The Jazz actually had more open shots (defined as a shot without a defender within 4 feet) than the Mavericks tonight, 42 to 37. Unfortunately, The Jazz made just 15 of those shots (for just 35% on open shots!), compared to 23 makes for the Mavs (62%). This outweighed the Jazz’s impressive finishing ability when there was someone nearby: as they made 8 more contested shots (going 25-42) compared to the Mavs, who shot just 18-50 while contested.
Some of this is to be expected: the Mavs have built a team that’s pretty strong on the perimeter, 6th in the league in 3P%, while the Jazz’s focus has been at the hoop. Of course, the team with Dirk Nowitzki and Jose Calderon is going to outshoot most opponents. Surely, some of it is luck too. But perhaps some of it might be preparation. This is a sample size of one, but I went out to ESA’s court at about 5:30 to watch warmups. Here’s what I found:
ESA at about 5:30 before a 7 PM game.
On the left, you see several Mavericks getting shots up, working on their form and moves with coaches and ballboys. On the other side, you see only Enes Kanter working on his game. 1 Kanter went 8-13 in tonight’s game in perhaps Utah’s best offensive performance.
That may be because the Mavs didn't get a shoot around and the Jazz did? WHo knows? Need a bigger sample size.
Now, I’m not saying that the Jazz are preparing inadequately, and of course, correlation is not causation. But when I saw this, I remembered back to the Jazz’s game against Miami, in which Ray Allen was taking hundreds of shots in a pregame warmup in his 17th NBA season. Allen is perhaps the greatest shooter of all time, while the Jazz are missing 65% of their open shots. Maybe there’s something there.
2. Corbin’s philosophy on youth development
Ty Corbin’s time in Utah has not been all roses, but perhaps the hottest point for critics has been the distribution of playing time between young players and veterans. It’s happened for several seasons now: Corbin has chosen to start veterans like Raja Bell, Josh Howard, and Richard Jefferson over their younger counterparts. It has left a lot of observers confused, especially given that in many cases the young players have outplayed said veterans.
Jim Burton, of the Ogden Standard-Examiner asked a question 2about this tonight, and in particular, whether or not that philosophy has changed given the Jazz’s position in the standings.
Ty responded as follows: “I never think that it’s good just to play guys just to play guys. I think you teach guys how to play right to win. We understand that we want to develop the young guys, but we want to develop them to play a certain way. That’s not just putting them on the floor. We’re playing to develop winners, we’re not playing guys to be on the floor. It’s a delicate balance between that. We want to make sure that we play a certain way and how to play to win.”3
It’s a philosophy that actually makes sense. There’s some sense that playing time is the only real carrot a coach can use, and without the potential reward of more playing time, players don’t choose to put in the out-of-game work that allows them to be successful players (see point #1). Of course, there’s the obvious counter that the best practice minutes are game minutes, and I don’t think Corbin would argue with that. But if success is at least partially a result of establishing certain habits, maybe the Jazz are trying to achieve that “delicate balance” that allows them to be best moving forward. I’m open to more conversation on this.
I agree. Playing with bad habits isn't necessarily a good thing. Guys should earn their time.
3. Leapin’ Leaners & Low Tops is coming up.
Leapin’ Leaners & Low Tops is a charity event thrown by the Jazz every year, taking place on the hardcourt of ESA. It’s a typical charity scene, with an auction and catered dinner, etc. But it’s a cool chance for the wealthy and/or well-connected to give their money to a good cause (Larry H. Miller Charities) to be able to spend some time with Jazz players and management. If you’ve got surplus money and love the Jazz, buy a table or ticket.
Just for fun, I asked Corbin which of his players he would choose to sit with at the event. His response? “Depends on what I want. I might see what Enes has on his mind. Explore that. Maybe sit with Derrick Favors, see if I can make him talk a little bit longer.”
If I had the money, I’d probably choose to sit with Richard Jefferson. He spent about 15 minutes with a youth group after tonight’s game, completely unsolicited. Even when the youth group had ran out of questions, Jefferson asked them to ask him more, trying to get the shyer kids involved. In the locker room, I’ve heard Jefferson act as storyteller and mythbuster with equal skill. He’s been my favorite player to talk to as a part of the media, simply because he is so legitimately insightful. I’ve learned a ton by being able to interact with him.
I think he's been good for the team rather you agree with his playing time or not. He'll be missed.
With the Jazz, owners of a 23-42 record, firmly in rebuilding mode, attendance — an average of 17,947 announced fans per game, though there are often far fewer than that actually in the building — has dropped to the lowest the franchise has seen since moving out of the Salt Palace and into the Delta Center in 1991.
It’s a four-percent decline from a season ago, and a nine-percent decline from a peak of 19,908 six seasons ago when the Jazz won the Northwest Division and made it to the Western Conference semifinals.
Front runners. They wanted the tank but aren't showing up to watch it.
The drop, however, was not unexpected for a franchise that let four of its five top scorers from last year leave for free agency to make playing time for a younger, developing base.
"We anticipated that we would have a slight decline," Jazz president Randy Rigby said.
It would be a hit to the bottom line, Rigby added, especially in one of the league’s smallest markets, where ticket sales are a "critical component" of financial viability. Helping ease concerns, Jazz officials believed the team had a fan base that was "supportive of the plan and strategy."
"But you’re still stepping out to the edge of a cliff and you’re not sure if there are going to be angels to help lift you up," Rigby said. "And they’ve been there."
With just nine home games remaining in the season, franchise leaders have been happy with the numbers they’ve drawn. After drawing the ninth-most fans in the NBA on average last season, the Jazz have dropped to 14th-most and are still above the league average of 17,297. Among teams with losing records this season, only the New York Knicks, the Los Angeles Lakers and the Boston Celtics are drawing more fans.
Commitment to the rebuild took faith and market research. Rigby said Jazz officials also heard the message from fans last season that they would endure rebuilding, taking "short-term pain for a long-term reward."
"They’ve been very supportive of the plan and the strategy," he said.
And as the season draws to a close, Rigby is still preaching "patience in a very impatient business."
"We all want to have a winner sooner than later," he said. "But we’re not going to skip steps. We’re going to do it right, so we can have something that will be sustainable for a long period of time."
In the meantime, the Jazz have tried provide reminders of better times. A ceremony to honor Hall of Fame coach Jerry Sloan earlier this year and the planned reunion of Adrian Dantley, Mark Eaton, Darrell Griffith, Rickey Green and the rest of the 1983-84 Utah Jazz — the first playoff team in franchise history — later this month have not purely been the products of coincidence.
Cool! The beginning of the Jazz as a winning franchise.
"We’ve wanted to remind our fans and reiterate to some of our younger fans or those who have moved in and become fans that, hey, this organization knows how to compete, knows how to build championship-caliber teams," Rigby said. "We’ve done it and we’re going to do it again."
But the franchise knows patience and memories will only fill seats for so long.
"We understand this team is growing. We want to give them something to be happy and proud of," Corbin said. "We look forward to the folk coming back and the stands being filled."
Ten things the Jazz can do in their final 18 games to improve their future — aside from losing all 18 for a better shot at a difference-making draft pick:
1. Force Trey Burke to get to the basket and to the line more.
Not only is the rookie the best free-throw shooter on the team (91 percent), he has the worst field-goal efficiency (37 percent) among the Jazz’s main contributors. Solution: Encourage him to drive to the rim for easier scores and/or get fouled. Magic Johnson always said — and Jerry Sloan would agree — that the players who shoot closer to the basket usually win. They’re right.
Or maybe even pass on occasion!
2. Find a way to have Derrick Favors and Enes Kanter play together.
While there were stretches where the two were laughably ineffective, Tyrone Corbin punted on the proposition too early. Favors and Kanter are too talented, too valuable for the Jazz to use them alternately. They must either figure out schemes at both ends that work in tandem or one of the two should be traded.
One will be traded if they get figure it out in the next year. They definitely need to try to get them on the court together more to find out if it can work.
3. Scream at Kanter until he plays better, smarter defense.
The big Turk will never be a shot-blocker, but he can use his strength to his advantage in protecting the basket with a double-dose of anticipation and recognition. He picks up useless fouls, often because of a lack of savvy.
Favors has a bigger problem with fouls. Enes needs to continue to improve though.
4. Coach and motivate the Jazz as a whole to play better, smarter defense.
Their defensive rating — points allowed per 100 possessions — ranks 29th out of 30 teams. Like a lot of their shortcomings, some of that deficiency can be traced to youth, but the Jazz’s defensive struggles have remained from the start of this season.
5. Play hard every minute of every game.
The Jazz flat-out are not good enough to coast. Leave that to the Heat and the Spurs, as they prepare for the postseason. The Jazz must give everything they’ve got on every trip — dive for loose balls, set solid picks, rebound, the works. Too often, they don’t. Monday night’s loss to the Hawks was a prime example. They cruised in the first half and couldn’t find enough gas in the second to beat a team that had lost six straight and was at the end of a 10-day roadie.
With a young team they certainly need to bring energy as much as possible.
6. Run the floor.
The Jazz rank 28th in points per game (94.8). They shoot just 44 percent. Their opponents shoot almost 47 percent. The math is not in the Jazz’s favor. Getting easier attempts in transition would help reduce the grind.
Burke isn't comfortable in that type of game. Not sure if he can change or not?
7. Play the youngsters exclusively down the stretch.
This isn’t tanking, it’s investing in the future. In almost every area of weakness, the Jazz lack seasoning. Get some now, when the outcome of games makes no difference in playoff positioning. At this point, there’s no way Richard Jefferson and Marvin Williams should be averaging more minutes than Kanter. Jefferson is shooting great from beyond the arc, but he’s making $11 million-plus. If he’s not going to be on the roster next season, give his minutes to someone who will. Get Burke, Alec Burks, Gordon Hayward, Favors and Kanter on the floor together as often as possible. Make it possible. Play Rudy Freakin’ Gobert.
Gobert should be in the D-League. Not sure why he's not?
8. Punch up a pillow and provide Hayward some couch time.
Nearly all the younger players are being asked to do things they’ve never done before — as noted in No. 7, that’s a good thing — but none has carried more weight than Hayward. He’s taken the world on his shoulders. He plays more minutes than anybody else. He’s taken more shots. He’s missed more shots. He’s delivered more assists. He’s committed more turnovers. He’s made more steals. Most glaring, he’s hit barely 40 percent of his shots. Hayward has made just two more field goals than Kanter — in 155 more attempts. Consistency is his vexing issue. His shooting percentage has dropped each year in the league, from 48 percent as a rookie, to 45 percent, to 43 percent, to his current low. Hayward needs to breathe, back off just a bit, and stress less about next year’s contract. It will be OK.
If he left as much money on the table as some reports indicated I can understand him being stressed. He might be regretting.
9. Get the ball into Favors and Kanter more.
Each is developing his offensive game, and each has shown progress in doing so. Each can do more. As bigs, Kanter and Favors are expected to shoot at a sweeter clip than the perimeter guys — and they have. Favors makes 51 percent of his shots, Kanter 50 percent. That’s better than everybody on the team, with the exception of Jeremy Evans. Rough edges or no, they need the ball more. If the Jazz make the playoffs in coming seasons, those anchored foundations will be traced back to the hammering done now.
Burks and Kanter should be the first two options.
10. Develop a tougher mindset.
Related to No. 5. Some worry about the adverse effect this season’s losing will have on the youngsters. Screw that. Any competitor who lets a cold wind turn his head around isn’t worth much investment. The Jazz must follow the example of Burke, who knows exactly what’s going on right here, right now, who understands it, but who hates it. He probably hates it enough to do something positive about it. That’s what the Jazz need more than anything.
GORDON MONSON hosts "The Big Show" with Spence Checketts weekdays from 3-7 p.m. on 97.5 FM/1280 and 960 AM The Zone. Twitter: @GordonMonson.
Marvin Williams missed practice this morning with a lower back strain. The veteran forward was scheduled to undergo an MRI today to determine his status going forward.
Those results have yet to be released as of about 5 p.m. Thursday [UPDATE: Williams' MRI was rescheduled for Friday morning at 11, meaning his status likely won't be made public until about 90 minutes before tipoff tomorrow], but while we wait it's worth nothing that Williams has had some back issues throughout his career:
• He missed one game in 2006-07 with back spasms.
• He missed 16 games in the 2008-09 season with a lower back injury.
• On Dec. 29, 2010, he landed on his back after attempting to block a shot (video here) and did not play again until Jan. 26, 2011, missing 11 games over that time.
• In June 2011, Williams had "minor surgery on his lower back to alleviate the pain from a bulging disk" and spent about two months that summer in recovery.
This season, it's been Williams' Achilles' and heel that have slowed him at times.
He's averaging 9.6 pints and 5.2 rebounds in his 54 games with the Jazz this year, and it's worth nothing that the Jazz have yet to win a game this season in which he hasn't played.
As I said, we don't yet know how serious this injury is or how much time — if any — Williams might miss over the last month of the season.
If he does miss any extended time, it seems likely we'll see Enes Kanter and Derrick Favors back together on the court more.
Got to go with Enes or possibly Gobert I guess. Evans isn't a starter and Thomas hasn't played.
The Jazz's "frontcourt of the future" hasn't exactly panned out just yet, or at least we haven't seen it. To date, the two big men have played together in 39 games for a total of 502 minutes — only the 23rd-most used two-man combo.
The statue of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar outside Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles is a frozen portrait of the Hall of Famer’s deadly skyhook.
It’s a shot the ex-center lamented has fallen out of favor in today’s game.
"I’m not really surprised because the guys that coach grade school kids don’t show them how to play near the basket," he said. "They all want to shoot 3-pointers. Kids want to handle the ball."
Yeah I was spending time at a high school recently for a few months here and they all want to launch 3's even though they have a hard time even making a lay-up.
But it’s a shot Jazz center Enes Kanter has in his repertoire — and one his coach would like to see more of.
"When he feels the guy, feels the guy and it’s that running hook across the lane with his rhythm, I think that’s a really good shot for him," Ty Corbin said. "And actually it gives him an opportunity to get fouled because he’s going across the basket. He’s moving, his guy is moving."
About 11 percent of Kanter’s attempts this season have been some variation of a hook shot, according to the NBA’s data. He’s hitting on 61 percent of them.
He has the jump hook or push shot like Al but recently he's added the running hook across the lane.
"Kareem in his day perfected the shot," Corbin said. "It’s very effective. I’ve seen a few of them myself live. You can’t get to it."
John Lucas III wore a protective boot on his right ankle Wednesday, after spraining it the day before in practice.
"He tried to block a shot," Corbin said of the 5-foot-11 point guard, before breaking into a laugh with reporters. "We like the hustle. He knew right when he tried to block the shot it wasn’t the right thing to do, but we appreciate the effort."
Lucas, a 30-year-old journeyman, has blocked two shots in his NBA career.
Corbin said X-Rays of Lucas’ ankle were negative. He’s listed as day to day.
When he was a kid, Trey Burke looked up to smaller point guards like Iverson and Chris Paul.
For a while, the much-younger Burke even had a hairstyle similar to Iverson's.
"I had braids when I was younger," Burke admitted. "But, man, I was too tender-headed. My mom would braid my hair and it would hurt too bad, so I ended up starting to get haircuts."
Burke, who grew up to be 6-1, continued to try to emulate some of the 6-foot Iverson's crafty and creative game.
"(Iverson) was a guy that I watched a lot. I think I did imitate him a lot at a young age," Burke said. "He was one of those guys who was just a special player, his size and he was able to score on pretty much anybody."
While his shooting percentage has dipped to 37.1 percent, Burke is working on trying to become more effective at scoring near the basket a la Iverson.
37% is very AI like.
But it wasn't just Iverson's scoring prowess that impressed Burke.
"He had that competitive nature and that killer instinct," the 21-year-old said. "I think that allowed my love for the game to grow, too, just to see a guy that small — you could tell he was having fun out there, but at the same time competing."
Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin would love it if Burke, with a similar slim and small frame, continued to try to match the "tough, tough" Iverson's level of offensive explosiveness and his gritty, determined style.
"I thought he was one of the toughest little guys in this league. I think that (he could) learn from that toughness and the way that Allen could finish at the rim. He could create contact," Corbin said. "There's a lot of good things in the comparison, if you want to compare them, that he could take and put in his game."
Corbin waited for a moment and smiled as he added, "But he'd have to practice."
I took a look at Enes Kanter’s career comps today. I chose four players:
Carlos Boozer, Al Jefferson, David West and David Lee. I was looking for similarly sized and similarly athletic players.
Kanter entered the league much younger than any of these comps—even Al Jefferson. Kanter is still just 21 years old. David West was 23 and David Lee was 22 during their rookie seasons. Boozer was a rookie at 21 and Al Jefferson was in his second year at 21.
It’s interesting when you look at these comps how many more minutes Kanter has played than his comparables. Also, it’s interesting that, offensively, he has performed every bit as well as theses players. Remember: West was 23 and Lee was 22.
Kanter compsKevin Pelton of ESPN has a player projection system that compares players. At the beginning of this season he had Kanter compared to Derrick Favors, Zaza Pachulia, DeJuan Blair and Amar’e Stoudemire. His system does not include players who were not in the league at their age, so Boozer, West and Lee were not compared.
Looking at Pelton’s comps, Kanter is behind in minutes played. His offensive production is ahead of everyone except Stoudamire, though he’s not far off.
For the season Kanter and Favors have played 503 minutes together. In those 503 minutes the Jazz offensive rating is 92.7 points per 100 possessions. This is by far the worst of any of the Jazz 30 most used playing pairs, only 8 are under 100 points per possession. This is a continuation of last season when the Jazz struggled to score with both Kanter and Favors on the floor.
Last year, with Kanter and Favors on the floor the Jazz were great defensively. This season that has not been the case. Instead, the Jazz are allowing 113.4 points per 100 possessions with both of them on the floor. Only the tandems of Kanter and Burks at 114.2 and Kanter and Marvin 116.5 pts per 100 possessions are worse.
Most of these minutes happened early in the season when the Jazz were without Trey and Marvin and were outmatched every night.
Since November 24th when Trey entered the starting line-up Favors and Kanter have played 200 minutes together. In those 200 minutes the Jazz offensive rating is 98.7, an improvement, but the defensive rating is still an abysmal 115.5. This is the second worst defensive pair (Marvin and Kanter are 115.9) of the 60 most used pairs since November 24th.
Over those 200 minutes opponents EFG% has been 53.7 (league average is 50%, team average is 50.7). The Jazz have been a better offensive rebounding team, grabbing 27.7% of the offensive rebounds (team is 24.8%). However, on the defensive glass they team has grabbed 73.6% of the defensive rebounds below the team average of 74.8% Finally, the offense has been very turnover prone, turning it over 16.9% of their possessions, higher than any tandem that doesn’t include Rudy Gobert.
So far this season the data questions whether or not Kanter and Favors can play together. The next stretch of games is their chance to prove otherwise.
there have been a fair share of bright spots for the Utah Jazz. One has been the recent play of point guard Diante Garrett. For a team with a long history of being able to find the proverbial diamonds in the rough through free agency and late draft picks, Garrett represents the latest success.
Trey Burke’s injury to start the season caused the Jazz to trot out a point guard tandem of John Lucas III and Jamaal Tinsley. The results were disastrous, almost to epic levels.
The choice to tank and not a have a capable NBA vet to mentor Burke was/is a joke!
On November 12th, Tinsley 1was waived. The next day, Utah inked Diante Garrett, causing Jazz fans to scour the Internet for information about this relative unknown. He had spent his rookie season in Phoenix and attending Oklahoma City’s training camp.
He was instantly a breath of fresh air. In his Utah debut, Garrett was instrumental: his seven points and five assists helped lead the Jazz to their first win of the young season (after a disappointing 0-8 start). In his first seven outings, Garrett was productive, averaging 5.3 PPG and 4.1 APG. Then his playing time became very sporadic, as head coach Tyrone Corbin alternated between Garrett and Lucas as Burke’s primary back-up. Later, though, it became clear that Garrett’s playmaking, outside shooting, and length in the backcourt set him ahead of Lucas.
Since then, he’s been solid and sometimes very good. He has played with a lot more confidence since knowing the job was his to keep. In January, Garrett contributed 4.2 PPG, 1.8 APG and 1.8 RPG, while shooting 43.8 percent from long-distance. He was even better in February, with 4.6 PPG, 1.7 RPG and 1.3 APG and 53.8 percent 3-point shooting. Since the All-Star break, Garrett is contributing 5.5 PPG and shooting 50 percent from beyond the arc. He has often played alongside Alec Burks, allowing the two to share ball-handling duties. Garrett’s ability to stick the open jumper, in tandem with Burks’ passing, has helped Corbin’s second unit.
Garrett certainly has a lot to work on. His 23.7 turnover percentage is a concern and he has more turnovers than assists since the All-Star break. His assists have gone down as he’s played more off the ball.
His future may be more of a combo guard.
He also has a very low free throw rate at .041. His two free throws against the Atlanta Hawks were his first in 18 games (and 300 minutes).
But as a reserve, he has injected energy and hustle. Garrett’s long arms help on defense, along with a willingness on that end of the court. He is a solid rebounder, particularly on the defensive boards (10.0 DRB%). All things considered, he has given stalwart minutes. His consistent outside shooting has been a boon for a team in need of some perimeter marksmanship (41.8 percent for the season on treys). Garrett is making just $719,266 this season, so he has been a steal.
What does the future hold for Garrett? With a team option for a mere $915,000 for next season and possibly many roster vacancies, he has a good chance of returning. Garrett will have a full season under his belt and will be able to fine tune his game this off-season, likely including playing some summer league ball. Moreover, he seems to have upside with room to grow his game. While the Jazz and 2013 second-round pick Raul Neto seem to have a mutual desire to make something happen, Garrett would be a wise option as one of the two back-up point guards going forward.
Perhaps the Jazz have once again found another hidden gem in Diante Garrett.
They need a vet! If Neto is on the team there may bot be room for Garrett.
Jazz played a good game tonight. Defensively they held the Clippers the #2 offensive team in the NBA, the #1 team over the last 10 games, a team that has been scoring 115 points a game to 96 points. The Clippers got it going in the 3rd quarter hitting 14 of 18 shots.
Like so many games this year. One quarter did them in. Have a hard time putting 48 minutes together. Which with their pg and depth situation it's not surprising.
The Jazz lead it 70-60 with 3:30 left in the 3rd and the thought went through my mind that maybe the Jazz could pull this off. It must have crossed the Clippers mind also because they promptly went on a 17 to 2 run. Chris Paul took over the game and the Clippers defense amped it up.
The Jazz don’t have a go to player who can take over a possession and make a play and that showed in the 4th quarter when the Clippers got into the Jazz and held them to 15 points. The Jazz got slowed down by the pressure Darren Collison for 94 feet over Trey. It slowed down the Jazz offense allowed the Cippers to switch on defenders. The Jazz couldn’t beat the mismatches.
Kanter and Favors started very well together. Favors got saddled with foul trouble. In the 1st quarter the Jazz lead it 22-15 when Favors went out so they were +7. In the 3rd quarter they were -2 before Evans came in for Kanter. In the 4th quarter the Jazz were even with the two on the floor. For the night the Jazz were +5 with Kanter and Favors on the floor.
Nice! Griffin/Jordan might be a pretty good match-up for them though.
Getting beat tonight is not something to be upset with. For most of the night the effort was terrific. A few plays will stick in your craw however. A huge Willie Green transition 3 happened in the third quarter because a player jogged back instead of making the effort to get all the way back and then he was a step late to get to Green. A soft inbound pass that gets intercepted. Turnovers above the free throw line that lead to points. All of those things are a bummer.
Jazz had 20 turnover that lead to 31 points.
Enes Kanter had a great game on the boards with 15 the 2nd highest of his career but was 5 for 17 shooting. Gordon Hayward had a great game passing with 10 assists, 6th time this year but was 2 for 8 shooting. Alec Burks had 10 points but more turnovers than field goals. My point is all of our guys played well is aspects and then against the hottest team in the league also got exposed.
Interesting the watch the Clippers just face guard Gordon Hayward with Willie Green in the 4th quarter. They decide they would not let him get the ball and make plays. Doc Rivers 4th quarter concern was taking Gordon out of the game. He did it.
Tyrone Corbin has said that he will make a concerted effort to play Burke, Burks, Hayward, Favors and Kanter together.
For the season the 5 man grouping has played 54 minutes together. That makes them 12th most used 5 man lineup for the Jazz this season. As I documented earlier playing Favors and Kanter together had not yielded positive results which moved Coach Corbin away from using this grouping.
Coach Corbin played the young 5 together for 18 minutes over 4 games in January and got limited results. In the 18 minutes the Jazz were outscored by 44-35. Defensively the group really struggled allowing 123.5 pts per 100 possessions. (League average is 103.7, worst team in the NBA is 108). Offensively, the group had success, scoring at a rate of 110 pts per 100 possessions.
Surprisingly, the group not only didn’t defend allowing an efg% defense of 57.1% they also didn’t defensive rebounding allowing 40% of all misses to be offensive rebounds.
No excuse for getting killed on the boards with that group.
However, after not being pair together for the month of February the group has played much better in March. Over 22 minutes they have outscored the opponents 48-46. The offensive rating has been a strong 107.6 and defensively have been a greatly improved 102.9.
One outlier in the recent period has been the offensive rebounding. This group has pulled down 54.5% of all offensive rebounds which is unsustanable.
More importantly, in this limited time the group has been good defensively. Allowing just a 47.3% EFG and forcing turnovers on 18% of possessions.
After a rough going in January with the 5 youngs it looks as though Coach Corbin has installed them back into his rotation and they are showing improvement.
With this improvement I would not be surprised if we see more of them in the final 17 games of the season