December 2011 Basketball Wiretap

Jazz Plan To Use 13-Man Rotation

Dec 28, 2011 10:34 AM

Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin dismissed the traditional use of an eight-to-10-man rotation.

"We've got a 12-13 man rotation right now," Corbin said. "We want everybody to start ready. We can dress 13 and we want 13 to be ready to go."

That is a wrinkle the NBA introduced this season.

Teams are allowed to dress and play 13 players — instead of a dozen — for the first two months.

The final two months, however, 13 players can dress but only 12 will be allowed to see action. One player must be designated as being non-active, taking that option away from coaches.

Jody Genessy/Deseret News

Tags: Utah Jazz, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Celtics Aim To Improve Offensive Rebounding

Dec 27, 2011 12:36 PM

Under Doc Rivers, the Celtics have never finished any better than 15th in offensive rebounding.

Because the Celtics have been so consistently weak in this area, there has been a perception that this is something that Rivers doesn't stress. Not true, he says.

"We always wanted to do that," Rivers said. "That's been one of the most misunderstood things about us. We've always told our bigs, 'If you're under the basket and we shoot, how about going to get it?' "

A. Sherrod Blakely/CSNNE.com

Tags: Kevin Garnett, Boston Celtics, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Small Lineup Gives Blazers Most Offensive Power

Dec 27, 2011 10:19 AM

Portland's small lineup of LaMarcus Aldridge, Gerald Wallace, Jamal Crawford, Wesley Matthews and Nicolas Batum overpowed the Sixers to take a 72-70 advantage all the way to 95-80. The Blazers ultimately won by a 107-103 final after Philadelphia battled back again.

"When we go small like that if they double team we have a bunch of guys that can make plays," Aldridge said. "That's probably our most lethal offensive lineup."

Aldridge had 25 points to lead the Blazers, while Gerald Wallace had 21 points and nine boards.

"We have a lot of weapons," said Aldridge. "I think as times got tight for us guys stepped up and made big plays."

NBA.com

Tags: LaMarcus Aldridge, Gerald Wallace, Nicolas Batum, Jamal Crawford, Wesley Matthews, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Casey: Better Ball Distribution Will Improve Raptors From Last Season

Dec 27, 2011 10:12 AM

The Raptors defeated Cleveland by a final score of 104-96 in their 11-12 regular season debut.

"Everybody who stepped on the floor contributed in some way or another," said new coach Dwane Casey. "I liked what I saw tonight, but this is a process. The good thing is we've got 65 more games to find out how far we can go."

Toronto assisted on 35 of its 42 field goals.

"I always say, 'Trust the pass,' and my guys did," Casey said. "They trusted each other, and found the open man."

Casey believes their ball distribution is what will separate this year's team from last year.

“That’s the difference from this year and last year, I thought,” Casey said. “No disrespect to last year but this is not a democracy offensively; we want to make sure we get the ball where we want it to go.

“It’s not a “my turn” game, it’s not a rec league game,” the coach added. “We want to make sure our offensive players who are our closers get the basketball and I thought Jose (Calderon) did an excellent job of doing that, getting the ball to DeMar and also Andrea at the right time in the right place.”

NBA.com

Tags: Toronto Raptors, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Stoudemire's Usage Rate Down In Opener

Dec 26, 2011 1:07 PM

Amar'e Stoudemire used just 18.1 percent of New York’s possessions in Sunday's win over the Celtics.

Stoudemire posted a usage rate higher than 18.1 in 77 of the 78 games he played last season.

Carmelo Anthony primarily used Tyson Chandler on pick-and-rolls with Stoudemire being used just once.

Stoudemire was frequently positioned as a spot-up shooter during those situations, similar to the way Dallas used Dirk Nowitzki when Chandler was involved in the pick-and-roll.

Zach Lowe/SI.com

Tags: Amar'e Stoudemire, New York Knicks, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Rivers: This Is The Rondo We Want

Dec 26, 2011 11:19 AM

Rajon Rondo had an outstanding 31 points, 13 assists and five steals (27.6 FIC40) in Boston's Opening Day loss to the Knicks.

"This is the Rondo we want," Doc Rivers said after the game. "This is what we talked about last year. Getting to the free-throw line. Taking the shots when they're open. I thought he was the aggressor in the game. I don't know if [he] can do that every night, but overall, that's the Rondo that we want. It was terrific."

"He attacked. He attacked early. He set the tone, got into the paint, softened up their defense," Ray Allen said. "It's a great sign for us."

"I was just trying to get us into transition," Rondo said. "Trying to get us to the line. Trying to get us some easy looks, get them in the penalty early. But it's only one game. When P [Pierce] gets back, obviously, some of the shots will go to P. Whatever the team needs, whatever Doc wants me to do, that's what I'll do."

Peter May/ESPN

Tags: Rajon Rondo, Boston Celtics, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Blazers Now Ready To Fully Utilize Wallace

Dec 26, 2011 11:11 AM

Nate McMillan believes he has now learned the best way to use Gerald Wallace, who is known for having one of the best blends of toughness and athleticism in the NBA.

"You just have to let him go, you have to just let him play," McMillan said. "I don't think you put a lot of rules and restrictions on him. He plays fearless basketball ... Sometimes you can over-coach. If he is out there thinking, should I do this or should I do that, you can take away his strength, which is the ability to anticipate and create opportunities. So you just let him go."

Wallace excels most when he's allowed to roam free, when his basketball instincts and intuition take over and his mind rests. 

Wallace is the great unknown for the Blazers in terms of how he can impact the team.

"That's my thing -- I just go out and play," Wallace said. "I'm not a big fan of trying to think and trying to comprehend what I've got do out on the court; worry about where I'm supposed to be. My thing is just go out and play, use my instincts, react and try to cause havoc." 

"You just have to let Gerald play his game," center Marcus Camby said. "You see him out there all over the basketball court, trapping the basketball, being aggressive and that leads to a lot of easy buckets for us. Gerald really can't define his game by position, he' just a player. He goes out there, he's very scrappy ... he gives up his body. He only knows how to play one way, which is all out." 

Joe Freeman/The Oregonian

Tags: Gerald Wallace, Portland Trail Blazers, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Stern Anticipates Thunder Needing To Make Tough Decisions On Who To Keep

Dec 26, 2011 11:06 AM

On Sunday, David Stern dismissed the argument that the luxury tax will hurt small market teams like the Thunder.

The Thunder already have Kevin Durant on a rising extension and would need a large payroll to retain Russell Westbrook, James Harden, Serge Ibaka and Kendrick Perkins.

“That's ludicrous,” Stern said. “The idea that the luxury tax hurts small markets is ludicrous. It may impact a small market that is a great team and has to raise payroll. But at bottom, it's designed to eliminate the ability of teams to use their economic resources to distort competition.

“It does have a bite if you have any team that's well assembled and you want to keep it together. So if you have the Thunder over here and the Heat over there, they're both going to have to deal with luxury tax issues. That's not a small market (issue).”

Stern added that the Thunder, like any loaded team, would someday potentially have to surrender one of its stars.

“People are saying to Miami, ‘Well, you're going to have a decision to make with respect to one of your big three.' And they may say the same thing to Oklahoma City, and that's a good thing."

Darnell Mayberry/Oklahoman

Tags: Russell Westbrook, Kevin Durant, James Harden, Serge Ibaka, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA CBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Heat Planned On Using Aggressive Offense To Highlight Quickness Over Dallas

Dec 26, 2011 10:56 AM

Erik Spoelstra said the Heat were prepared to be aggressive offensively against the Mavericks, giving LeBron James and Dwyane Wade more freedom to operate instead of being held to a structured offense.

"It allows us to add another dimension of inside-out and still be able to play to some of our other strengths, which is our speed and quickness," Spoelstra said.

James had 37 points and 10 rebounds in Miami's 105-94 win.

Matthew Reagan/Star-Telegram

Tags: Miami Heat, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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McRoberts 'Terrific' In Debut, Earning 'McRambis' Nickname

Dec 26, 2011 10:51 AM

Josh McRoberts had six points, eight rebounds and two blocks in a Lakers' debut Kobe Bryant described as "terrific."

McRoberts has been nicknamed 'McRambis' by some fans with how his style of play is similar to Kurt Rambis.

McRoberts started at power forward with Pau Gasol shifting to center due to the suspension of Andrew Bynum.

Ben Bolch

Tags: Josh McRoberts, Los Angeles Lakers, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Clippers Confident In Depth Of Rotation
Mo Williams, Randy Foye, Ryan Gomes, Brian Cook and Reggie Evans make up the Clippers' bench.

Los Angeles Times

Clippers Unable To Launch 'Lob City' In Win, Expect Cohesion To Develop Over Time Like Heat Last Season
The Clippers had a workmanlike performance and were unable to show their new 'Lob City' identity.

Los Angeles Times

Cousins Ready To Apply Lessons Learned From Rookie Season
DeMarcus Cousins was foul and turnover prone, plus he shot just 43 percent from the floor.

Jason Jones/Sacramento Bee

Maggette Embracing Mentor Role For Young Bobcats
Corey Maggette will be mentoring Tyrus Thomas, D.J. Augustin and Kemba Walker.

Charlotte Observer

Heat Mantra: When You Rebound, Good Things Happen
The Heat outrebounded the Mavericks by a 51 to 31 margin in their Opening Day win.

Miami Herald

Karl: Nene Needs To Improve Defensively
The Nuggets will look inside the organization for potential replacements for Kenyon Martin.

Denver Post

Lakers Name Devin Ebanks Starting Small Forward
Devin Ebanks has been named a Lakers starter, beating out both Metta World Peace and Matt Barnes for the role.

Janis Carr/Orange County Register

Tyreke Evans Looking To Improve Defensively
Paul Westphal wants Tyreke Evans to become more team-oriented.

Ailene Voisin/Sacramento Bee

Carmelo Eager To Change Defensive Reputation
Carmelo Anthony’s defense has drawn plenty of criticism.

Ian Begley/ESPNNewYork.com

Wade, Heat Impressed By Norris Cole’s Ball Distribution
Norris Cole has learned where his new teammates want the ball.

Manny Navarro/Miami Herald

Nuggets Using Version Of Dribble-Drive On Half Their Possessions
The Nuggets are using the dribble-drive concepts developed by Vance Walberg in approximately 50 percent of their offense, according to George Karl.

Denver Post

Durant Adding Dirk's One-Legged Fadeway Jumper
Kevin Durant is adding an indefensible shot perfected by Dirk Nowitzki.

Oklahoman

Casey, Raptors Emphasize Defensive Success Through Consecutive Stops
Dwane Casey combines traditional coaching with advanced statistics.

Toronto Star

Spoelstra Loosening Reins, Allowing Heat To Improvise Offensively
Erik Spoelstra is giving the Heat trio more freedom on offense.

South Florida Sun Sentinel

Collins, Sixers Tracking Deflections To Gauge Activity On Defense
Doug Collins wants the Sixers to take their defense to the next level.

Dei Lynam/CSNPhilly.com

Nets Seek More Aggressive Lopez, Charting Rebounds Attempted
Brook Lopez's rebounding slipped to 5.95 per game last season.

New York Post

Bosh Adds Three Point Shot To Repertoire
Chris Bosh extended his range over the offseason.

Tom Haberstroh/ESPN.com

Perkins: Durant Leads By Example
Kendrick Perkins praised Kevin Durant’s work ethic.

John Rhode/Oklahoman

Stoudemire To Shoot Threes?
Amar’e Stoudemire’s outside shooting could be a major benefit to the Knicks.

Alan Hahn/Newsday

Hawks Aim To Increase Tempo With Teague
The Hawks hope to capitalize on their speed and athleticism by getting more easy baskets in transition this season.

Atlanta Journal-Constitution