Motiejunas shines in second half stint

So I woke up from a nap around midway through the third quarter and turned on the game on my Ipad.  Until my connection went out, sometime midway through the fourth, Donatas Motiejunas played the entire duration.  In that time, he shined.

Motiejunas finished the game with 11 points (4-6 from the field) with 6 boards.  During the cited stint, though, I recall the big man hitting two 3′s, driving the lane for two passes, and posting up inside several times.  In essence, he showed every ability a big man can have aside from tearing down the rim with a tomahawk slam.

The 3′s are self explanatory.  On the mentioned drives, as the ball was swung around, he caught and dribbled through the paint, making a skip pass to Omer Asik on two occasions.  (Asik scored on one and the other time, was called for three seconds.)  But what stood out most from Motiejunas were the postups.  It wasn’t just that he’d post up when it was his number called – he’d regularly, almost on every play, aggressively try to post up his man deep inside the paint, off the ball, in hopes it would be swung around.  This puts quite a great deal of pressure on the opposing defense when they already are needing to worry about Harden strong-side penetration.

You will recall that I was a big fan of Marcus Morris.  With a shooting stroke and postup moves, he had a smooth skillset.  The problem was that he just didn’t have a position.  Morris was capable of all of the things Motiejunas can do, but he didn’t show that he could do them at the NBA level.  Morris had a beautiful postup game, but was too small to post up against NBA power forwards.  He was too slow to match up against NBA 3′s, as was the plan when he was drafted.  Morris became relegated to a poor rebounding spot-up shooter.  That’s probably why he’s gone.

Donatas grabbed six boards last night.  I didn’t focus in much on his defense, though I do recall one possession where Emeka Okafor backed him in, faked him out of his shoes, but missed the point blank layup.  For now, Motiejunas will need to be hidden next to Omer Asik.

It’s an encouraging start for Motiejunas but as I stated in a recent post, it takes so, so much to even make it in the NBA.  Motiejunas has all the skills–that’s plain as day to the naked eye–but we’ll see if he can put it all together.

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  • Drew in Abilene says 1 YEAR ago

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

  • Jeby says 1 YEAR 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 1 YEAR 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 1 YEAR 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 1 YEAR 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?