2019 FIBA World Cup

InstaFace

MDLzera
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
8,527
Fox withdraws from team after playing only handful of minutes last night.
That sucks. He's so much fun to watch and root for. I was rooting like hell for his team to lose every game this last season and ended up becoming a Fox fan in spite of that.

Officially, it's "to focus his efforts on the upcoming season". Some reports from Chris Haynes that Sacramento was pushing him to do so. If so, I hope they take some shit from the league and USAB. But if not, and it's just because of playing time - despite getting heaps of public praise from Gregg fucking Popovich - my respect for him is diminished. Hell, a lot of top players were happier to get less playing time, because it meant less injury risk in blowouts.
 

HomeRunBaker

bet squelcher
SoSH Member
Jan 15, 2004
17,977
Fox withdraws from team after playing only handful of minutes last night.
I don’t blame him one bit. At this point I’m surprised more deep reserves aren’t dropping out. What is the upside to sitting on the bench in the exhibitions and in China for a month while sacrificing your summer vacation?
 

Cellar-Door

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
14,722
That sucks. He's so much fun to watch and root for. I was rooting like hell for his team to lose every game this last season and ended up becoming a Fox fan in spite of that.

Officially, it's "to focus his efforts on the upcoming season". Some reports from Chris Haynes that Sacramento was pushing him to do so. If so, I hope they take some shit from the league and USAB. But if not, and it's just because of playing time - despite getting heaps of public praise from Gregg fucking Popovich - my respect for him is diminished. Hell, a lot of top players were happier to get less playing time, because it meant less injury risk in blowouts.
Why would you lose respect for Pop for not playing a guy he probably wasn't going to put on the final roster more? Fox saw the writing on the wall that he was either going to not make the final cut or be last man on the bench. Would you respect Pop more if he made guys think that they were going to be on the final roster when they weren't?
 

Reverend

for king and country
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Why would you lose respect for Pop for not playing a guy he probably wasn't going to put on the final roster more? Fox saw the writing on the wall that he was either going to not make the final cut or be last man on the bench. Would you respect Pop more if he made guys think that they were going to be on the final roster when they weren't?
I think the dashes work differently in his post.
 

benhogan

Baynes Hogan (pending trade)
SoSH Member
Nov 2, 2007
6,666
Santa Monica
Makes sense for Fox to pass if there weren't going to be minutes for him in China.

I'm thrilled there will be more time for the Celtic 4 to gel.
 

Cellar-Door

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
14,722
I think the dashes work differently in his post.
Ah I see it, I was on my phone and missed that you meant Fox.

I'm fine with Fox dropping, no reason to travel to AUS for a tuneup game if you're pretty sure you won't make the final cut. Pop was showing him where he was, and Fox decided to take himself out before he got cut.


Edit- So they released team photos today with guys in new jerseys, numbers 4-7 and 9-15 are visible (numbers 4-15 are used in FIBA play) the only 2 players who don't have visible number are Barnes and Kuzma. Presumably barring injury they are fighting for the #8 jersey and the last spot on the roster.
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
8,527
Why would you lose respect for Pop for not playing a guy he probably wasn't going to put on the final roster more? Fox saw the writing on the wall that he was either going to not make the final cut or be last man on the bench. Would you respect Pop more if he made guys think that they were going to be on the final roster when they weren't?
Yes, lose respect for Fox, for not seeing out his commitment. Sorry for the ambiguity, it's on me to write clearly.

It would be very hard for me to respect Pop more.

I'm fine with Fox dropping, no reason to travel to AUS for a tuneup game if you're pretty sure you won't make the final cut. Pop was showing him where he was, and Fox decided to take himself out before he got cut.
I dunno, where could he possibly be on the PG depth chart? Kemba Walker... Derrick White? I gotta imagine they'd take Fox over Derrick White, unless people who've watched full scrimmages would tell me White's done better on defense or in running Pop's plays. But Fox would've been a fantastic slash-and-kick backup PG, going up against team's second lines in the rotation and just being twice as fast as anyone most of them have ever played against.

Though obviously all of these guys can initiate offense, Donovan Mitchell is a 2, Smart is usually used as a 2, Joe Harris a 2/3 swing, etc. I think Walker and White are the only actual point guards on the roster right now, with Fox departed.

Edit- So they released team photos today with guys in new jerseys, numbers 4-7 and 9-15 are visible (numbers 4-15 are used in FIBA play) the only 2 players who don't have visible number are Barnes and Kuzma. Presumably barring injury they are fighting for the #8 jersey and the last spot on the roster.
Solid observation.

Not sure who I'd pick between them, but I gotta imagine Kuzma is a likelier bet to stay in the USAB program for the longer term, even if Barnes is a better player today (and was on the 2016 Rio roster). In their most recent NBA season, Kuzma wins on PER (14.0 to 12.8), Win Shares is a push (3.1 to 3.6), TS% is a push (.546 to .550), Barnes is a better FT shooter (83% to 75%).
 
Last edited:

chilidawg

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 22, 2015
1,482
Yes, lose respect for Fox, for not seeing out his commitment. Sorry for the ambiguity, it's on me to write clearly.

It would be very hard for me to respect Pop more.


I dunno, where could he possibly be on the PG depth chart? Kemba Walker... Derrick White? I gotta imagine they'd take Fox over Derrick White, unless people who've watched full scrimmages would tell me White's done better on defense or in running Pop's plays. But Fox would've been a fantastic slash-and-kick backup PG, going up against team's second lines in the rotation and just being twice as fast as anyone most of them have ever played against.

Though obviously all of these guys can initiate offense, Donovan Mitchell is a 2, Smart is usually used as a 2, Joe Harris a 2/3 swing, etc. I think Walker and White are the only actual point guards on the roster right now, with Fox departed.


Solid observation.

Not sure who I'd pick between them, but I gotta imagine Kuzma is a likelier bet to stay in the USAB program for the longer term, even if Barnes is a better player today (and was on the 2016 Rio roster). In their most recent NBA season, Kuzma wins on PER (14.0 to 12.8), Win Shares is a push (3.1 to 3.6), TS% is a push (.546 to .550), Barnes is a better FT shooter (83% to 75%).
I thought Kuzma looked pretty good against Spain. Barnes didn't stand out much at all, good or bad.
 

HomeRunBaker

bet squelcher
SoSH Member
Jan 15, 2004
17,977
I dunno, where could he possibly be on the PG depth chart? Kemba Walker... Derrick White? I gotta imagine they'd take Fox over Derrick White, unless people who've watched full scrimmages would tell me White's done better on defense or in running Pop's plays. But Fox would've been a fantastic slash-and-kick backup PG, going up against team's second lines in the rotation and just being twice as fast as anyone most of them have ever played against.

Though obviously all of these guys can initiate offense, Donovan Mitchell is a 2, Smart is usually used as a 2, Joe Harris a 2/3 swing, etc. I think Walker and White are the only actual point guards on the roster right now, with Fox departed.
You first have to recognize that this isn’t NBA competition with NBA rules. Fox is a pure 1 and not only don’t you really need to be a pure 1 in FIBA rules vs FIBA competition but it also can be a detriment. Aside from Kemba you don’t need a pure 1 on the floor when you have Mitchell, Middleton, and even Smart on the floor capable of handling these same responsibilities in FIBA.

In an NBA your pure 1 has to protect the ball against Beverley, Paul, RWB, Fox, etc for 94 feet while able to get to his spot with the dribble to initiate the offense while being quick enough to keep these same 1’s from getting to their spot with the dribble on the other end. In these FIBA games there won’t be this level of PG defense to navigate or to initiate offense since much of the time we’ll be running zone offense against a pure zone. You also won’t need the same defensive skill set as an NBA 1 so these guards I listed won’t be exploited by quickness off the dribble. It is MUCH more important to have guards who can shoot over a zone while possessing the length to contest 3’s than it is to have a pure 1 on the floor in FIBA rules.
 
Last edited:

InstaFace

MDLzera
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
8,527
Ok but isn't Fox's quickness a game-breaking weapon against the zones common in FIBA competition? You try to rotate and he's already past you.

You're right that Kemba is on the roster for his shooting and passing more than his initiating or defense, but don't you think Fox brings more to the FWC table than White?
 

DrewDawg

Dorito Dink
SoSH Member
Dec 16, 2010
35,934
I would assume that Fox withdrawing was after talking with Pop after the game. It avoids him getting cut and allows him to bow out.
 

HomeRunBaker

bet squelcher
SoSH Member
Jan 15, 2004
17,977
Ok but isn't Fox's quickness a game-breaking weapon against the zones common in FIBA competition? You try to rotate and he's already past you.

You're right that Kemba is on the roster for his shooting and passing more than his initiating or defense, but don't you think Fox brings more to the FWC table than White?
Tomato, Tomahto since neither would be seeing anything more than token minutes. Pop obviously prefers having White there and the latter wasn't going to leave Pop's team due to lack of minutes since it was his NBA coach who invited him.

We don't know how Fox's game plays in FIBA and I don't believe he has any FIBA rules experience so his game in Sacramento isn't necessarily what we'd see in China......I'm guessing it wouldn't be.
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
8,527
ah well, that's too bad, he's an exciting player and he's not going to sniff the Olympic roster, so unless he's a top-10 guard in 4 years' time, we might not see him on that stage.

If Pop did tell him he was going to be cut, then that makes sense, but after all the other withdrawals and after weeks of training, it had a whiff of "I can't be bothered to play for my country".
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

Member
SoSH Member
Mar 26, 2005
16,846
Ok but isn't Fox's quickness a game-breaking weapon against the zones common in FIBA competition? You try to rotate and he's already past you.

You're right that Kemba is on the roster for his shooting and passing more than his initiating or defense, but don't you think Fox brings more to the FWC table than White?
There sere some reports from practices that White was "the best player on the court". FWIW.

I think Fox's issue is his shooting. I believe when Pop was asked about Fox's shooting, he said something like "well enough, I guess.
 

lovegtm

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 30, 2013
4,569
Kiev, Ukraine
ah well, that's too bad, he's an exciting player and he's not going to sniff the Olympic roster, so unless he's a top-10 guard in 4 years' time, we might not see him on that stage.

If Pop did tell him he was going to be cut, then that makes sense, but after all the other withdrawals and after weeks of training, it had a whiff of "I can't be bothered to play for my country".
I think the fact that he was out there competing this whole time makes it unlikely it was "can't be bothered."

There's also a very good chance he's a top-10 guard in 4 years' time--De'Aaron Fox has a lot of really high-quality basketball yet to come.
 

DrewDawg

Dorito Dink
SoSH Member
Dec 16, 2010
35,934
Nice trio--got a vet, a young gun, and tireless worker/junkyard dog type.

Now get Mitchell so excited about playing with #TeamShamrock he comes to Boston in a few seasons.
 

thehitcat

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Nov 25, 2003
1,626
Windham, ME
Still one cut to make. Kuzma shot well from deep against the Aussies. Jaylen seemed to play well as a starter. Who do we think the odd man out is at this point? Would they only take 2 bigs or is it a wing?
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
8,527
I buy C-D's contention that Kuzma or Barnes is the last person out. per the box score, Kuzma got 19 minutes off the bench, Barnes got 13. Only non-starter with more was Tatum (22'), and followed closely by Middleton (12').

Full game highlights from last night:

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gw1wVCsxFnk
(check out the Kuzma "rebound" on the play starting at 4'37")

Here's some good analysis. We appear to be planning to live and die by the 3. Went 6-18 from deep in the first half, and it was an even game; went 5-6 for 3 in the 3Q and it became a blowout.
 
Last edited:

DrewDawg

Dorito Dink
SoSH Member
Dec 16, 2010
35,934
Derrick White got less than 3 minutes. Why wouldn't we think he's the one to be cut?
 

scottyno

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 7, 2008
4,896
Rough game for the team usa celtics, beaten by Patty Mills and the dominant paint offense of Bogut and Baynes
 

DrewDawg

Dorito Dink
SoSH Member
Dec 16, 2010
35,934
Rough game for the team usa celtics, beaten by Patty Mills and the dominant paint offense of Bogut and Baynes
Kemba was leading scorer with 22, Smart started and had 7 points, 3 assists, Jaylen had 8 points, going 3 of 3 from the floor, while Tatum struggled a bit, with 5 points on 2 of 8 shooting.

Minutes:
Walker: 27
Tatum: 25
Brown: 16
Smart: 9

Gotta think Smart was easing back into things and may have gotten the assignment on Mills late if he was fully healthy.
 
Last edited:

chilidawg

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 22, 2015
1,482
I didn't see any of this game , but first game Bogut had a couple moves that looked surprisingly athletic. Maybe he's finally healthy again.
 

HomeRunBaker

bet squelcher
SoSH Member
Jan 15, 2004
17,977
78-game international winning streak ends and nobody seems at all concerned with how bad of a FIBA team this actually is here?
 

Ale Xander

Member
SoSH Member
Oct 31, 2013
22,475
This should never ever ever ever happen. (USA losing in basketball) What a disgrace.

I'm very concerned, HRB
 

ugmo33

Member
SoSH Member
May 6, 2016
60
Kuzma is dropping out because of ankle injury. Seems a little convenient to me....
 

HomeRunBaker

bet squelcher
SoSH Member
Jan 15, 2004
17,977
I'm not concerned the way I am about paying for college for my kids, or about that supervolcano under Yellowstone. But it's a subpar basketball team.
Who for reasons I cannot fathom are still -400 to win this thing. My Serbia is down to +200 & +230. The individual game value is going to be off the hook. Turkey is a more than competent team and +800 to win the Group but the game number has the potential to be outrageous for this matchup.

Edit: Didn’t realize until now the Mills/Pop storyline.
 
Last edited:

lovegtm

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 30, 2013
4,569
Kiev, Ukraine
78-game international winning streak ends and nobody seems at all concerned with how bad of a FIBA team this actually is here?
I think most of us care as much about FIBA as the top NBA players do. It's fun to watch some summer basketball, but I don't get really worked up over it.

Your Serbia bet is looking solid though.
 

Light-Tower-Power

Member
SoSH Member
Jun 14, 2013
8,108
I think most of us care as much about FIBA as the top NBA players do. It's fun to watch some summer basketball, but I don't get really worked up over it.

Your Serbia bet is looking solid though.
Yeah, it’s nice to watch basketball in the doldrums of the summer (especially with four Celtics on the team) but I think like 98% of United States basketball fans couldn’t care less about FIBA.
 

InstaFace

MDLzera
SoSH Member
Sep 27, 2016
8,527
they lost to one of the 4 other teams who can field a legit NBA lineup, on a night where Patty Mills played out of his mind (I saw highlights, dude went off both shooting and passing) and Pop decided to run a bunch of random shit (his starting lineup was all weird, to say nothing of the rotations). This was probably almost hoped-for by Popovich, to remind Caesar that he too is mortal.

Plus there was an audience of 52,000 fans in a converted field-sport stadium going absolutely fucking nuts. This has undoubtedly improved international awareness and interest in the game, and perhaps in the FIBA world cup itself. Nobody outside the US and its diaspora feels anything but awesome about this, even though it really means very little. A win all around, I'd say. The US is so hegemonic that anything that evens the playing field, even just a little, helps the sport.
 

DrewDawg

Dorito Dink
SoSH Member
Dec 16, 2010
35,934
USA bounces back and beats Canada 84-68. USA was up 20-9 after 1.

Celtics:
Jaylen Brown led Team USA with 19.
Tatum was only 2 of 11 for 6 points. He did have a nasty windmill dunk though.
Kemba had 12 points, 5 boards, 2 assists, 2 blocks.
Smart did not score but there are twitter highlights of diving on the floor.