February 2020 NBA Game Thread

bigq

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Sixers are struggling down by 15 with 3:45 to go in the game. They are not a good road team anyway but I assumed they would get up for this game and put together a competitive effort. Giannis is taking it straight at Embiid on numerous possessions. Embiid now with 5 fouls while shooting 6-25 from the floor. Horford tasked with guarding Giannis. This one is over.
 

jmcc5400

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Lakers-Rockets is an extremely entertaining clash of styles. Great game from Russ so far. Midget Rockets by 4 after 3q.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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It really feels like the Rockets 3.0 are almost the perfect incarnation of basketball for Russell Westbrook.
 

jmcc5400

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Covington with back to back daggers. It's incredible. Watching the Rockets has been like eating vegetables, and now I feel like they are can't miss
 

Kliq

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LeBron. Davis. Harden. The fucking Brodie is the best player on the court (this was also the case the last time they played). Long live the Westbeast.
 

Apisith

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Like I said in the other thread, Morey is trying to go for the Warriors death lineup and punish teams that play a traditional big. Either the big has to guard Westbrook or he's stuck guarding some other shooter at the 3 point line. Today was an example of what can go right with this strategy. A lot can and will go wrong too, so let's see how it goes against other teams. Glad it went right against the team with the most high-quality bigs, though.
 

ElUno20

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I'll beg you guys not to overreact to a regular season game in February. Please.
 

lovegtm

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Lol, which one you tried to tell me that Giannis was Embiid's son?

I mean, look at this stuff. This was just Giannis taking out his dick and whipping it around for two hours.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCTxM1Z50a0
I said that, and I'll stand by it. The Embiid who was out there last night wasn't the same guy who played on Christmas (in the same way that he wasn't against the Celtics recently). I don't know whether Philly can find him again this year--it's going to be a very, very short postseason for them if they can't.

This Philly team is in complete disarray right now, and that's exactly the kind of situation where Giannis goes off over and over.

I don't want to make too much of this because I respect Giannis a ton as a player and agree the Bucks are among the top title favorites. But I do think they are really uniquely constructed in that if you're not totally on your game, they utterly destroy you, and if you put up resistance, things get interesting. This is all completely born out in their point differential and record against good teams--they're still good, but it's a ton more competitive than their overall net rating would indicate.

I think there's an interesting and nuanced discussion to be had about the Bucks and their postseason odds, but if you just want to dunk on people whenever Giannis goes off against a disorganized team...shrug?
 

benhogan

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Like I said in the other thread, Morey is trying to go for the Warriors death lineup and punish teams that play a traditional big. Either the big has to guard Westbrook or he's stuck guarding some other shooter at the 3 point line. Today was an example of what can go right with this strategy. A lot can and will go wrong too, so let's see how it goes against other teams. Glad it went right against the team with the most high-quality bigs, though.
I'll definitely tune in to watch more Rockets action. I think there is a lot to glean from D'Antoni/Morey's Petri Dish, looking forward to watching/learning the rest of the reg season/playoffs. They basically have $3MM of cap dedicated to players taller than 6'9" (Chandler/Hartenstein).

Also interested in seeing how opponents react to playing them, Dwight Howard played 4mins last night (all first half), by far his lowest total this season. McGee played his standard 16mins split between the start of the 1st/3rd quarters (+1min of garbage time).

Celtics get them twice in the next 3 weeks, next Tuesday and the end of the month. Brad can go with his Best5 and Granite at the Center a lot in those games. Interesting chess match.
 
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lovegtm

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I'll definitely tune in to watch more Rockets action. I think there is a lot to glean from D'Antoni/Morey's Petri Dish, looking forward to watching/learning the rest of the reg season/playoffs. They basically have $3MM of cap dedicated to players taller than 6'9" (Chandler/Hartenstein). Do those two see any non-garbage time minutes?
Yeah, I have a feeling this may end like D'Antoni's Phoenix time: no titles for him, but opens up strategic options for the rest of the league and coaches.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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Lol, which one you tried to tell me that Giannis was Embiid's son?

I mean, look at this stuff. This was just Giannis taking out his dick and whipping it around for two hours.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCTxM1Z50a0
The Sixers have given up 127 to ATL, 116 to BOS, 137 to MIA, and 112 to MIL. It's not just the offense that is a problem.

I was going to watch the game (have it on tape) but from watching the highlights, I probably won't bother. Just go to the third play of the highlight and it's clear that there is more than just basketball stuff going on. Giannis gets switched on to Korkmaz at the top of the key. If that happened versus BOS, they'd immediately send a double and hope to rotate out of it. Instead, they let Giannis get up a head of steam, no one really helps out - Simmons tries a bit but look at Horford on that play, he appears to be guarding Connaughton in the corner but he takes maybe two mini-steps and doesn't even try to bother Giannis - and it's kind of like me playing against my 9 year old son.

Over and over it's just Giannis driving on someone; everyone else on PHI is standing around; there's no team defense and even less effort.

This is worse than what BOS went through last year.
 

wade boggs chicken dinner

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Speaking of Horford's defense, in addition to the play mentioned above, WTF is he doing on the plays starting at 1:51 and 2:27 of the highlights?

And just for fun, from the highlights, Giannis just blew past Al on four occasions, 2 times he hit jumpers over him (one 1 3P), and Giannis had lobs or put backs on three occasions when Al had to switch in PnR.
 

Jimbodandy

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Speaking of Horford's defense, in addition to the play mentioned above, WTF is he doing on the plays starting at 1:51 and 2:27 of the highlights?

And just for fun, from the highlights, Giannis just blew past Al on four occasions, 2 times he hit jumpers over him (one 1 3P), and Giannis had lobs or put backs on three occasions when Al had to switch in PnR.
Al is either hurt or ran out of unicorn blood. Last few times I've seen him play, he looks like a guy from the Y on defense, sans the knee pads.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Before we bury Philadelphia entirely - and I will admit to being bullish on them before the season just because some posters here are keeping close tabs on that sort of stuff for "learning" purposes whatever that means - lets see how they do in incorporating Robinson III and Burks into their offense.

Neither will solve their defensive problems but they should help with spacing. To be clear, I don't believe that they will fix the team but they can definitely help.
 

jmcc5400

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Bill Simmons tweeted a few times last night that he found Houston-LAL unwatchable. I really can't disagree more - I find Westbrook careening into the lane (and absolutely owning Kuzma, by the way) infinitely more entertaining than a Harden dribble-fest into a step-back three (or three free throws). Now, for me the watchability may have been significantly enhanced by the fact that they were punking the Lakers, but I found the Westbrook show and Houston's intensity/switching on defense really entertaining.
 

Light-Tower-Power

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I'm going to the Rockets/Celtics game at the end of the month. I think I'll be equal parts entertained and annoyed.
 

lovegtm

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Bill Simmons tweeted a few times last night that he found Houston-LAL unwatchable. I really can't disagree more - I find Westbrook careening into the lane (and absolutely owning Kuzma, by the way) infinitely more entertaining than a Harden dribble-fest into a step-back three (or three free throws). Now, for me the watchability may have been significantly enhanced by the fact that they were punking the Lakers, but I found the Westbrook show and Houston's intensity/switching on defense really entertaining.
Simmons seems like the kind of person who would love 90s basketball, because everything happens in one isolated part of the court, and you can make mano-a-mano narratives.

Turnips are more perceptive than he is.
 

Kliq

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Simmons seems like the kind of person who would love 90s basketball, because everything happens in one isolated part of the court, and you can make mano-a-mano narratives.

Turnips are more perceptive than he is.
To be fair, Simmons was particularly critical about how ISO heavy Houston's offense is and how it just one guy dribbling and four guys standing around the perimeter. He was actually calling out it for being TOO ISO heavy. In his Book of Basketball podcasts, he is consistently critical about the clunky style of play and praises how the game is played today.

I don't have a problem with Houston in that sense, because I can appreciate a guy like Harden and how talented and smart he is with the basketball. What I don't like about Houston is the A) Complete indifference to playing defense and B) Any shot is a good shot as long as it is a three-pointer. Harden is a special case, but I really don't need to see Daniel House/Ben McLemore/Austin Rivers just jack up contested threes all game.
 

lovegtm

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To be fair, Simmons was particularly critical about how ISO heavy Houston's offense is and how it just one guy dribbling and four guys standing around the perimeter. He was actually calling out it for being TOO ISO heavy. In his Book of Basketball podcasts, he is consistently critical about the clunky style of play and praises how the game is played today.

I don't have a problem with Houston in that sense, because I can appreciate a guy like Harden and how talented and smart he is with the basketball. What I don't like about Houston is the A) Complete indifference to playing defense and B) Any shot is a good shot as long as it is a three-pointer. Harden is a special case, but I really don't need to see Daniel House/Ben McLemore/Austin Rivers just jack up contested threes all game.
Yeah, it’s not super-beautiful. I’m interested in their new experiment because it forces them all to try more on the defensive end, and also creates some fun offensive situations when Harden gives it up to Westbrook and he gets to play 4 on 3.

I’m cautiously optimistic that full smallball will bring out the best in their viewability.
 

benhogan

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Yeah, it’s not super-beautiful. I’m interested in their new experiment because it forces them all to try more on the defensive end, and also creates some fun offensive situations when Harden gives it up to Westbrook and he gets to play 4 on 3.

I’m cautiously optimistic that full smallball will bring out the best in their viewability.
I'm hoping Brad steals a lot of what works for the Rockets.
The truth is the Celtics play rather small relative to the rest of the league, no regular starter is over 6'8".
 

terrynever

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76ers up by 27 in third quarter. They were up 10 when Embiid left with a stiff neck. That’s when the track meet started with Ben running the show. Game over. Joel had 10 points and 10 rebounds in 16 minutes. Plus 7. His fellow starters were plus 25, 22, etc.
If 76ers have to choose one after season ends, I hope they keep Ben.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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Oladipo looks terrible
I know everyone understands this but he will struggle and Indiana is likely to have some fits and starts as they integrate a new player into their line-up.

HRB thinks the Pacers are a bad construct with VO back but I just don't know. I will be very interested in where they are a month from now when Oladipo has been playing for a while and the team is getting ready for the dance.
 

jmcc5400

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Dame with 27 at the half. Portland down to 7 players. Another 50 + incoming.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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jmcc5400

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Yup - dont think 60 is out of the question under the circumstances. Going to be fun to see Carmelo go up and down for 20 minutes
 

jmcc5400

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That has to be the worst missed goaltending I've ever seen. Portland deserved better.
 

Pablo's TB Lover

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Just sitting in my hotel room not attached to either team playing, and fucking NBA refs. Dame put it all out there playing almost the full game, obvious goaltend by Golbert and for some goddamn reason it goes uncalled and CAN'T be reviewed. What a shitty ending to a game, thanks NBA.
 

Sam Ray Not

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Egeregiously awful call — Dame had every right to be incensed — though fwiw I'm pretty sure that shot was not going in if Gobert had not goaltended it.

No idea why that isn't reviewable, though.
 

jmcc5400

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Oh, I thought it was in, but either way that's a call that simply cant be missed by professional refs
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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So Lilliard and McCollum missed six straight shots in the third as they were completely gassed (McCollum did not sit during the second half while Lillard ended up playing all but two minutes of the half). Still he had 42 points on 16-30 shooting including 8-14 from distance as well as six boards and six dimes. This was the second night of a road B2B and the Blazers only had seven players for most of the game.

I shudder to think what the Blazers record would be like were Lillard not around.
 

DeJesus Built My Hotrod

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And just like that they lose in Phoenix by 36.
Their center (Westbrook) was out and it was the second night of a B2B. As some guy Paul Pierce said earlier, this was a classic schedule loss. I mean, they may really end up being horrible given their size limitations but just as one game isn't a great barometer, two isn't really either.