Donatas Motiejunas getting his chance

This video via Clutchfans.  To start, regarding Matt Bullard’s comment, while I’m sure Motiejunas has been practicing, this move isn’t indicative of anything in that regard – he had this kind of stuff already in his repertoire before the Rockets drafted him.  Offensive skill was his strength.  What kept Motiejunas abroad, and has kept him off the court thus far isn’t offense, but rather, his lack of rebounding and defense.

Watching the play, you can understand my assertion months back that Motiejunas has easily been the most talented post player on the team since the start of camp.  Just look at the fluidity of the move and contrast against the robotic, rigid motions of Patrick Patterson and Omer Asik.  This, combined with his 3 point touch, and Motiejunas already has the skillset to help this team.

As already alluded to, Motiejunas’ problem is rebounding and defense.  He has a REB% of 8.1%.  For context, the unanimously disparaged Patrick Patterson has a REB% of 10.5, and against starting competition.

How about Motiejunas’ defense?  The Houston Rockets as a team have a Defrtg of 104.4.  When Motiejunas is on the court, that falls to 101.2.  That doesn’t really tell us much because Defrtg is inclusive of and not accountable for many other variables such as opponents and teammates.  For a closer look, I logged into the Synergy database to check out how D-Mo fares individually in different circumstances.  Unfortunately, the site isn’t working…

I’ll check back on that later and in the meantime, use the eye test to judge the rookie forward as he’s finally getting minutes.

View this discussion from the forum.

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Total comments: 17
  • Drew in Abilene says 9 months ago

    He was working with his national team, and the Rockets allowed him to due that instead of Summer League.

  • Jeby says 9 months ago

    Any theories as to why the Rockets didn't have D-Mo didn't put in some work at Summer League?

  • Rockets fan newton says 9 months ago

    this is a repost from my post on clutch fans

    Tjones easily. hands down.

    the PF starting spot will be a 5th option due to the people on the court. Harden/howard wil be the 1 and 2 options. switching off depending on the situation. chandler parsons is the 3rd spot. he's going to get more 3 attempts over the PF spot. the PF will have the ball very little while the starters are on the court. they will take an occasional 3, get a pass on a PnR, and get put backs.

    dmo needs to ball for a post up. he doesn't have a knack for rebound like jones does. ive seen both of them pass decently. both their outside shots need work. jones is a slightly stronger finisher.

    jones being a better finisher has an advantage with PnR and he doesn't need the ball in his hands for a long time to score. his knack for rebounding also is an advantage for getting offensive rebounds/put backs which do not take a long time to perform. jones' better defense fits the starting squad more.

    dmo fits the bench better. he can be a 2nd/3rd option when the bench is on the court. offensive spark off the bench. beverly and asik will be the defensive hounds and will offset some of dmo's weaknesses.

    Agreed..I still want to see how Dmo looks with the muscle he put on..we havnt got a chance to see him play at all..Tjones already has the leg up with reb and help def..which te team needs more anyway..if he can add a decent shot he should staet
  • miketheodio says 9 months ago

    this is a repost from my post on clutch fans

    Tjones easily. hands down.

    the PF starting spot will be a 5th option due to the people on the court. Harden/howard wil be the 1 and 2 options. switching off depending on the situation. chandler parsons is the 3rd spot. he's going to get more 3 attempts over the PF spot. the PF will have the ball very little while the starters are on the court. they will take an occasional 3, get a pass on a PnR, and get put backs.

    dmo needs to ball for a post up. he doesn't have a knack for rebound like jones does. ive seen both of them pass decently. both their outside shots need work. jones is a slightly stronger finisher.

    jones being a better finisher has an advantage with PnR and he doesn't need the ball in his hands for a long time to score. his knack for rebounding also is an advantage for getting offensive rebounds/put backs which do not take a long time to perform. jones' better defense fits the starting squad more.

    dmo fits the bench better. he can be a 2nd/3rd option when the bench is on the court. offensive spark off the bench. beverly and asik will be the defensive hounds and will offset some of dmo's weaknesses.

  • 2016Champions says 9 months ago

    I can feel how my body is getting stronger my power and speed are coming back ! Incredible !

  • ale11 says 1 YEAR ago

    You want to know what is the best way to address the rebounding issue? Get the guys throw 3's in practice and get Motie to box out Asik until he can out-rebound him....if you can box out Omer, you can do it with most players.

  • DaDakota says 1 YEAR ago Glad to see my man DMo getting some love.

    He has skills for sure, just needs time on the floor to find his way.

    DD
  • rockets best fan says 1 YEAR ago after watching d-mo last night I don't want to be to quick, but who were those guys we traded again :lol: just kidding I wish those guys well especially ppat and mm. they gave us some good monents. now back to d-mo. depending how he responds the last part of this season I think we might put that PF aqusition on hold :lol: I know some of the posters here have been calling for this a long time, but I told you we needed to be patient. we have good PFs. they just need PT. obtaining t-rob and already having d-mo and t-jones I think we are set there.......oh and there is another guy, but can't seem to remember his name royce something :lol: it might be time for us to start looking at some other positions to upgrade instead of PF. I really liked the passion I saw in d-mo last night. this guy is ready. lets unleash him
  • Steven says 1 YEAR ago

    rockets best fan, on 24 February 2013 - 17:29 PM said:


    thomas robinson has his work cut out because d-mo is looking like the starter we have been looking for B)/>


    Compation breeds excellence.
  • arnold p says 1 YEAR ago I agree his defense is an issue but looks like rebounding is no longer a real problem. He did some good blocking out last night but the more impressive thing I saw was they way he used his quickness to save the ball twice and to get his hand on ball to keep in play. With the quickness he show the defense will come with more playing time.
  • rockets best fan says 1 YEAR ago thomas robinson has his work cut out because d-mo is looking like the starter we have been looking for B)
  • Red94 says 1 YEAR ago New post: Motiejunas shines in second half stint
  • timetodienow1234567 says 1 YEAR ago That's like the difference between a beggar and a billionaire.
  • Jeby says 1 YEAR ago Although he'll never be a dominant shot-blocker, D-Mo drew at least one charge last night with his quick feet. I think that was the most encouraging sign for him defensively--he has the speed to get to the right spot. Once he gets comfortable with the rotations, I think he could be passable as a help defender a la Jared Jeffries. He still doesn't have the strength to handle big post players, but I wouldn't worry about that for two reasons: 1) bruising post players are a dying breed, and 2) virtually no rookie bigs have that strength anyways, and it doesn't really hurt their stock (looking at you, Anthony Davis. Wait--where'd you go? Oh. You turned sideways). I would really love to see him playing next to Robinson with T-Rob in a Ben Wallace role. I think they could be like a bench (read: poor man's) version of Ben and Sheed.
  • Rahat Huq says 1 YEAR ago A few other things:

    1) McHale's recent comments on Motiejunas are very encouraging. He said that he has been playing very well in practice and will get more time.

    2) I think the defense is one of those things where he just has to get out there and adjust to the speed of the game. He won't get better sitting on the bench. Fortunately it seems McHale is willing to give him reps.
  • cdhthegreat says 1 YEAR ago His defense is very suspect at this point. He doesn't move his feet well enough on the defensive end to keep up with more agile bigs and he doesn't have the bulk to handle the bigger guys. His offense is promising though and with Asik manning the middle we may be able to cover him up a bit.
  • thejohnnygold says 1 YEAR ago You're spot on. D-Mo is so good offensively it almost negates how bad his defense currently is--almost. I almost think playing him on the wings might be better for a while. his speed and length would make it tough to get by him, and if we put Smith and Asik behind him then we're pretty solid. Plus, don't you think he could post up about every SF in the league not named Lebron or Carmelo with ease?