Minutes and mail and more on The Regend's role
Given that the really isn’t a lot of division of talent between the two starting wings for the Raptors (DeRozan, Kleiza) and the two guys who back them up (Barbosa and Weems), it should come as no surprise that Jay’s pretty much split time almost evenly the other night.
And until someone takes charge and starts playing well for huge long stretches of time, it’s going to be like that.
“What they have to understand is right now, the minutes are going to be fairly split unless someone is really rolling and really playing well so the idea is, when you’re out there, you go and play those minutes as hard and as fast as you can with a great amount of intensity knowing that someone is going to be coming in for you and if you do well in playing those minutes, you’re going to stay on the floor.
“It’s a matter of those guys find a groove and my comfort level with the rotation.”
One of the points he was making is that players who play extended minutes have a tendency to find ways to take a possession or two off defensively to catch their wind. It happens all the time and the good teams get away with it because the other guys on the floor can cover up for the slacker.
Not so much.
The talent level dictates that everyone play every possession balls-out and the habit of slacking for even one could be costly. Now, not every player – not any player anywhere, as a matter of fact – is going to have the requisite energy and mental toughness to be perfect every time up and down the floor but the habit of coasting has to be broken here.
It’ll be interesting to see if any one of those guys emerges as head and shoulders better than the others and plays himself into a 35-minute-a-night guy.
I’m dubious that anyone will.
Oh, yeah, the Rangers look great, don’t they?
Turn Matt Cain into Cy Young (although the dude’s been outstanding the whole playoffs) and, I tell ya, watching Vlade Guerrero stumble around the outfield was embarrassing.
I remember when he used to a Gold Glove guy; now he looks like a 52-year-old sportswriter, although I know one who was good-field, no-hit back in the day.
Coming off the big opening night win over Boston, here's what they're saying about the Cavaliers in the cyber pages of the P-D.
Early mail to get us started:
Q: Hey Doug. As I stay indoors to avoid the continuous wind of a recent south east Asian typhoon, I ponder the stat line of Hakkim Warrick and I wonder, with Nash at his side, is he capable of being a near 20 and 10 big man?
It makes me wonder if Nash's best ability is perhaps his ability to make others around him thrive. Which leads me to my second question: aside from Jack and Calderon, who* on this team do you think could really thrive if Nash was on the Raps right now? *note: Of course the easy answer is to say almost everyone but I'm more interested in who would thrive most. Cheers
It makes me wonder if Nash's best ability is perhaps his ability to make others around him thrive. Which leads me to my second question: aside from Jack and Calderon, who* on this team do you think could really thrive if Nash was on the Raps right now?
*note: Of course the easy answer is to say almost everyone but I'm more interested in who would thrive most.
Josh F, Ningbo, China
A: Since there are only a handful of 20-10 big men, I’m doubting Warrick gets to that lofty plateau but his numbers will surely go up. It’s the Nash Factor.
I’m thinking Amir Johnson. Rolls hard to the basket off screen-roll stuff, quick in transition and has vastly improve his finishing at the rim.
Kind of like a poor man’s Stoudemire. Very poor, but you get my drift.
Don’t forget, we’re here at noon for the Question And Answer Hour (we need to get a nifty new name for that) so we’ll see some of you then?
Hey, remember way back when I told you about the change in shootaround stuff and how the Heroes of the Hardcourt were going later in the day and that it’d make things slightly less hectic for me?
They’re reverted to form now, have the traditional late-morning shootaround with media availability after and it’s like nothing’s changed.
Why’d they go back? One guy says:
“We’re not good enough, we need the work in the morning.”
Probably true, by the time they hold a late-afternoon walk through they can’t go all that hard because game time is coming up so quickly; going 11-noon gives ‘em more time to recover.
It bites, especially on days like today.
The Cavs are doing their media before they shootaround at 10, Raps going after they shoot so it’s be in the arena by 9:30 to say hi to AP and Jamario (if I get this done on time and traffic’s not too bad), miss the Raps because I’m talking to you and then putter around on work 1-4 before the pre-game stuff really begins
So someone asks Jay yesterday about this whole Reggie thing, where Evans’s first reaction after getting any offensive rebound is to look out instead of at the basket.
And the coach had this to say about that:
“If he’s got a wide-open look, we want him to take it; he’s not going to run out with a wide-open look. But, he’s under-sized inside so sometimes its tough to get a shot up. We want him to get us another possession and if he can make a basket on it, we’ll take it; if not, we want the ball.”
Hey, anyone got either a good restaurant or a good sports bar in Sacramento?
Halloween in that dreadfully uneventful town will only be made palatable by a good meal or a good seat to watch Game 4 of the series.
Speaking of Sacramento, I wonder if Antoine Wright’s found a California Mona and has set up a soiree for his old teammates on Saturday night?