Posts Tagged ‘Vince Carter’

GAME REVIEW: Raptors vs Nets [Dec 15]

December 16, 2008

NBA games can change dramatically depending upon the substitutions a team makes, or not, and the combination of players it has on the court, at any point in time, versus an opponent’s specific 5-Man Unit.

Such was the case last night when the Raptors faced the Nets.

At the 05:00 mark of the 3rd Quarter, New Jersey led Toronto by a single point, 58-57, when the following series of substitutions were made for each team:

SUBSTITUTIONS, TIME, SCORE & RAPTORS’ +/-

[Raptors vs Nets, Mon Dec 15 2008]

Nets

3rd Q

Raptors

PG

OG

SF

PF

C

Time
Score

+/-

PG

OG

SF

PF

C

DH

VC

BS

RA

JB

05:00

58-57

-1

JC

JK

JM

AB

CB

KD

VC

TH

 

 

03:25

60-64

+4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

02:32

60-66

+6

 

AP

 

JG

AB

 

 

 

 

 

00:10

63-70
+7

 

 

JK

JG

 

 

4th Q

 

DH

KD

 

 

 

12:00

63-70
+7

RU

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

09:18

66-72

+6

JC

 

 

CB

JO

 

 

 

 

 

08:48

70-72

+2

 

JK

JM

 

 

 

VC

 

 

 

06:21

74-72

-2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

05:39

74-72

-2

 

 

JG

AB

CB

 

 

 

 

 

03:26

84-74

-10

 

 

JM

CB

JO

 

 

 

 

 

02:44

88-74

-14

 

 

AP

 

 

Legend:

AB – Andrea Bargnani; AP – Anthony Parker; BL – Brook Lopez; BS – Bobby Simmons; CB – Chris Bosh; DH – Devin Harris; JB – Josh Boone; JC – Jose Calderon; JG – Joey Graham; JK – Jason Kapono; JM – Jamario Mooon; JO – Jermaine O’Neal; KD – Keyon Dooling; RA – Ryan Anderson; RU – Roko Ukic; TH – Trenton Hassell; VC – Vince Carter

When the bleeding finally stopped for the Raptors, at the 02:44 mark of the 4th period, the Nets had established a 14-point margin that eventually proved to be insurmountable for the home team.

Closeer examination of these events reveals a number of interesting things about the mechanics of last night’s contest.

———————————————————–

After relinquishing the lead to the Raptors’ 5-Man Unit of …

Calderon-Kapono-Moon-Bargnani-Bosh,

the Nets made their first key substitution at the 03:25 mark of the 3rd Q, when they replaced Harris/PG & Simmons/SF with Dooling and Hassell, respectively, although they were trailing by 4 points [60-64], at the time.

What this substitution did was change The End of the 3rd Quarter/Beginning of the 4th Quarter Match-ups for each of the teams at the PG position.

Despite playing without their starting PG, the Nets were able to stay within striking distance of the Raptors, while buying valuable rest time for Harris to begin the 4th Quarter versus Ukic, the back-up PG for the Raptors.

Conversely, the Raptors made their first key substitution at the 02:32 of the 3rd Quarter when they replaced Kapono/OG and Bosh/C with Parker & Graham, respectively, while leading the Nets by 6 points, 60-66.

What this substitution did was create a most unusual line-up for Toronto that has rarely, if ever, seen the court this season [either under Sam Mitchell or Jay Triano]:

Calderon-Parker-Moon-Graham-Bargnani

It was this unit which failed to open up a wider working margin for the Raptors versus the Nets, playing without Harris.

Then, at the 3rd Quarter interval, was when both teams made their second set of key substitutions:

New Jersey … used Harris & Dooling together, in conjunction with Lopez, Anderson & Hassell; while resting Carter.

Toronto … replaced Calderon with Ukic, and kept their other four players [who finished the 3rd Quarter] on the court.

What these two sets of subs did was:

1. Prevent the Raptors from establishing a wider working margin over the Nets, while New Jersey was buying rest time for Carter;

2. Establish Harris [who scored the first 5 points of the quarter playing versus the Raptors’ back-up PG] as the Offensive Focus for the Nets during this segment of the game.

The third key substitution for the Nets was made at the 06:21 mark of the 4th Quarter when they replaced Dooling/OG with Carter, who was rested for the stretch run, after the Nets had already regained the lead from the Raptors, primarily, on the back of Harris and Lopez.

The third key susbstitution for the Raptors was made at the 05:39 mark of the 4th Quarter when they replaced Moon/SF & O’Neal/C with Graham/SF & Bargnani/PF, respectively, shifted Bosh to the Center position, in conjunction with Calderon and Kapono [who played all 12 minutes of the 4th Quarter]. 

It was this line-up that was outscored 10-2 by the Nets between the 05:39 and 03:26 marks of the 4th Quarter, which allowed New Jersey to establish a 10 point lead on the Raptors, 84-74.

The fourth key substitution for the Raptors was at the 03:26 mark of the 4th Quarter when Toronto replaced Bargnani/PF & Graham/SF with O’Neal & Moon, respectively, after which the Nets increased their lead to 14 points, 88-74.

In fact, it was during these two specific segments of the game that the following  16 Key Possession Outcomes occurred and determined the eventual Winner/Loser of this match-up:

KEY POSSESSION OUTCOMES

[Raptors vs Nets, Mon Dec 15 2008]

 

Nets

4th Q

Time

Score

+/-

 

Raptors

 

05:39

74-72

-2

 

#1. Carter, Made Driving Layup [2+1], Fouled by Bargnani

05:31
77-72

-5

 

 

05:12

#2. Kapono, Missed J3

#3. Harris Made Two FT’s [1+1], Fouled by Graham

04:48

79-72

-7

 

 

04:42

79-74

-5

#4. Calderon, Made Two FT’s [1+1], Fouled by Lopez

#5. Carter Missed J2

04:22

 

 

04:17

#6. Calderon, Turnover/4

#7. Harris J2 [2]

04:06

81-74

-7

 

 

03:52

#8. Kapono, Missed J3

#9. Anderson, Made J3 [3]

03:33

84-74

-10

 

 

03:26

Time-out/20

 

03:18

#10. Bosh, Missed Driving Layup

 

03:15

#11. O’Neal, O-Reb, Missed Two FT’s, Fouled by Anderson

 

03:13

#12. Bosh, O-Reb, Missed Tap-in

#13. Lopez, Missed Layup, Blocked shot by O’Neal

03:00

 

#14. Anderson, O-Reb, Made Tap-in [2]

02:55

86-74

-12

 

 

02:48

#15. Calderon, Turnover/5

#16. Anderson, Made Two FT’s, Fouled by Moon [1+1]

02:44

88-74

-14

 

Time-out/Full

02:44

 

i.e. New Jersey converted 6 of their 8 Possessions [75.0%] into 14 points; while Toronto converted only 1 of their 8 Possessions [12.5 %] into 2 points. 

Of particular interest to this corner are the following facts:

* The Raptors LOST the Battle of the Boards last night, 38 to 54. 

* During these 8 Possessions the Raptors’ output consisted of:

  • 2 Missed J3’s by Kapono
    2 Missed Layup/Tap-in Attempts by Bosh
    2 Turnovers by Calderon
    1 Set of 2 Missed FT’s by O’Neal
    1 Set of 2 Made FT’s by Calderon

* During these two key segments of the game, the Raptors chose to ignore the line-up they used last week versus the Pacers to close out their first victory under Jay Triano, i.e. Calderon-Moon-Graham-Bosh-O’Neal, that is by far the best REBOUNDING & Team Defense 5-Man Unit which Toronto can put on the floor.

———————————————————–

In general …

How a team uses its substitutes, at important moments within a specific NBA game, can be a crucial factor toward determining the eventual Winner/Loser of that contest.

Such was the case last night, at the ACC, when the Raptors forgot just how vital REBOUNDING & Team Defense are … especially, during the 4th Quarter of a close game, in this league, versus a dangerous opponent.

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CDR: Chip meet shoulder

October 3, 2008

Every once in a while … a player falls through the cracks in the annual NBA Draft, and re-establishes the fact that many of the GM’s in the League do not have a special gift for adroit talent identification.

—————————

Nets’ Douglas-Roberts very motivated
Nearly 100 days have passed since Chris Douglas-Roberts was taken 40th in the NBA Draft and the Nets’ swingman’s bitterness from not going earlier hasn’t waned.

“I feel like I have to keep a chip anyway just to stay motivated, but that’s an extra boost for me,” Douglas-Roberts said after practice Thursday.

“I come into the gym with that on my mind every day. As crazy as it seems, that’s still on my mind. But it helps me in a way.”

So it hasn’t lessened at all?

“No,” Douglas-Roberts said.

This could be good for the Nets, if Douglas-Roberts takes it out on other teams.

—————————

When this many teams take a pass on a player like CDR it creates the kind of hunger which can carry a young man … who has good size, a high degree of athleticism, competitiveness, and a solid Basketball IQ … with authentic NBA talent a long way in this League.

Keep your eye on CDR … it says here … he is going to be a Pro’s Pro for a long time.

Good fit for the Nets

September 4, 2008

Given the strengths and weaknesses of his current Player Roster, the Little General is once again proving to astute NBA observers that he is a solid NBA coach … 

Dribble Drive Motion Offense in the Swamp

who knows exactly what he’s doing, when it comes to making sound adjustments with his team that maximize his players’ skills & abilities.

Focusing the Nets’ offensive system on the penetrating abilities of Devin Harris, Wince Carter, Keyon Dooling and CDR, without a dominant LOW POST-scorer anywhere in sight, and with a plethora of mobile, athletic youngish Bigs, who have an array of offensive (and defensive) talents … is a sound coaching move by Lawrence Frank.

Looking at the Nets’ 2008-2009 roster … there are any number of intriguing options/combinations when you take a young Big Man, like Brook Lopez (Boone-J & Williams-S), shift him to the WEAK SIDE block, and then surround him with a combination of Guard & Forwards who can either take it to the rack, shoot the ball, or both (Harris-D, Carter-V, Dooling-K, Hassell-T, Najera-E, Simmons-B, CDR, Hayes-J., Swift-S, Anderson-R, and Jianlian-Y).

Unlike other NBA observers …

Summer Forecast: Which way is the East going?
Summer Forecast: Which way is the West going?
NBA off-season rankings – v3.0
NBA power rankings: Celtics no surprise as preseason No. 1

this corner DOES NOT project New Jersey to finish at the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings this season.

Rod Thorn, Kiki Vandeweghe and Lawrence Frank … are too good at what they do to let that happen.

Misdiagnosis in New Jersey

January 31, 2008

Q. Should the Nets trade Jason Kidd? (or not)

Nets in three-way talks for Kidd 

A. In a nutshell … (absolutely) NO (frigg’n) WAY! 

Jason Kidd has been New Jersey’s stalwart PG, and a perennial League All-Star, since his arrival in ‘the Swamp’, via trade from Phoenix (when Nets’ GM, Rod Thorn, fleeced his Suns’ counterpart, Bryan Colangelo, exchanging Jason Kidd and Chris Dudley for Stephon Marbury, Johnny Newman and Soumaila Samake, Jul/18/01).

Reviewing Kidd’s 6 prior years with the Nets …

Season W-L Win% Finish
’01-02 52-30 .634 Lost NBA Finals
’02-03 49-33 .598 Lost NBA Finals
’03-04 47-35 .573 Lost Eastern Conference Finals
’04-05 42-40 .512 Lost 1st Rd Playoffs
’05-06 49-33 .598 Lost Eastern Conference Semi-finals
’06-07 41-41 .500 Lost Eastern Conference Semi-finals

New Jersey has yet to miss the playoffs, has made 5 trips to the Eastern Conference Semi-finals, 3 trips to the Eastern Conference Finals, and 2 trips to the NBA Finals …

which stands in stark contrast to how the Nets fared prior to his arrival:

Season W-L Win% Finish
’94-95 30-52 .366 *
’95-96 30-52 .366 *
’96-97 26-56 .317 *
’97-98 43-39 .524 Lost 1st Rd Playoffs, 0-3
’98-99 16-34 .320 Lockout Season *
’99-00 31-51 .378 *
’00-01 26-56 .317 *

* Missed Playoffs

a decidely dim period in their organization’s history.

In fact, The Difference is, literally, like Night (sans Kidd) and Day (avec Kidd).

THE PROBLEM, however, in New Jersey, right now, has nothing to do with Jason Kidd.

THE PROBLEM, in New Jersey … has everything to do with, one, Vincent Lamar Carter!

Period. Full stop. Exclamation Point. End of discussion. 

Since HIS arrival in ‘the Swamp’, via trade from Toronto (in exchange for Alonzo Mourning, Aaron Williams, Eric Williams and two First Round draft picks, Dec/17, 2004), the Nets have moved steadily in reverse, and have failed to reach the Eastern Conference Finals each of the past 3 seasons.

The fact is … ‘Wince’ Carter is a supremely talented ‘individualistic’ basketball player, who plays only ‘when’ and ‘how’ he chooses to, on any given day (depending on the mood he’s in), is a ‘chronic under-achiever’, and who is  a ‘poor fit’ with the other two shining lights for the Nets (Kidd & Richard Jefferson).

Instead of simply acquiescing to the trade request of Jason Kidd, what Rod Thorn needs to do, in this situation, is look out for the best interests of the Nets organization, and:

(i) Find a willing suitor for the services of Vince Carter, who was signed this past off-season to a reasonable contract extension by New Jersey; and, then …

(ii) Stay the course with Jason Kidd;

(iii) Await the return of Nenad Krstic (C), who has missed the Nets’ last 33 games this season, after missing almost all of last year, while rehabilitating his injured knee …

Nenad May Be Needed Addition

Trading Jason Kidd is not the solution to what ails the New Jersey Nets, right now … currently, holding down the 8th (and final) Playoff position in the Eastern Conference (19-26).

What New Jersey needs, both, this season and moving forward for the future, is a terrific Point Guard (i.e. Kidd); a 1st class Small Forward (i.e. R-Jefferson); a young and athletic Power Forward (i.e. Sean Williams); a rock solid Center, who can rebound effectively, defend an opposing ‘Big’, pass the ball, and make mid-range jumpshots, selflessly (i.e. Nenad Krstic); and, then, a Prime-time ‘Scoring Machine’, at the Off Guard position (i.e. ???), who can consistently knock down perimeter jumpers and get to the FT Line on a regular basis … all of which ‘Wince’ Carter no longer does, night-to-night, in the NBA.

All-Star, ‘pass-first’, ‘triple-double’ Point Guards (like J-Kidd) do not just grow on trees, in this league … wildly inconsistent, athletic, egocentric, ’20-14 & 5′ wing men (like V-Carter) do.