January, 13, 2012
By Henry Abbott
- Lamar Odom's fall-off this year has been staggering. What's going on?
- John Hollinger explains that hack-a-player only works if that player is DeAndre Jordan or Ben Wallace. Even at Dwight Howard's free-throw rate, having him shoot free throws every time down the floor would create the best offense in the history of the NBA. Therefore he says the Warriors made a horrible mistake. Further evidence that this team -- which promised to be more stat-centric with the new owners -- was working with poor analysis, however, comes from the fact that they did not hack Howard the one time it really was likely to help them: "Bizarrely, the Warriors didn't foul Howard in the one situation when it made completely obvious sense -- with 21 seconds left in the third quarter and Orlando playing for the last shot. In that instance, the expected points of Howard free throws would have been nearly offset by the points Golden State scored on the offensive possession it just created."
- If Dwight Howard wants to make even more of those free throws, here's how to shoot granny shots. Dwight Jaynes is writing something I have harped on before: players could win more games by shooting that way. Plain and simple. They are selfish to worry more about looking good when they could look silly and really help their teams. I believe that ... but I also have to admit that I don't shoot free throws granny-style for the exact same reason Shaq says he didn't. Just too weird. Would I if I had titles on the line? Maybe.
- Tony Parker is amazing both at getting to the rim frequently, and finishing once he gets there. Or, at least, he was before this season. Silver lining for Spurs' fans: If he regresses even a small amount toward the mean, the team's offense will improve dramatically.
- Somebody named the best NBA blog in every city. In the majority of cities, the TrueHoop Network blog was chosen. If you're going to tell everybody how great the TrueHoop Network is, then I won't quibble. Those bloggers do a great job.
- Very small frog getting a lot of attention. Very small players doing the same.
- Greg Monroe is one of the surprises in the top ten in PER in this young season, proving that slow and steady wins the race. The other? Super-fast Corey Brewer, who is shooting far better than in the past in limited minutes of making chaos all over the court in Denver. Also fun to note: Marcin Gortat is in the top twenty, as is DeMarcus Cousins.
- A lot of fans found themselves looking for alternatives to the NBA. Here's a solid choice.
- "Having preferences means having weaknesses." That's a quote from a chess master, Magnus Carlsen. That's what I'm saying about Kobe Bryant, too. He prefers to shoot. Makes the Lakers weaker, because opponents know this.
- Starsky, Hutch and Buse.
- Look how Marc Gasol messed with the Knicks defense.
- Despite all my railing about Bryant's bad decision-making I'm not stupid! Of course his toughness, and never-say-die attitude, are epic.
- If only the Bobcats had an employee whose job it was to keep the players focused and inspired.
- Is the schedule wearing out the referees?
- Now a huge Tim Tebow fan: LeBron James.
- For the second time in my life, I find myself hoping someone can explain a Tony Allen tweet. While you're at it, we probably also need an explanation of this missed layup. (Scroll down.)
- Tyrus Thomas' timeline ... this is no PR schmooze fest. He is a real guy saying real things.