 9


Minnesota 88 Lakers 74
– Watching this one it looked as though Casey had the Lakers scouted to the nth degree …. The key to Kobe is keeping him off the free throw line and he had just 6 free throw attempts …. This is how Minnesota is going to have to win because they don’t a true second scorer. Last night Trenton Hassell was the offensive source other then KG ….. Eddie Griffin was the game changer. Minnesota was +24 when he was on the floor ….

Philadelphia 112 Dallas 97
– Dirk Nowitski got hurt and left in the 2nd Quarter ……Nowitski was +9 when he left with the injury …. 3 point shooter Kyle Kover went 9 for 11 but just 2 for 4 from 3. I am not sure he was ever taken more shots inside the arc then outside the arc ….Chris Webber is back on track with an 18 shot 19 point game and was a -9…. Keith Van Horn had a nice line, 19 points and 13 rebounds, except the Mavs were outscored by 24 when he was on the floor …. John Salmons and John Thomas of Philly had great games off the bench, they were +24 and +17, respectively.

Clippers 102 Washington 97
– Great performance in the clutch by the Clippers. Elton Brand can’t score late in games and that has always been the Clips downfall, but last night Cassell, Mobley and Maggette all made plays … Last year the Clips got crushed in two areas, point guard play and turnovers. Cassell is changing both of those. It makes sense that the Clips are for real and a playoff team …. Clippers only had 12 turnovers in the game … Brand was great, 14 of 18 from the field …. Antonio Daniels did not play. 21 missed games to go to get to my projected 60 game season.

Boston 99 Memphis 98
– Great game. Pierce hit Ricky Davis for the game-winner, one play after Eddie Jones hit a fantastic baseline shot to give Memphis the lead. The Eddie Jones play was most telling because it touched all five members of the Grizzlies. Their ball movement and unselfish play was impressive all game …. Delonte West is a sick athlete … Memphis bench kept then in the game after their starters got crushed early in the game … Boston is playing Al Jefferson for the entire 4th quarter.

New Jersey 91 Utah 83
– The first bad defensive game of the year by Utah …. Talk about unclear rotations, Jerry Sloan didn’t play any of his starters other than Kirlenko in the 4th quarter …. Keith McLeod was a –17 and Okur was a –16 in 15 minutes … Richard Jefferson continues to be terrific, NJ was +18 with him on the floor and he had 17-9-12. …. I still like New Jersey a lot.

San Antonio 94 Charlotte 86
– mismatch.. . Tony Parker might be better then he was last year … Van Exel has been struggling off the bench as we showed in a previous Beyond the Box Score so they started him last night with Parker and had Manu come off the bench … Manu is the ultimate team player.

Chicago 85 Golden State 84
– The Warriors closed the game with Derek Fischer, Baron Davis, Jason Richardson, Mike Dunleavy and Troy Murphy. That is small ball … The Bulls went at the small lineup on the final play of the game isolating Mike Sweetney on Troy Murphy and drawing the foul …. Foyle is some sort of hit or miss player. Last night he was a –10 and the previous nights he was off the charts on +/- in a good way …. Chicago was #1 in the NBA in field goal defense last year and they held the Warriors to 33% last night …. Kirk Hinrich is a total stud.

Portland 95 New York 83 – Way to go Nate… Larry Brown without a win… Jerome James did not play … Nate Robinson had double figures for the first time in his career …. Jarrett Jack is getting more time then Sebastian Telfair, though Telfair was a +21 in his 20 minutes. The two of them played together to open the 4th Q .. In the 16 minutes Antonio Davis was on the floor the Knicks got outscored by 21 points. That is hard to do …. Jamal Crawford was a –15 … Who was the Knicks best +/- player last night, Nate Robinson at +6 …

Denver 107 Sacramento 91 – The Rick Adelman death watch starts now …. The Kings are a bad team …. They only scored 9 points in the 4th quarter … What does this tell you about Abdur-Rahim? Every team he has been on losses. Same can be said for Bonzi Wells … Nice off-season Geoff Petrie … Earl Boykins was a +20 for Denver …. Earl Watson does not play again.

Orlando 88 NOK 83 – two bad teams …. I am not sure how long they run Chris Paul out there for 40 minutes a night.

Indiana 95 Miami 90 – Holy smokes. Miami was outscored by 20 points with Payton on the floor and GP only played 27 minutes …. Indiana has quite a player in Sarunas Jasikevicius. He closed the game for the Pacers and made two big plays down the stretch … Indiana closed with Fred Jones and Jasilevicius in the back-court …. Miami closed with Payton which might be why they lost …

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

MY VERSION OF A SONICS ROTATION

The constant grip of Sonics fans right now is that the team has no consistent rotation. I thought I would post what I would build around if I was the head coach. Obviously, this would just be a framework and their would be some flexibility. I bold faced the substitutions that Would be fixed and inflexible.


Time 1 2 3 4 5
Start Luke Allen Lewis Evans Vitaly
6:00 Vlady
4:00
Wilkins Collison

2nd Q Brun Wilkins
VladyFortson Collison
10:00
Allen
6:00 Luke
Lewis Vlady Vitaly

3rd Q Luke Allen Lewis Evans Vitaly
6:00 Vlady
4:00
Wilkins Collison

4th Q Brun
Allen Vlady Fortson Collison
8:00
Lewis
6:00 Luke
5:00 Vlady


TOTAL MIN
Luke 36 Allen38 Lewis 38 Reggie 12 Vitaly 19
Brunson 12Wilkins 8 Vlady 10 Vlady 24 Collison 29
Fortson 12


That is what I would do. Let me know how you would change it

SIMULBLOG FOR SONICS V. CAVS

FINAL SCORE CAVS 112 SONICS 85

The Clips v. Wiz game on the League Pass is great. SO was Philly putting it to Dallas.

Cavs 78 Sonics 60 with 2:46 left in the 3rd Quarter
Honestly I am pretty mystified on what has happened here. I am somewhat out of explanations
The Lewis injury is significant in regards to why they can’t score.
The lack of energy is hard to understand other than the back to back.
LeBron is incredible. I can’t wait to see him in person on Dec 4th.

Cavs 65 Sonics 43 end of 1st half
The Cavs ran the fast break early getting 4 of their first 6 field goals on fastbreaks.
Then they went to the rack all night.
Seattle can’t handle LeBron and he is slicing the middle of the defense.
Again the offense is out of whack. This is more of guys just not making shots. The Cavs are not a good defensive team and the Sups are missing good lucks.


Cavs 57 Sonics 39 with 2:47 left in the 2nd Quarter
Oh my this is not good.
LeBron is unguardable
Luke is 1 for 5. Vlady is 0 for 6.
What is jumping out to me is the Sonics are running their offense and the ball swings around to Luke or Wilkins for 3 and they are good looks. However, I don’t think it is going in whenever those guys shoot. They are not good shooters and so the shot goes up and misses and another possession goes for not.
Reggie Evans and Danny Fortson were playing together. Now that is searching.



Cavs 43 Sonics 30 with 8:22 left in the 2nd quarter.
Sonics have been outscored by 10 with Ray Allen on the bench.
Without Lewis and Allen there is no flow and no offense
Flip is what I call a 50/50 player. 50% of this plays are great, but 50% are disasters and he has been 50/50 so far tonight.
The Cavs are unabashed about going to the rim
Rebounding is Cavs 17 to 4 -- We told you coming in the Cavs were getting an amazing 79% of their defensive rebounds.
Cavs are shooting 62%


Cavs 34 Sonics 26 end of 1st Quarter
+/- for Flip is an issue again. Flip entered with the Sonics tied and by the end of the quarter the Sonics were down 8
This is the first time early in game that the Sonics have really struggled defensively.
So much talk about Weiss and his rotations, but the rotations will never solidify if the guys don’t start owning the positions

Cavs 25 Sonics 22 with 1:47 left in the 1st Quarter
No defense from either side tonight
The Cavs are attacking the rim. WIthout any 7 footer the Sonics defense is not imposing and the Cavs are going right to the basket.
Flip replaced Luke tonight as the point guard



RASHARD LEWIS INJURED
Rashard Lewis left the game holding his left shoulder.
He ran into Potapenko and grabbed his arm.
Lewis had his left shoulder sublux in April 2002 during the playoffs.
He also had an incident in December 2003.
Each time the shoulder subluxs it becomes more likely to sublux again.

STORYLINES
1) Vitaly starting at center
2) Vlady's reaction
3) Flip back in the rotation
4) Cavs terrible defense

BEYOND THE BOX SCORE - November 8

Golden State 110 Milwaukee 103 – The +/- on this game may be the most amazing thing I have seen. Check out the Bucks +/-. Redd –23, TJ Ford –20, Magloire –18 and Andrew Bogut +20. Bogut was +20 while everyone else was falling apart. That is insane. That totally floors me ….. Golden State has not lost when Baron Davis plays … Troy Murphy is Radmanovic but he rebounds. He had 25 points and 4 threes in the game … The Warriors are having rebounding issues but have survived …13 of 27 from 3 can cover a lot . Warriors played this game small all night very similar to Phoenix last season …. Tj Ford was 3 of 14. He has been outstanding this year, but I was not sold on his ability to shoot out of Texas and questioned whether he was worth that early a pick. Let’s put some caution out on how great he really is …. For the second straight game Adonal Foyle had an amazing +/- night the Warriors were +17 when he was on the floor.

Lakers 103 Atlanta 97 – At halftime of this game the Lakers had taken 34 shots and Kobe had taken 15 …. The Lakers go to 3-1. So much of this league is about confidence and with Phil Jackson on the sideline if the Lakers get a few more under their belt they are going to believe they are good and that is more then half the battle …. I love Lamar Odom’s game. His head has always been the issue. His line last night was awesome 13-11-6 and 5 steals. With his length and talent if he buys in he could be every bit Scottie Pippen to Kobe Bryant. Amazingly with that line the Lakers were still a –1 when he was on the floor … Smush Parker was +15 …. Devin George was +18 …. For Atlanta Al Harrington was a –16 and Joe Johnson was a –15. That means when their two best players were off the floor Atlanta was +13. That makes you wonder of where those guys are coming from.

Detroit 102 Kings 88 – The Kings look awful. I mean awful …. They have a ton of pieces and it could jell but they don’t look like they are cohesive at all …. Their starting five looks brutal on the floor together … Adbur-Rahim was a -22, Peja was a –20 and Wells was a –18. Wells and Abdur-Rahim are what I call fantasy players, they are great on your fantasy team and you are in a fantasy world if you think they will make you win in real life …. Look at the box score and it looks like they had a good night but they always lose … When the Detroit Pistons were introduced before Tuesday night's game, the Arco Arena scoreboard flashed images of abandoned buildings, burned-out cars -- nearly every outdated, offensive stereotype of their hometown.

Orlando 76 Houston 74
– Without McGrady Houston can’t score ….. They really have no scorers anywhere on the floor …. Jameer Nelson was clutch late hitting two big threes and a lay-up …. Point guard +/- for Houston was interesting. Alston was –15 and Luther Head was a +10.

SONICS +/- REPORT FROM GRIZZLIES GAME

Sonics +/- Report from the Grizzlies Game
Player +/-
Allen 0
Cleaves -2
Fortson -4
Evans -4
Flip -6
Potapenko -6
Collison -7
Petro -11
Wilkins -19
Vlady -20
Rashard -21
Ridnour -23


SUMMARY: What jumps out is Allen's 0. That means when Allen was off the floor the Sonics were outscored by 26 points and when he was on the floor they were even. Ridnour's -23 is disturbing. The Sonics are asking him to be solid everynight and that is a huge next step in his career.

Locked on Sports: Taking stock of misses and hits

Locked on Sports: Taking stock of misses and hits: "I have just completed my third year writing every Wednesday for the P-I. In other words, 52 times a year I don't follow the advice of being better off remaining quiet and thought a fool than opening my mouth and removing all doubt.

Each year, I think it is only fair to look back and see what absurd, inaccurate and inane things filled this space on Wednesdays."

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

THIS IS THE BEST PITCHER IN THE AMERICAN LEAGUE


So you think Bartolo is having a nice off-season. Evidentally, his arm may not be able to pitch but it clearly it can feed his face.

SIMULBLOG FOR SONICS V. GRIZZ

GRIZZ 94 SONICS 69 FINAL
A bad night
The offense never got flowing Turnovers are a large part of it. The lack of a 3rd scorer is putting undo pressure on the Sonics big two and they are going to wear down.
Radmanovic, Collison and Ridnour all had shots that they have to make and if those shots fall the entire complexion of the game changes
Defensively the first half was great. Gasol got going when he crushed Petro to open the second half. Most of the breakdowns were in direct relation to the offense falling apart.


Grizz 78 Sonics 55 with 8:11 left in the 4th quarter
This has gotten ugly.
The Sonics are losing the match-up at small forward to Shane Battier. That shouldn’t happen.
Memphis has gotten Seattle spread out defensively and now are getting room to make one on one moves. That is making Gasol really dangerous and is a bad sign when Miller comes in.
I am glad Damien Wilkins has new confidence with his new contract, however he needs to play within himself. Right now he is playing out of his game.
Luke is not playing well.
Sonics are still shooting just 33%.


Grizz 60 Sonics 49 with 3:01 left in the 3rd Quarter.
The Sonics are losing the match-up at small forward to Shane Battier. That shouldn’t happen.
Memphis has gotten Seattle spread out defensively and now are getting room to make one on one moves. That is making Gasol really dangerous and is a bad sign when Miller comes in.
I am glad Damien Wilkins has new confidence with his new contract, however he needs to play within himself. Right now he is playing out of his game.
Luke is not playing well.
Sonics are still shooting just 33%.


Grizz 50 Sonics 42 with 8:30 left in the 3rd Quarter
For the first time Petro looks like he is 19 years old and from France, having never played against an NBA player before. Gasol has totally embarrassed him in the opening moments if the 2nd half.
The concern right now is the Sonics are playing good defense, but they are not a defensive team, which means they will break down at some point for a span of 5 to 7 minutes/. If the offense doesn’t pickup they will be out of the game by the time that span is over. I believe that span is inevitable.


Grizz 37 Sonics 35 with 2:51 left in the 2nd Q
Value the beeping ball
The defense has been really really good
Gasol didn’t get his first field goal until 4:39 in the second quarter.



Sonics 29 Grizz 29 with 8:!2 left in the 2nd Quarter
The fact that the Sonics can be as poor as they were in the 1st quarter and then be in the tied within two possession is amazing. It is either a sign of a good team or a fa├žade and the Sonics are about to pay the price.
Collison and Fortson in together to start the second quarter.
Radman hit a three and rebounded well while he was in.

Grizz 24 Sonics 20 at the end of 1 quarter
7 turnovers and 37% shooting in the first quarter,
The Sonics look poor offensively and good defensively.
That is exactly what everyone said would happen when Weiss became the head coach.
The Sonics spent an amazing amount of the pre-season on defense. The belief was this team can score in their sleep. So far the work has created a much better defensive team.


Grizz 17 Sonics 15 with 2:49 left in the 1st Quarter.
Luke has missed two open three’s from the corner. That is the shot that AD knocked down all year last year. Luke has to make that shot.
Some of you might re-call that I bet AD would only play 60 games this year. Word out of Washington is that he will miss their next game. 21 to go.
Turnovers continue at too high a rate. They have 6 already. For the season they are at 22% of their possessions. Tonight they are at 33%.
Vlady has had two really good days of practice but has butchered his first two possessions.
If Mike Miller is going to guard Rashard Lewis the Soncis have to kill that match-up. Lewis walked the first time the Sonics went to it

Sonics 11 Grizzlies 8 with 5:40 left in the 1st Quarter
Petro gets three fouls in 2 minutes. He may not be ready yet.
Sonics had a very lazy defensive possession early in the game where neither Luke or Ray went hard to the ball.
Vitaly maybe lacking the length you want out of a center, but he is in the right place all the time. He cut off two moves to the basket and has body Gasol out of his regular spot on the block


STORYLINES
1) Stars -- Allen v. Gasol
2) Search for the 3rd scorer
3) Can Vlady get going on the road?

KEYS STATS FOR SONICS V. GRIZZ

I will have the simulblog going during the game tonight.

* Neither team has played good defense this year. The Sonics rating is at 109 per 100 possessions and the Grizzlies are at 108. League average last season was 105

* Grizzlies have been terrible on the offensive glass getting just 26% of their rebounds. The Sonics defensive glass has slide from 71% last season, 15th in the NBA, to 61%.

* The Sonics have been committing turnovers on 22% of their possessions. However, the Grizzlies have not been forcing turnovers only at 14%. Last season the Grizz were 3rd in the NBA in forcing turnovers. This may be due to the new guards.

NIGHT IN THE NBA -- November 7

There are a lot of references to +/-. This is the same as the Hockey stat. How many points this player’s team outscored their opponent by when he was on the floor. Or a negative number is how many they were outscored by.

Cleveland 105 Toronto 93
– Sam Mitchell death watch continues. Now the question is will he win a game before being canned …. Illgauskas and Snow were both +18 in the game … Chris Bosh is coming into his own, but it is hard to tell how special he really is playing on this bad a team …. Sam Mitchell is threatening changes, but you shouldn’t make that threat if you don’t have anyone to change to.

Miami 90 New Jersey 89
– Interesting that this was such a low scoring game …. New Jersey’s lack of a bench is really hurt them …. Surprisinging numbers on the +/- front as Antonie Walker and Jason Williams had the best days for the Heat …. It is amazing that Alonzo is able to handle 38 minutes a night, last night he had 11 points, 11 rebounds and 5 blocks …. Miami played just 7 players again…. New Jersey won this game on the offensive glass.

Utah 95 Charlotte 91 – Another close game win for the Jazz …. Another super low shootng % against the Jazz. The Bobcats shot just 35%. The Jazz were one of the three worst defensive teams in the NBA last year. If they defend this year they will be the most improved team in the NBA. Thus, far they have been great defensively. Andri Kirlenko is the reason. He blocked 7 shots last night. They were very good defensively last year when he was playing and feel apart after he got hurt….. Do you think having a 7 footer matters, Greg Ostertag was +13 last night …. If the defense holds when Carlos Boozer returns will be interesting.. .. The Jazz guards are soo bad I can’t imagine they win a lot this year …. I really like Sean May and think he will be a great pro. Last night was the first night that he seemed aggressive. He took 14 shots in 24 minutes but made only 5. He grabbed 8 rebounds. He missed a ton of camp so it will take time …. Raymond Felton had his first double figures assist game with 10. Felton was +14 and May was +10. Emaka Okefor on the other hand was –16.

Minnesota 93 LA Clippers 78 – The Clips are tough when Cassell or Mobley is hitting. When neither or hitting this is what happens …. Clippers went 0 for 13 from 3 …. KG is unreal. He had 22-11-8 and 3 blocks and 3 steal. He dropped 22 with only 11 shot attempts …. KG was +24 … The Clippers starts just got their asses handed to them. In other words, they didn’t come to play. Let me think Cassell in his old stomping grounds takes his buddies out for night … Just a thought.

San Antonio 104 Chicago 94 – Interesting dichotomy at the SA point guard position. Tony Parker was a +16 when he was on the floor and Nick Van Excel was a –9 when he was on the floor…. Duncan is amazing. 24-16-4 and 6 blocks in 42 minutes. And he only took 15 shots…. Brent Barry played only two minutes. His role is diminishing. I would like him backing-up Luke …. Kirk Hinrich is a really nice player and a great defender. However, every now and again he has a night like last night when he goes 4 for 19. My theory is that he works so hard every night that some nights he has nothing.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

NIGHT IN THE NBA -- November 6

Lakers 112 Denver 92 – Tough 1-2 start for the Nugs …. The Nuggets were a –24 when Carmelo Anthony was on the floor tonight. The worst of anyone on the team ….Kobe took 31 of the Lakers 82 shots …. The Lakers are benchless …. Nuggets another terrible night from 3 point range. This time 2 of 15 …. Earl Watson does not play again. The Sonics would love to have him and he would love to be in Seattle. The Nuggets signed him to a 5 year 29 million dollar deal to sit on the bench. That is amazing.

Golden State 83 New York 81
– The Knicks are still winless …. Jerome James started tonight. That is desperation. The Knicks were outscored by 7 points in 7 minutes. James put in 7 minutes 3 fouls and 3 reboudnds. The legend grows. …. Adonal Foyle had a great +/- game at +11, equaling Jason Richardson for Warriors best … Troy Murphy chalks up another double-double. He gets one almost every night …. The Knicks were +12 with Nate Robinson on the floor. In just 7 minutes. … Jamal Crawford played just 17 minutes and had 2 points with 3 turnovers. Crawford and Larry Brown are a bad match…. In 19 minutes Q. Richardson was a –11.

Sacramento 118 Phoenix 117
--- This was a great game. I hope you caught it on the pass. Abdur-Rahim tried to gag when he missed both free throws, but the Kings got through it. By the end he clutched up and had 23-12-7….. Miller and Adbur-Rahim combined for 15 assists. That is a sign of the Princeton offense taking effect …..All 5 Kings starters played over 40 minutes. Sacramento hadn’t played in 2 days and Phoenix was playing a back to back …. Barbosa of the Suns had the best night of his career and Boris Diaw had another good night as the Suns actually used their bench….. Peja had 33 and finally got going.

NIGHT IN THE NBA -- November 5

LA Clippers 100 Minnesota 99 --- back to back overtime losses for Casey …. Minnesota doesn’t have a second scorer. Wally is not good enough. After going 0 for 6 from 3 against Seattle, he had just 4 points …. They are going to struggle for points all season long …. The Clippers might be tough. Night one Cassell went nuts, the last two nights Mobley has complimented Brand …. Remember they played better last year when Maggette was off the floor, let’s see if that happens again when he comes back from injury.

Portland 94 Atlanta 93 – Congrats to Nate for his first win in Portland. On the other hand, if he doesn’t beat Atlanta at home their aren’t going to be many win to come by …. Nate stared Sergie Monia after having him inactive the first two games ….. Marvin Willimas fouled out in 25 minutes …. Atlanta moved Joe Johnson out of the point guard roll starting Tyrone Lue.

Phoenix 97 Utah 88 – Each one of this wins by the Suns is very impressive …. Boris Diaw came off the bench and was the key for Phoenix. Diaw is another great pick up in the off-season by Phoenix. They got him in the Joe Johnson deal ….. Jerry Sloan is concerned whether or not rookie Deron Williams can guard NBA point guards. He couldn’t tonight getting 6 fouls in 26 minutes …. Utah had another good defensive night holding the Suns to 43% shooting and only 6 of 21 from 3 …. The Jazz had point guard problems last season and committed 21 turnovers tonight.

Dallas 104 San Antonio 83 – Who are these Spurs? Nowitski was unguardable. The Spurs put Bowen on his but he was too small and is the most overrated defender in the NBA. Then they went to Duncan and then to Finley and then they gave up.

Washington 87 Orlando 78
– 3-0 start for the Wiz and 0-3 for the Magic …. The Magic can’t score without Grant Hill …. The Magic shot 31% ….Washington is playing some special defense this year. They held the Raptors to 39.8% shooting, the Knicks to 32.9% and now the Magic to 31%. How about their 4th Quarter defense? They held the Raptors and the Knicks to 14 4th quarter points and the Magic to 18.

Detroit 117 Toronto 84 – The Sam Mitchell death march continues …. Darko Millic got 14 minutes, but scored just 2 points …. The Raptors got only 3 offensive rebounds in the entire game …. Rookie Joey Graham and second year player Matt Bonner tried to guard Tayshawn Prince and Prince killed them.

New Jersey 100 Chicago 99 --- Tyson Chandler did not have a field goal. He is showing no signs of any offensive development. They are really missing Eddy Curry in the post. The Bulls are trying to live with a three guard line-up of Heinrich, Gordon and Duhon for most of the game. The Bulls may be a big disappointment this season …. Richard Jefferson was enormous again, 28-13-7. Last year, when he was forced to be the #1 guy he looked miserable. However, with Kidd and Carter he is as dynamic as anyone in the NBA ….. New Jersey took 39 free throws and won despite going 1 of 12 from 3 …. Jason Kidd 10-11-11

Charlotte 107 Boston 105 – Huge 2 game win streak for the Bobcats ….The overtime was 4-2 ….. Dan Dikau was back in the rotation with 22 minutes. He had 7 assists …. Gerald Wallace has linked back to back big nights for Charlotte.

Philadelphia 111 Indiana 109 – Philly gets a win… C Web had a great night. Miracles happen. He had 25 points on 14 shot attempts … Mo Cheeks played no bench as 4 starters were over 40 minutes … Philly shot 55%, what happened to Indiana’s defense? …Pacers lost this game with turnovers committing 21 and Artest was responsible for 8.

Memphis 113 Cleveland 106 – You have to begin to wonder about Cleveland’s defense … this is two nights in a row and last year they just quit playing defense in the second half of the season …. Memphis shot 58% … LeBron had 36 … Pau Gasol may have taken the next step. He has been enormous so far this season. Tonight he had 29-7-5. This off-season was the first time he hasn’t played overseas so he may finally be fresh. In his first two games he averaged 24-10.

New Orleans 91 Houston 84 --- See what no T-Mac does? Houston scored just 13 points in the 4th quarter and only 31 in the second half …. Hornets ended the game on a 1702 run … Yao Ming was 8 of 22 as the go to guy … Stromile Swift is not showing to be a different player in Houston then they under achiever he was in Memphis … New Orleans has turned this team over to Chris Paul. He is playing 30+ minutes each night. His shooting is poor, but he is getting time. Byron Scott compared him to Isaiah Thomas.

Milwaukee 105 Miami 100
--- The Bucks are for real …. Without Shaq the Heat played just 7 players …. TJ Ford had another strong game with 13-11 and newly acquired Bobby Simmons had 22. The Bucks are tough.