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@  2016Champions : (04 December 2013 - 07:42 PM) Pop has the luxury of having Tim Duncan who makes Pop's job a lot easier, and he also has a longer leash with decision making because he has won championships.
@  feelingsuper... : (04 December 2013 - 01:20 PM) It's way too early for that kind of stuff. Way way too early.
@  rocketrick : (04 December 2013 - 05:20 AM) I don't ever remember Pop or Phil benching star players at the end of a close game
@  timetodienow... : (04 December 2013 - 01:23 AM) That's what Pop does. I think he's going to have to find ways to push their buttons like Pop and Phil do in order to win a chip.
@  rocketrick : (04 December 2013 - 12:45 AM) So Coach McHale should discipline Harden, D12 or both when they fail to follow the plan? Take them out of the game?
@  timetodienow... : (03 December 2013 - 11:09 PM) Who is that on? Mchale for not forcing the PnR or Dwight for refusing to do it? With Mchale's refusals to combat Harden's ISOs, I'd have to go with Mchale's lack of discipline.
@  2016Champions : (03 December 2013 - 10:19 PM) The reason his percentages are down are because he's posting up more now, where as he was mainly a pick and roll guy in Orlando.
@  2016Champions : (03 December 2013 - 10:18 PM) Dwight's numbers per 36 are actually about the same as his per 36 in Orlando, so his numbers aren't down as much as it looks on the surface.
@  Sir Thursday : (03 December 2013 - 11:39 AM) I think there is definitely something to the notion that Howard doesn't look like he has the same devastating explosiveness around the rim anymore. Probably still too early to come to any hard conclusions about whether he can still be an elite finisher there though.
@  jorgeaam : (03 December 2013 - 07:32 AM) Well, I think Dwight won't be posting 20-10 every night, but he should be able to finish more, I've seen him missing a lot of shots that he would have made in Orlando, I think it is more of a confidence issue with him, because in the Hakeem training videos he looked smooth.
@  RollingWave : (03 December 2013 - 06:11 AM) I do wonder if his finishing decline is a thing or a fluke
@  RollingWave : (03 December 2013 - 06:11 AM) he is getting a smaller % of touches, especially in terms of plays strickly ran for him, than he did in Oralndo
@  RollingWave : (03 December 2013 - 06:10 AM) FWIW, it is very unlikely for Dwight to really put up 20 per game points wise with our offensive system
@  RollingWave : (03 December 2013 - 06:09 AM) Meh, there's a good deal of things that points in the right direction for Dwight and some that aren't, let's see how it evens out towards later in the season
@  HazeWinkle : (03 December 2013 - 05:02 AM) espically if this team has a chance at being a top 4 team and make at least 60% from the free throw line.
@  HazeWinkle : (03 December 2013 - 05:01 AM) when you get paid what dwight gets paid Dwight needs to get 20-10 every game.
@  2016Champions : (03 December 2013 - 04:54 AM) I'm perfectly happy with a 90% Dwight, we just need to run the PnR more
@  2016Champions : (03 December 2013 - 04:52 AM) How far is Dwight from his old self? Because some of those alley oops he caught were pretty impressive
@  HazeWinkle : (03 December 2013 - 04:17 AM) Dwight Howard where is your old self because lately you have shown the city of houston why alot of people think you are overrated and overpayed
@  jorgeaam : (03 December 2013 - 04:10 AM) Oh God, where's the D?


DwightLife - Chapter 6: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

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#1 Red94


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    Posted 01 December 2013 - 09:27 PM

    New post: DwightLife - Chapter 6: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
    By: John Eby

    Dwight Howard’s arrival in Houston signals the arrival of one of the most dominant players in basketball, along with one of the most polarizing personalities in sports. Here at Red94, we are embracing the drama of Superman’s first season as a Rocket with a weekly column: “DwightLife.”

    The win over the Spurs showcased the good, the bad, and the ugly parts of Dwight Howard's post play.

    First, the good. Howard made it clear in the opening moments of the game that Tim Duncan couldn't handle him in the post by himself. Here Howard gets the ball right where he likes it--on the right block.


    He takes a few strong dribbles toward the middle, fakes back toward the baseline, spins back to the middle and lofts in a skyhook that hits nothing but net.


    The next time Howard posts up, Tim Duncan tries to front him.


    Howard catches the ball with ample space to make a move to the basket. He gets right underneath the basket, gets fouled, and inexplicably misses the bunny layup.


    He still gets a point at the line, and by now the damage to the Spurs defense is done. Tim Duncan, one of the greatest help defenders of all time, now has to direct almost all of his attention toward containing Howard, and San Antonio is going to have to send a double team and leave a shooter every time Howard gets the ball in the post. However, this leads us to the "bad."

    Since the double team is assured, Howard will need to pass out of a few of them. Right after Howard's first successful post up against Duncan, Houston goes to him again. This time, when Howard makes his move towards the middle, Kawhi Leonard goes for the strip with his go-go-gadget arms.


    Howard recovers the ball, but when he tries to pass to Harden, whom Leonard has sagged off of, the go-go-gadget arms strike again.


    Leonard steals the pass. Howard's presence near the basket still creates space for shooters even when he isn't touching the ball, but if there's anything Dwight needs to learn from Hakeem, it's how to react to multiple defenders coming at him at once.

    Now, for the ugly.

    In the fourth quarter, when the Rockets desperately needed a bucket, they went to Howard on the right block against Tiago Splitter. This should have been an automatic two points.


    Instead, Splitter plays Dwight Howard, Dwight Howard's elbows, and the referees like a fiddle. As Howard turns to spin baseline for a hook shot, Spitter crow-hops over into the path of Howard's enormous elbows, and flops.


    Howard gets called for a charge on this exact play once every couple games, and it's one of the most infuriating, anti-basketball calls in the NBA. He's not lowering his shoulder. He has both hands on the ball, and he's not even holding his elbows very wide. It's just physically impossible for Dwight to turn and face the basket with the ball in his hands without his elbows swinging around. I might add that a left-elbow to the defender's face was exactly what made the most unstoppable shot by the most unstoppable scorer of all time, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Do you think  a whistle blew when this shot was taken?

    No call gets Dwight out of his rhythm more than the bogus elbow-charge, because it's a call that basically makes it a foul for him to face up and shoot a shot. It's also the ugliest part of Howard's game, because just when we think we're going to see a great athlete do athletic things, we instead hear a whistle blow and watch his face fill with impotent rage. One solution would be for Howard to develop a fadeaway. A better solution would be for the league to just require defenders to defend Dwight Howard instead of jumping into his elbows.

    Follow John Eby on Twitter.


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    #2 ale11


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    Posted 02 December 2013 - 03:32 PM

    I'd really love to see him try some sort of short-range jumper. Defenders are expecting him to throw some kind of hook/layup/dunk and often leave him a bit open until he steps into the paint. One of the not-so-secrets about Hakeem's post-play was that the opposite center had to guard the jumper as well. Keeping defenses honest makes it easier to attack the rim, specially if you are not a master "back to the basket" player.

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