We have one more week of a bunch of lousy teams and boring games to endure. I like a good old fashioned ass kicking as much as the next guy, but this has been ridiculous. The team has to play a disappointing game for the margin to be under 15. The Wolves and Sixers are just awful teams. Those are not fun games to watch. The Nets? UGHHH!!!
Putting on my Pop hat for assessing my offense early in the season, I thought I would focus on shot selection. Shots go in and shots don’t. If your team is in a shooting slump, you can’t panic and change the offense. You need to be acutely aware of whether your players are executing your offense and whether they are taking good shots. That, as a coach, is what you can control. You can’t control whether they go in or not.
In addition, the Spurs offense has been struggling. I thought I would try to assess whether or not things were all that different.
This is a new series I meant to start at the beginning of the season. I’m a bit slow, but I’m finally getting around to acknowledging the season has started.
We have three very unexciting games coming up. Well, they should be very unexciting. These are great candidates for the DVR because I have serious doubts about my ability to watch them live without falling asleep.
As a long time Spurs’ fan, I can’t tell you how many times I have heard this line — or a similar sentiment — from a coach or player early in the season: it’s a process.
What kind of process? I’m assuming a building process. But, what I have always found odd, is that you hear it from long-time veterans in the exact same system. I mean, what kind of process is there to learning the exact same thing you already know. Isn’t it more like a quick review? I mean, if I had to do some algebra now, I wouldn’t read the whole damn book front to back and call it a process! I’d give myself a quick refresher and move along.
Of course, that might be why I’m a loser.
I hate the use of the phrase “market inefficiency” when it is applied to basketball players. It’s kind of like “Beer! It’s not just for breakfast any more!” It’s funny the first time and the second time. But after that…well, it’s still funny.
Ok, I don’t have a point there. I just like beer. But, market inefficiency is an overplayed metaphor. I think it is a way for people covering the sport to say “Talent! We don’t know it when we see it!”
It’s time for my almost annual analysis of the Spurs schedule. I breakdown the schedule into segments and then predict how the Spurs will fair in each segment. In the end, I’ll tell you how many games I think they’ll win this season.
The shell drill is about defensive positioning. You have to learn to play defense away from the ball as well as on the ball. The key to this is positioning. It is the same whether you are playing man-to-man or zone. Different coaches will have different rules, but the principles will be the same.
In this class we are going to put in the foundation for shooting drills. These are going to be the basics from which a player can develop their full set of drills. As the class continues, we will add to this first class.
Everything you need to know happened in the second and third minutes of game 4 which ended with the Spurs up 5-2. Want to know what Spurs basketball is? It happened. Want to know what great coaching is? It happened. Want to know what effort is? It happened. Want to see lollygagging? It happened. Want to see the difference between coachable players and non-coachable players? It happened. Want to know why the Spurs are up 3-1? It happened. Want to know why the Heat won’t recover? It happened.
I kid you not. Five to two is hardly a commanding lead, but every difference between these teams happened in those two minutes.
Week two will (did, really, as class was yesterday) focus on the three basic steps you need to know in order to play defense. The retreat step, the attack step, and the pivot. I read about them in a book written by Morgan Wootten, the great Dematha High School coach. The cover has a picture of Keith Bogans on it from his high school days.