PDA

View Full Version : Coach: Breaking Down Paul George



90'sNBARocked
03-04-2012, 02:12 PM
http://www.hoopsworld.com/coach-breaking-down-paul-george

Quick Breakdown: Paul George


Paul George has enjoyed a strong second professional season thusfar. Capable of a highlight play on almost every trip, George is averaging 12 points, nearly 6 rebounds, and has started every game for the 22-12 Indiana Pacers. He is ranked around the middle of the pack amongst starting NBA shooting guards when it comes to PER (15.6 is only slightly above average overall, however), and his body type, athleticism, and enthusiasm has led many to predict big things for the 6’8 guard.

It is without a doubt that Paul George oozes potential. The first thing you notice is how he looks – George’s length and athleticism are obvious to any observer. His pure length rivals that of players like Kevin Durant and Corey Brewer. He possesses smooth movement patterns, and any herky-jerkiness in his game is deliberate rather than accidental. His body moves fluidly, all as one piece, and he appears refined and bouncy in nearly every attack situation.

There are many things to like beyond the fact that he passes nearly any NBA “eye-test” with flying colors. George displays good tendencies that you typically see in smaller guards that make him very difficult to guard at his size. He attacks off two feet often, giving him the ability to control his finishes better and take a physical bump but continue on to complete the play. He changes directions well, often making small adjustments mid move that allow him better attack angles at the end.

George does not waste a lot of space on drives. His length and quickness form a lethal combination when it comes to face-up attacks, as he gets by the shoulder of his defender and is in the lane after barely a full stride. This straight line drive eliminates any curvature or banana shape to his attack, and makes him much more deadly against help defenses.

A talented passer, George looks like he is willing and able to get his teammates involved despite an average of just over two assists per game. He is scary in transition, and stationed at the top of the key is able to fit the ball into small areas and throw it over the top of defenders as well. Speaking of defense, George is a plus on-ball defender, using length to take up space against his opponents, and does not shy away from contact.

With all that said, some of his youthful tendencies are not quite as positive. George will go through entire series of possessions where he disappears completely in the halfcourt setting. He gets caught standing around too much without the ball, unengaged with his team and not threatening the defense with his ability to score.

Because so many of his drives come so easily to him, he tends to give up when he encounters resistance a little too quickly. This leads to him settling for pull-ups and contested long jumpers, both of which are low percentage shots for him right now (especially long, contested 2s, which are the worst shot in basketball). In those situations, George needs to either create passing angles and get the ball back to attack again or he needs to work on his ability to push past that defender using counters and change of speed to continue his attack. It also makes his overall shot selection suspect, as he simply can’t make some of the shots he takes.

While his on-ball defense is a plus, George’s off-ball defense is not as good. He often gets caught halfway when off-the-ball: he ends up reaching in on attacking opponents, doesn’t really get in position to force them into a decision, and leaves teammates out to dry just a little too much. One thing he will need to learn is to either commit his body or not, and that going halfway is a recipe for disaster (both for him personally, as he looks lost, and for his team, because without commitment they don’t know exactly where he’ll be).

George has been compared to a young Tracy McGrady. This seems an unfair comparison, as he looks to me like much more of a stat sheet stuffer than an assassin-like scorer. He needs to think about the overall impact he can have on a game as a shooter and all-around playmaker (like a Steve Smith). The value he can bring a club comes from his overall skillset rather than just his ability to score.

A matchup problem for many teams around the league, Paul George looks like the kind of player who can be a starter for a championship contender, and maybe a threshold all-star if things come together over the next few years. He may not be the untouchable solution that some make him out to be, but his value is considerable and his contributions will be many over the next few years.



Each week, HOOPSWORLD NBA analyst and coach Anthony Macri will open his notebook and offer an assortment of observations on games, players, and teams from throughout the league. Coach Macri serves as a player development consultant for the Pro Training Center and Coach David Thorpe, working with a variety of NBA players on their skills and game understanding and serves as an assistant coach at Paul VI Catholic High School (Fairfax, VA), a consensus top 10 team in the nation this season. The Coach’s Notebook appears on HOOPSWORLD every Thursday

gummy
03-04-2012, 02:37 PM
This is a pretty good write-up, though I have a quibble with this part:

"He changes directions well, often making small adjustments mid move that allow him better attack angles at the end."

This is a part of his game that is still developing, especially in traffic - I wouldn't say he does it well just yet, but he's getting there. Lots of people have commented on how he would barrel into the paint for an offensive foul seemingly once or twice per game dating back to last year. He usually made a nice off the dribble move to get there and then, for whatever reason (I think partly due to his high dribble, which doesn't help his overall balance), couldn't avoid running into the opposing player who was well set to take the charge.

It was just a few games before the All-Star break when I noticed improvement in this area. He is now sometimes able to slide his feet a little better to avoid hitting the defensive player square on.I expect defenses will make an adjustment and so then we will see if PG can develop this skill further.

Anthem
03-04-2012, 02:50 PM
That's a fantastic writeup. Dude knows his basketball.

A lot of this we've all seen, but I hadn't ever noticed the two-feet thing. I'll watch for that next game.

ksuttonjr76
03-04-2012, 03:42 PM
It is without a doubt that Paul George oozes potential. The first thing you notice is how he looks – George’s length and athleticism are obvious to any observer. His pure length rivals that of players like Kevin Durant and Corey Brewer. He possesses smooth movement patterns, and any herky-jerkiness in his game is deliberate rather than accidental. His body moves fluidly, all as one piece, and he appears refined and bouncy in nearly every attack situation.

I've been saying this since Day One after watching some YouTube videos prior to the NBA Draft. Paul George has BEAUTIFUL body control overall. Very smooth and silky. LOL...I believe I even used the word "sexy" once...yeah, I know. That sounds gay.

<iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/OzR2uwxQ_DI?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/2ck1U79mP0I?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>


George has been compared to a young Tracy McGrady. This seems an unfair comparison, as he looks to me like much more of a stat sheet stuffer than an assassin-like scorer. He needs to think about the overall impact he can have on a game as a shooter and all-around playmaker (like a Steve Smith). The value he can bring a club comes from his overall skillset rather than just his ability to score.

After watching some additional video, the true conclusion is that he has the body movement of Kevin Durant, BUT the body build of Tracy McGrady.

ksuttonjr76
03-04-2012, 03:53 PM
Second coming of George Gervin, perhaps?

<iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/U5s6bSfOBpI?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Paul George's layup highlight....so smooth.

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/XkAYQM5fMVI?rel=0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

xIndyFan
03-04-2012, 04:00 PM
Second coming of George Gervin, perhaps?



or maybe derrick mckey with a jump shot.

ksuttonjr76
03-04-2012, 04:14 PM
or maybe derrick mckey with a 3PT shot.

Fixed ;).

graphic-er
03-04-2012, 04:19 PM
Or a more athletic Tayshaun Prince.

righteouscool
03-04-2012, 04:21 PM
Or a more athletic Tayshaun Prince.

I don't get this comparison at all.

Pacer Fan
03-04-2012, 04:33 PM
How bout the first coming of Paul George!

ksuttonjr76
03-04-2012, 04:40 PM
How bout the first coming of Paul George!

See...someone always want to be the first. We need carbon copies of previously great players.

Should I use the green font, lol?

xBulletproof
03-04-2012, 04:49 PM
Or a more athletic Tayshaun Prince.

Today maybe that's an okay comparison. As Paul George grows it won't last long.

Frostwolf
03-04-2012, 06:20 PM
I don't get this comparison at all.

people forget how good tayshaun was back in 2004/5.

Major Cold
03-04-2012, 07:07 PM
I liked Steve Smith. But he was a third option in a decent team. If we want to be contenders then PG needs to be more of a scorer.

BlueNGold
03-04-2012, 07:46 PM
Steve Smith is a strange comparison. Paul's game isn't much like Steve's. Paul is an athlete. Steve is probably below average in that category. Great player with good skills, but you'd never see him dunk over Roy Hibbert. Also, I don't think Steve was a great defender. Paul is capable of that.

MaHa3000
03-04-2012, 08:06 PM
Paul reminds me of a mix of Derrick McKey and Jonathan Bender. But I think he has the potential to be a go-to scorer like Danny has been for us the past few years.

2minutes twoa
03-04-2012, 09:05 PM
Since the Allstar Break, he seems more confident and has a bit more of a swagger to him. I love it!

Foul on Smits
03-05-2012, 12:23 AM
How bout Latrell Sprewell?

TheDavisBrothers
03-05-2012, 12:33 AM
How bout Latrell Sprewell?

I don't know, I think his choking skills will have to show a lot of improvement to get to that level of doucheness

Sherlock
03-05-2012, 03:58 AM
Scottie Pippen ?

naptownmenace
03-05-2012, 02:00 PM
How bout Latrell Sprewell?

I think that's a very good comparison. He has more range on his shot than Sprewell did this early in his career but I can see a lot of similarities to their game.

A lot of people don't remember Sprewell in his Golden State days before the choking incident. He was a dynamic player on both sides of the floor. He was so smooth and effective at everything.

Kid Minneapolis
03-06-2012, 02:12 PM
I'll break down PG thus far:

First, he's a fantastic prospect, with a world of potential. His body, athleticism, demeanor are what you look for in an NBA star. He's very skilled across the board; defense, transition offense/defense, rebounding, passing --- all upper tier for a guy at his position. He's going to be a triple-double threat down the road. His man defense is top-flight.

He's got some things he needs to work on, though.

I think he needs a shot doc. His shot can be inconsistent in it's form, especially when he's not set. When he's set, it's a pretty shot. He coils properly, fully, extends properly, puts a nice arc on it --- it's a top-flight shot. Very smooth. When he's taking someone off the dribble, or posting up, however, he tends to have this short, not fully-extended shot, where he doesn't coil all the way, and it's a very "hasty" looking shot, and it doesn't go in at the rate you'd expect him to shoot at if he was set. If you watched the guy he is most compared to, TMac, you'd see that TMac had a great ability to always make every shot "set", by using footwork, angles, leverage, twisting in air, squaring up... no matter if he was setting up for a straight shot, or doing some incredible drive off the dribble between 3 defenders, by the time he released his shot, his shoulders, elbows, everything was "set", in an almost identical pattern, which increases your chances of making the shot exponentially. PG is nowhere close to that. PG also shies from contact, whereas TMac actually relished it and used that contact for leverage and "feeling" out the shot, like Iverson and DRose. PG really is just a transition finisher and an off-screen/spot-up shooter at this point in his career... the rest of his offense is pretty helter-skelter.

(I want to point out that I don't ever really see PG becoming TMac's equal offensively... that's okay, but he can still improve a lot of things. TMac might have been the single most perfect offensive scorer I've seen in this league, there was no move he couldn't do, or place on the floor he couldn't score from... now his defense.........)

He doesn't post up enough, which is what someone at his height/position should be able to do. He's a 6'9" shooting guard. That *could* be a tremendous advantage if only he would figure out how to do it, but he mainly ignores it and hangs on the perimeter. If he could develop some sort of low-to-mid-post turn-around, he would be damn near impossible to stop, especially once he started sprinkling in some moves and variations. There's nothing those shorter guards would be able to do to stop him. It would also make him even harder to guard, because he *is* capable of slashing and playing on the perimeter and in transition also... whoever was defending him would be facing a lot of "alright, how do I guard this guy". But as it is right now, they can sort of press him on the perimeter, at which point he usually chooses to pass off.

His handles... needs to dribble the ball lower. You get the impression that it's his handles keeping him from being just a ridiculous basket-attacker. All it takes is some pressure on the perimeter to throw him off.

And lastly, his assertiveness, on both sides of the ball. This has improved some --- I still think he has a ways to go, though. I don't know if this is because he feels like low man on totem pole and he's being respectful, but sometimes he just defers too much. The games where he engages himself, like Dallas, he dominates. The games where he doesn't, you'll see the 5pt, 2rb, 2as, 1stl, 4to type of stat line. When he puts his mind to it, he's a lock-down defender... but he doesn't always put his mind to it. His team/help defense can have holes in it.

But, he's only 21. This guy has a lot of time/room to improve --- but I suggest he doesn't wait too long. Before ya know it, you're 26, haven't "reached your potential", and that's the last thing ya want. He's got a world of potential. To be the next "Tracy McGrady", he's got a long way to go. I think he can be at that level down the road, but he's gotta step on it and get going, lol...

That said, PG is my favorite Pacer. Vogel could just keep him in for 48 mins/game for all I'm concerned. I'm willing to watch his bumps and bruises as he gets the system down, and I am anxious to watch this kid develop and improve and become the player I think we all believe he can be some day.

xIndyFan
03-06-2012, 02:20 PM
. . . He doesn't post up enough, which is what someone at his height/position should be able to do. He's a 6'9" shooting guard. That *could* be a tremendous advantage if only he would figure out how to do it, but he mainly ignores it and hangs on the perimeter.

If he could develop some sort of low-to-mid-post turn-around, he would be damn near impossible to stop, especially once he started sprinkling in some moves and variations. THere's nothing those shorter guards would be able to do to stop him. It would also make him even hard to guard on the whole, because he *is* capable of slashing and playing on the perimeter... whoever was defending him would be facing a lot of "alright, how do I guard this guy". But as it is right now, they can sort of press him on the perimeter, at which point he usually chooses to pass off. . .

me too as far as the learn how to post his guy. either in the low post or midpost. dude is 6 inches taller than most guys guarding him. it is silly not to learn how to take advantage of it.