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@  SadLakerFan : (16 September 2015 - 04:37 AM) Man, as a Laker fan, I'm learning how little you care about the off season when your team sucks. Anyway, a quick moment to remember Moses. Still remember watching the 81 team as a kid - losing record, NBA Finals. I would have cried w/joy if they could have beaten the Celtics.
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@  jorgeaam : (15 September 2015 - 08:30 PM) So to celebrate his new contract, Montrezl Harrell saved someone's life on monday
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Dallas Mavericks 123, Houston Rockets 120: Where's the defense?


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#1 Red94

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    Posted 21 November 2013 - 05:59 AM

    New post: Dallas Mavericks 123, Houston Rockets 120: Where's the defense?
    By: Eric Nielsen

    In a near playoff atmosphere, the Rockets crumbled under pressure in the 4th quarter.  Leading by 14 to start the 4th, the Rockets defense disappeared. Monta Ellis and Dirk Nowitzki scored at will in the final frame as the Mavs outscored Houston 36 to 19.  The defensive weaknesses were very apparent and will have to be solved to beat good teams.  Dallas is a very good offensive team with Nowitzki, Ellis, Carter and Calderon able to hit big shots in the clutch.

    As the clock wound down, Nowitzki hit shot after shot on Jones.  Jones wasn’t effective on Nowitzki, who shot 13 of 20 for 35 points. Monta Ellis shot 13 of 18 for 37 points.  The Maverick veterans showed why coaches love the experienced players in clutch time.  It was Ellis, Nowitzki and Carter dominating our young guys at the end of the game.

    The Rockets offense froze in the final quarter.   No one wanted to take the big shot and the ball kept ending up in Harden’s hands with the shot clock running down.  It turned out to be like last year, Harden in isolation at the end of the game and everyone on defense keying on him.  He shot only 2 for 8 from behind the arc.

    Parsons was dominating in the first half and then disappeared in the final quarter.  Chandler had 21 points and 11 assists but was MIA in clutch time. This was a good dress rehearsal for the playoffs.  The Mavs haven’t lost at home this year and are a tough out.  Let’s chalk this one up to a learning experience and hope to come out better prepared to deal with close games like this as the year progresses.

    Howard had his best game of the season by far, making Dalembert look like his shoes were nailed to the ground.  The first three quarters, the Mavs left Dalembert one on one with Howard and he hit his first 11 shots.  He went 9 of 13 from the line and took the Hack a Howard strategy out of play by hitting his free throws.  Hack a Howard was used only once in the game with 3 minutes left in the third and he hit both free throws.  But, by the 4th quarter the Mavs started double teaming, shutting down the inside game and the Rockets couldn’t hit from the outside.  Howard finished with 33 points and 11 boards.

    Lin was a non factor in this game.  He didn’t hit one field goal and ended up with one point in 17 minutes of play.  His +/- was a -10.  His shot looked short and McHale went with Beverley for 37 minutes.  Beverley’s defense was probably one of the reasons he got so much time, but he couldn’t do anything to stop Ellis.  Our youth showed in our guard play tonight.  Often this season that youth is a plus, but tonight it killed the Rockets.

    Asik came in early and played 12 minutes and grabbed 5 boards.  But, with Howard earning all those millions with his stellar play, Asik only came in to spell Howard temporarily.  The Rockets do not have a defensive stopper and that may be what they need to look for if they trade Asik.  This game was a tragedy to lose, and they wasted Howard's best game of the season.


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    #2 rm90025

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      Posted 21 November 2013 - 06:46 AM

      Houston's loss to Dallas is an indictment of McHale's coaching philosophy.  Anyone could've seen that Houston's lead was fool's gold.  Dwight Howard not missing a shot or a FT? Terence Jones, more efficient than James Worthy? Come on!  The only reason that lead held up for so long was because of Chandler Parsons' hot shooting (though he only took 10 shots) and Jose Calderon's pretty subpar play.  What was missing was the dribble penetration from Harden and Lin.  I think the big mistake was not getting Lin into rhythm earlier in the game.  In the first half, his minutes were spaced sporadically, and he barely got off the bench until the end of the 3rd quarter.  His passing, defense and ball handling were good, but he missed 5 shots and only played 17 minutes (but it felt like he played 10).  It would be easy to blame Lin for having a bad game, but isn't it the responsibility of the coaching staff to get the team's most efficient scorer into position to score?  They ran maybe 2 plays for him and he got 1 trip to the line out of it.  How does someone who has scored so well to start the season only get 5 shots and 17 minutes?

       

      The Beverley experiment pretty much failed...miserably.  He got absolutely torched by Monta Ellis and was not able to score enough on the other end to make him work on defense.  It's hard to justify what Beverley did to earn 30+ minutes. The plays he did make were the typical energy/loose ball plays that one usually gets from a bench player.  Monta could've put up 30 shots if he had wanted to, but was focused on trying to find a third scorer to help him and Dirk. Stellar game for Ellis. He might've turned the corner in terms of his efficiency and trying to make his teammates better.

       

      Defensively, does McHale really think that Terence Jones is an upgrade over Asik?  Jones is really good finishing near the rim, but defensively he isn't a good fit.  


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      #3 HazeWinkle

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        Posted 21 November 2013 - 07:15 AM

        Houston's loss to Dallas is an indictment of McHale's coaching philosophy.  Anyone could've seen that Houston's lead was fool's gold.  Dwight Howard not missing a shot or a FT? Terence Jones, more efficient than James Worthy? Come on!  The only reason that lead held up for so long was because of Chandler Parsons' hot shooting (though he only took 10 shots) and Jose Calderon's pretty subpar play.  What was missing was the dribble penetration from Harden and Lin.  I think the big mistake was not getting Lin into rhythm earlier in the game.  In the first half, his minutes were spaced sporadically, and he barely got off the bench until the end of the 3rd quarter.  His passing, defense and ball handling were good, but he missed 5 shots and only played 17 minutes (but it felt like he played 10).  It would be easy to blame Lin for having a bad game, but isn't it the responsibility of the coaching staff to get the team's most efficient scorer into position to score?  They ran maybe 2 plays for him and he got 1 trip to the line out of it.  How does someone who has scored so well to start the season only get 5 shots and 17 minutes?

         

        The Beverley experiment pretty much failed...miserably.  He got absolutely torched by Monta Ellis and was not able to score enough on the other end to make him work on defense.  It's hard to justify what Beverley did to earn 30+ minutes. The plays he did make were the typical energy/loose ball plays that one usually gets from a bench player.  Monta could've put up 30 shots if he had wanted to, but was focused on trying to find a third scorer to help him and Dirk. Stellar game for Ellis. He might've turned the corner in terms of his efficiency and trying to make his teammates better.

         

        Defensively, does McHale really think that Terence Jones is an upgrade over Asik?  Jones is really good finishing near the rim, but defensively he isn't a good fit. 

         

         Lin is no better then beverly lin looked absolutly lost tonight like he didnt know what he was doing and asik cannot finish at the rim. This team is really good on offense but even worse on the defensive side they are bad

         

        Edited by HazeWinkle, 21 November 2013 - 07:16 AM.

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        #4 goRockets

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          Posted 21 November 2013 - 08:18 AM



          Rockets scored enough to win this game, even with Lin being cold. I agree that first half he just never got in rhythm, only played like 9 or 10 minutes entire 1st half, also 2nd half. And of the 5 shots he took, most were with no time or little time left on shot clock, basically not great looks. PB was left in the game 4th Q to basically help Harden on defense guarding Ellis, which both failed to do. Rockets could have probably used Lin's dribble penetration down the stretch, but McHale was too worried about Harden's defense, so he kept PB in there. But Rockets have lost all 4 games that PB plays more than 30 minutes, and if you look at those games (except the Philly game), it's mainly because the other teams SGs were torching Harden, so PB is playing defense to cover up Harden's deficiencies.

          But it's still early in the season, hopefully the players and coaches will take note and not play 4th Quarters like this anymore, need to get stops and attack on offense. And stop letting PB take the last shot of a game, he's not that type of clutch player.


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          #5 Richards

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            Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:38 PM

            I have been beating this coaching snafu drum for some time. You can blame Harden's ISO, or clutch gene, ball movement, or shot got cold.

            McHale's rotation was absolutely horrible especially last night game. He used Lin as a mop up and Lin never got into rhythm. What a shame.


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            #6 SDrake

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              Posted 21 November 2013 - 01:51 PM

              Although the Rockets did many things poorly that lead to the loss, WTF was Harden doing shooting an unnecessary 27 footer during the last minute of the game?  Does Harden not trust his teammates during the final minutes of games?  Or is the "only Harden is allowed to shoot" during the final minute of close games a McHale directive?

               

              Maybe my memory is being selecive, but I'd love to see a summary of Harden's stats during the final minute of close games for this season and last.  My "hopefully selective" memory believes his shooting is horrendous.  How many games do the Rockets choke in the final minute because of the "only Harden is allowed to shoot" offense.  There's 4 other players.  Run an offense and get the other 4 players involved.


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              #7 Alituro

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                Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:16 PM

                Our bench lost us the game last night. You can claim that it was due to Harden's clutch time heroics (or lack of), but it was during both bench stints (late1st/early 2nd, and late 3rd/early4th) that the momentum swayed in favor of the Mavs. The 2nd unit defense was miles worse than the 1st unit's and Garcia and Lin were ice cold, and Asik is never much of a threat to score anyway. The only bright spot from our bench play last night was the 5-5 Casspi, but he can't do it all. We were able to regain our momentum after the first bench stint, but due to being the second night of a B2B (with travel) we weren't able to wrestle the momentum back in the second stint. Maybe it's all on McHale for not staggering the rest periods of our starters in the second half rather than pull them all out at once. There is no such thing as a comfortable lead on the 2nd night of a B2B nor is there one against the offensive juggernauts that are Ellis and Nowitski, we should have been better prepared, physically, for that final onslaught, I knew it was coming form the start of the second half. Definitely a learning experience, just hope we can build off of it. Oh, and where was D-mo last night? We definitely could have used his energy and being 7' he may have done a better job thwarting Dirk.


                Edited by Alituro, 21 November 2013 - 02:18 PM.

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                #8 PKM

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                  Posted 21 November 2013 - 02:36 PM

                  I fell asleep right before the game started, woke up at the end of the third quarter, saw that we were up by 14, and decided to just go back to sleep.  Looks like that was the right move.

                   

                  How was Harden's defense, anyways?  I know I wrote in the preview that Ellis would be a big test defensively, but it sounds like from what I've heard that Ellis just went off like he always does against Houston.  How much was the former, and how much was Harden's defense?


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                  #9 John P

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                    Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:14 PM



                    Great summary. It pretty much explains it all.

                    For 3 quarters this looked like a well oiled machine. The offense was flowing easily and the D wasn't horrible...we were getting occasional stops. But then the wheels came off. Jekyll and Hyde basketball.

                    My only additional thought was that two real things are keeping this team from WCF or a Championship (besides the always necessary good luck):
                    1) Howard's mental state: last night he played extremely well. Maybe it was because the D on him was lacking, but he looked dialed in, concentrating and playing a great post game (for once). But we have all seen when he isn't dialed in. ...when he is at the free throw line just sitting there in his head "don't miss...don't miss" and of course he misses. I don't know what kind of process he can develop to get out of his head but clearly it is the dominant feature that holds him back.
                    2) Defense. And I am not talking about lock down Indiana or SA defense. Just mediocre defense that is there all game. Defense that doesn't disappear. Defense that doesn't leave men wide open over and over again. This is a team problem but Harden is the biggest problem of a problem bunch.

                    Until both of these stars fix those problems we are going to be a great team to watch loose the first round of the playoffs.

                    The season is still really early but whoever can talk to Harden about committing to D needs to do it. Was he that bad in OKC? Did Durant keep him in line?

                    And Howard's mental state...? Who knows. Maybe if he starts having more and more games like this past game, where he dominates...then his confidence will go back up after LA ruined it. Here is hoping for it.


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                    #10 metta3311

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                      Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:30 PM

                      Wow. Looks like McHale/Sampson want to cap Lin's ceiling.

                       

                      How do you give Lin 17 minutes after the way he's been playing?

                       

                      Absurd.


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                      #11 Mason Khamvilay

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                      Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:33 PM

                      Wow. Looks like McHale/Sampson want to cap Lin's ceiling.

                       

                      How do you give Lin 17 minutes after the way he's been playing?

                       

                      Absurd.

                      Exactly. And it's not like he was playing Lin then pulled him out because he wasn't playing well, most of those minutes came after Lin was cold from sitting on the bench for too long. Cold and confused, as was I. 


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                      #12 Cooper

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                        Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:39 PM

                        Yeah Lin playing more might have helped but there's no excuse for giving up 123
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                        #13 datruth

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                          Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:51 PM



                          This is how McHale treats Lin . Mchale can't wait for a chance to bench this kid. Please just trade this kid,


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                          #14 Mason Khamvilay

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                          Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:51 PM

                          Yeah Lin playing more might have helped but there's no excuse for giving up 123

                          If I was McHale I wouldn't have let Harden guard Ellis, that was a disaster waiting to happen. The best match-up for Ellis probably would have been Lin, he would have definitely done a better job of staying in front of Ellis and forcing the bad shots Ellis is known for. 


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                          #15 Mario Peña

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                          Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:57 PM

                          I seriously doubt McHale has something against Lin. That doesn't make any sense and sounds like message board fodder.
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                          How sweet it is!

                          #16 Richards

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                            Posted 21 November 2013 - 03:58 PM

                            Nothing new. All the same as last year.

                            McHale stick with the unit that doing well for too long until they started fading or tired. And then he put another unit those sitting on the bench for too long and tough to get into rhythm. I kept saying this since last year, McHale rotation was pretty bad.

                             

                            And he has no authority to stop Harden's ISO while game is on line. I have no problem with Harden as primary option and he should be.

                            But dribble dribble dribble while all others standing for nothing and chuck a low percentage shot. That must stop.


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                            #17 Richards

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                              Posted 21 November 2013 - 04:02 PM

                              I seriously doubt McHale has something against Lin. That doesn't make any sense and sounds like message board fodder.

                              I believe McHale is a good person. He just misused Lin, (TJ in the past). 

                              Again, I admire and love McHale as a person. He contributed so much to the game, one of the best players in history of basketball and Hall of Famer.

                              But I think he is a so so coach. I don't think he can take Rockets to championship. I hope he can prove me wrong.


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                              #18 Mason Khamvilay

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                              Posted 21 November 2013 - 04:10 PM

                              I believe that if McHale becomes more receptive to analytics it will improve his rotations and improve him as a coach. I'm sure his rotations will improve on their own after a lot of "experimenting", but the improvements would come faster with the help of analytics, and that's okay with me because the players and chemistry is improving too so when everything comes together it's going to be huge.  


                              Edited by 2016Champions, 21 November 2013 - 04:13 PM.

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                              #19 timetodienow1234567

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                              Posted 21 November 2013 - 04:11 PM

                              But don't tell the players. Brad Stevens tried and his players were confused.
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                              Why so Serious? :D


                              #20 pampaus

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                                Posted 21 November 2013 - 04:12 PM

                                This game looked like Mchale thought it was NBA 2k14 where you can just keep the starters in and turn fatigue settings off.

                                 

                                -First quarter was great, but we all know its not possible to keep that pace without rotating 8+ players (see: Mike Dantoni offense).  Mchale did a poor job of rotating his players in at the right moments, then got frustrated when the second unit went cold and got disorganized and put all the starters back in early (this happened in both 1st and 2nd half).

                                 

                                In regard to Lin, how does one of your leading scorers only get 17 minutes, and sporadic minutes at that?  It was like revolving door minutes last night.  

                                 

                                And did the coaching staff really think Terrence Jones could stop Dirk from being Dirk?  There isn't a PF in the league that can stop him when he gets going.  Double team!

                                 

                                D12 and Parsons were great, Beverley was meh, Harden was frustrating as usual.

                                 

                                 

                                TL;DR: Mchale is Hall of Fame player, not Hall of Fame coach


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