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Thread: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

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    Default Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Once again, Bob Kravitz writes somthing positive and reasonable:


    http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dl...TS01/605250433

    EXCERPT>>

    The rules, or at least the way the rules are interpreted. The clutching and grabbing has been expunged from the game, giving athletes like Dwyane Wade and Leandro Barbosa a chance to excel.

    After spending an entire season watching the Pacers play paint-by-numbers basketball, it's a joy now to watch athletes being given the freedom to do what they do best.

    <<


    Call it smallball, Euroball or whatever. The point is that it is good basketball, and it is winning basketball. For Pacers fans, the main point is that good things are happening in the NBA and the Pacers aren't part of the trend. Other teams have adapted to the modified rules and learned to play quicker and score more. The Pacers haven't adapted, and so they just foul more.
    And I won't be here to see the day
    It all dries up and blows away
    I'd hang around just to see
    But they never had much use for me
    In Levelland. (James McMurtry)

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Putnam
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    Other teams have adapted to the modified rules and learned to play quicker and score more. The Pacers haven't adapted, and so they just foul more.
    I think this is the answer to many coach/players critics!!!


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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    The NBA is back in some places. Some places it is not.

    Watching Phoenix/Dallas play, than comparing it to any Pacer game, or a Piston game, or most EC games, is like watching two different sports. How many times did Phoenix run a set play last night off a made basket that resulted in a good shot in less than 5 seconds? It wasn't that Dallas was playing bad defense....it was that Phoenix wasn't giving Dallas a chance to play defense. It was fun to watch, exciting, lots of strategy involved.

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    Jimmy did what Jimmy did Bball's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    When I watched Phoenix play in person at Conseco I saw that they weren't a 'run and gun' or 'run and fun' team as some had labeled them.

    They disected us. They shared the ball and they kept the ball moving. And they found the open man. They didn't try to burn shot clock nor did they try and get a quick basket. They simply worked for a good shot and took it with confidence. And the player movement and ball movement meant that they had us off guard and got a good look as they, more times than not, got us out of position and scrambling to recover. The only time the fans knew what was coming was when they saw a Phoenix player come open and knew Pho would get him the ball. ...Unlike the Pacers where you know what is coming seemingly 90% of the time with the ball stalling in Sjax or JO's hands... or AJ (or Freddie) holding the ball for the last shot of a quarter.

    And it isn't like Phoenix ran to the other end of the court and hoped we missed so they could go play offense again.

    But, I don't think the whole thing is about 'small ball'... You could make it work with a bigger lineup... It's about ball movement and player movement and not focusing so much on any one (or two) players.

    Grind it out basketball is one thing... but the Pacers sank to being a team that was ultra-predictable, and not even that good at the one thing they tried to do. ...over and over again. They turned into a team trying not to lose. And like most teams that do that, they lost. They lost the games, their swagger, their confidence, and their heart.

    And finally they lost the fans.

    -Bball
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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bball
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    When I watched Phoenix play in person at Conseco I saw that they weren't a 'run and gun' or 'run and fun' team as some had labeled them.

    They disected us. They shared the ball and they kept the ball moving. And they found the open man. They didn't try to burn shot clock nor did they try and get a quick basket. They simply worked for a good shot and took it with confidence. And the player movement and ball movement meant that they had us off guard and got a good look as they, more times than not, got us out of position and scrambling to recover. The only time the fans knew what was coming was when they saw a Phoenix player come open and knew Pho would get him the ball. ...Unlike the Pacers where you know what is coming seemingly 90% of the time with the ball stalling in Sjax or JO's hands... or AJ (or Freddie) holding the ball for the last shot of a quarter.

    And it isn't like Phoenix ran to the other end of the court and hoped we missed so they could go play offense again.

    But, I don't think the whole thing is about 'small ball'... You could make it work with a bigger lineup... It's about ball movement and player movement and not focusing so much on any one (or two) players.

    Grind it out basketball is one thing... but the Pacers sank to being a team that was ultra-predictable, and not even that good at the one thing they tried to do. ...over and over again. They turned into a team trying not to lose. And like most teams that do that, they lost. They lost the games, their swagger, their confidence, and their heart.

    And finally they lost the fans.

    -Bball
    amen! as Saras said: look who's still playing in playoffs. teams, that share the ball, teams that play team basketball. others are all gone.

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by caaprius
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    look who's still playing in playoffs. teams, that share the ball, teams that play team basketball. others are all gone.
    And teams with a lot better players than ours. Seriously.

    The sharing the ball philosophy is great. There is also a talent and "basketball smarts" gap. Would any player other than JO start on any of the 4 remaining teams? Would any be 6th man? 7th man?

    Well, Peja of course, only if healthy. Everyone else would be sitting further down the bench than Eddie House, Mbenga, et. al.
    The poster "pacertom" since this forum began (and before!). I changed my name here to "Slick Pinkham" in honor of the imaginary player That Bobby "Slick" Leonard picked late in the 1971 ABA draft (true story!)

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bball
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    But, I don't think the whole thing is about 'small ball'... You could make it work with a bigger lineup... It's about ball movement and player movement and not focusing so much on any one (or two) players.

    -Bball

    A bit disjointed.

    Anyone else ever wonder how good the Pacers would be if they were coached to play like Phoenix? I have and do.

    Both Donnie and Larry are on record as saying they want to know what they have before they trade a player. Yet if they stick with Carlisle as they say they are going to do, it appears to me they are wasting a year. Why? Because we don't know how good the players on this team would be playing a different style.

    With the new rules we are not winning when we play Rick's isolation ball. Our players don't like isolation ball. The fans for sure don't like the way the Pacers play. Bird wants to play up tempo.

    So with all that, why are we keeping Carlisle who says he likes a faster pace, but who's teams don't play that way? Why don't they play faster? Because Rick likes to call the plays, and he likes to run isolations when it becomes a half court game.

    So why are TPTB keeping Rick other than they don't want to pay two coaches? (Him and his replacement.)

    It appears to me they will lose more money from fans not coming to games than paying two coaches.

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by pacertom
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    And teams with a lot better players than ours. Seriously.

    The sharing the ball philosophy is great. There is also a talent and "basketball smarts" gap. Would any player other than JO start on any of the 4 remaining teams? Would any be 6th man? 7th man?

    Well, Peja of course, only if healthy. Everyone else would be sitting further down the bench than Eddie House, Mbenga, et. al.
    Seriously? Seriously if the Pacers moved the ball like Phoenix we might still be playing. That's not the players, that's the coaching. We have good players!

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Will Galen
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    A bit disjointed.

    Anyone else ever wonder how good the Pacers would be if they were coached to play like Phoenix? I have and do.

    Both Donnie and Larry are on record as saying they want to know what they have before they trade a player. Yet if they stick with Carlisle as they say they are going to do, it appears to me they are wasting a year. Why? Because we don't know how good the players on this team would be playing a different style.

    With the new rules we are not winning when we play Rick's isolation ball. Our players don't like isolation ball. The fans for sure don't like the way the Pacers play. Bird wants to play up tempo.

    So with all that, why are we keeping Carlisle who says he likes a faster pace, but who's teams don't play that way? Why don't they play faster? Because Rick likes to call the plays, and he likes to run isolations when it becomes a half court game.

    So why are TPTB keeping Rick other than they don't want to pay two coaches? (Him and his replacement.)

    It appears to me they will lose more money from fans not coming to games than paying two coaches.

    Welcome to the club.

    -Bball
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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Will Galen
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    Seriously? Seriously if the Pacers moved the ball like Phoenix we might still be playing. That's not the players, that's the coaching. We have good players!


    It is very dificult to play like the Suns. Besides having to be in great physical condition, you must have completely unselfish players, and your best player must be the most unselfish of all.

    Pacers simply don't have the players to play that style

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Its not Euroball, smallball, run-and-gun ball or anything else youwant to call it.

    Its NBA basketball as its always been and always would have been, except that Pat Riley figured out a way to win without great players and began the death knell of true basketball in the NBA.

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Unclebuck
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    Pacers simply don't have the players to play that style
    You don't know that.

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Sharing the ball is something that is always fun to watch, but it can be fun to watch at any tempo. I suppose I need to watch a few more Suns games, b/c everytime I have watched them play it has been all run and gun. I also find it interesting that Buck is touting them, as I believe it was Buck who laid out D'Antoni (sp?) and the Suns for their utter lack of defense in last years early playoff exit.

    I think people are forgetting about Detroit a little as well. They can move the ball a bit, but they also play what seem to be more traditional sets/roles. It is amazing what a difference a year can make.

    The nice thing about slow ball is that it is a little more predictable than a free flowing style of play. However, it isn't near as fun to watch as an uptempo team. We'll see what happens b/c I"m sure everybody is in favor of playing faster vs. slower as long as you win.
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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by brichard
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    I"m sure everybody is in favor of playing faster vs. slower as long as you win.

    Not me. I would rather be entertained than win. Sure I like to win as well as the next guy, but first of all I want to like what I'm doing, I want to be entertained.

    Sometimes watching the Pacers play and win isn't entertaining, it's like having a tooth pulled. Conversely, if they play hard and scrappy, and entertain me I'm satisfied even if they lose.

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by brichard
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    Sharing the ball is something that is always fun to watch, but it can be fun to watch at any tempo. I suppose I need to watch a few more Suns games, b/c everytime I have watched them play it has been all run and gun. I also find it interesting that Buck is touting them, as I believe it was Buck who laid out D'Antoni (sp?) and the Suns for their utter lack of defense in last years early playoff exit.
    Yes I did and you have a very good memory.

    This year I haven't really touted the Suns all that much, I wanted the Clippers to beat the Suns and I thought the Lakers had a really good chance of beating the Suns two rounds ago.

    I've been touting the Mavs more than any other team. I think that is the model that wins in todays NBA. Very quick and aggressive, can play fast, medium and even slow if needed.

    As a fan I love close games played with a lot of intensity, whether they are slow, fast medium. The Spurs/Mavs series was all that fast in the last round and that is the best playoff series maybe I've ever seen.

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Did anyone listen to Nash on Inside the NBA last night btw? He made a great point. He said that they aren't bad defensively, they just struggle on the boards for obvious reasons (height issues, 3 SFs play up front, lack of true big man, take your pick). How many shots did Dirk miss last night? Enough. Marion did as good a job as anyone on him. On the flipside, however, how many offensive rebounds did Dirk get? More than enough. You still need size to compete. The Suns can't wait for Thomas and Amare to get back. That's when they'll be even more dangerous.

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Will Galen
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    You don't know that.
    I kinda agree with UB, Will. I think Freddie can play that way, but he's just as likely to go it on his own. Same with Tinsley. Definitely true for Stephen "I never saw a play I didn't want to freelance on" Jackson. I can't see us doing it consistantly on a long term basis: as the personality of the Pacers.
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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Unclebuck
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    Pacers simply don't have the players to play that style
    I also disagree with this. Every one of the Pacer players has probably played on a team at one point or another that has played "fast". They all know how to do it. They probably all LIKE doing it. I would guess that almost every player in the league would welcome a trade to Phoenix right about now, and not just because of the nice weather.

    Playing that style and WINNING might be a problem. But the players the Pacers have can certainly play a faster pace of basketball.

    .

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    We don't have the athletes or the coach to play that way right now.

    Seriously, who's running the point? Tinsley? AJ? Sarunas?

    You want Jax in the open court making decisions? Peja is slow.

    Foster? Croshere? Harrison? Riiiiiiight.

    Danny's game is not suited for this either. And JO will probably hurt himself.

    The only guys on the whole team that would benefit from this are Freddie, maybe Jax a little and Sarunas if he wasn't the primary ball handler.

    We've got a half-court roster and a half-court coach. It would take a good 2-3 years to turn this into an up-tempo squad.
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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Roy Munson
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    I also disagree with this. Every one of the Pacer players has probably played on a team at one point or another that has played "fast". They all know how to do it. They probably all LIKE doing it.
    Sorry, I have to come out of post-Pacer-season lurk and give a rasberry to this.

    With few exceptions, when the current players have been given their head their idea of fast involves taking the cool shot as soon as possible, not passing the ball around until someone else gets the easy shot.
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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    I'm going to use an analogy here. Let's think of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

    The Steelers have always done things the same way they're doing it now (except for the horrible "Slash" era), and that's running and defense with effective passing. They've always played that way - through rule changes, through new players, styles, defenses. And where has it gotten them? Last year's Super Bowl and a handful of others over the years. Why? Because that is a tried and tested method to win. They haven't gone to the Kansas City Cheifs'/Indy Colts/St. Lou Rams "we'll outscore you!" method. They know that their way works and work very well.

    Apply that to the NBA. PHX and Dallas and Miami (to and extent) have all reached the conference finals using this newer method of run and gun and using athleticism to win. It's all fine and dandy, and it may work - just like the Rams did back in 2000 (?). But, no matter who wins this year, the old-school, move the ball efficiently, play defense, and rebound kind of game (*cringe*that Detroit plays*cringe*) will always work and is in the long run, a better option.

    Jerry Porter and Troy Polamalu can blitz Peyton Manning, and Jerome Bettis can run over Bob Sanders. Steve Nash can run circles around Big Ben, but five good players that pass, rebound, defend, and execute can beat the Suns.

    PS: I'd like to nominate Bball's first post in this thread (#4) for post of the year.
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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by Will Galen
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    Not me. I would rather be entertained than win.
    My first question is this, "Do you really mean that?" And if so, at what level would the W-L record take it's toll on you.

    Let's face it, an ugly winning team will put butts in the seats all day long vs. losing. Antwaan Randle El is one of the most exciting guys, if not the most exciting guy, to ever play Indiana University football. However, the games were much better attended during the Bill Mallory smash mouth football years. Why? B/c IU won and went to bowl games.

    But I would bet you that most people just want to watch a team that executes their plan well. The 80's Celts were a 1/2 court team and the 80's Lakers were a running team. But both teams were very enjoyable for me to watch. They were fun to watch b/c they knew what they were doing, they played great team basketball, and they executed fundamentals at a high level.

    Love Skaut Etch's freelance description, and I think Pizza guy does a good job using the Steeler analogy.
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    Administrator Unclebuck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    One thing that needs to be pointed out about the Suns halfcourt offense.

    They run the same play about 90% of the time. They have three players standing at the three point line while Nash and Amare, Marion, or Diaw, run a pick and roll. After the initial pick and roll Nash decided what to do based on what the defense does. If teams don't help off the three point shooters, then those three guys just stand there and either Nash shoots, drives or passes inside to the picker. If teams help off the three point shooters, then Nash drives and he passes out to them.

    Their offense is very simple, they don't have to call plays because they run the same play every time.

    Edit: One last thing. It isn;t fair to lump the Mavs and Suns together. They don't play the same way, they aren't even all that similar

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    Default Re: Kravitz: the NBA is back!

    Quote Originally Posted by pizza guy
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    I'm going to use an analogy here. Let's think of the Pittsburgh Steelers.


    The Steelers have always done things the same way they're doing it now (except for the horrible "Slash" era),
    That's tantamount to "the season we do not discuss."

    and that's running and defense with effective passing. They've always played that way - through rule changes, through new players, styles, defenses. And where has it gotten them? Last year's Super Bowl and a handful of others over the years.
    And six AFC championship appearances during the Bill Cowher era.

    Why? Because that is a tried and tested method to win. They haven't gone to the Kansas City Cheifs'/Indy Colts/St. Lou Rams "we'll outscore you!" method. They know that their way works and work very well.
    Right, because its reasonable to expect that NFL playoff games are played outdoors during January, in bad weather. You've got to have a game plan/ identity that isn't affected by the weather.

    Apply that to the NBA. PHX and Dallas and Miami (to and extent) have all reached the conference finals using this newer method of run and gun and using athleticism to win. It's all fine and dandy, and it may work - just like the Rams did back in 2000 (?). But, no matter who wins this year, the old-school, move the ball efficiently, play defense, and rebound kind of game (*cringe*that Detroit plays*cringe*) will always work and is in the long run, a better option.
    The run-and-gun game is new? Tell that to the 1980's Lakers. Or Oscar Robertson. The NBA game moves in cycles. Fifteen years ago, the idea of playing a guy who couldn't score but could defend and rebound was new and widely questioned.

    Jerry Porter and Troy Polamalu
    JERRY!?!?

    can blitz Peyton Manning, and Jerome Bettis can run over Bob Sanders. Steve Nash can run circles around Big Ben, but five good players that pass, rebound, defend, and execute can beat the Suns.

    PS: I'd like to nominate Bball's first post in this thread (#4) for post of the year.
    I thought you were going down a different road with this analogy. And I think it would've been better. Phoenix, even during the dog days of defense, was never a great defensive team. Under Coangelo, They have generally been an offense-oriented team that has been fun to watch, and they've been the most successful "offense-oriented" team over the past fifteen years, with an NBA Finals appearance and some deep playoff runs whether it was Tom Chambers, Barkley, Kidd, or Nash as the offensive star. (I thought about adding Ceballos to that list )

    Detroit tried unsuccessfully to go the "superstar" route, and most significantly, their superstar was a guy considered to be "soft" but extremely talented. He was never really embraced by Detroit and they probably think of the Grant Hill era as their equivalent to "Slash". ("Slash"-ball actually got worse when Tommy Maddux replaced Slash, by the way. Even if they did go 13-3 that was probably the worst of our AFC Championship game teams.)

    The Lakers aren't show-time anymore. NBA games, which are played indoors, have less of "franchise identity" than you'd see in football where teams in the rust belt tend to play hardnosed, smashmouth football and warm-weather/ indoor teams tend to play a quicker, softer game. Except the Arizona Cardinals. They just suck, period.
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    And life itself, rushing over me
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