2024 Playoffs Western Conference First Round: (4) LA Clippers vs (5) Dallas Mavericks

ElUno20

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Hasnt played in weeks and no minutes restriction as he stunk up the joint. Brilliant, ty lue.
 

Pablo's TB Lover

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Soft as Charmin call with Kyrie appearing to get all ball, but really he should either back off or wrap Kawhi up.
 

Mystic Merlin

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This series is going to be wild. If it goes anything less than 7 than we are the losers in that deal.

Clippers had a 26-5 stretch which was the leagues best record during that time following the Harden trade. Dallas has a 16-2 stretch at the end of the year when they had the best record in the league during that time following the PJ Washington/Daniel Gafford trade.

Something has to give and I think the winner of this series is the team that can beat Denver…if anyone can beat Denver.
I think there’s a scenario where LAC really pushes DEN, but I don’t see it with Dallas. How are they defending the Nuggets?
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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That was a remarkable win and I guess it illustrates how Dallas can take the series. Their D was good but not great. However their shotmaking ability means that good may be enough.
 

HomeRunBaker

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I think there’s a scenario where LAC really pushes DEN, but I don’t see it with Dallas. How are they defending the Nuggets?
How is anyone defending the Nuggets? Dallas has two guys who can take the game over offensively themselves while opening up spot-up three’s for others and their two-headed center monster to matchup with Denver’s frontcourt. They gave Jokic’s fits a few weeks ago when Kyrie won the game with his runner and while I recognized it was a regular season road game for Denver I do like how they matchup. I like Dallas more than most with their retooling at the trade deadline and they are the one team I have a sprinkle on as a longshot to win the WC. They play together really well as everyone on that roster knows what their specific role is on the team which has shown in that 16-2 stretch they just completed.
 

benhogan

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How is anyone defending the Nuggets? Dallas has two guys who can take the game over offensively themselves while opening up spot-up three’s for others and their two-headed center monster to matchup with Denver’s frontcourt. They gave Jokic’s fits a few weeks ago when Kyrie won the game with his runner and while I recognized it was a regular season road game for Denver I do like how they matchup. I like Dallas more than most with their retooling at the trade deadline and they are the one team I have a sprinkle on as a longshot to win the WC. They play together really well as everyone on that roster knows what their specific role is on the team which has shown in that 16-2 stretch they just completed.
the Timberwolves' size matches up nicely against Denver's frontcourt.

Lakers/Wolves/Dallas would be a good test
 

HomeRunBaker

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the Timberwolves' size matches up nicely against Denver's frontcourt.

Lakers/Wolves/Dallas would be a good test
Those are the 3 exact matchups I was thinking to make for an upset or at least to wear them down. All 3 have holes that Denver can exploit though. It’s gonna be a long a fun two months these playoffs. Oh and look at what we have here…
B2201AD0-DD12-4550-9697-3418979E8713.jpeg
 

benhogan

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Those are the 3 exact matchups I was thinking to make for an upset or at least to wear them down. All 3 have holes that Denver can exploit though. It’s gonna be a long a fun two months these playoffs. Oh and look at what we have here…
View attachment 81442
Luka goes Rodman!

I didn't watch the 2nd half, but it seemed like the Clippers couldn't throw it in the ocean. I kept thinking the Mavs should be up 20 (I'm rooting for them since I also think they could give Denver a migraine)

Looking at the box, quite a few FTs in the game, have the Refs been re-activated?
 

lovegtm

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Those are the 3 exact matchups I was thinking to make for an upset or at least to wear them down. All 3 have holes that Denver can exploit though. It’s gonna be a long a fun two months these playoffs. Oh and look at what we have here…
View attachment 81442
I watched the 2nd half, and Luka's effort on D was at a different level. Credit where it's due. If he does that, Dallas is a real team.
 

slamminsammya

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Luka goes Rodman!

I didn't watch the 2nd half, but it seemed like the Clippers couldn't throw it in the ocean. I kept thinking the Mavs should be up 20 (I'm rooting for them since I also think they could give Denver a migraine)

Looking at the box, quite a few FTs in the game, have the Refs been re-activated?
no they have not been reactivated. it was rough and tumble out there.
 

Auger34

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I'm not sure what to make of this game...

On one hand, the Clips couldn't hit the broad side of a barn and they were in the entire game. On the other hand, they just lost the home court advantage.

Pending Kawhi's health (famous last words) I think Clips win in 7. However, because Kawhi can't be counted on to play so many games in a row, as a Celtics fan I want the Mavs to win so they can give Denver more trouble
 

HomeRunBaker

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Luka goes Rodman!

I didn't watch the 2nd half, but it seemed like the Clippers couldn't throw it in the ocean. I kept thinking the Mavs should be up 20 (I'm rooting for them since I also think they could give Denver a migraine)

Looking at the box, quite a few FTs in the game, have the Refs been re-activated?
It was a slugfest reminiscent of the Van Gundy Knicks. I don't understand what has happened with the Clippers offense. The have horrific spacing with Zubac in the game and Kawhi doing his best Anthony Mason (RIP) impersonation pounding it to turn a middle into a contested 12-footer. I know the Mavs defend well, despite the public opinion of them from the first half of the season, but the way the Clippers approach this side of the ball they make it so difficult on themselves.....few clean looks, everything challenged, no shots in rhythm. They actually looked better without Kawhi slowing them down. They need to go back to that 26-5 team when all was clicking or else their next game in LA will be an elimination one.
 

Jimbodandy

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I watched the 2nd half, and Luka's effort on D was at a different level. Credit where it's due. If he does that, Dallas is a real team.
Yeah a Luka who plays even net neutral defense is in the conversation for best player on earth. Maybe that guy is the conversation.
 

lovegtm

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Yeah a Luka who plays even net neutral defense is in the conversation for best player on earth. Maybe that guy is the conversation.
The effort is there, but let's see what happens when he plays a team that has more speed and power than the Clippers. Jamal Murray and SGA and Jaylen Brown and Anthony Edwards aren't getting any easier for him to defend.

And, while not taking anything away from Luka's offense, he still has more to show in terms of raising a team offense to the next level. He's still too my-turn-your-turn, although I saw him doing a bit more yesterday.
 

Auger34

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The effort is there, but let's see what happens when he plays a team that has more speed and power than the Clippers. Jamal Murray and SGA and Jaylen Brown and Anthony Edwards aren't getting any easier for him to defend.

And, while not taking anything away from Luka's offense, he still has more to show in terms of raising a team offense to the next level. He's still too my-turn-your-turn, although I saw him doing a bit more yesterday.
I want to drill down on this more because "my turn your turn" is right but it's a little bit more than that...

To use a @benhogan term, when Luka doesn't have the ball he turns into a "potted plant". Just no interest in doing anything to threaten the defense. It's the same thing as Harden with Houston. When he has the ball, it's mostly magic but you've got to show some sort of something when someone else has the ball. It's a 5 man team
 

lovegtm

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I want to drill down on this more because "my turn your turn" is right but it's a little bit more than that...

To use a @benhogan term, when Luka doesn't have the ball he turns into a "potted plant". Just no interest in doing anything to threaten the defense. It's the same thing as Harden with Houston. When he has the ball, it's mostly magic but you've got to show some sort of something when someone else has the ball. It's a 5 man team
Absolutely, and I've talked about this a lot, so was using "my turn your turn" to evoke it. Durant has started to have this in Phoenix: he's just not threatening at all when he doesn't have the ball, and it makes his pretty efficiency stats a lot more hollow.

Compare this to someone like prime Steph, who could completely break your defense while "only" putting up 25/6 on a nightly basis.
 

benhogan

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I want to drill down on this more because "my turn your turn" is right but it's a little bit more than that...

To use a @benhogan term, when Luka doesn't have the ball he turns into a "potted plant". Just no interest in doing anything to threaten the defense. It's the same thing as Harden with Houston. When he has the ball, it's mostly magic but you've got to show some sort of something when someone else has the ball. It's a 5 man team
As @lovegtm noted Steph holds a masterclass on off-ball movement (JJ Redick, Reggie Miller & Bird were all good at it in their time). It's a highly underrated skill for alpha scorers/shooters who are defensive eyeball magnets

Luca & Harden can sometimes check out on offense when off-ball. Standing at halfcourt with their arms folded turns the offense into a 4 on 5 disadvantage. (Thinking Basketball had video evidence of this) On-Off on Offense is a stat that picks up a little of this.

I can hear @HomeRunBaker furiously typing away explaining Alpha scorers are better off taking a break on offense, which is somewhat true, but that's where Luca/Harden conditioning rears its head.

Funny enough, on a much smaller scale than Curry, Sam Hauser does a terrific job moving/cutting, drawing some attention when he doesn't have the ball.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZfufGaRhHg&t=252s
 

bakahump

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Funny enough, on a much smaller scale than Curry, Sam Hauser does a terrific job moving/cutting, drawing some attention when he doesn't have the ball.
"Not Overpaid" Robinson in miami was like this as well. I always thought that if Sam could do what Robinson did we would have a best case scenario.
 

Deathofthebambino

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If the Clippers starters shoot 5/23 from deep, and the Mavs starters shoot 12/27, then the Mavs likely win this series, especially if Gafford's back flares up and he's unable to contribute (got hurt in the 1st, returned in the 2nd last night, played only 9 minutes and missed the entire 4th).

I'm not buying on this Mavs team yet (although if the Clips continue to run a sub par Kawhi out there, the Mavs could pull this off). Harden was 1/9 before hitting that late 3 from deep. The Clippers would have trouble beating UCLA if he does that and Kawhi goes 0/5.
 

lovegtm

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As @lovegtm noted Steph holds a masterclass on off-ball movement (JJ Redick, Reggie Miller & Bird were all good at it in their time). It's a highly underrated skill for alpha scorers/shooters who are defensive eyeball magnets

Luca & Harden can sometimes check out on offense when off-ball. Standing at halfcourt with their arms folded turns the offense into a 4 on 5 disadvantage. (Thinking Basketball had video evidence of this) On-Off on Offense is a stat that picks up a little of this.

I can hear @HomeRunBaker furiously typing away explaining Alpha scorers are better off taking a break on offense, which is somewhat true, but that's where Luca/Harden conditioning rears its head.

Funny enough, on a much smaller scale than Curry, Sam Hauser does a terrific job moving/cutting, drawing some attention when he doesn't have the ball.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZfufGaRhHg&t=252s
I mean, while it's true that alpha scorers need breaks (on offense and defense), you're generally better off if they can remain threatening in their breaks.

In addition, dribbling takes a lot out of you physically. One thing that both peak Warriors and this year's Cs did well was economy of movement: a lot of actions are initiated via cuts and screens while someone holds the ball, which reduces turnovers sure, but also lowers the fatigue for the alpha players.

Harden and Luka dribble a LOT, and then tend to either wear down as a series progresses, or need to take plays off within a series. It's not optimal.
 

Jimbodandy

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The effort is there, but let's see what happens when he plays a team that has more speed and power than the Clippers. Jamal Murray and SGA and Jaylen Brown and Anthony Edwards aren't getting any easier for him to defend.
Yeah he's not going to be able to guard any of those guys. Good defending PGs struggle defending those guys credibly. I just mean if he is serious about maintaining an effort level at that end like he did in this game, to me he suddenly becomes a real problem. A guy who can make offense like he does without giving back buckets of points on the other end is a scary man.
 

lovegtm

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Yeah he's not going to be able to guard any of those guys. Good defending PGs struggle defending those guys credibly. I just mean if he is serious about maintaining an effort level at that end like he did in this game, to me he suddenly becomes a real problem. A guy who can make offense like he does without giving back buckets of points on the other end is a scary man.
Yup. I give Luka shit relative to Tatum, but I'm not a hater. It's never happening, but my dream would be that he asks out in Dallas and that contractually-locked-in-Jaylen+stuff is enough to get him.
 

Jimbodandy

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Yup. I give Luka shit relative to Tatum, but I'm not a hater. It's never happening, but my dream would be that he asks out in Dallas and that contractually-locked-in-Jaylen+stuff is enough to get him.
We are aligned. I give Luka shit because I think that dropping a couple of percent of body fat and expending some non-zero effort on defense would elevate his prospects of winning basketball games and can't fathom why someone wouldn't want to do that. Look at Lebron's physique at his age. Even Harden learned to expend some effort disrupting opponents' offenses, albeit later in career. I don't get it. But hey, maybe he learned a lesson, maybe someone's in his ear on the defense thing.

I also hear your point about maybe it's easier to stay in front of a few old Clippers, but you play the games on the calendar.

I don't want to break up the band any time soon, but I hear you.
 

HomeRunBaker

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As @lovegtm noted Steph holds a masterclass on off-ball movement (JJ Redick, Reggie Miller & Bird were all good at it in their time). It's a highly underrated skill for alpha scorers/shooters who are defensive eyeball magnets

Luca & Harden can sometimes check out on offense when off-ball. Standing at halfcourt with their arms folded turns the offense into a 4 on 5 disadvantage. (Thinking Basketball had video evidence of this) On-Off on Offense is a stat that picks up a little of this.

I can hear @HomeRunBaker furiously typing away explaining Alpha scorers are better off taking a break on offense, which is somewhat true, but that's where Luca/Harden conditioning rears its head.

Funny enough, on a much smaller scale than Curry, Sam Hauser does a terrific job moving/cutting, drawing some attention when he doesn't have the ball.
It isn't so much conditioning as it is that these are two BIG guards for their position would are more slow-twitch than fast. Guys like Curry, Ray Allen, Maxey etc can run around screens for 45 minutes and no lose anything on the other end or in the 4Q. That isn't the case with bigger slow-twitch players...it just isn't as much as you want to bash a guy. The other thing is that the set when the ball isn't in there hands accounts for this and their job is primarily to defend in transition when they aren't involved in the set. Now....that isn't to say that Doncic and Harden don't abuse their privilege during the regular season bc they certainly do....but that's the regular season. I know its sacrilegious to suggest this but.....the regular season doesn't freakin matter! I suspect Harden will struggle more with this years playoff officiating than Doncic will but I sure won't expect to see them running around screens when they aren't involved in the set when there is more important spots for them to expend energy during these 48 minutes. There ya go...you baited me. Grrrr. Lol
 

PedroKsBambino

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That looked awful, but do think that was Westbrook trying to make a play on the ball.

By rule, though, a hit in the head on the break and in the air should be a flagrant
 

Auger34

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Supposedly Westbrook is a good dude off the court…

But as far as a player interacting with fans, he’s just a massive piece of shit. You want to get people thrown out for saying “Westbrick” but you can yell “fuck you” repeatedly to fans courtside? Fuck off
 

ElUno20

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I'll amend that. Kawhi needs to retire. He can't contribute at all when it matters most.