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Beal scored a career high 53 last night in a terrible loss to the Bulls. Tonight, follows it up with an astounding 55 in a hell of an effort against the Bucks (another loss but still). First player to score 50+ on back-to-back nights since... Kobe. Wow.
He's fucking amazing. A shame his talent is being wasted just like Trae.
 

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What is everyone's opinion on Rocket's super small ball? 4 out + Westbrook seem to be working for them besides that slip up against the Knicks. They don't seem to be missing much without a traditional center. It almost seem like Westbrook is playing the role of a center on offence for them now.

Also lol the Nuggets lost to the g-league warriors.
 

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What is everyone's opinion on Rocket's super small ball? 4 out + Westbrook seem to be working for them besides that slip up against the Knicks. They don't seem to be missing much without a traditional center. It almost seem like Westbrook is playing the role of a center on offence for them now.

Also lol the Nuggets lost to the g-league warriors.
I hate everything about it. And it's a Mike D'Antoni invention so that makes me hate it even more. And it's not going to work in the playoffs so it's an idiotic move on his part and just further shows why he's one of the all time most overrated coaches in the history of the sport.

With that said, it isn't really hurting the Rockets all that much as of now. In fact it's helping Westbrook be a lot more effective as a player. It's going to absolutely fuck them over when they are matched up against teams like the Lakers, Nuggets, or the Jazz.
 

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I hate everything about it. And it's a Mike D'Antoni invention so that makes me hate it even more. And it's not going to work in the playoffs so it's an idiotic move on his part and just further shows why he's one of the all time most overrated coaches in the history of the sport.

With that said, it isn't really hurting the Rockets all that much as of now. In fact it's helping Westbrook be a lot more effective as a player. It's going to absolutely fuck them over when they are matched up against teams like the Lakers, Nuggets, or the Jazz.
MDA with CP3 and Harden was the only team that concerned the KD warriors though. That has to count for something. Mike was ahead of his time with the Suns, how is he overrated? His biggest flaw is a lack of trust in the 8th to 10th man and always overplaying his core players. But that is not that important in the playoffs when rotation shorten anyway.

I have similar doubts about it being effective in the playoffs but honestly I can't see any matchup is going to really punish them besides the Nuggets and Philly with Jokic and Embiid. AD will destroy any traditional centers as a small ball 5. Gobert lacks the post skill to punish small ball on the offensive end. The one match up that could really go against them is Jokic but the Nuggets are really guilty of playing to their opponent's level this season so they might lose a favorable match-up just because.

By going super small, the Rockets are baiting teams into post-ups that is less efficient than drive and kicks. Their players are strong enough to hold their own just enough against most small ball bigs. (traditional 3s and 4s) so that might not be as bad as it seem for them. Having said that, they are going to be outrebounded but probably betting that they will make more transition 3s for the post up 2s they are giving up.
 

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MDA with CP3 and Harden was the only team that concerned the KD warriors though. That has to count for something. Mike was ahead of his time with the Suns, how is he overrated? His biggest flaw is a lack of trust in the 8th to 10th man and always overplaying his core players. But that is not that important in the playoffs when rotation shorten anyway.
No, his major flaw is his complete disregard for the defensive end of the floor. And this isn't even in regards to making his guys play that end either (which was once an issue). Just the way his team is constructed right now is an indicator that he still doesn't care about defense. And it wouldn't be such an issue if everything about his game-plan didn't revolve around offense. But that isn't even his greatest flaw. His greatest flaw is the fact that he doesn't know how to adapt to the team given to him. Instead, he needs teams to be built to what he wants because he doesn't work off of anything else. His time as the 2013 Lakers head coach was one of the worst stretches of coaching I have ever seen in my entire life (and that is not an exaggeration, from my time that I started watching the NBA and playing basketball growing up, I can't think of any coaching performance that was worse). He has a starting line up consisting mostly of over the hill players who are well past their prime, and two frontcourt players who at that point are slower than your average PF/C, and he's STILL trying to implement his fast offense system. He was having Pau Gasol try to be a three point specialist. His absolute disregard for the personal at hand was attrocious and basically ruined the Lakers season (that and injuries, which was the main reason they struggled but still). His lack of trust in the 8 to 10th man? I wouldn't even put that in his top 5 worst qualities as a coach. But I digress.

And yeah, that team was a concern to the Warriors...for one season. And that was mostly due to Harden and Paul playing terrific.

Ahead of his time with the Suns? You think his style of offense was the first of its kind? You need to brush up on your NBA history.

I have similar doubts about it being effective in the playoffs but honestly I can't see any matchup is going to really punish them besides the Nuggets and Philly with Jokic and Embiid. AD will destroy any traditional centers as a small ball 5. Gobert lacks the post skill to punish small ball on the offensive end. The one match up that could really go against them is Jokic but the Nuggets are really guilty of playing to their opponent's level this season so they might lose a favorable match-up just because.
It's not about opposing players punishing them with post ups (although it will be hilarious to watch them try to defend against AD, assuming they make it that far). It's about having all of these smaller guys trying to compete with these bigger, stronger players for a seven game series. Shit like that matters. When you have a guy like PJ Tucker trying to play physical with someone like Gobert for consecutive games, that's going to take a toll on him. Imagine him trying to just get basic rebounds. Forget the fact that Gobert will likely feast on offensive and defensive rebounding, that's going to take a lot out of him or any other player that tries to fight for those opportunities. This is one of the reasons why you always want a big who is contempt with doing all of that dirty work. This is one of the reasons the Warriors struggled against the Thunder in 2016. They had a hard time dealing with the larger, more physical play style of the Thunder, who had much bigger and stronger players. If it wasn't for Klay Thompson, that 73 win Warriors team wouldn't have even made the finals that year (a series where the bigger physical style of play of the Cavaliers was also a factor, although not the main reason for the finals loss obviously).

By going super small, the Rockets are baiting teams into post-ups that is less efficient than drive and kicks. Their players are strong enough to hold their own just enough against most small ball bigs. (traditional 3s and 4s) so that might not be as bad as it seem for them. Having said that, they are going to be outrebounded but probably betting that they will make more transition 3s for the post up 2s they are giving up.
The problem with this is that there isn't enough versatility defensively to make that point matter. No matter what, a good offensive team is going to take advantage of it. Can you imagine this Rockets line up trying to stop Jokic from doing whatever he wants out there? Forget about the fact that LeBron is probably going to drive into the paint whenever he wants to. I don't take anything away from Robert Covington, who is a great defensive player, or even PJ Tucker for that matter, but you can't expect them to do all that much when guys like Westbrook and Harden (who has improved defensively I will give him that) are allowing people to score at will because they lack the ability to stop it from happening themselves. Going back to the 2016 Warriors for a moment, yeah, they liked to employ a small ball line up that was deadly, but the difference there is that it had multiple versatile defensive players like Thompson, Barnes, Iguodala, and Green who could guard multiple positions on the floor and could score from anywhere on the floor at the other end, and they all had a clear understanding of their roles on the court. You can't say the same about the Rockets right now. That doesn't take away from the individual talent of those players, but it is a factor no less.
 

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No, his major flaw is his complete disregard for the defensive end of the floor. And this isn't even in regards to making his guys play that end either (which was once an issue). Just the way his team is constructed right now is an indicator that he still doesn't care about defense. And it wouldn't be such an issue if everything about his game-plan didn't revolve around offense. But that isn't even his greatest flaw. His greatest flaw is the fact that he doesn't know how to adapt to the team given to him. Instead, he needs teams to be built to what he wants because he doesn't work off of anything else. His time as the 2013 Lakers head coach was one of the worst stretches of coaching I have ever seen in my entire life (and that is not an exaggeration, from my time that I started watching the NBA and playing basketball growing up, I can't think of any coaching performance that was worse). He has a starting line up consisting mostly of over the hill players who are well past their prime, and two frontcourt players who at that point are slower than your average PF/C, and he's STILL trying to implement his fast offense system. He was having Pau Gasol try to be a three point specialist. His absolute disregard for the personal at hand was attrocious and basically ruined the Lakers season (that and injuries, which was the main reason they struggled but still). His lack of trust in the 8 to 10th man? I wouldn't even put that in his top 5 worst qualities as a coach. But I digress.

And yeah, that team was a concern to the Warriors...for one season. And that was mostly due to Harden and Paul playing terrific.

Ahead of his time with the Suns? You think his style of offense was the first of its kind? You need to brush up on your NBA history.
But Pau ended up shooting 3s later on to stay in the NBA. So even that decision was ahead of its time. You know nothing about NBA history if you refuse to acknowledge Mike's offence changed the game. You let his bad years cloud your judgement of his entire career and you are the one again trying to sell me that you know more about the NBA? lol



It's not about opposing players punishing them with post ups (although it will be hilarious to watch them try to defend against AD, assuming they make it that far). It's about having all of these smaller guys trying to compete with these bigger, stronger players for a seven game series. Shit like that matters. When you have a guy like PJ Tucker trying to play physical with someone like Gobert for consecutive games, that's going to take a toll on him. Imagine him trying to just get basic rebounds. Forget the fact that Gobert will likely feast on offensive and defensive rebounding, that's going to take a lot out of him or any other player that tries to fight for those opportunities. This is one of the reasons why you always want a big who is contempt with doing all of that dirty work. This is one of the reasons the Warriors struggled against the Thunder in 2016. They had a hard time dealing with the larger, more physical play style of the Thunder, who had much bigger and stronger players. If it wasn't for Klay Thompson, that 73 win Warriors team wouldn't have even made the finals that year (a series where the bigger physical style of play of the Cavaliers was also a factor, although not the main reason for the finals loss obviously).
That's the thing though, the Rockets core players are shorter but they are all pretty strong to play up a position. Harden and Westbrook are more than capable of defending 1-on-1, their weakness is getting caught in switches. Covington is an excellent help defender. Tucker has been playing up a position for years and like you said is going to be dead playing center for full games. :lol Yeah you listed how those teams struggled, but what about teams that have a big struggling against those teams too? Playing smaller doesn't mean playing less physical. They are betting they can run the bigger guys who can't punish them on offence off the court. And judging by how the playoffs have been the past half a decade, we can't say that is a bad bet.



The problem with this is that there isn't enough versatility defensively to make that point matter. No matter what, a good offensive team is going to take advantage of it. Can you imagine this Rockets line up trying to stop Jokic from doing whatever he wants out there? Forget about the fact that LeBron is probably going to drive into the paint whenever he wants to. I don't take anything away from Robert Covington, who is a great defensive player, or even PJ Tucker for that matter, but you can't expect them to do all that much when guys like Westbrook and Harden (who has improved defensively I will give him that) are allowing people to score at will because they lack the ability to stop it from happening themselves. Going back to the 2016 Warriors for a moment, yeah, they liked to employ a small ball line up that was deadly, but the difference there is that it had multiple versatile defensive players like Thompson, Barnes, Iguodala, and Green who could guard multiple positions on the floor and could score from anywhere on the floor at the other end, and they all had a clear understanding of their roles on the court. You can't say the same about the Rockets right now. That doesn't take away from the individual talent of those players, but it is a factor no less.
I don't know man, how many bigs are out there that can protect the rim while staying in a small ball game? Like I said I feel Jokic is the one player that can really punish them but the Nuggets are really bad at playing to their opponents' level against easier opponents this season so I can't fully buy into them against the Rockets yet. Lebron is going to drive into the paint against anyone without Hibbert's 'verticality'. How are the Rockets able to guard Lebron is more of who they have at wing guarding him than super small ball versus regular line ups. Gordon, Tucker, Harden, Covington and Westbrook have the physical tools to play versatile defense too. They definitely have a clear understanding of their roles too knowing they are the shorter team for almost every game so it is team rebound every game. Rockets are super small in terms of height but they aren't giving up much in terms of strength imo. It is really up to them remaining disciplined with the game plan or it falls apart easily.
 

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But Pau ended up shooting 3s later on to stay in the NBA. So even that decision was ahead of its time.
That decision happened in 2013 when big men shooting threes was already a lot more common. And there's an entire country worth of big men who have been known three point shooters for a long time. There's nothing "ahead of his time" about that. Once again, learn the history of the game.

You know nothing about NBA history if you refuse to acknowledge Mike's offence changed the game. You let his bad years cloud your judgement of his entire career and you are the one again trying to sell me that you know more about the NBA? lol
Never said his offense didn't change the game. But he wasn't ahead of his time. That style of play wasn't anything new, it just wasn't the norm at that point. If you want to consider that "ahead of their time", I will proceed to laugh at you for acting like that is in anyway a positive aspect of D'Antoni when his playstyle never won him anything.

Why would I not let his bad years cloud my judgement? He's had more bad years than good ones. His entire tenure with the Knicks and Lakers were failures. In Phoenix, he failed over and over again (I'll give him a pass for 2007 because of Amare's suspension). Being a good regular season team doesn't mean anything when your formula isn't a proven success. At least Larry Brown won a title with his. No one is denying how effective his offense was. No one is denying how great the Suns were. But when he went somewhere else, the flaws in his system showed (and they showed even in Phoenix). It wasn't based on the coach, it was based on the personal. And that wouldn't necessarily be a problem if he wasn't hell bent on doing it regardless.

One of the most basic aspects of being a coach is that you adjust based on what you are given. And yet with a 40 year old Steve Nash, nearing retirement Kobe Bryant, an old Ron Artest, an old and slow Pau Gasol, and Dwight Howard who was fresh off of back surgery and noticeably slower, he wanted to incorporate a fast paced style that rivaled the Showtime Lakers.

That's not good coaching. That is laughably bad elementary leveled coaching that would be rejected at any high school level competition. And the part I always found amazing is when he blamed it not working on talent, NOT on this not being the right system for the team (and then when Kobe became the main ball handler, he tried to act like that was all him. Fuck right off D'Antoni because we all know that isn't true). And yes, it deserves to be focused upon. If LeBron's performance 9 years ago against the Dallas Mavericks continues to get criticized (and rightfully so), then don't be surprised when people point out the numerous years of failures D'Antoni experienced as a head coach, especially when it is well deserved and is more than any good years he's had.

That's the thing though, the Rockets core players are shorter but they are all pretty strong to play up a position. Harden and Westbrook are more than capable of defending 1-on-1, their weakness is getting caught in switches.
That is a massive problem when running a small ball line up.

Covington is an excellent help defender. Tucker has been playing up a position for years and like you said is going to be dead playing center for full games. :lol Yeah you listed how those teams struggled, but what about teams that have a big struggling against those teams too?
Like who?

Playing smaller doesn't mean playing less physical. They are betting they can run the bigger guys who can't punish them on offence off the court. And judging by how the playoffs have been the past half a decade, we can't say that is a bad bet.
Judging by what? The Warriors, a team that had four all stars in two of those finals wins and beat an injured team in the other? Or the Cavaliers who won off of a historic comeback thanks to being more physically dominant than the injured Warriors? Or the Raptors who were a complete all around time with versatile big man defenders on their team causing all kinds of problems for the Warriors? And all of this happening in games that were more slowed down, based on more physical styles of play where defense matters more than ever?

That's a pretty bad bet to make.

I don't know man, how many bigs are out there that can protect the rim while staying in a small ball game?
Anthony Davis, Javal McGee, Nikola Jokic, Steven Adams, Hassan Whiteside (IF the Blazers make the playoffs), Rudy Gobert. Quite a lot actually. All hypothetical's, I honestly have no idea idea how well they'd do in this situation, but they've done it before.

Like I said I feel Jokic is the one player that can really punish them but the Nuggets are really bad at playing to their opponents' level against easier opponents this season so I can't fully buy into them against the Rockets yet. Lebron is going to drive into the paint against anyone without Hibbert's 'verticality'. How are the Rockets able to guard Lebron is more of who they have at wing guarding him than super small ball versus regular line ups. Gordon, Tucker, Harden, Covington and Westbrook have the physical tools to play versatile defense too. They definitely have a clear understanding of their roles too knowing they are the shorter team for almost every game so it is team rebound every game. Rockets are super small in terms of height but they aren't giving up much in terms of strength imo. It is really up to them remaining disciplined with the game plan or it falls apart easily.
Having the strength doesn't do you a whole lot if you don't have the length. Even as I watch this Clippers/Rockets game right now, the glaring problems with this style of play that I just got done pointing out are incredibly obvious, and this isn't even one of the teams I mentioned. They have no idea what to do against Harrell, who basically has been able to do what ever he wanted down low. And he's not even a big guy with a lot of length.

And Harden, Westbrook and Gordon do NOT have what it takes to be versatile defenders. They have short arms and aren't very tall players. They do have the athleticism, but you're going to need a lot more than that when trying to defend teams like the Lakers and Nuggets. Again, Covington and Tucker, while great at that end (even fantastic) isn't going to be enough to get the job done. You need more than that. I'm not saying they aren't capable of doing it. But if you are relying on these guys to be "versatile defensive players", you're basically shooting yourself in the foot. Kyrie Irving has all the tools needed to be a versatile defensive player, I'm not about to put my hopes and dreams into him doing that because I know better.
 

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That decision happened in 2013 when big men shooting threes was already a lot more common. And there's an entire country worth of big men who have been known three point shooters for a long time. There's nothing "ahead of his time" about that. Once again, learn the history of the game.
Which big was shooting threes that season? Pau wouldn't even attempt to shoot it until like 2 years later.



Never said his offense didn't change the game. But he wasn't ahead of his time. That style of play wasn't anything new, it just wasn't the norm at that point. If you want to consider that "ahead of their time", I will proceed to laugh at you for acting like that is in anyway a positive aspect of D'Antoni when his playstyle never won him anything.
Many winners after that Suns team credit the Sun's offence and playing style for changing their approach. How is something wasn't the norm before him, but is the norm now not ahead of his time? Yeah the style wasn't new, but it wasn't proven in the NBA and seen as a gimmick European style before the Suns won a lot.

Why would I not let his bad years cloud my judgement? He's had more bad years than good ones. His entire tenure with the Knicks and Lakers were failures. In Phoenix, he failed over and over again (I'll give him a pass for 2007 because of Amare's suspension). Being a good regular season team doesn't mean anything when your formula isn't a proven success. At least Larry Brown won a title with his. No one is denying how effective his offense was. No one is denying how great the Suns were. But when he went somewhere else, the flaws in his system showed (and they showed even in Phoenix). It wasn't based on the coach, it was based on the personal. And that wouldn't necessarily be a problem if he wasn't hell bent on doing it regardless.
How is winning 50+ games = failling over and over again? How is being a good regular season team a knock on his coaching? Again champions in recent years have always held his system in high regards. I trust them more than someone hating on him for some dumb ringzzz only reason.

One of the most basic aspects of being a coach is that you adjust based on what you are given. And yet with a 40 year old Steve Nash, nearing retirement Kobe Bryant, an old Ron Artest, an old and slow Pau Gasol, and Dwight Howard who was fresh off of back surgery and noticeably slower, he wanted to incorporate a fast paced style that rivaled the Showtime Lakers.
Every coach wants to run fast now. Don't blame him for vets not realizing the change was coming and refuse to change.

That's not good coaching. That is laughably bad elementary leveled coaching that would be rejected at any high school level competition. And the part I always found amazing is when he blamed it not working on talent, NOT on this not being the right system for the team (and then when Kobe became the main ball handler, he tried to act like that was all him. Fuck right off D'Antoni because we all know that isn't true). And yes, it deserves to be focused upon. If LeBron's performance 9 years ago against the Dallas Mavericks continues to get criticized (and rightfully so), then don't be surprised when people point out the numerous years of failures D'Antoni experienced as a head coach, especially when it is well deserved and is more than any good years he's had.
Again, bigs started shooting 3s. Every team started running more. The vets had the tool to reshape their game to fit into a more modern offence but did not respect him enough to trust ti will work out. Imagine if Pau started spacing the floor and Dwight doing pick-and-rolls in his prime instead of asking for post-ups. That team would be much better even though they were much older.



That is a massive problem when running a small ball line up.
Hasn't really affected as much since teams like to target Harden in the post-up where is actually quite capable at. Their defense actually improved after the Capala trade. Still a small sample size though.



Like who?
Memphis, Rockets with Dwight. Also top seeded Pacers struggled against a losing 8th seeded Hawks that effectively destroyed Hibbert's career. I don't even know why I am defending this. Recent history showed bigs that can't contribute on offence are being played off the court in the playoffs.



Judging by what? The Warriors, a team that had four all stars in two of those finals wins and beat an injured team in the other? Or the Cavaliers who won off of a historic comeback thanks to being more physically dominant than the injured Warriors? Or the Raptors who were a complete all around time with versatile big man defenders on their team causing all kinds of problems for the Warriors? And all of this happening in games that were more slowed down, based on more physical styles of play where defense matters more than ever?

That's a pretty bad bet to make.
How about just a team with Lillard and CJ making the Western conference finals? Or every team playing smaller than their regular season lineups in the playoffs. Or Anthony Davis saying he is willing to play the 5 in the playoffs? Playing small =/= less physical. Warriors are notorious for being very physical to compensate for their height disadvantage. The bet is if everyone goes smaller in the playoffs, why not go even smaller than what others are doing to see if there is any advantage in that?



Anthony Davis, Javal McGee, Nikola Jokic, Steven Adams, Hassan Whiteside (IF the Blazers make the playoffs), Rudy Gobert. Quite a lot actually. All hypothetical's, I honestly have no idea idea how well they'd do in this situation, but they've done it before.
All of them besides Adams were run off the court in the playoffs in recent years though. Adams staying on the court could be why the Thunder never made it past the 1st round even though he played well individually. And McGee and Whiteside are horrible at rim protection chasing stats instead of playing solid defense and trusting their teammates.



Having the strength doesn't do you a whole lot if you don't have the length. Even as I watch this Clippers/Rockets game right now, the glaring problems with this style of play that I just got done pointing out are incredibly obvious, and this isn't even one of the teams I mentioned. They have no idea what to do against Harrell, who basically has been able to do what ever he wanted down low. And he's not even a big guy with a lot of length.

And Harden, Westbrook and Gordon do NOT have what it takes to be versatile defenders. They have short arms and aren't very tall players. They do have the athleticism, but you're going to need a lot more than that when trying to defend teams like the Lakers and Nuggets. Again, Covington and Tucker, while great at that end (even fantastic) isn't going to be enough to get the job done. You need more than that. I'm not saying they aren't capable of doing it. But if you are relying on these guys to be "versatile defensive players", you're basically shooting yourself in the foot. Kyrie Irving has all the tools needed to be a versatile defensive player, I'm not about to put my hopes and dreams into him doing that because I know better.
I think the Rockets shooting 7-42 has more to why they struggled in that game than giving up length. Small ball is always at risk of losing the rebounding battle but with so many 3s being shot, there are more long rebounds we could be seeing rebounding guards > bigs in securing a rebound. Another big issue with small ball is a lack of rim protection which is giving the opposing ball handler a license to attack the basket at will. So far they have the speed and strength to keep that in check. The Rockets are going all in with live or die by the 3 with this approach which I have to say is very interesting to see if it will work. If the Rockets experiment works, and changes how we look at rim protection and rebounding in team building, it could mean a real positionless basketball and shooting > height in talent evaluation in the future.
 

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Which big was shooting threes that season? Pau wouldn't even attempt to shoot it until like 2 years later.
Kevin Love off the top of my head. Would need to look into it more.

Many winners after that Suns team credit the Sun's offence and playing style for changing their approach. How is something wasn't the norm before him, but is the norm now not ahead of his time? Yeah the style wasn't new, but it wasn't proven in the NBA and seen as a gimmick European style before the Suns won a lot.
For that exact reason you just listed. It wasn't new. We had seen teams try it before, a lot of which were bad ones. The Suns were one of the first teams (not counting the Showtime Lakers who were truly ahead of their time albeit a different situation as well as structure and style) to successfully implement it into a winning formula. If we are really gonna go off of the legitimate definition of "ahead of its time", then yes, you can say it was ahead of its time. But that doesn't necessarily make him a good coach, not for that reason anyways.

How is winning 50+ games = failling over and over again?
Pretty obvious that isn't what I'm referring to.

Again champions in recent years have always held his system in high regards. I trust them more than someone hating on him for some dumb ringzzz only reason.
Who? Like Steve Kerr? The guy who was his assistant? Of course he's going to hold his system in high regard.

I never once mentioned his lack of rings as my reason for hating him. It's for his approach to the game. The results speak for themselves. His lack of title wins are the proof to the argument I am making. That's not a dumb reason.

Every coach wants to run fast now. Don't blame him for vets not realizing the change was coming and refuse to change.
First off, no they don't. Don't take what's happening to a couple of teams and apply it to everyone else. Second, it's pretty obvious at this point that more teams having a fast paced offense is due to the success of the Warriors, not D'Antoni's Suns team (of which happened more than a decade ago. If it had that big of an impact we would have seen things happening much sooner).

Again, bigs started shooting 3s. Every team started running more.

he vets had the tool to reshape their game to fit into a more modern offence but did not respect him enough to trust ti will work out. Imagine if Pau started spacing the floor and Dwight doing pick-and-rolls in his prime instead of asking for post-ups. That team would be much better even though they were much older.
No, they wouldn't have. One of the reasons why it didn't work in the first place was because they were already missing key players to injury. They didn't have the personal needed to make it work. And what do you mean "imagine if Pau started spacing the floor"? He TRIED. He COULDN'T. He was not a consistent three point shooter at the time. It was never something he consistently worked on. It was an idiotic idea on D'Antoni's part and it failed massively.

Hasn't really affected as much since teams like to target Harden in the post-up where is actually quite capable at. Their defense actually improved after the Capala trade. Still a small sample size though.
True.

Memphis, Rockets with Dwight. Also top seeded Pacers struggled against a losing 8th seeded Hawks that effectively destroyed Hibbert's career. I don't even know why I am defending this. Recent history showed bigs that can't contribute on offence are being played off the court in the playoffs.
I meant from this season.

How about just a team with Lillard and CJ making the Western conference finals? Or every team playing smaller than their regular season lineups in the playoffs. Or Anthony Davis saying he is willing to play the 5 in the playoffs? Playing small =/= less physical. Warriors are notorious for being very physical to compensate for their height disadvantage. The bet is if everyone goes smaller in the playoffs, why not go even smaller than what others are doing to see if there is any advantage in that?
Why on earth would a team play to the Rockets scheme and go small ball for them? Your argument is going off of the scenario that these teams are actually dumb enough to try that. And I can tell you right now, if Vogel (for example) sees that team in the playoffs, he's going to take advantage of his bigs and have them beat the shit out of Houston's small ball line up. And even in the scenario where do in fact decide to play Davis at the 5, all I have to say to that is...have fun trying to stop LeBron and Davis from scoring inside for an entire series.

All of them besides Adams were run off the court in the playoffs in recent years though. Adams staying on the court could be why the Thunder never made it past the 1st round even though he played well individually. And McGee and Whiteside are horrible at rim protection chasing stats instead of playing solid defense and trusting their teammates.
Whiteside yes. McGee however hasn't been like that all that much this season. He's putting a lot more effort into actually protecting the rim instead of going for blocks.

I think the Rockets shooting 7-42 has more to why they struggled in that game than giving up length. Small ball is always at risk of losing the rebounding battle but with so many 3s being shot, there are more long rebounds we could be seeing rebounding guards > bigs in securing a rebound. Another big issue with small ball is a lack of rim protection which is giving the opposing ball handler a license to attack the basket at will. So far they have the speed and strength to keep that in check. The Rockets are going all in with live or die by the 3 with this approach which I have to say is very interesting to see if it will work. If the Rockets experiment works, and changes how we look at rim protection and rebounding in team building, it could mean a real positionless basketball and shooting > height in talent evaluation in the future.
If it does in fact work, then yes, it is going to absolutely change the game. But I doubt it will. Even if the Rockets somehow make it out of the West and into the finals, the Bucks (assuming they make the finals) would have a field day with this line up. No one to guard their lengthy shooters, no one to stop Giannis (except for Covington because he actually does have the length to be bothersome), and the Bucks actually have the defensive talent to slow down the Houston offense.
 

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Kevin Love off the top of my head. Would need to look into it more.
Cool. How many bigs that never shot the 3 before but started to shoot them?



For that exact reason you just listed. It wasn't new. We had seen teams try it before, a lot of which were bad ones. The Suns were one of the first teams (not counting the Showtime Lakers who were truly ahead of their time albeit a different situation as well as structure and style) to successfully implement it into a winning formula. If we are really gonna go off of the legitimate definition of "ahead of its time", then yes, you can say it was ahead of its time. But that doesn't necessarily make him a good coach, not for that reason anyways.
How is him making it a novelty offence in the years before him into a league-wide offense now not ahead of his time? You are clutching at straws to deny him what other coaches have said influenced them. Even Pop used elements of the Suns philosophy when he made Tony Parker the go to guy in 2007. By your logic, nothing is ever new because someone can dig up past history of poor teams doing something so it doesn't count. Wow you went from calling him overrated to flat out calling him not a good coach? Let me guess, are you one of those hating on Spol, Blatt and Kerr type of guy?



Pretty obvious that isn't what I'm referring to.
His teams usually are playing against the best player in the playoffs. Why is winning in the regular season not an accomplishment? Why is it ringzzz the only argument here for coaching accomplishments and not improving players or changing the approach to the game? So is Hall of Fame coach Jerry Sloan a failure too?



Who? Like Steve Kerr? The guy who was his assistant? Of course he's going to hold his system in high regard.

I never once mentioned his lack of rings as my reason for hating him. It's for his approach to the game. The results speak for themselves. His lack of title wins are the proof to the argument I am making. That's not a dumb reason.
Says his lack of rings is not reason for hating him. Use lack of rings as proof of argument he is making. Huh? What approach to the game do you hate so much? More running and more shooting to space the floor for the ball handler?



First off, no they don't. Don't take what's happening to a couple of teams and apply it to everyone else. Second, it's pretty obvious at this point that more teams having a fast paced offense is due to the success of the Warriors, not D'Antoni's Suns team (of which happened more than a decade ago. If it had that big of an impact we would have seen things happening much sooner).
Pace has shot up over the years. How can you say it is only to a couple of teams? Yes and the Warriors ran fast because of the influence of Mike's style. Sometimes change doesn't come immediately because of inertia. I say 12 to 13 years since his style was first introduced to completely changing how the game approached is a pretty short window.

No, they wouldn't have. One of the reasons why it didn't work in the first place was because they were already missing key players to injury. They didn't have the personal needed to make it work. And what do you mean "imagine if Pau started spacing the floor"? He TRIED. He COULDN'T. He was not a consistent three point shooter at the time. It was never something he consistently worked on. It was an idiotic idea on D'Antoni's part and it failed massively.
But he miraculously found a way to shoot 3s years alter? Pau just did not accept the role. Can't really blame him because he found success playing the way he did before D'Antoni arrive. But I do not believe Pau was giving his full effort into the new role. He just needed to shoot 30% to keep defenses honest. Also you seem to have ignored the part about Dwight.

I meant from this season.
You brought up the 2016 Thunder-Warriors series and claim you meant this season? How disingenuous can you be? Even your Gobert example is pretty ironic considering Tucker and Capela combo won the playoff match up 2 seasons in a row with Tucker getting more minutes in the more recent series and Utah went smaller this season without Favors.

Why on earth would a team play to the Rockets scheme and go small ball for them? Your argument is going off of the scenario that these teams are actually dumb enough to try that. And I can tell you right now, if Vogel (for example) sees that team in the playoffs, he's going to take advantage of his bigs and have them beat the shit out of Houston's small ball line up. And even in the scenario where do in fact decide to play Davis at the 5, all I have to say to that is...have fun trying to stop LeBron and Davis from scoring inside for an entire series.
Because that is literally what is happening across the league the past few playoffs. Unless you are Giannis or Embiid level of efficiency on offense in the paint, spacing from the threat of 3s > post ups. Davis at the 5 is their best option to give more space for Lebron to attack.

Whiteside yes. McGee however hasn't been like that all that much this season. He's putting a lot more effort into actually protecting the rim instead of going for blocks.
Davis is so much better at it than him.

If it does in fact work, then yes, it is going to absolutely change the game. But I doubt it will. Even if the Rockets somehow make it out of the West and into the finals, the Bucks (assuming they make the finals) would have a field day with this line up. No one to guard their lengthy shooters, no one to stop Giannis (except for Covington because he actually does have the length to be bothersome), and the Bucks actually have the defensive talent to slow down the Houston offense.
Yeah this is going to test the value of rim protection that is the one skill that wings have not replicated. We could see more 4/5 tweeners like Draymond Green being full time starters instead and maybe even subbed out to go even smaller if this Rocket's experiment work.
 

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Cool. How many bigs that never shot the 3 before but started to shoot them?
So you're going to assume that was all because of D'Antoni doing it unsuccessfully with Gasol?

(Still have yet to look because of laziness)

How is him making it a novelty offence in the years before him into a league-wide offense now not ahead of his time? You are clutching at straws to deny him what other coaches have said influenced them. Even Pop used elements of the Suns philosophy when he made Tony Parker the go to guy in 2007.
I already acknowledged that what he did influenced other coaches in their offensive approach. Hell the Spurs were something I already specifically mentioned. Try keeping up please.

By your logic, nothing is ever new because someone can dig up past history of poor teams doing something so it doesn't count. Wow you went from calling him overrated to flat out calling him not a good coach? Let me guess, are you one of those hating on Spol, Blatt and Kerr type of guy?
Actually no, I like all three of those coaches, especially Blatt who I have praised time and time again on this forum. You want to know why? Because not only have their formula's actually worked, but they actually give a damn about defense AND make legitimate adjustments based on specific situations as well as the roster given to them. D'Antoni has a proven history of not doing this.

His teams usually are playing against the best player in the playoffs.
What an incredibly laughable excuse. The 2010 Boston Celtics played against the two best players in the entire Eastern Conference players, beat them both, went to the finals and took the Lakers to seven games, who had Kobe Bryant, the best player in the West. The Suns had the players needed to get the job done, they simply couldn't do it, because guess what? Playing one end of the floor isn't going to get the job done (no shit).

Why is winning in the regular season not an accomplishment? Why is it ringzzz the only argument here for coaching accomplishments and not improving players or changing the approach to the game? So is Hall of Fame coach Jerry Sloan a failure too?
First off, D'Antoni isn't Jerry Sloan. Don't ever compare those two again.

Second, once again, rings are not my only argument here. They haven't even been my main argument. My main argument has been his failures as a coach in NY and LA, something you continue to not acknowledge and instead are focusing entirely on his time with Phoenix. If his team with Phoenix featured him taking a team full of people who had to adjust to what he wanted to use to run the offense, I'd be more impressed. But he had the perfect personal needed to do what he wanted to do. But yeah sure, he had great consecutive seasons with a stacked roster. I guess Mike Brown is an all time great coach because he had back to back 60 win seasons as the Cavaliers coach. I guess Tye Lue is a legendary coach because he took a team to three straight NBA finals despite having no idea what he was doing.

Context matters. I don't care how many great regular seasons he had. It was the right place at the right time for him. If he were on any other team at that time frame, he would have never coached in the NBA again. Think I'm wrong? Feel free to name a team from that time frame besides the Suns who would have fit his system perfectly.

Says his lack of rings is not reason for hating him. Use lack of rings as proof of argument he is making. Huh?
Stop with the trolling. You know why I said that. Don't try to play the idiot game because you don't have any real retorts to this point. You know my reason for hating him, and you know his lack of rings are not my main argument. You're going right back to the ignore list if I see it again.

What approach to the game do you hate so much? More running and more shooting to space the floor for the ball handler?
I've stated this three times already. I hate his mindset that defense doesn't matter and that fast paced offenses can work with any team. It doesn't work like that. You have to respect both aspects of the game and adjust how your team runs its offense based on the personal on hand.

Pace has shot up over the years. How can you say it is only to a couple of teams?
I actually don't know why I said that. You got me on that one.

Yes and the Warriors ran fast because of the influence of Mike's style.
You're going to need to give me legitimate proof of this. You can't just say they did it because of this reason and leave it at that.

Sometimes change doesn't come immediately because of inertia. I say 12 to 13 years since his style was first introduced to completely changing how the game approached is a pretty short window.
You accuse me of clutching at straws and then you say this.

But he miraculously found a way to shoot 3s years alter? Pau just did not accept the role. Can't really blame him because he found success playing the way he did before D'Antoni arrive. But I do not believe Pau was giving his full effort into the new role. He just needed to shoot 30% to keep defenses honest. Also you seem to have ignored the part about Dwight.
I didn't ignore the part about Dwight. I chose not to acknowledge it because it was irrelevant. Dwight's issues that year a lot more to do with the mental aspect of his game. At this point I am fully convinced that he would have struggled anywhere he went that season. The guy was a mess.

You brought up the 2016 Thunder-Warriors series and claim you meant this season? How disingenuous can you be?
Why the hell would I be talking about the 2016 season in regards to bigs that could do well against the Rockets line up THIS YEAR? I brought up the 2016 Warriors vs Thunder series because that was a clear cut example of how a much bigger and stronger team can cause significant problems against a smaller team that lacks the strength and rebounding.

Even your Gobert example is pretty ironic considering Tucker and Capela combo won the playoff match up 2 seasons in a row with Tucker getting more minutes in the more recent series and Utah went smaller this season without Favors.
That's not ironic. This isn't the same Rockets team as those two years. They don't have Capela. It is a very different team now.

Because that is literally what is happening across the league the past few playoffs. Unless you are Giannis or Embiid level of efficiency on offense in the paint, spacing from the threat of 3s > post ups. Davis at the 5 is their best option to give more space for Lebron to attack.
Once again, context matters. Teams that see this small line up, especially when having the personal available to do it, will attack the basket at will against them. They aren't going to rely on the three point shot to beat a team that can't defend the paint.

Davis is so much better at it than him.
Of course Anthony Davis is better than him at it. It's Anthony Davis.

Yeah this is going to test the value of rim protection that is the one skill that wings have not replicated. We could see more 4/5 tweeners like Draymond Green being full time starters instead and maybe even subbed out to go even smaller if this Rocket's experiment work.
It would make a strong case for D'Antoni to be in the hall of fame (and before you ask, no, I don't see him getting inducted).
 

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So you're going to assume that was all because of D'Antoni doing it unsuccessfully with Gasol?

(Still have yet to look because of laziness)
Hey other bigs that never shot 3s started shooting them a few seasons later. I don't know how you refuse to see he saw what the game was moving towards.


I already acknowledged that what he did influenced other coaches in their offensive approach. Hell the Spurs were something I already specifically mentioned. Try keeping up please.
But you still refuse to concede the system and philosophy was ahead of his time. Look at the difference in how pace is viewed and the number of 3s attempted now and during his Suns run. Also he adapted to Harden with the Rockets by slowing the game down relative to the league. Iso-centric ball and less of his Suns pick and rolls. We could have witnessed the new template a decade later with 5 out-iso ball with this Rockets team.



Actually no, I like all three of those coaches, especially Blatt who I have praised time and time again on this forum. You want to know why? Because not only have their formula's actually worked, but they actually give a damn about defense AND make legitimate adjustments based on specific situations as well as the roster given to them. D'Antoni has a proven history of not doing this.
Why do you deem Blatt formula to work when he didn't win like D'antoni? D'Antoni's team emphasize offence over defense, but that doesn't mean he don't give a damn about it. That's nonsense.



What an incredibly laughable excuse. The 2010 Boston Celtics played against the two best players in the entire Eastern Conference players, beat them both, went to the finals and took the Lakers to seven games, who had Kobe Bryant, the best player in the West. The Suns had the players needed to get the job done, they simply couldn't do it, because guess what? Playing one end of the floor isn't going to get the job done (no shit).
Best player in the series usually decide a 7 game series between two teams of similar level. Just saying I am not going to give him a negative for not going against the odds. Did any of D'antoni's team have the 2nd, 3rd, 4th best player in a series like that Boston team in the Eastern conference?



First off, D'Antoni isn't Jerry Sloan. Don't ever compare those two again.
Why not? You said D'antonit failed again and again to show he isn't a good coach. Why does that not apply to other coaches?

Second, once again, rings are not my only argument here. They haven't even been my main argument. My main argument has been his failures as a coach in NY and LA, something you continue to not acknowledge and instead are focusing entirely on his time with Phoenix. If his team with Phoenix featured him taking a team full of people who had to adjust to what he wanted to use to run the offense, I'd be more impressed. But he had the perfect personal needed to do what he wanted to do. But yeah sure, he had great consecutive seasons with a stacked roster. I guess Mike Brown is an all time great coach because he had back to back 60 win seasons as the Cavaliers coach. I guess Tye Lue is a legendary coach because he took a team to three straight NBA finals despite having no idea what he was doing.
And my main argument is his success at the Suns and the Rockets means he isn't overrated. His lack of success with those two teams you mentioned was not purely his fault. Melo was reluctant to play the 4 under D'antoni, until injuries in the roster forced him to once D'antoni left, and guess what? Melo had his best season at the Knicks when he did. His time at LA was a failure for everyone, not just him. Howard not wanting ot run pick and roll with Nash. Gasol and Howard clogging the paint. Kobe feuding with Howard.

His initial successful Suns team was Nash + parts of a 20+ win team. How is that the perfect personnel or a stacked roster? He had to adapt to playing even smaller because of injuries too. His and Nash's regret was they didn't shoot even more threes and push for Nash to be a scoring guard that we are seeing is the norm in the NBA today.

If Mike Brown or Ty Lue implemented a style that is copied by the whole league 5 years later, then sure call them all time great coaches too. You just proved my point that having the best player in a series is pretty important with Ty Lue example. I think you are finally getting it.

Context matters. I don't care how many great regular seasons he had. It was the right place at the right time for him. If he were on any other team at that time frame, he would have never coached in the NBA again. Think I'm wrong? Feel free to name a team from that time frame besides the Suns who would have fit his system perfectly.
Saying contest matters but bring up Mike Brown and Ty Lue to compare with D'antoni. Someone too lazy to find 3 point big man shooters less than a decade ago is asking me to find the rosters of teams 15+ years ago. Stop trolling.


Stop with the trolling. You know why I said that. Don't try to play the idiot game because you don't have any real retorts to this point. You know my reason for hating him, and you know his lack of rings are not my main argument. You're going right back to the ignore list if I see it again.
You brought up his failure to win a ring to invalidate his coaching. And seeing how stupid that point is, you are sidestepping it as saying that's not the 'main' argument. Am I correct to assume you hating on him and calling him one of the most overrated coach is he 'don't play defense'? What retorts do I have against a made up point like that for hating him?



I've stated this three times already. I hate his mindset that defense doesn't matter and that fast paced offenses can work with any team. It doesn't work like that. You have to respect both aspects of the game and adjust how your team runs its offense based on the personal on hand.
Defense doesn't matter is made up. It is what type of defense he value. Try to keep up with the NBA. Why can't fast pace offence work for any team when the whole league is much faster now than teams during his Sun's run? Also, he is running more Isos with the Rockets in recent seasons that slows the game so he isn't only one mindset like you assume.



I actually don't know why I said that. You got me on that one.
Because you don't know as much as you think you do.



You're going to need to give me legitimate proof of this. You can't just say they did it because of this reason and leave it at that.
Freaking Steve Kerr and Alvin Gentry credited that Suns team. Stop trolling to try to get me to find stuff.


I didn't ignore the part about Dwight. I chose not to acknowledge it because it was irrelevant. Dwight's issues that year a lot more to do with the mental aspect of his game. At this point I am fully convinced that he would have struggled anywhere he went that season. The guy was a mess.
Wait...so...it wasn't all of Mike's fault at LA?

Why the hell would I be talking about the 2016 season in regards to bigs that could do well against the Rockets line up THIS YEAR? I brought up the 2016 Warriors vs Thunder series because that was a clear cut example of how a much bigger and stronger team can cause significant problems against a smaller team that lacks the strength and rebounding.
And I brought up examples in the past just like you did here to show how teams going smaller performed better than expected against teams that couldn't go smaller to match up. The point is pointing out your moving of the goalpost to 'win' an argument by saying you meant this season.

That's not ironic. This isn't the same Rockets team as those two years. They don't have Capela. It is a very different team now.
The irony is you using Gobert as an example of bigs that can punish their small-ball when the Rockets played Tucker even more minutes last season than the season before and Capela less. I didn't say no big can punish them, I just don't see Gobert as one of those bigs.

Once again, context matters. Teams that see this small line up, especially when having the personal available to do it, will attack the basket at will against them. They aren't going to rely on the three point shot to beat a team that can't defend the paint.
Yes, and attacking the basket is much easier with better spacing by going smaller. Warriors didn't only win by shooitng the most 3s, but using the threat of the 3s for easy cuts into the paint.

It would make a strong case for D'Antoni to be in the hall of fame (and before you ask, no, I don't see him getting inducted).
I think he will get in eventually just for popularizing the style of play we see in the NBA today. But that would take a while since there are quite a few coaches with more wins and titles than him that have not been inducted. Also I feel this experiment is more Morey than Mike. I doubt even he would ditch having a traditional big for the lob threat option without Morey's input.
 

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SEASON IS SUSPENDED!

IF THE WARRIORS CAN'T COMPETE FOR THE TITLE NOBODY CAN!

Guess I was wrong about Gobert. He can stop the small ball Rockets. He can stop the whole freaking league.
 
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