Thoughts on a Boxscore: Pacers 104 Warriors 98

Still haven’t had a chance to watch the Pacers game, and may not for a while, but a few things stand out from the box score:           

1) Just how dependent Barnes and Green are on Curry for their offense. Barnes’ numbers simply plummet with Curry off the floor, just as you might expect for a low usage player who can’t create his own shot. It should be clear that this would also be true for Green, if he were forced to play more minutes without Curry.

There is no second unit point guard who can draw the defense, and get them their shots.

2) Green has failed to exceed 6 rebounds in three of the last four games. I ask again, is power forward his best position? Even if it were, would STARTING him at power forward against the likes of David West be the best solution to Lacob’s Cube? Or would starting him at three and then shifting him to power forward later in the game, the way all the other great defensive stretch-fours in the league are used — including three he might face in the playoffs: Kawhi, KD and LeBron — be more productive?

3) Whatever position Shaun Livingston played last night, it wasn’t point guard. 2 assists?

Can the Warriors win in the playoffs without a backup point guard?

4) I’m going further out on a limb here, but the box score tells me that Kerr stuck with his system, and didn’t allow Livingston to play pick and roll. Which in my opinion is one of only two possible ways to play him. The other being posting him up. The only efficient way to use a guard who can’t stretch the floor is to put the ball in his hands and ask him to create.

5) The showcase is over, and yet Harrison Barnes is still starting, and getting 29 minutes to David Lee’s 18.

My mind boggles, but that’s not the point. The point is that David Lee is gone. This is his last season as a Warrior.

Management has spoken.

200 Responses to Thoughts on a Boxscore: Pacers 104 Warriors 98

  1. Livingston failed in the only role I actually thought he might be useful in, as an emergency backup starter for Curry. But with Klay as the only legit scorer in the starting unit (sans Curry), Livingston is only a further detriment.

    • Is it possible that he had a bad game ?? But, you are right this is exactly the game he should have shone. Still think, Livingston will prove his worth, in playoffs and he still one of the top backup for the team.

    • Too add, I think the problem is that coach got the combination wrong. Livingston should have gotten more minutes with Lee, Speights and Holiday, some of the off the ball players.

      • I loved the initial acquisition and defended Livingston’s salary to my skeptical friends at the time. He’s a great defender and rocks coming in with a big lead, but when we need production he has no shot to stretch the floor, no quickness to beat better guards off the dribble, and does not see the floor well. How many times can I watch Lee roll wide open off a pick only to see Livingston settle for that (25%) 12 foot jumper? This was a do or die game for Livingston. Complete fail.

        • Livingston is shooting .505 on 10-16 foot jumpers and .556 on 16+ foot jumpers so your demonstrably wrong boss.

        • Atom, most players in the league succeed only in certain conditions. There are select few who succeed in every condition, and they are all stars or rare players like Green.

        • To the first comment – Thought it was obvious that my shot percentage was an exaggeration. My point is that, over and over, we see:

          1) Lee set a great pick for Livingston at the top of the key,
          2) Livingston take Lee’s man with him (essentially doubled),
          3) a wide open Lee flash a b-line towards the basket,
          4) Livingston completely ignore the wide open Lee, and
          5) Livingston take (and generally miss) the contested, double teamed, 12-15 foot jump shot.

          Not sure what the split is on Livingston’s double-teamed attempts off the dribble but I’d wager it’s closer to .250 than .500. And regardless, it’s never going to be as good as the wide open layup.

          • I mean, Livingston took 6 shots and missed two. I missed the game but the fact that he took so few shots, had so few assists and so few (raw) turnovers suggests that the problem wasn’t him executing the P&R poorly so much as either Kerr not running the P&R enough (as Feltbot suggests) or him being such a weak shooting threat that he was killing Lee’s space.

            I generally agree that he is a bad fit for the team but it seems the Warriors philosophy is to always go for the best player available rather than the player that fits the team/scheme best. I prefer the Hawks strategy of building a team to suit you’re style of play and the strengths of your cornerstone players. Still, nobody can argue with the Warriors record.

            We will find out which team building philosophy is more successful come June.

        • @Harry: Like I said – I’ve been a Livingston apologist for most of the season. I really like a lot of what he brings and still see potential. But at $5.3M, you can’t start that game and finish with 2 assists. That was a huge opportunity for him to play big minutes with the starters and show us all what he’s made of. Bad time for a bad game. Huge missed opportunity. Huge fail.

  2. #4 is complicated by the fact that Livingston had no one to pick and roll with. Livingston and Lee were scarcely on the floor together. Then when Lee was on the floor, there wasn’t a PG.

    http://popcornmachine.net/gf?date=20150222&game=GSWIND

    Unless Livingston could have run it with Bogut or Green. Another reason to start Lee at the 4.

    The obvious choice is Bogut, and they did make some attempts here earlier in the season. It just doesn’t look like that is going to happen from here on out. Last night would have been a good time to try.

    They were able to come out running, and Klay was phenomenal. But when the defense tightened up and they had to run half court sets, production fell off the table. Look at the last minutes of the first half. And the Pacers started dropping their shots.

  3. It appears that after a decade of high caliber play, after finally being on a team near full strength, Lee will never get a chance to make serious contributions in the playoffs.

    And apparently he will never be featured in one of those funky ads.

    I’m just curious. Why did Barnes get such prominent billing in those ads, this season and last? And he’s only one of maybe a half dozen who got such play. Seriously. Why is that?

    Has the fast food jerk disappeared? Or did they run the ad while I was taking a pee?

    • I seriously doubt the marketing department gives much of a crap about the play on the court vs. whatever stats they have on fan interest and engagement. Despite 3 years of generally mediocre or below play, he remains pretty popular among fans. The audience at large also prefers the new to the tried and true. Lee just isn’t very exciting to the casual fan.

      Lee seems like he would be pretty marketable, but for whatever reason he’s just never been a hugely popular player…. surely under-appreciated in many ways for his time here.

      • One thing odd I’ve noticed: Just like Don Nelson, Lee is far more popular in front of the Oracle crowd than he is in the media or online forums.

        The standing O he recently got a good example of that.

      • Is Barnes that popular? You may be right, and his dunks may be selling points to the star struck. Still, I wonder what that says about how the organization sees Barnes and his importance and future with the team. He’s received the bulk of attention, among all the players. I’m really curious here, not trying to trash Barnes.

        And you may be right about Lee. But if I had to do a video, it would be of his getting back in the Knicks game after being bit by Chandler, after the trainer bandaged up the cut, though the blood kept coming, and closing the game out with a win against a fairly sound Knicks team from his effort. 28 points (11-17), 10 boards, 4 steals.

        http://espn.go.com/nba/boxscore?id=301110018

        Two weeks after the infection that nearly ended his career, he was back on the court. Also, he sure got a standing O when he entered the playoff game injured, against the Spurs.

        Lee may not be a Warrior in the FO’s eyes, but he is a warrior.

        • Back to the lowest common denominator u mentioned yesterday,rgg.
          Barnes is like Sedaris, Curry Victor Melville. Who’s gonna be more popular today?

          No slight to the Sedarises. Haven’t read their stuff, nor will I.

          • Oops putHugo first. Then remembered you said Moby D restored your sanity. Kinda did the reverse for me. Labyrinth of a book.

          • The guy that gets me is Jonathan Franzen. I read The Corrections and regretted it—superficial and poorly written, really dumb. Yet he is billed heavily by the pub corps as our leading literary figure and the reviewers have chimed in. I had no interest in reading Freedom. He’s an example of how messed up the scene is now, from publishers on down.

          • If one of the reasons a book is written is to reflect or mirror aspects of life, and I believe that to be true, Franzen is brilliant. (I believe that too.)

          • I can and have read anything with appreciation, from Bukowski to Henry James. Franzen, however, was painful—I regretted reading him. But there seems to be a difference of opinion here that I’d better respect.

          • What would the world be if everyone liked the same thing? I don’t care if you like Frankenstein or Franzen. I do object to personal preference judging craft. I don’t want to write a book like any of Franzen’s but I’d kill for his chops.
            Signed,
            HarrisonB

          • Being polite is no fun. Franzen is the Harrison Barnes of literature.

          • bloodsweatndonuts

            If you are referring to David Sedaris, he’s more of a writer and performer of comic memoirs than a supposed literary titan. It’s really funny in a unique way and it’s better listening to him read it.

  4. Why is this Lee’s last season as a W? Just curious.

    Painfully obvious point on the backup PG. And we still need a pure shooter. Is the carcass of JKapono still around? Give Steph and Klay a little help, pleeeeze

    “My other beef is that there haven’t been many novels the past decades I especially want to read. Literature is dead.”

    +1. Earliest book on my nitestand stack is cerca 1971. Most of em are 100+ yrs old. Not sure about the 2nd sentence. Slowly dying, maybe.

    • Now that the ‘trade deadline’ is history, a team can’t make a trade? I’m sure there’s some sort of logic behind this, to protect someones’ behind, but what is it exactly? Seems to me two teams should be allowed to make a trade whenevr they want, just like 2 consenting adults..

      • apparently you’ve had limited participation or involvement with labour unions. the ‘consenting adults’ involved go beyond the teams. granted, only a very select few players get no trade or trade consent clauses in their deals, but neither can they be considered the same as buildings or race horses. players are still being moved and signed, via waivers, buyouts, and straightforward free agency. recently traded bigs k. perkins and t.robinson were liberated from the teams that just acquired them, and signed with teams of their choice.

  5. I’ll repeat the question. Anybody recall how Stuckey went on a tear and scored 30? Who was guarding him? He averages 12 ppg.

    • stuckey has had eight games (of forty eight played) of 20+ points, with 30 in the game immediately preceding last night’s.’

      as a foot note to Dr. Zamir’s conversation over the market prices of free agent lead/combo guards last summer, stuckey ended up signing for the vet minimum ($1.2 m). if west and hibbert decided to leave in July, Ind has long term commitments to only george, hill, and miles ; the big two might stay one more season on their options. at present, Ind’s player budget is nearly the same as GS’s ; no comparison with revenues, of course, and the lacobites have successfully deflected their fans’ attention to next season’s budget ‘worries’.

  6. Last Dubs thought for today. Murph or Mac on KNBR posed a rhetorical question as to who should start/take most of Harrisons minutes, implying there was no else on the roster capable of filling his spot. The list that came to my mind:
    Justin
    Andre
    DLee (fit him in at 4, dray to 3)
    Mo (see above)
    BrandonR (giv him a shot)
    McAdoo

    I’d even be willing to try Liv out at the 3, line drive jumper and all.
    If all these options fail, just pick up the best available D-Leaguer.

    If your 3 isn’t giving u dependable scoring, he better be giving u great D and intangibles. Andrew can’t score, but provides some rim protection and smarts.

    I still hope HB can transform from a moth into a butterfly (if thats where BFlys come from), but we have a serious shot here and need to maximize it. Be proactive.
    Anyway, three tough road games coming up. I’ll miss the first halves at least, check in here for insight.

  7. The only positive that I can draw from this game is that Kerr has done Curry’s MVP chances a world of good.

    “Have you seen how Harden/Curry carries the Rockets/Warriors?”

  8. Over at the Fast Break blog, DLee is getting slammed by the main blogger and most of the posters. Few there are concerned with Barnes.

    I finally gave up the ghost on Barnes becoming other than an average support player at best, not a 3rd scoring threat and for sure not a future All-Star.

    I’m really disappointed in him.

    • warriorsablaze

      I think one thing that has happened is that people have re-adjusted their expectations. Barnes has played mediocre, but MUCH better than last season.

      Lee is still viewed as a 20-10 guy who plays limited D… even if the primary cause is misuse or limited use, he doesn’t appear to be the 20-10 guy anymore, and the improvements he seems to have made on the defensive end are harder to see (as defense often is)…increased blocks notwithstanding.

      • barnes playing heavy minutes with bench players last season could only end in disappointment. he heavily depends on the ball skills, including decision making, of the other guys on the court.

        • warriorsablaze

          Exactly… the difference being that after his rookie year (mostly due to his playoff performance), there were significant folks talking about Barnes becoming one of the Dub’s future stars.

          That just isn’t said anymore. On GSOM, there’s is literally about 1 dude who things Barnes is special, the rest view him at varying degrees of solid role-player to D-League level. There’s certainly more lingering hope there than here, but expectations have most definitely been tempered.

    • It makes no sense to evaluate Lee based on this season’s performance, based how little he’s played and how he’s played. But that seems to be what everyone is doing.

      The debate on Barnes has shifted, from whether or not he is OK player to whether or not he is an essential player on the team come the playoffs. It looks definite he will start, and apparently will close.

  9. Pingback: David Lee’s Farewell Tour « GSW Blog!

  10. The second half of this article contains interesting analysis of Mike Budenholzer’s philosophy of forgoing offensive rebounds in favor of getting back on defense.

    https://medium.com/the-cauldron/the-atlanta-hawks-secret-sauce-9d33719e5a48

    • Re giving up offensive rebounds, that’s a longstanding policy of Pop’s too. SA consistently ranks very low on that score.

  11. I highly highly highly recommend checking Tim Kawakamis Podcast Interview yesterday with Jerry West. Extremely candid and insightful with respect to the Warriors (maybe too candid) & the state of NBA basketball. Well worth the listen.

      • Some of the most interesting aspects of the interview not in the column (Tim may have been doing Jerry a favor by not putting some stuff in the article)…

        1) Dynamics of NBA Front Offices especially amongst folks who have never played. I’d listen very closely to that section for some of the nuance as I think some of it is directed at the Warriors.
        2) Basically says the Thunder are the best team in the West
        3) Subtely criticizes some aspects of Kerr’s coaching
        4) His thinking behind not pulling the trigger on the Love deal – may or may not be implying more than that

        Again a lot of stuff in the interview you need to listen closely too in order to catch.

        Appreciate others take on the interview as at least I thought there was a lot more there than meets the ear…..

      • Among other things, he repeats that the team needs a shooter to make a run in the championship. That just sounds like a kludge to me. A shooter would add another limited piece to other limited pieces—a non-scoring center, youknowwho and youknowwho, etc.—to a puzzle that is already too convoluted. They need good—not great because they won’t get them—two-way players, and aren’t making use of the one they have.

        He also says Green should get a max contract, which I don’t think anyone would argue with here. Green’s strengths justify that, but his limitations—still an undersized 4 with limited offense—point to the need for the kinds of players who will best complement him.

        (I didn’t listen to the podcast.)

        • RGG, the points Tim summarized I thought were the least interesting aspects of the interview – and be may have done that very deliberately. He’s had a strongine of communication with West for 20 Years now and Tim is very cagey about keeping his sources on good terms throwing them a lot of bones if you’ve followed his career. I’d really listen to the podcast if you get the chance.

          And Felbot, you may be sitting at a Poker Table as I write this but I think you and the other site goers will find the Podcast worth the 25 Minutes.

    • About to listen the podcast as I torture myself on my elliptical, but my take when I heard West said the Warriors needed another shooter was that he was taking a shot at the Shaun Livingston signing. The best and most logical place for the Warriors to add shooting, given their roster, is at point guard. Right?

      • As I recall, West was high on Livingston. I think I posted a link here to that effect. No, it sounds like he’s taking the team as is and giving his best recommendation—a shooter.

  12. Basically what I think was going on is that he was very very subtly venting some of his frustrations..

    • Just finished listening, and to be honest, I didn’t hear nearly as much subtext about the Warriors front office dynamics as I did in a recent radio interview he gave (on KNBR, I believe). That radio interview laid it all out for me, as did TK’s recent interview of Schlenk and the Little Prince.

      I’d be interested to hear your take on what West said, Goose.

      • When the conversation about front offices came up I got the distinct impression West had a ‘slip’ regarding owners &
        front office personnel who’ve never played the game ‘wildley changing their opinions’ in reference to Love – hence there are members of the Warriors front office who aren’t qualified to make personell decisions. If you’ve listened to West interviews before there’s a lot of interesting subtext going on.

        Again, could be reading too much into this but also in his reference to Kerr I got the sense West felt he was too strictly adhering to Popovich system/style of basketball and that made it hard for the Warriors to fill some personell spots.

        I thought he reference to Curry as ‘the most unique’ player in the league was fascinating as well.

        Finally, gotta commend him for watching the NBA Channel from 4:30 – 11:30 each night.

        I’m a bigger West fan thantou but his work ethic and passion for the game is unquestioned especially at his age.

  13. A few things stood out to me about the interview:

    1) West RAVED about Enes Kanter, going so far as to insinuate that the pickup made the Thunder the clear favorites in the West.

    What West said about him should have clear resonance for Warriors fans: his shooting ability makes him extraordinarily valuable, as the ability to pull opposing centers 15 feet out from the basket opens up driving lanes (and offensive rebounding possibilities) for the rest of your team.

    I also have been raving about Kanter this season, and started suggested months ago that the Warriors attempt to trade Harrison Barnes for him.

    This is what the Thunder actually traded (and took back) for Kanter:

    “The Thunder traded center Kendrick Perkins, forward Grant Jerrett, the draft rights to Tibor Pleiss and a protected 2017 first-round pick to Utah. Oklahoma City also acquired forward Steve Novak from the Jazz.”

    Is that package, and the ability to dump Novak’s contract, more desirable from Utah’s standpoint then, say, Barnes and filler would have been? I can’t really judge that, but I will say that if the Warriors weren’t willing to part with Barnes for Kanter, or even Barnes and Ezeli, then they’re stone idiots.

    Did West in a roundabout way hint that he wanted to make this trade, when he said that Myers couldn’t find anything that didn’t involve moving players who have played well this season and are part of the future? Was there implied criticism there?

    I think it’s quite likely that West would dump Barnes for Kanter in a heartbeat, I strained my ears to hear it, but I frankly think it would be a stretch to find confirmation of this in West’s words.

    What a missed opportunity though… And I agree with West that the Thunder are the best team in the West — as I predicted pre-season — IF KD is healthy and fit for the playoffs. Big if.

    Unfortunately, just realized I have to run. I’ll have more on what I heard in this interview later.

    • Ok, so I’ll play devil’s advocate here. I think Kanter stretches the floor, but the Thunder can already do that by playing Ibaka at the 5 and Durant at the 4. I’m actually glad we won’t see as much of that now.

      Kanter is also very soft defensively. Much softer than Perkins. I think you’re overrating the effect he’s going to have. Hopefully, I’m wrong though.

      • You’ll see just as much of that now as you did before. If Brooks gets it right, Kanter is replacing Adams, Perkins and Collison in the first and third quarter starting lineups, not Ibaka at center in crunchtime.

        As for softness defensively, do you think their team will suffer with Ibaka, Durant, Westbrook and Roberson around him? I see one of the best defensive teams in the league, quite frankly, longer and MORE MOBILE than even the Warriors.

        And just curious, is defensive rebounding a part of defense? Take a moment to compare the Thunder’s rebound rate to the Warriors.

        http://www.teamrankings.com/nba/stat/total-rebounding-percentage

        I’m asking for a friend, currently rotting at the end of the Warriors bench.

      • Offensively, Kanter will provide them with the ability to stretch the floor permanently if his defense can keep him from getting pulled early.

        My take is that he is a rental (forgo rookie extension by choice) and will be gone next year when some other team offers him big money.

        Besides, Kerr wouldn’t know what to do with him/Lee/Speights/Ezeli all stacked at the 5.

        • Restricted.

          • OKC is sitting on $78,260,712 in 2015-16 with Waiters ($5.1M)as a team option. Rise in cap, reluctance to hit the luxury, etc…

            Besides, the Warriors already have their own version of Kanter and Kerr is already struggling to figure out how to play him.

      • one of the OK blogs commented on the perkins to kanter shift in another way — adams went from their ‘offense’ center to their ‘defense’ center. obviously it will come down to how brooks uses his new kanter/adams/ibaka + spares rotation, and if the net effect is an improvement from what he could get from perkins. as we know, increasing offensive efficiency ends up benefitting the defense. the woeyr defense’s struggles vs. Ind exposed how much they depend on that factor.

  14. Seeing a lot of arrogance here.
    Livingston shoots 4-6 from
    The field and the complaint is
    he did not have enough assists.
    Thought purpose of basketball is to
    score efficiently even if back-up
    point guard.

    And really the best a coach can do
    with Livingston is isolate him and
    Reynolds pick and roll? I guess that’s
    all you can think of. Maybe you
    Should watch a little closed and see
    how Gentry uses him. Start with
    ally-oops and other plays.

    Think West wanted a batter shooting
    back-up SG. Won’t know without
    him saying so directly.

    • Main purpose of basketball is to win games, if youre a pro. Liv now 0-1 as a starter.
      For amateurs as myself, main point of hoops is to have some fun while competing.

    • Frank, scoring efficiently is firing 3-pt shots at over 40%, or scoring 2-pt. shots at 50% with a few “and-ones” thrown in. Livingston gets neither. Zero free throws in the last game, as usual. Livingston is averaging .9 FTAs/game this season – less than one FTA per game.

      More importantly, TEAM scoring efficiency is a primary responsibility of a PG. Take a clue: 2 assists sez that ain’t happening. He’s not helping his teammates be efficient.

      Also, Frank, I’d like to amend your definition of arrogance a little. I’d say it’s continuing to repeat a point even after it’s been disproven. Udoh 3.8 min./game with the Clips this year. Wouldn’t you like to tell us how stupid Doc Rivers is? According to you, all his other coaches were.

  15. Goose, FB @11, the West interview:

    I doubt you’ll see open dissent from West, but you will see differences among the crew. West is decidedly old school, and maybe out of date. He questions the early 3, really ignoring what an effective weapon it can be in the hands of the guards, and the value of the 3 in general.

    He also questions analytics, which will put him at odds with Lacob pere et fils, both stat hounds, in favor of knowing the individual player and his inner strengths. His praise of Harden for his grit and craftiness would put him in direct opposition to Barnes, whom West questioned from the start.

    And speaking of stats, you have to wonder if Lacob didn’t select Livingston simply because of his low turnovers, an obsessive concern we’ve see before. We know, of course, why his turnovers are low.

    He obviously distances himself from the Spurs pass system Kerr favors, though wasn’t critical. Kerr, btw, has cut back on the early 3s by Steph in favor of initiating passing first. Note he praises Speights for his midrange shot (which he seems to prefer to the stretch 4 shot) as well as Holiday, and both are getting marginal play now.

    His call for shooters obviously puts him at odds with all the oneway players we’ve seen.

    Given the differences between West and Kerr, as assimilated by the primitive views of Lacob and Myers (who, as West says, is a spokesman, though Lacob said the same thing about West), you wonder how they can put much coherent together. And in many significant ways they haven’t.

    • Nice analysis RGG.

      I’ve always been a big fan of West whose true brilliance more than his drafting ability (which I value more highly than Feltbot) is his talent for ‘constructing’ teams by blending Superstar with role players.

      As to his analytics comments your’re correct but West always mentions the unmeasurable/unquantifiable value of ‘heart’/’workethic’ & he’s right. Draymond Green, Derek Fisher & Byron Scott will never be ‘superstars’ but their value to their respective teams was unquestionable because they ‘are’ & ‘were’ vital pieces to solving the puzzle/’cube’.

      • You know he has Barnes in mind, but won’t speak (he already has). Lacob picked HB for his “character” and athleticism, and West was skeptical these translated into a basketball player.

        I believe he praised Memphis as well, which is not surprising. I feel West is out of date. More to the point, he doesn’t have the core players at Golden State to create the kind of team he wants and is completely out of sync with Kerr, which is not a criticism. Someone will have to take over and give direction, and it won’t be Lacob or Myers.

        • West is not perfect but he is still a brilliant basketball mind. I don’t think its a coincidence that even after the two Lakers Dynasties he 1) went to Memphis and got them into the playoffs for the first time within two seasons 2) has his prints all over revitalizing of the Warriors after 15 Years of Misery.

          Everywhere he’s gone he’s had success and as you said he’s an outspoken voice in a room where there is a ‘protective’ tendency to conform….

        • The most telling remark was his unqualified praise of OKC (he’s assuming a healthy Durant). He didn’t put the Warriors at top. West calls ’em as he sees ’em.

  16. RGG,

    forgot to mention you’re absoluty right in that West is a bit too old school – I’d say more ‘stubborn’ actually. The offseason before the Lakers first Championship Season of the Shaq/Kobe team the head coach West wanted (the coaches name escapes me – writing this on my IPhone) was old-school and it was Jerry Buss who overrided West (who was anti-Phil) in order to hire the man who oversaw 5 Lakers Rings.

  17. Quote of the night: “Gortat is a big who can run the floor.”

  18. memorable game for das Wunderkind. twice he’s run the court looking at a routine breakaway, twice he’s been caught from behind and snuffed, once by a d-leaguer and then by a thirty seven year old he was trying to burn.

    • Paul friggin pierce? Ackk. Not watchin but can visualize

      We should all pitch in and buy someone a seat right behind the Warriors bench. Maybe they really can slip HB somethin in a Gatorade cup.
      What’ll kind of virus will keep him out til march?

      • barnes was defending pierce, ran at the oldster’s jump shot(converted) and just kept running the floor, thinking pierce would be scoreboard watching.

  19. Barnes -8, Green -8, Bogut -6. (Curry and Thompson were both +1)

    Iggy +19, Lee +15, Speights +9

    Time for a shakeup in the starting lineup.

    • Thank you. Warriors looked barely passable tonight. Matchups were all over the place. A couple different bounces and you’re looking at 2 losses in a row to fairly strong teams.

  20. WHEN THE HELL IS KERR GOING TO FIGURE IT OUT?

    Opening play, Bogut gets burned by Nene—I do hope that was a cross match. Green picks up two quick fouls. Wash builds a lead. Then Lee comes in and the team settles down and gets back in the game. Lee facilitated, got 4-5 boards, and was able to get open for shots he’s been making for a decade, though missed them tonight. Bogut’s offense was a prayer. Keep feeding him. They will come. They need a larger 4 with the starters and a scoring presence.

    Start Lee. Put Green at 3, where he will wreak havoc on the perimeter defense with the guards. Finish with Lee at 5 and Green at 4. Options and toughness all around.

    And send Barnes down to the subs and work his way up to the starters, which should have been what the team did all along, instead of having the slot handed him on a platter. Or let him go back to Facebook and work on his image. Blocked twice, once by Pierce. 0 free throws. Barnett: Barnes should take on the older Pierce. He didn’t. If he did anything on defense, I didn’t see it. I just saw him get burned.

    And give Speights minutes with the subs. They need the shooting as long as they’re stuck with Livingston. Think his points made a difference tonight?

    • just my hunch, you’ll tire yourself out hoping for significant changes in their overall plan. methinks they’ll go pretty conservatively the rest of the season, most of which will be a grind.

      • You are right, of course. I might get to rest early in April or May, though.

        This isn’t playing conservatively. I don’t know what this is.

    • Agree, but it won’t happen.

    • It’s hard to imagine a clearer demonstration of cause and effect than the first minutes. Kerr said he was baffled.

  21. Good win. I think.

    Yeah. Makin 6 figs and probly more should help him. Just kinda hope the “more” is from another team.

  22. Hey Feltbot, by your reasoning – why is Lee gone but Barnes is the showcase? Surely if you were going to trade them, they would both be showcases then wouldn’t you think so? Why leave Lee rotting on the bench? And if Barnes is really the showcase, why feed him cuts and open 3s, are there any GMs that stupid? Wouldn’t you also want Lee to play to his maximum ability so you get more value for him come trade time?

    I think its so much more simpler than that. Barnes is in the starting line up so there is more balance in the second unit especially when you can bring Iggy and Lee off the bench. This also allows the stronger players like Curry, Thompson to cover any deficiencies there may be in Barnes.

    Lee is on the second unit so they can spread the floor on the first unit with Green at the four. It probably wasn’t Kerr’s intention at the start of the season, but why mess a 43-10 line up. There’s no point in blowing out crappy teams and showing all your cards at once so you get found out at playoff time.

    I do think that Kerr can be a little stubborn in game, because he continually plays Lee/Speights which just doesn’t work. Right now he seems like he’s living with this odd fit as a result of only so many minutes to go round.

    We also saw how devastating the pick and roll could be in the Spurs game when Lee and Curry were running it. You would have to think the coaches saw it too and they’ve gone away from running it so they can save their best plays for the playoffs. If Popovich is saving his best matchups for playoff time, its reasonable to expect the warriors coaching staff to do the same.

    I still think Lee IS gone at the end of the season, but only for tax reasons. I’m glad they kept him for the remainder of the season, its only fair to the guy who’s been around when the organization was a total failure. A good move to retain chemistry in the playing group. Plus as he’s mentioned over the years, all he wants is a good run in the playoffs. The lad went out there on a broken hamstring in the Denver games. Fair play to the guy.

    • Good post. And I agree that my theory that the Warriors might have been showcasing Barnes is looking less likely by the minute. Right now the basketball reasons you cite appear to be the best explanation of Kerr’s thinking. Although I’m pretty certain Lacob played a big part in Barnes’ being featured this season, showcase or not.

      There are several fascinating storylines in play at the moment. The first for me being whether Kerr’s rotations remain written in stone in the playoffs — particularly when and if the Warriors play the Spurs, Thunder and Cavs, teams that will not only have huge rebounding advantages over the Warriors, but also world-class stretch-fours at the three who can be expected to eat Barnes alive, and would conversely be the matchups where you’d most want to play Green.

      Not to mention the Grizzlies, Clippers and Blazers who will trot out superstar fours that dwarf Draymond, and will present an incredible physical challenge over a long series.

      I give Kerr enormous credit for guts, but… it’s going to be fascinating.

      The next most interesting storyline for me won’t be resolved until the offseason. Lee is gone, obviously. So who will be the Warriors starting power forward next season? I just don’t see the size and rebounding-obsessed Joe Lacob being convinced that Green is the Warriors starting power forward. (By the way, Green had 6 rebounds tonight — the fourth game in the last five he’s failed to exceed 6 — and the Warriors got crushed 45-29 on the boards.) At the same time it seems increasingly likely that Lacob is completely ego-invested in Barnes, and intends to hold onto him come hell or high water.

      So how does that play out?

      • Well I guess Lacob is just going to have to pick his poison isn’t he? It’s a straight up choice between keeping Lee or Green. And the way the warriors are playing now makes that choice quite clear for Lacob. Theoretically he could have Lee at the 4 and Green at the 3, but then it might just be a bit too expensive for him to bear, plus Lee doesn’t space out as much Green does.

        I think Barnes has a season to go? If he’s cheap then I can see Lacob retaining him, but the money is going to Green and there won’t be any left after that. Still surprised he’s getting 30 minutes but Kerr seems adamant about leaving things alone when they are winning.

        • It’s not between Lee and Green, and never was. It’s between Lee and Barnes. No idea why literally no one gets that. No one even gets that that’s what I’ve been arguing for 6 solid months now. No, actually, years, now that I think about it.

          As for spacing, there is no better lineup by plus/minus on the Warriors over the last two years than Lee at 5 and Green at 4. Start with that FACT, and then proceed with your analysis.

          • I was talking about who Lacob is going to keep next year and I can’t see Lee staying considering they have to pay for Green. The Green money has to come from Lee or Iggy and Lee as an expiring might be easier to deal.

            As for Barnes playing over Lee, Lee is the sacrificial lamb, the hero we deserve for the team playing 43-10 ball. Kerr likes Lee in the second unit and it seems they aren’t going to fiddle the rotations too much so Barnes gets 5 less minutes and Lee gets 5 more. Either way I think you will find your answer come playoffs time.

            I do wish they did play him more because as you say the best plus/minus line up is Lee at 5 and Green at 4.

          • Barnes finished the game last night with Green at the 5 in crunch time, so it is clearly between Barnes and DLee, and Kerr decisively choose Barnes. (Seems Kerr is shifting away from Bogut during crunch time.)

          • “It’s not between Lee and Green, and never was. It’s between Lee and Barnes. No idea why literally no one gets that.”

            Actually, it’s between Lee and Father Time. And Father Time, as they say, is undefeated.

            No idea why you don’t get that. :)

          • DLee +15 with the scrubs, Barnes -8 with starters. What’s that again, Swopa?

      • I’m sensing a shift in attitude, boss.

      • gentry and adams are probably brainstorming for the post season, preparing a menu of wrinkles and counters. most likely for emergency use only, because they want the players to be confident in what they’ve already established. starting green at the four will continue in that vein, but very early insertion of iguodala and speights or lee will also be more frequent.

    • I’ve had it with the idea the better players are needed on the 2nd unit so Barnes has to start. Yea, I know, 44-10.

      • FWIW, I replied to a similar comment you made on an earlier thread, though it got buried in the rush of trade-deadline commentary. >a href=”http://feltbot.com/2015/02/08/trade-david-lee-hawks-126-warriors-116/#comment-42772″>Here’s what I said:

        … the real question you should ask is, why does *Kerr* think Barnes is valuable enough to keep him as the starting SF (and, if my prediction above is correct, start giving him more backup PF minutes as well)? Is the rookie head coach pulling some kind of perverse daredevil act, intentionally starting an inferior player and taunting opponents to do something about it?

        I mean, seriously, if the majority opinion here about Barnes is accurate — that he’s a marginal player overall and, in particular, a poor defender at SF — then there’s no way the Warriors should have the best record in the NBA, with the league’s best defense, and sky-high team chemistry.

        Instead, the reality should be that opposing teams gleefully expose HB’s flaws, GS loses more games, and teammates grumble at the obvious, unjustified favoritism. But the reality isn’t that way at all.

        It says a great deal about the egos of posters here that when reality doesn’t conform to their assumptions, they react as though *reality* is somehow flawed. :)

        As a footnote, the prediction I refer to — about Barnes getting increased playing time — has been borne out in the past few games. Which is earlier than I expected, but also unsurprising enough that I was able to flat-out punk Feltbot on the subject. So my admittedly arrogant remarks about predictions conforming to reality should carry a bit more weight, IMHO.

        • You get credit, Swopa, for reading the signs that have been before us for some time. Really it was obvious the Atlanta game several weeks ago, a statement game, that Barnes was getting priority when he closed it out, playing the whole 4th. quarter—without much influence in what was a loss.

          The problem has been believing the signs, especially in the face of his mediocre to dismal play. His influence, the “chemistry,” are merely assumptions based on their performance, and the record wins can be explained in other ways, most notably the weak competition, the many injuries of key players from opponents. Go through the games game by game—I did. But they have lost in significant games, and Barnes simply has not stepped up when they needed him.

          What we really see is how good the other guys are, how good their chemistry is, how well they can carry him along. They can carry Speights as a starting center, when Bogut went down. What more proof do you need? Barnes is simply along for the ride. Get another body in Barnes’ spot, or they probably could have made adjustments with the players they have, and they easily could have done the same. We don’t know about other lineups simply because they haven’t been tried—although they have been successful in closing games out without Barnes before.

          On paper, Barnes presents the advantages of youth and athleticism, and, with his shot, a stretch 4. But he lacks the head and skills to make us of his athleticism—he just doesn’t have them. He takes about two and a half 3 point shots in 30 minutes a game, most often from the easier corner. Hardly a serious option. If he’s not open, he passes off. What he can’t do is drive from the arc when someone comes out on him and take advantage of the space he has supposedly opened up, of his speed, and drive. Again, he just passes off.

          Lee’s health is a concern, but we don’t see evidence of it. He’s getting up and down the court and muscling up. (Bogut looked moribund last night—again.) Maybe they’re saving him up, but at some point they have to get him going and see what he can do. So far, it doesn’t look like they will do that.

          As for team chemistry, it took Lee about 10 seconds last night to fit in with the starters and be effective and settle them down. After all, he’s been playing with these guys for years. He is a leader, not a follower on training wheels.

          Nicely formatted comment, btw.

        • 44-10 certainly justifies Kerrs line ups and rotations so far. Significant Barnes minutes are at the 4, where he contributes more. I can of think of other cases, where a top player was not started — Havlicek and Ginobli come to mind.

          Perhaps Kerr evaluates Barnes D at the 4 is better than DLee D at the 5, Green equally effective at either.

          That being said, I think the Warriors would be even more successful with Iguodala or DLee starting in place of Barnes and Barnes off the bench as a Stretch-4. The only thing here is we don’t know if DLee is what he was. The 3 core surgeries and the hammy indicate reduced minutes might be prudent.

          • Your second paragraph nails it. I just watched an online replay of the 4th quarter, and Barnes played excellent defense the entire quarter.

            How can that be, when he had no blocks and no steals? Because he has enough length to deny postup attempts by fronting the PF, and the lateral quickness to instantly switch onto a PG to prevent penetration. (He did both multiple times in the quarter.) David Lee has his virtues, and tries as hard as he can, but he can’t do that.

            Incidentally, I meant the “Father Time” remark to explain why Barnes (at 22) is considered a core player for the W’s going forward, while Lee (at 31) isn’t. As far as I can tell, Lee looks healthy. But even at peak health, he’s just not agile enough to fit very well into the W’s defensive scheme.

          • The age factor is important for building the future, not so much for this season.

            When it comes to guarding Durant, LeBron, Leonard during the play offs, we might see more of Iguodala and maybe Holiday with more of Barnes minutes at the 4.

            Under the Kerr lineups and offenses, DLee and MoS are not going to get near the minutes Barnes getting.

            I have the feeling Ezeli is held back as Bogut play off insurance.

  23. Pistons lost tonight, but look at that Reggie Jackson performance. I like Kerr as a coach, but SVG would have been a great GM + coach. What a job he’s done in one season. Nellie-esque.

    Next step: letting Greg Monroe walk in the offseason.

    • If SVG is going to let Monroe walk in the off-season, why didn’t he get something for him at the deadline?

      • May be sign and trade so he can leverage Monroe to get back some talent. Probably that is why he let Josh Smith go without trying to get any talent back.

      • Dirty little secret: no one wants him.

        • felt,
          Somebody will want him, he like Lee in lot of ways. I can bet, he is going to get 14 mils minimum.

          • won’t know until monroe hits free agency how high the price tag will get, but, it seems unlikely someone will give him thompson-level $$ when his production more resembles m.speights (or what speights would do with monroe’s minutes and usage). monroe doesn’t do much defensively nor does he shoot 3’s, and his ball skills aren’t the equal of lee’s.

    • Fairly confident Stan likes Monroe. He’s gotten good mileage out of Monroe and Drummond together for approximately 15-20 mpg, and then splitting the rest of the C team next to stretch 4s.

      In an interview with ESPN he recently said Reggie Jackson fit their timeline. IE he’s 24, Monroe is 23, Drummond and KCP are 21

      • If SVG wanted Monroe, why did he completely stone him last offseason, instead of offering him a contract? And if Monroe is a commodity around the league, why was he forced to return to the scene of his humiliation for the qualifying offer?

        Monroe is gone. A losing player, made even worse by the pairing with Drummond. A perfect exemplar of the occasional disconnect between stats and true worth.

        • I more or less agree with Felt’s assessment of Monroe’s worth, but IMO last summer’s negotiations weren’t necessarily proof of that.

          Monroe has an egotistical agent (is that redundant?), David Falk, who was determined to get him a max contract. SVG quite sensibly didn’t want to give him that, and few other teams had the cap room to do so without a sign-and-trade (which SVG didn’t want, just as he preferred waiving Josh Smith to trading him for other teams’ undesirable players/contracts).

          By having Monroe take the qualifying offer, Falk bet that he had a much better chance of getting a max offer (or something reasonably close) in the 2015 free agent market, when more teams would have cap room–and might be desperate to add talent in a smaller FA pool. I’m not going to predict either way, but I do think that was a plausible assumption.

  24. notes to #10, 11, 12, 13 — budenholzer’s deemphasis of offensive boards with a priority to transition defense is old school, having quite a few adherents over the years, with his own twist on it. in former times, emphasis on chasing the off. glass was generally personnel based, and that is the basis for the comment from milsap, that he still hits the offensive boards but has modified the extent and selectivity. in the old games, more teams featured back to the basket players with low post offense, and there was no three point shooting to take any defender further than twenty plus feet. with the game’s changes and fewer guys with low post skill, percentages favor commitment to transition defense much more. with Atl it’s more pronounced with an offense built on high pct., catch and shoot scoring.

    the recent exception in a defense-first team that still went after offensive boards was Ind while stephenson, hill, george were all at their peak, because at least two of the three had specific transition defense assignments and all excelled at it. the team was drilled in anticipating from their own offense where the shots came from, and the positions of their personnel, and they’d know exactly which player would be crashing. as we noted the other night, vogel still has a depleted Ind team playing with a high degree of discipline.

    concur that west reveals his true old school thinking in that extended interview. he brings up offensive rebounding a couple of times, and he sounds like it has a priority more like his playing days than the present. the best perimeter shooters in those days simply missed more, reflected in not just the shooting pct.’s but the rebounding numbers of course. they were shooting more in the 14-17 ft. range than now, and it was reasonable for the quick guys to occasionally ‘follow’ their missed shot and go for the offensive glass. not exactly encouraged nowadays.

    one part of the interview that amused me, how highly west regards harden as a player. not only does GS completely lack that type of ball handler/scorer, but he’s among the least popular stars in the hearts of the lacobite partisans.

    • His praise for Harden is curious, as it would be hard to fit him into the Warrior system and roster. Another throwback from West’s days, I suspect.

      • Thompson isn’t far off from Harden as as scorer. He’s added Harden’s Euro-step and he’s a better shooter. GS doesn’t need Thompson to handle like Harden because they have Curry, who is a better ball handler than anyone else in the league.

        • I can’t see Harden playing with Curry, not very well.

          • you’re considering ‘harden’ the actual player/personality. another guard who played with his style, skill, and aggressiveness would combine well either with curry or thompson or with both. they were successful with j.freaking jack in that role, after all, and curry/thompson are on another level than they were.

          • +1 moto. The Ws don’t have anyone other than Curry who can play the point in crunch time, draw the defense, create his own shot, set Curry up, get to the line etc. Iggy is a fail, Klay is rapidly developing, but Harden is the ne plus ultra. He could fill that role in spades.

          • Did you see the AS game?

  25. I would be terribly curious to see Holiday given all of Barnes minutes at the 3. I think Holiday’s downfall has been his inability to hit shots consistently, combined with some questionable decision making. There must have been some evidence that we was the reason the second unit started blowing up so badly, or he would be playing more.

    To me Holiday is an important piece when the Warriors want to get into that scrambling defensive, fast-break mode. Barnes doesn’t have the instincts or the decision making to be part of that. The Curry, Thompson, Iggy, Holiday, Green lineup is the ultimate smallball lineup. I would love to see it employed for about 8-10 minutes per game.

    • This type of lineup if used at the correct time can give the Grizzlies fits, BTW.

    • Love that first sentence!

      Swopa:
      “I mean, seriously, if the majority opinion here about Barnes is accurate — that he’s a marginal player overall and, in particular, a poor defender at SF — then there’s no way the Warriors should have the best record in the NBA, with the league’s best defense, and sky-high team chemistry.”

      -Sure there’s a way. Hes playing with the starting WC All-Star team backcourt, Dray and the spector of Andrew (still useful) to boot.
      Extrapolating the W’s continued success all the way thru the playoffs with Barnes getting big minutes as a starter is akin to gambling, IMHO.

      I already gave the analogy of TLincecum and the World Champ Giants, which FeltbotsFakeFriend was kind enuff to point out was idiotic. But I like it anyway and think its apt. Lincecum isn’t a better player just because he’s on the Champs, despite good chemistry. Hes actually not a good player, but more of an odd brand, “Timmy”, whom the average Giant fan seems to love.

      • Question for further discussion:

        Can anyone think of another player in the NBA who has received so much publicity, so much attention and playing time, right off the bat, who has pushed starters to the bench, who, at best, leads to utterly ambiguous discussion as to his actual value as an NBA player?

        • Warriors fans probably can’t. But other teams probably have their favorites.
          Whats so hard about admitting you made a draft mistakes? It happens to everyone. Barnes should have had to earn his spot, not been gifted with it.

          As a side note, I just checked the IRS site re my return status. And you get this cheery little pop-up:

          “Use of this system constitutes consent to monitoring, interception, recording, reading, copying, or capturing by authorized personnel of all activities. There is no right to privacy in this system. Unauthorized use of this system is prohibited and subject to criminal and civil penalities, including all penalities applicable to willful unauthorized access (UNAX) ”

          I realize its a govt agency, but this could be interpreted with alot of leeway.

    • holiday simply isn’t proficient enough on offense for kerr to give him more court time, much less from one of the starter’s minutes. the other blog is chock full of odes to barnes’ promising present and great future, if swopa or harry need booster doses.

      a thought experiment related to the holiday substitution — just suppose they had a developed, proficient combo guard who can distribute, hit 3’s, and draw fouls, rather than das Wunderkind. lead guard + 2 wings = 144 min. curry, thompson, combo guard-x play 100-115 of those minutes, green and iguodala the balance. many of the partisans want another decent 5/4 for bogut insurance, but decent vet combo guards are generally more accessible on the market, as Dr.Zamir has often pointed out.

  26. Interesting article on genesis of Spurs/Hawks/Warriors offense.

    http://probasketballtalk.nbcsports.com/2015/02/25/hawks-see-their-offense-as-evolution-to-defeat-modern-defenses/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

    Two things the article misses, imo:

    1) The Spurs and Hawks also run a ton of high pick and roll in the middle of the floor, and there is diddly-squat that Thib’s defense can do about that.

    2) Thib’s defense was only made possible by the change in the illegal defense rules.

    Isolation basketball was the most efficient form of basketball under the old rules, which prohibited the overloading of the strong side. I know this because that old fox Don Nelson exploited it so ruthlessly that he forced the NBA to change the rules.

  27. Getting back to TK’s West interview, I did get something from what West said about Kerr: that he was devoted to Popovich’s system, and that it was incumbent on management in this situation to get him players that fit his system.

    Was West making a point about the Warriors personnel? I really think he was, and in particular Shaun Livingston, who very clearly doesn’t fit Pop’s system. There is no place for non- three point shooting guards in Spurs or Hawks basketball. My assumption here fits nicely with my other assumption that when West talks about the Warriors needing another shooter, he is talking specifically about Livingston’s spot.

    I also heard a note of disappointment, or puzzlement with Kerr, when West talked about Justin Holiday disappearing from the rotation. He seemed extremely high on Holiday’s potential. Yet another piece to the puzzle.

    I also suspect — though some will read this as confirmation bias — that the old school West doesn’t get the marginalization of David Lee, and Kerr’s extreme Nellieball. That’s what I heard in West’s recent remark in another venue that the Warriors are playing too much outside, and don’t have enough players taking it inside and drawing fouls.

    Given these rather candid remarks from West — and the jibe that people who never played the game are “all over the map” with their personnel opinions, I’m starting to wonder…

    Is West off the reservation?

    • I gotta preface this by saying I know the team is 44-10 ;)

      but this is all getting bizarre. Chemistry is probably more of a factor than some people will allow. But the lack of moves on the FO’s part before the trade deadline was frustrating to this simple fan who admittedly is not a stats guy and just likes watching hoops on TV. If SVG were coach/GM the only players remaining on the team right now from the pre-deadline squad could very well be steph, Klay, and Dray. Granted, he had a dreadful team in Det, but he ignored collateral damage, and moved heavan and earth (Josh Smith, trying to dump BJennings) and got Sh&* done. Seems like Lacob may just be polishing his sceptre and admiring himself in the mirror, too focused on his comb-over to realize he’s buck naked. (sorry joe. And everyone for that)

      The season is too long and the rest is gonna be somewhat of a meaningless slog. I’m sure Pop doesn’t care where his Spurs finish, as long as ther’ye in and healthy. So HB may just be providing filler minutes until it really matters. Thats what I hope at least. Father time may have caught up with DLee, but wouldn’t it be nice to verify this? Gotta work him in there more. Justin ditto. He’s shown the defensive chops, confidence, and allaround game to earn a start or three. I also like Feltbots odds on his wager on whichever new back-up PG the Bulls may pick up being a better fit than Liv. Some of these points are so seemingly obvious that it just makes you wonder about kerr and the whole FO. Who is really pulling what strings?

      I guess we have to give em the benefit of the doubt at this point and assume they’ll make logical moves come playoffs. With the roster as currently constituted, with a few square pegs sitting atop round holes.
      We’ve come this far. But even if we win it all theres gotta be changes come next year. Thats what good FOs do.

      • warriorsablaze

        It’s easy to make wild, drastic teams when your team is rebuilding. There’s not way SVG jettisons major pieces from the team with the best record in the league at the deadline. He likely would have done SOMETHING, however… as there are always ways to improve.

        Also, every single team in the league has some square pegs… players are finite resources and despite what armchair GMs seem to think, you can’t just get whoever you want whenever you want them.

        We could certainly be hurt by our lack of scorers come playoff time, but it’s no guarantee…. especially since we have the best defense in the league to keep you in it when the shots are bricking.

      • FeltbotsFakeGirlfriend

        Do the Spurs make drastic changes every season?

    • a legit question. already gave a bit o’ grief to one of the spiritual leaders of the other blog for calling west a ‘kassandra’. west is marginalized in terms of not being strictly in harness with the lacob/ridder program, but at the same time it probably boosts their ego to have a token loose cannon on their deck to bolster the brand and enable the spiel about synthesizing diverse views. the attention west attracts to their franchise can only help sustain the ticket and sponsorship revenues.

      west was linked with kerr in keeping thompson out of the trade offer to Min, and kerr is the sole other member of the pseudo-‘inner council’ with legit hoops credentials [the owner’s pick up games and myers’ college bench-warming might be bigger minuses than plusses]. kerr of course operates within much tighter constraints with what he can share with the media and outsiders, including the owner’s amanuensis t.k., and he might be benefitting from west putting his critiques before the public.

      if west discusses stuff with kerr and the other coaches without lacob’s courtiers (in medieval chinese lit some writers used the ideogram for ‘magpie’ to represent knight/courtiers) hanging about, the content would tell us much more about the extent of west’s marginalization.

      • “…the owner’s pick up games and myers’ college bench-warming might be bigger minuses than plusses…”

        moto please share your basketball credentials that you draw your expertise from to critic others?

    • West was a big supporter of signing Livingston:
      http://blog.sfgate.com/warriors/2014/10/01/jerry-west-raves-about-livingston-thompson-warriors-over-lakers/

      Honestly, I think we got one of the best offseason acquisitions there was in Shaun Livingston. He’s a terrific player. He’s going to play all over the place, he can defend, he has an incredible mind to play the game. He’s still young. People say he doesn’t shoot the ball well, but he shot better than 80 percent from the free-throw line. … They started winning in Brooklyn when they started playing him last year. We really think he’s going to be a tremendous addition for us. … I saw USA Today said we have the best backcourt, and I truly believe that. I think we’ve really enhanced it by bringing (Livingston) on board. … I’ve had two or three people call me personally and say they wanted him. … He’s our best playmaker. When you watch him, he’s pretty to watch. He’s such a great ball-handler, with his size, he will help everyone.”

      • thank you. this statement completely disqualifies west from the ‘Kassandra’ attribution.

      • I remembered him speaking in favor of the signing, but as I read this I wonder if he was as instrumental in the signing as this makes it sound?

        If so, it could account for the discernible air of disgruntlement as he described Kerr’s attachment to Pop’s system… Perhaps he expected Kerr to fashion his system to accomodate SL, but now realizes that Kerr will stick to his own system regardless, and a change will have to be made?

        Something doesn’t make sense here. How do you call for the Warriors to add a shooter while maintaining at the same time that SL should have a significant role?

        West is clearly on the wrong side of history as regards modern basketball. He doesn’t get the most efficient offense that has ever existed, the Curry or Klay walkup three. He doesn’t get the move away from the midrange shot, or the move away from offensive rebounding. Telling him 1.2 ppp is better than .99 ppp would probably elicit a scornful look of incomprehension.

        He also is a complete obsessive about size, which could clearly lead to the error of valuing it over more important qualities in a point guard — despite the fact that he and Wilt got their asses handed to them by Clyde Frazier and Earl Monroe and a couple of power forwards, in the NBA finals, twice.

        It’s a bit of a mystery, isn’t it. The only thing that is really clear is that something about the Warriors’ construction or system or rotations isn’t clicking for West.

        Doesn’t he realize the team is 43-10? Some of the board members here should call him up and give him their lecture.

  28. This is fascinating. At SFPL looking thru microfiche of 1969 SF Chronicles for an obit on a case at work. Of course I gotta check out the sporting green:

    “Playing without superman Rick Barry, the Oakland Oaks rode the scoring of Doug Moe(!) , Gary Bradds, and Warren Armstrong to a 140-135 American Basketbball Assoc victory last night over the LA Stars. The victory gave the Oaks a 29-4 record to lead the west division..

    Gonna look for the Orenda too

  29. Hat: Maybe you have forgotten
    that the Warrior far outscored their
    opponents with Udoh then with
    any other Warrior player. He’s had
    significant injuries since leaving the
    Warriors. I guess in your view I
    should have predicted that.

  30. Hat: Sorry that I didn’t realize that
    since the Warriors are 0-1 with
    Livingston that he sucks. Sure we
    should have signed an all-star
    back-up PG that was as good as
    Curry. I just wanted a back-up PG
    Who when playing with subs would
    outscore their opponents when he’s
    on the court. And that positive point
    differential would have been even
    higher if Lee, Holliday, and Barbosa,
    had playing earlier together in the season
    Alongside Livingston. You ignore his
    stellar defense holding opposing
    PG’s to shooting only 44 percent while
    he shoots 51 percent from
    floor. You should realize that by the
    Warriors outs ring there opponents with
    Livingston playing that other Warriors are
    making assists and the offensive sets run
    are designed to do so. Livingston
    deserves some and the Warriors for signing
    Him. The Warriors are getting out of
    Livingston everything they want and could
    expect.

    • Except a point guard. Iggy plays point whenever Shaun hits the floor.

      • in a recent post game interview iguodala admitted he’s expected to lead the reserves. the practice scrimmages are based on the a’s vs. the b’s, and he’s the leader of the b’s, not insignificant.

    • The one thing Kerr/Livingston have been able to do is keep Curry’s minutes down. He has played 38 minutes or more only 6 times this season. Comparatively, Harden has done so 22 times.

      If nothing else, giving Steph 10 or more minutes on the bench each game is worth it’s weight in gold. I believe this extra rest allows him to play defense harder, which has resulted in the league leading 2.2 steals per game, and the Warriors playing at an extremely high pace when Curry is in the game. Of course it would be nice to have a backup PG who pushed the pace, but I think Barbosa is doing a decent job of being that sparkplug.

      • Maybe Kerr should allow Livingston to run the team out of the low post? Isn’t that what Kidd came up with?

  31. Hey moto.
    You said that Holliday simply isn’t proficient enough to be given one of the starters minutes. But there’s really only one to find that out, now being the perfect time. Of course the staff knows more about this than us, but when u compare his small sample size with Barnes,he passes the preliminary eyeball test (maybe not the stats test), IMHO. While I doubt he truly is an nba starter, especially with his tweener frame, I think he could be a more proficient contributor than HB to this GS team- and I wanna see it. If he’s Kent Bazemore the second, at least we know that.

    • proficient on offense, more precisely. the really gifted scorers, like reggie w. (two time national scoring champion), n.robinson, we might see getting their shooting together in a couple of possessions and erratic playing time, not that it’s any easier for them of course. the coaches aren’t giving holiday the opportunities to settle in and find what works best for him as a shooter. we’ve been over the bidness reasons why barnes will always get the benefit of opportunities on this team. won’t see holiday get any solid minutes unless someone in front of him gets disabled, or until their playoff seeding is clinched. the team likes to talk big about being defense oriented, which should get holiday a share of minutes, but the Ind game was pretty good evidence how dependent their defense is on their scoring. they’d never admit it, for appearances.

    • Just checkin the boxscores. Dallas is one team who’d love some of the W’s subs, maybe all 5. They’re threadbare, and if one of their top 5 goes down, Kerplunkk.

      I was gonna say Utah, led by GordonH, is playing a lot better. Then the Lakers beat them.
      The Clips are actually doin OK w/out Blake. Blake was awesome at Oklahoma but it doesn’t fully translate to the pros. Maybe he’s their Harrison lite. Sacto beats Mem and Chi loses to Charlotte. Feel a bit better about the W’s shot at the crown.

      like your posts Moto. And you got a great memory if you can remember 1969 ABA players. Or else your just ancient. Like the Oracle @ delphi!
      Youre helping me increase my vocab too. Today alone i had to investigate Kassandra(?) and the word amanuensis. (That one reminded me of “Bartleby the Scrivener”.)

      This is the actual article I read about Crumb. Check out pic #3. Thats how he used to sit on Market St:
      http://www.sfgate.com/entertainment/article/Still-in-the-shadows-an-artist-in-his-own-right-2487551.php

      • This is a hell of a good piece.

        Bartleby one of my all-time favorite stories. Gave me a mantra to live by.

        • Nice feltbot.
          It is a profound and perplexing little story that stuck with me too, I believe because I’ve had plenty of menial and just plain crappy jobs in my life. Makes you ponder over human nature. It’s too late for Bartleby but not for us.

        • Non serviam!

          • Regrettably, I am more Bartleby than Lucifer.

          • Bartlebys make the world go round. But it’s good to have some Luciffer in you too.
            I just got my yearly SSDI retirement monthly payment projection letter. I’m almost 50 and for 13 adult years didn’t file becuz I wasn’t officially makin anything. Non serviam! (Auto correct on my phone wanted non-Serbian. That too)

            I was shocked to see my projection of 793$ a month. Luv this country! But that’s 15 years away. Definitely not gonna sit around and count my chickens
            Tough one tonite

          • Oops. Wanna clarify. Don’t mean disability. Just mean social security. I’ve never been/collected disability or unemployment in my life. Got confused with the SSDeathIndex, which we reference often at work

          • One more comment. My brother just told me if I work 10 more years I’ll be able to afford my Kaiser coverage and an occasional Burrito while living under a bridge somewhere waiting for my end to come. I was thinking more about retiring in El Salvador and living like a presidente. But he also pointed out guys like Mark Cuban can draw $1600 a month. He’s a bit of a know-it-all, but SS for the ultra rich is American to the core.

      • the more usual anglo spelling for Kassandra has a “C” if you didn’t find out already. another kind of oracle, from another huge influence in my childhood reading, Homer. thanks for the link, rarely read the SF paper, it was a healthy dose of reality, though the subject could be said to partake of the unreal.

        the all star game dunk contest would have been perfect for armstrong in his prime, which was all too brief. like robinson or lavine his height (6’2″) seemed normal. for entertainment he’d stand in front of the rim, arms stretched wide with a ball in each hand, rise up and dunk each ball on the way down.

  32. http://www.vantagesports.com/#story/VOV74CYAAFEDNoyH/golden-states-achilles-heel-oreb-pursuit-rate

    Can anyone open this? Puported to list stats very favorable of Harrison Barnes offensive improvement from last season and ranking relative to other Wings.

    • the article on barnes is linked on the right column of the page, “…Ready to Deliver”, by r.bissell. the writer points out the value of a player who can create his own shot, and conveniently posted two video highlights showing barnes doing so, as if they’re representative of his work. similar to what some fans thought they saw in barnes’ rookie post season, he’s projected to be a key factor if GS can advance in the playoffs. no harm in optimism ; areas of disappointment will be well distributed if they can’t surpass seven post season wins.

      • “Barnes has been hovering around a 50.00 FG% this season. He ranks near the top 10 among all players with as many or more field goal attempts. Barnes joins Kevin Durant, Kyle Korver, and Goran Dragic as the only guards and wings near this mark.”

        Not bad.

      • One could make the argument Barnes is being fed unguarded opportunities, or the opponets give it up to him rather than to Curry or Thompson, which begs the question would Iguodala or Holiday do as well statistically given the same opportunity. The evidence seems to indicate no, but we’ll never know. The Warriors are committed to Barnes, and Barnes is doing what’s expected of him and efficiently, not to say he won’t learn further and improve. I just don’t see him becoming an All Star level player.

        • I believe we are seeing why the critics of Barnes are largely right and why he is in the starting lineup. You have a high volume, high efficiency scoring backcourt. A low volume, moderate-to-high efficiency center. A moderate volume, moderate efficiency (but erratic) power forward. Barnes is low volume, high efficiency. You don’t need more volume, there are not enough shots. You don’t need more low or erratic efficiency. You have three great facilitators in Curry, Bogut, and Green so you get diminishing returns from another. You need someone who does not need a lot of shots but hits at a high efficiency. For all of his warts, he is efficient, he is unselfish, he rebounds, and his defensive effort is improved (even if the results are questionable). Maybe he isnt the best but rather, the best fit.

  33. Rajon Rondo and Carlisle getting into it in Dallas. This doesn’t bode well for the Mavs playoff chances. No cohesion on this team, it appears.

    http://espn.go.com/dallas/nba/story/_/id/12382605/dallas-mavericks-suspend-rajon-rondo-one-game-altercation-coach-rick-carlisle

  34. Barnes, Swopa, defense, stars, the starstruck, etc.—

    Wasn’t Barnes mostly on the aged Pierce, who scored 25 points, twice his average?

    I’ll concede your point about choreography as to Barnes being able to move within the system defensively since I don’t have the game recorded. But defense has to be more than movement. He has to do something significant in it at critical points, especially closing out a game—stopping a drive at a key moment, drawing a charge, getting a steal, crashing the board for a critical rebound—and I’ll bet we don’t see that. He might just be helping to maintain status quo, but not taxing the offense. Critical moves weaken the defense and take the load off the other defenders on his team or give them advantages. Status quo doesn’t lead to wins, in fact can often lead to losses. (We had this discussion before.)

    The same point can be made about offense. He moves around in the passing, weaving schemes, but seldom does anything critical in it. He largely just passes off, rather than taxes it by taking a shot or making a drive when he should have an opening, though a somewhat challenged one. Or penetrating enough to draw defenders and make a pass to an open player. Doing so would tax a defense in the overall scheme and in the flow of the game, presenting an offensive advantage that builds for the whole team. And in Kerr’s system, especially with the offense challenged Bogut, such contributions by the rest of the team are important. It doesn’t happen. His fairly high percentage reflects his high selectivity for safe shots. His assist number is low, but also what doesn’t get counted is the number of passes that might have led to a bucket, which he doesn’t make. These don’t appear in stats.

    What should come out of this is a better way to assess a player’s impact on both ends of the court. Stats just won’t tell us much. Feltbot’s artifact theory on defense is intriguing, however. High % shooting especially is suspect.

    Finally, the +/– of defensive and offensive impact has to be combined and compared, as well as his effect with different lineups. His stats here are low. It’s what justifies keeping Lee on the court.

    The desire to have a star is tremendously powerful and slow to fade. The public and the press, who don’t see many of his games, have bought in since his college days, when I started watching him. He was billed as the second coming at UNC. He gives the image with his YouTube dunks, but not much else.

    • rgg, as hard as I try, I can’t find some new point you’re trying to make here.

      We’ve been all over all that stuff, it seems hundreds of times, for years now. Is mere repetition the point?

      • I believe I am countering points above that have been repeated as well. There seems to be a difference of opinion. I believe you have repeated yourself liberally as well. There’s a word for what you’re doing here, but I doubt it would sink in or have effect.

        • So, yes, you’re repeating yourself again.

          Yes, there IS a difference of opinion. That is well established.

          I rarely repeat myself, though I’m willing to make exceptions, especially when you bombard this site with copy-and-paste repetitions of points you’ve made thousands of times.

          There’s a word for what I’m doing? Would that be “editorializing?”

          • Hypocrite.

            Answer a question, Hat. Several posts ago a commenter with a new handle asked Longtimer to stop commenting. It’s the only time he has appeared. Was that you? You’ve done this before.

            Go fuck yourself. You are an old fart and a troll.

            Repeatedly you try to censor criticism of the FO, a constant theme here. Yet you have never rebutted with a sane or intelligent reply. It’s not even clear you listen to what those guys say.

            You complain about negativity (I don’t think you understand criticism), yet freely voice your own.

            You have also asked posters to stop commenting on matters not related to basketball, yet they have flourished and given the blog life.

            You abuse posters you don’t like liberally, yet take offense when the abuse comes to you.

            I’d suggest you keep your hands to yourself, and maybe try to become better. But of course you can do whatever the hell you want. Don’t just expect people to shut down. Keep trolling, and I will unload.

          • How disappointing. A refusal to discuss rationally. Schoolyard name-calling. “Keep my hands to myself.” Hee hee. Haven’t touched you, rgg.

            rgg, if you don’t want feedback, don’t post. If you don’t like feedback that says you’re pointlessly, endlessly repeating yourself, don’t repeat yourself.

            Re your Q about the mysterious one-time antagonist of LongTimer, no, that wasn’t The Hat in disguise. Get a clue. The Hat IS a disguise, bobo. And The Hat is plenty courageous enough to call out schoolyard bullies and demagogues (like LT, or, say, check your mirror), even when they somehow feel entitled to dominate an open discussion with miles of pointless verbiage.

            As for your threat to “unload,” I’m pretty certain I’d enjoy seeing you wet your pants. Go for it.

          • Everyone has repeated themselves here, Hat, including you. I’d like to think the argument is being extended.

            You know, Hat, I don’t know what your problem is with me, but I don’t care. I’ve had you on my back for years, and it’s getting old and you smell bad. Most of your posts are really stupid. I never see rational thought from you. But I just leave you alone. Yet you, in all your childishness, cannot stay away.

            You always avoid the most serious issues. Your attempts to control the blog and censor it are just poison and show deficiency of character. I’m not going to let you get away with it.

            And quite frankly, I don’t believe you. You’ve lied before.

          • No personal problem with you, rgg, I don’t know you. My “problem” is as simple as I said. Your constant attempts to shape or lead every discussion by repeating yourself is annoying. Other people have worthwhile things to say, and you don’t have something worthwhile to add to every thread. No one person could.

            It’s not your blog, remember?

            Here, I’ll give you a tip. Take it as a gift of friendship. Peepee-poopoo name-calling doesn’t make your point, gain you friends, or prove the validity of your self-righteousness. Quite the opposite.

            Even better, here’s an efficiency tip: Make a list of your concerns, publish it one time, then simply call off the number the next time(s) you want to spew the same damn things. Like this:

            “I’m going with a #3 [link] on that,” or, “ya know, I gotta say #47-49 [link], though I’m sensing some #26 [link], thank you very much.”

            Think of all the typing time you’d save.

          • I’ll sign off with this, Hat, unless you keep trolling.

            I never try to direct conversation. I only disagree, though that seems to offend some people.

            The only person I’ve called names is you (you do it all the time, hypocrite) because I’m sick of your trolling and I hold you in contempt for your repeated attempts to censor this blog. You keep running away from this.

            OK, I got tired of Harry’s invective as well.

            And I don’t tell people how stupid their argument is. I leave them alone. I may disagree elsewhere, however.

            It’s impossible to take any of your “critical” advice seriously, as there isn’t any. You speak with such great authority, yet say so little of worth. I’ve been at this 30 years, from Stanford on down. You cannot construct an argument. Your reading skills are abysmal. It’s never clear you understand anything, and your replies make little sense. Yet you flaunt your abilities. If you have them, they don’t appear.

          • Did you learn that marvelous riposte at Stanford? More name-calling, more attitude, more nonsense. How sad. How… typical of ex-Stanfordites who cling to their rings.

            I was thinking of giving you a call, Gary. Would it be worth it?

            Dude, you’re a brilliant, creative person. Don’t you want to invent? Why stay in a rut? Let’s move on, shall we?

          • You have no right, no cause, no position to tell anyone what to do here. Maybe you get away with it wherever you work. Why don’t you tell us where?

            It’s not name calling. It is assessment. And I’m not the first you’ve tried to abuse and censor.

        • You’re not the fucking editor of this blog, either. You have no skills here anyway. But I’m happy to see people repeat comments for review, as Swopa did. Going back is a hassle.

          • Oh my, a Stanford grad. Now I get it.

            rgg, I’ve hired and, unfortunately, sometimes, fired Stanford grads my whole professional life. As you should have learned since graduation, the Stanford bauble on your finger (you paid thousands to wear it, didn’t you, you schmuck?) doesn’t confer super powers.

            At some point you deliver or don’t. When you don’t, you should listen up and consider the possibility that you have more to learn. Underprivileged people understand that, so what’s your problem, Mr. Big Money Smart Stanford guy?

            I’ll never forget my first Stanford Grad, way back in the early 80s. He diddled with his ring as we met for the first time. He despised me for my meager SJSU degree, and made sure to tell me so, first thing. As his (sudden, unwilling, I didn’t ask for this) boss, I told him I was willing to learn from his wonderful expertise, but I had to strongly advise him to learn some tact, a valuable skill for business and for real life.

            The last time I saw the schmuck… aw, nevermind. The poor guy…

            You’re one of THOSE Stanford grads who stopped learning life lessons when you left the farm and quit paying huge money for lessons. You imagine that that grad ring means something more than that you overpaid for an education that unfortunately instilled an elitist attitude that you have never even attempted to earn ever since you left the farm. Hey, Condi Rice is a Stanford asshole, right? You think that makes you special? Famous people come from Stanford so you’re somehow worth fame, and not an asshole?

            rgg, please, for your own sake, listen up here. You’re a marvelous human being with a contribution to make. You deliver that contribution or you don’t.

            Make a contribution, rgg, don’t just post the same old crap over and over again.

          • “I have a little shadow that goes in and out with me,
            And what can be the use of him is more than I can see.”

            http://blogs-images.forbes.com/peterhimler/files/2014/05/troll.jpeg

            Who the fuck cares who you hired and fired? I taught at Stanford, Hat. I’ve also taught at community colleges, and I can tell you that their ability to read and construct an argument exceed yours. But that’s not fair to them, because I’ve seen some brilliant students there. And I can tell you that most have superior character and are willing to make an effort.

            It’s just frightening how stupid you are. You seem to have no range of reference. You seem to have no range of anything. I intend to leave you alone. But I will not be shut down by the likes of you.

            You are exactly what you appear to be in your comments, a manipulator, a censor, and a hypocrite. I’ve seen the likes of you all my life, and I know how much damage you can cause, if anyone takes you seriously. I don’t.

            And you are a coward.

          • No, I’m not “the” editor of this blog, thank heavens. It would take too much time, especially in your case. I’d have to chop all your posts, because you mostly don’t seem to have a point other than to share your compulsive worries.

            FWIW, I have also taught at Stanford, as well as at over 250 corporations throughout the Bay Area. So much for your one-upmanship.

            Ready to receive my call, Gary?

    • And to repeat the obvious point, against larger teams, better defensive teams, contributions from the 3 and 4 will be critical on both ends of the court. The system has worked against most teams largely because they were able to build a lead with fast breaks or hot shooting from the guards, who were more open. All that will change.

    • Adding a defensive presence favors Iguodala over Barnes, and adding scoring and rebounding favors DLee. Kerrs got to figure it out, depending on opponent and game flow. So far, so good. Could be a tougher read during the play offs.

  35. I don’t know what I’d do if I were in Kerr’s place tonight. Total wins from here on out are more important than individual games. Playing all out tonight could lead to a loss against Toronto and fatigue going into the games that follow quickly. I’m guessing a big effort to come out scoring the first half, then taking it from there. If close or down at the half, or maybe halfway through the third quarter, he may just manage the rest of the game as he has before.

    • The Cavs will go all out for sure. Not sure the Warriors will be as committed. Smith, Shumpert, Mosgov, and LeBron tuff defenders, presenting a real challenge to the Warriors motion offense.

  36. BtoB games analyzed here for entire NBA:

    http://www.nbastuffer.com/tag/Schedule_Analysis.html

    My only thought is that the distribution is uneven, though I can’t tell if there are adjustments to be made for the whole schedule because of rest days. Total back to backs range from 22 to 16 (GS has 19). When a handful of games can make a difference, this looks like a serious disparity.

    • noted previously, the schedule, largely dictated by the national broadcasting contracts, is rife with imbalances and disparities. the pro bettors look closely if the casual fans don’t. Mem has the most back to backs of the top western teams, GS is second. Mem remained a western team despite its relocation east of the mississippi ; at least when OK crossed the continental divide they could still be considered western. Mem and Por will always have more miles in their travel book.

  37. @ 35

    I am, btw, intrigued with this discussion. Ultimately what’s at stake is finding a way to evaluate players, something we’ve all been working on here you. Swopa and YouTired show sophistication and make intriguing points. There’s just more to factor in, HB or whoever.

    • I agree on this, and though I’m busy at the moment, will put up a reply to your comment later.

      • Seriously, I am intrigued. You have a point, I have a counterargument. I’m not satisfied with either. It amazes me how much discussions range on players from here on up to the national media.

        Coaches are the only people worth listening to. Kerr, of course, has more to say but won’t before the press.

      • Shift the argument Swopa. How good a defender is Curry? Everyone used to say he was weak, everyone now says he is better. I suspect he is better, but only marginally, at containing threats like Westbrook. I also suspect we could run a string of YouTubes showing him getting burned and revealing other weaknesses.

        But no one does that because he is so valuable to the team. Really I don’t care how good he is individually on defense, in a sense. What I care about is how good the whole unit is on defense with Curry in it, and it’s been pretty darn good, and how good the team is overall +/–, which of course is awfully good. (I would make the same argument for Lee, back when he was played. You only had to stick Ezeli next to him to see team defense improve. It was the earlier season that he really got exposed without any kind of center beside him, or a good 4 when he played center.)

        I think there is merit to Felbot’s artifact idea. Not only do steals and blocks represent the tip of an iceberg of effectiveness, they also have great influence.

        Take steals, for example. Steals not only break down a defense, they also lead to fast break points. Big +/– gain. These points have helped the Warriors surge out to leads in many games.

        Comparisons on steals:

        2014 (when the defense was still good), 7.8 total steals per game, this season 9.4.

        Curry, 1.6 vs. 2.2 now
        Klay .9 vs. 1.2
        Green 1.2 vs 1.5
        (HB .8 vs .6)

        And in Green’s case, these should be adjusted for minutes

        • The last sentence of your first paragraph is where I think a lot of people get in trouble with analysis. You can find offensive and defensive lowlights for every player. You have to understand what you are looking at for an individual player, and their responsibilities within the scheme and then see whether long term statistics support the eye test. In the case of the steals, I see smart positioning, quick hands, good risk/reward decisions, and good defensive teammates that contribute to his success. I think his defensive improvement is real and palpable.

          The question isn’t whether he can contain Westbrook any more than no one player contains Curry. It is whether he is effective individually and within the team scheme to make Westbrook work harder and give up fewer of the shots he wants. If he hits the tough shots he hits them. Sometimes, you see this with Bogut and Green and Klay more frequently, they are left on an island against a good player with very little help coming their way. In those cases the team has decided to sacrifice one defender who may give up a bundle of points in order to prevent providing opportunities to the rest of the team they are defending. In defense you have to observe and understand first and measure second or the measurements are meaningless.

          • Not sure what you’re referring to, but Curry amply offsets limitations with steals and rebounds often, my point.

    • rgg you almost sound like you’re on a quest for the grail of objective player evaluation. my pessimistic view, there are many players in the mediocre fat section of the bell curve whose performances on a whole are ambiguous and difficult to separate from the context of the team they’re on. biases largely determine how those players get perceived. age bias is why barnes got my sobriquet Wunderkind, and it is probably a factor behind holiday’s very limited minutes, perhaps even ezeli’s. sampling or confirmation bias could each take a lengthy chapter.

      it looks to me that fans want to see a sharper-shooting version of another multi-purpose tar heel forward, geo. lynch, but to my eyes barnes doesn’t sustain lynch’s activity level on either end, doesn’t push himself as hard defensively or on the boards, the aspects he most visibly makes less of an impact compared to lynch’s. as for their shooting, when lynch was in a ball sharing system with other good scorers in college, he shot better than barnes, but didn’t find a team like that as a pro after his rookie season (when his shooting numbers also resembled what he saw in college). of course lynch would never be part of ‘future star’, or ‘part of young championship core w. curry, thompson, green’ chatter, either. he’s been marked down as a very good journeyman, a role filler.

      • You are probably right about evaluation of midrange players and below. Still, I am trying to learn something, and it would influence my appreciation of the game. If Swopa is correct in his interpretation of what Kerr is doing and its effectiveness, my watching of the game tonight and the entire season will change dramatically: they are pursuing their best odds. I remain skeptical, needless to say.

        It would be interesting to compare HB with Danny Green for the Spurs in offense, another Tar Heel, but a 2nd. round pick. Different position of course, but cause for comparison. His shooting is down, but I could argue he is more effective in the offense because he can show more looks and tax a defense.

        • The biggest difference between Barnes and Danny Green is defense.

          • and what lies beneath — if a player isn’t quick in his hoops cognition and his physical responses, popovich won’t keep him around. a reason why they identified leonard as a potential model for their game.

  38. rgg and hat
    This snit is makin the one that ended in Rggs butt shot look downright civil. Doesn’t bother me but it does seem to go in a loop. But I also enjoyed reading serial killer richard Kuklinskjs book “the Iceman”. It wasn’t about George Gervin. Don’t know much about your guys history, but maybe u guys meet. Probly be easier to communicate in the future.

    Or else it’d be one hell of a seniors MMA match. Pay per view worthy

    This blog is a great resource to turn to when u can’t watch a game. U don’t just get cold hard stats but insite and passion. I’m gonna check in late tonite and hope u guys leave some observant hoops posts like in the past

    • Nah, that was just a regular season warmup. Fireworks coming during the postseason.

      Just kidding. I’ll desist.

      I’ll try to desist.

  39. Cavs—

    First a question: How do the Cavs match up with the Heat teams the previous seasons, assuming full strength Lebron? On paper they look better with better players down the roster, though they are odd pieces and I don’t know how they fit together. Certainly a better center, a huge upgrade, and a better though problematic PG. I don’t see how they offset the diminished Wade, however. Bosh over Love, though both were/are underutilized. I don’t know what to make of Love watching him play for this team.

    Their greatest strength could still be their weakness. Lebron can’t take off like this 7 playoff games in a row. And if he doesn’t, that puts the burden on an uncoordinated squad.

    Right?

    The Warriors can outrun them. They can show a better coordinated attack.

    But I don’t see how they can do it without better shooting from players other than Klay and Steph. Here we can only hope. Lacob’s Cube is probably too tough to find a slot for Speights. Or maybe the cube means they have to play Speights.

    And I don’t see how they do it without front court offense. I’d be a Bogut fan if he could put up some good shots. The first few were good, the rest just unconvincing. And he looked sluggish the second half. I can’t believe he’s right.

    Look at what Lee did. So why was he pushed to the side second half? The closing unit didn’t have a chance. I don’t know what Kerr was doing, other than fatiguing Klay, Green, and Steph for tomorrow.

    Defensive artifacts:

    5 steals for Green. 3 blocks for Klay, including one on Love, plus stopping a Lebron drive.

    Misc. notes:

    Did I hear right? Blatt did accept the ass’t job, but Kerr turned him loose when he got the Cleveland offer.

    Livingston tried a 3! No, wait, he didn’t. (I thought I saw that.)

    Sigh.

    I need some philosophy. Hey, Martin, are you out there? I’m thinking Boethius (The Consolations of)

  40. To: Rgg and Hat. Can’t we all get along.
    Like you both. Would
    like to see you both sit down with
    Felty and each have a beer or two.
    Will cleanse you’re souls.Just like
    President Obama did with the Boston
    professor and policeman who arrested
    him.

    The HS team I’m helping should
    finish the season tomorrow 24-3.
    Rated 3rd in State. Beat 5 defending
    State champions. Sectional playoffs
    start next week. Have to win 7 straight
    Games to be crowned best team in State.
    Will keep you posted

    • Congrats! Pass on news. (I guess I can’t ask for the team.)

      I just think people should be free to speak up here. That’s all.

    • Just went back to check if rgg is ready to get real, and noticed your post.

      Disappointed by rgg, but that’s nothing new. Discovered your post and thank you for the thought. I’m perfectly willing to bury the hatchet. On my terms.

      Re the HS team you’re advising, that’s GREAT! Congratulations!

  41. Man, Livingston post ups will be the death of me. If I never see Barnes attempt to lead the fast-break, nor another Livingston post up again this season, I will be a happy fan. Barnes played his role well, sat in the corners, waited on the drive and kick and hit his shots. It was when he tried to do too much that he hurt the team.

    Safe to say Igoudala is healthy now?