"We're going to Disney World!" NBA to resume season July 31 at WDW

Tony C

Dope
Dope
Apr 13, 2000
12,379
Had to get food. Man, I missed a great Nugs 3rd quarter, huh?
Pretty good 4th, too.

Total BS that the Lakers are being gifted anything -- Portland was about as tough an 8th seed as you can get (recall more than a few picked them to win) -- and pretty sure Houston would have been picked over anyone other than the 2 L.A. teams -- but that said while the Nuggets are showing themselves the superior team, as a match-up the Lakers catch a break missing out on the Clippers. Big wings like George and Kawhi are their kryptonite. Denver is a better match up for them for sure.
 

BigSoxFan

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SoSH Member
May 31, 2007
35,396
Damian Lillard must be having fun right now. Clippers have been outscored by like 75 in 2nd half last 3 games.

Holy shit.
 

luckiestman

Son of the Harpy
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Jul 15, 2005
16,865
Look, I’d rather beat the Lakers anyway. Just gotta get by wily Riley.
 

Apisith

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Oct 19, 2007
2,448
Bangkok
Morey's biggest mistake was not necessarily the Westbrook trade, but trading for Paul and then signing him to a giant extension. The conventional wisdom was that Paul and Harden were a clunky fit together and it would be awkward for them to play together, and it ended up being the case and Paul demanded a trade. Some point during his tenure, Houston decided to give him a huge extension that was kind of shocking at the time, given Paul's injury history and the general aging curve for small guards. So when the Paul/Harden situation predictably went south, the trade market for him was really limited due to the extension. Houston was going to have to take on an equally questionable massive contract, so they pretty much had to trade with OKC and get Westbrook.

What annoyed me about Houston/Morey was that he basically had a crazy-guy scheme for basketball that could generate regular season results, but kept coming up short in the playoffs. Instead of thinking about adjusting his team, he just doubled down and kept on pushing the game further and further away from traditional basketball, ending up with an ugly facsimile of the game that basically turned the game into a random lottery based on shooting exclusively three pointers. I say that as someone that on this board frequently defended Harden's offensive style and found his genius appealing, but it reached a point where it was too much. Once Capela was traded and they went to ultra-small ball I was out.

The frustrating part was that if you on paper said that there was this GM who came up with this crazy strategy to win a championship that many people doubted, and his team consistently flamed out in the playoffs, and he put the team in salary cap hell, you would assume he would not only be fired, but he would be one of the worst GMs of the decade. Morey got an enormous amount of slack because the analytics community liked him and his logic was statistically friendly. Progressive minds thought it was great to cut out inefficient mid-range jumpers, to get rid of offensively limited big men, and to play fast with as much spacing as possible. The logic is sound, but Morey pushed it way too far and refused to make any real adjustments to his philosophy that may have unlocked a more sustainable version of the Rockets, digging himself deeper in the process and now painting a bleak future for the Rockets, despite still having a durable Top 5 NBA player in his prime.
I disagree that it was a mistake to trade for Paul. We won 67 games with a historic points differential, rolled through the playoffs and very, very nearly beat the best team ever. Morey went all-in and nearly won. The extension for Paul was also agreed before the trade was done. We planned on getting a 2-3 year window, but instead got 1 because after Paul’s hamstring went, his first step went with it. Now we’re on the downslope of Harden’s peak, and there’s no alternative than to keep going all-in. I don’t really fault Morey for upping the ante because that’s what you need to do when you have a guy like Harden. He has some duds in the playoffs but we don’t lose because of him, we lose because we don’t have a second scorer to take the load off him in tight games (see: Series v Warriors last year, Games 6&7 v Warriors the year before, Games 3-5 v Lakers this year).

See Kawhi this year for an example of how having one of the top players doesn’t guarantee that you get into the conference finals or the Finals. You need role players, and you need a legit second scorer.
 

ifmanis5

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Sep 29, 2007
42,155
Rotten Apple
Lakers winning it all the Clippers going out like this will do some serious long term damage to the franchise. Even if the Lakers lose they are at a major turning point. And right now, a laughing stock.
 

johnmd20

figuratively like ebola
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Dec 30, 2003
44,198
New York City
I just caught some of the highlights, or lowlights if you're the Clippers. They both choked and gave up, simultaneously. What a joy to see.

I am not a big Kawhi fan, so seeing his team implode after he screwed over the Spurs and then spurned Toronto, although he brought them a title, is very enjoyable. Turns out one player can't win it on his own. And Toronto showed they were just more than one player this year.