I have to toot my own horn here. For the many I’ve gotten wrong (Artest in LA, Ariza in NOLA, Scola), it seems I’ve been dead on about Kyle Lowry since last year. Since the All-Star break, the beastly bulldog has averaged 19.9 points, 8.5a assists, and 5.5 boards per contest. Those are All-Star numbers, folks. It would seem that Aaron Brooks’ mere presence in the lineup, as the positional incumbent, was having a restrictive effect on Lowry’s production. Maybe he forced things thinking his job was not safe…? Maybe he still had not felt like the team’s leader…? Who knows, but Lowry has been at another level since the trade.
Wednesday, 6:00pm CST @ Wells Fargo Center
All in-game and post-game discussion goes here.
Something to which some thought should be given. It’s been said by Morey himself that, requisite to contention are both a top 10 offense and a top 10 defense. This team has achieved both distinctions since the deadline.
Can they reproduce those efforts over the course of an entire year?
Here at Red94, I have linked to and lauded the work of Ian Levy and his sleek, robustly informative blog Hickory High prior to this post, so I almost feel embarrassed to focus so strongly on an article that he posted more than a week ago; however, as always, my capacity for handling shame is unparalleled, allowing me to talk about this great observation of Levy’s. After March 20th’s Rockets victory over the Utah Jazz, Levy wrote a piece focusing on the brilliant free-throw shooting of one Kevin Martin. Those in the Rockets fold have been keenly aware of Martin’s ridiculous efficacy at the charity stripe for the last year, but maybe all of us in the Rockets know may not quite comprehend the depth of the performance Martin has put on from the line in the 2010-11 season. From Levy:
The other thing which seems to make Martin so unique is his pattern of development. To the consternation of basketball coaches, trainers and analysts, free throw shooting is a skill which tends to stay fairly static over time. Over the past ten seasons the league average FT% has never dropped below 75.2%, and never risen above 77.1%. Over the course of a player’s career their FT% tends to stay fairly similar as well.
Despite entering the league as a very good free throw shooter, Martin has seen his FT% rise substantially. He shot 81.7% his last season at Western Carolina but just 65.5% as an NBA rookie. Even if we dismiss his rookie season as a blip we still see steady improvement. He’s increased his FT% almost every season, and is shooting 89.0% from the stripe this year. Even more impressive is he’s done that while substantially increasing his number of attempts. As a rookie, Martin averaged 4.4 FTA/36. This season he’s averaging 9.6. Read More