December 2015 Basketball Wiretap

Anthony Davis: We're Starting To Have Better Understanding

Dec 27, 2015 12:39 AM

The New Orleans Pelicans have won three of four games as they're starting to figure out Alvin Gentry's system.

Anthony Davis had 24 points, 13 rebounds and three blocked shots in their win over the Rockets. 

"We're just trusting each other, helping each other, talking to each other," Davis said. "We're starting to have a better understanding of our defense, our assignments our schemes and what we need to run against certain teams."

Brett Martel/Associated Press

Tags: New Orleans Pelicans, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Joe Prunty Trying To Keep Everything The Same For Bucks Without Kidd

Dec 24, 2015 11:27 AM

Joe Prunty is acting as interim head coach of the Milwaukee Bucks with Jason Kidd out six weeks with hup surgery.

"We're going to try and keep it the same," said Prunty. "Everything will be similar to what we've done in the past. We're not trying to change anything. For us, it's about consistency more than anything else."

Prunty was also an assistant on Kidd's staff with the Brooklyn Nets.

Bob Cooney/Philadelphia Daily News

Tags: Milwaukee Bucks, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Gar Forman: Changing Coaches Not About Boosting Bulls' Offense

Dec 22, 2015 11:51 AM

Gar Forman disputes the notion the Chicago Bulls have been a disappointment so far.

The Bulls haven't performed as well on offense as expected after replacing Tom Thibodeau with Fred Hoiberg.

"Anytime there is a change, it takes time," Forman said. "We see the glass half-full. And changing coaches was not about boosting the offense."

Forman is likely alluding to the poor working relationship the Bulls' front office had with Thibodeau.

Hoiberg has been still trying to figure out his rotations and offensive sets.

Zach Lowe/ESPN

Tags: Chicago Bulls, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Warriors Given Just 30.3 Percent Chance Of Winning 72 Games

Dec 21, 2015 1:19 PM

The Basketball Power Index from ESPN gives the Golden State Warriors only a 30.3 percent chance to win 72 games this season.

The Warriors, however, are two games ahead of the Chicago Bulls' 95-96 pace after their 26-1 start to the season.

If the Warriors beat the Utah Jazz on Wednesday, they will clinch the best record at Christmas the NBA has ever seen.

Marc Stein/ESPN

Tags: Golden State Warriors, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Clippers Would Like Blake Griffin To Shoot More Three-Pointers

Dec 19, 2015 4:38 PM

Blake Griffin made both of his 3-point attempts on Friday, raising his season average to 40 percent on 6-for-15 shooting.

Doc Rivers said he would like Griffin to start taking more 3-pointers, but the onus is on Griffin.

"He can shoot them," Rivers said. "It's funny, he works on them. I still think at times he doesn't really want to shoot them unless we draw the play up for him to shoot it or it's late clock."

AP

Tags: Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Kevin Durant Leads NBA In PPP On Isolations

Dec 10, 2015 1:43 PM

Kevin Durant leads the NBA in points per possession on isolation plays at 1.21.

Durant was asked if he feels like his efficiency is higher than it's ever been.

"Yeah, I pride myself on being efficient. That's something I've worked on for years. It may not be a lot. It may not be the 25, 30 shots some people want to see me shoot. There may be nights where I have to shoot those shots. But more times than not, I want to be able to score as much as I can with less shots, try to be as aggressive as I can with less shots. That's a challenge for me. I think that helps my teammates as well. They're getting shots and we're scoring a high amount of points. It's something I think about every single game, but sometimes I have to scratch that and get them up. Depends on how the game is going."

Anthony Slater/Oklahoman

Tags: Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Gregg Popovich: Three-Pointers Are Non-Basketball Circus

Dec 10, 2015 12:09 PM

Gregg Popovich continued to voice his displeasure over how the three-pointer has changed basketball.

"I still hate it," Popovich told reporters before the Spurs' 97-94 loss to the Toronto Raptors. "I'll never embrace it. I don't think it's basketball. I think it's kind of like a circus sort of thing. Why don't we have a 5-point shot? A 7-point shot? You know, where does it stop, that sort of thing.

"But that's just me, that's just old-school. To a certain degree, you better embrace it or you're going to lose. And every time we've won a championship, the 3-point shot was a big part of it. Because it is so powerful and you've gotta be able to do it. And nobody does it better than Golden State, and you know where they're at. So it's important. You can't ignore it."

The Spurs won the Finals in 2014 in large part due to their use of the three-pointer.

"I can't be stubborn just because I personally don't like it and think it mucks up the game. ... I still hate it," said Popovich after the 2014 Finals.

ESPN

Tags: San Antonio Spurs, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Durant, Donovan Praise Westbrook For His 16 Assists In 25 Minutes

Dec 9, 2015 2:56 PM

Russell Westbrook had 13 points and 16 assists in 25 minutes in a 125-88 blowout win by the Oklahoma City Thunder over the Memphis Grizzlies. Kevin Durant scored 32 points.

"When we play together like that, we make the game easier," Durant said. "We were just playing smooth basketball. It was beautiful to watch. It was a fun game to play."

"I can't say enough about what Russell did," Billy Donovan said. "In my opinion, he's one of the rare guys in the league that can dominate a game without scoring. 

"What he did tonight -- setting up his teammates, the 16 assists and the unselfishness -- started with him and Kevin."

"I try to set the table for guys and try to find ways to get everybody going, especially on the road," Westbrook said. "We just kept the pace hot.

"They kind of like to rough you up a little bit. I thought we did a good job of setting the tone on both ends of the floor."

Reuters

Tags: Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Stephen Curry On Teams Copying Warriors: You Won't Have The Personnel

Dec 8, 2015 1:14 PM

The Golden State Warriors are serving as a model for other teams who want to push the pace, go small and shoot a lot of three-pointers.

The Warriors now rank fourth in pace.

Stephen Curry was asked if the Warriors' style of small ball can be replicated.

"You can try to copy it, but you won't have the personnel," said Curry. "There isn't another Draymond Green, another Klay (Thompson), another Andre (Iguodala). If you put your small-ball lineup next to ours, we like our chances."

Curry was asked about what he sees for the next positional revolution.

"Eventually everybody's going to be a point guard, a point forward. You're seeing it in AAU ball now -- kids growing up, everybody wants to play point, which is fun. Of course we'll backtrack when the next big man comes along and sparks a shift, and then we'll copy that."

Sam Alipour/ESPN

Tags: Golden State Warriors, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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D'Angelo Russell: More Ball Movement Without Kobe Bryant

Dec 8, 2015 12:18 PM

D'Angelo Russell was disappointed about being taken out of the starting lineup but he found more freedom playing without Kobe Bryant.

“You’ve got to be more aggressive," Russell said about being with the second unit.

“There’s just more ball movement,” said Russell. “No disrespect to Kobe, but you just know you have more opportunity because he’s who he is.”

Russell had nine points, three rebounds and two assists in 21 minutes.

Byron Scott admitted that Russell and Julius Randle not playing alongside Bryant meant they didn’t “defer as much” to Bryant, a volume shooter.

“When KB is out there, they seem to defer a little bit more to him,” Scott said. “I thought tonight they played a little bit more free. They still made mistakes, but they’re going to make mistakes. They’re young. But I want them to continue to play as hard as they played tonight.”


Baxter Holmes/ESPN

Tags: D'Angelo Russell, Los Angeles Lakers, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Warriors, Cavs, Pacers, Hornets In Top-10 On Both Offense, Defense
We're roughly at the quarter mark of the season and the Pacers and Hornets surprisingly rank in the top-10 in both offensive and defensive efficiency.

RealGM Staff Report

NBA PER: Favors Jumps To 6th; Curry, Westbrook Remain Top-2
Derrick Favors made a big jump this week from 12th to 6th.

RealGM Staff Report

NBA Efficiency Differential Rankings: Cavs Drop From 3rd To 7th
Seven of the top-10 teams in Efficiency Differential are in the Eastern Conference.

RealGM Staff Report

Goran Dragic Finally Feeling Chemistry With Wade, Bosh
Goran Dragic is making progress with his chemistry playing with Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade.

Ira Winderman/South Florida Sun Sentinel

LeBron Okay With Ben Simmons' Comparisons
Ben Simmons has been compared to LeBron James with his abilities as a passer despite having the height of a forward.

Dave McMenamin/ESPN

Popovich: LaMarcus Aldridge Is Everything We Anticipated
LaMarcus Aldridge is averaging just 14.8 points per game this season, down from 23.4 last season with the Blazers.

Michael C. Wright/ESPN

Adam Silver Appreciates Blazers 'Not Bottoming-Out' With Rebuild
The Blazers are rebuilding after losing LaMarcus Aldridge to the Spurs in the offseason.

Mike Richman/Oregonian