Doc Rivers vs Vinny Del Negro (P. 8)

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CP3Best
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3 years under Vinny = BOTTOM 5 of the league in 3pt defense. 1st year under Doc = BEST 3pt defense in the league. And our defensive rating being lower had to do with pace. A faster pace means more possessions for the opposition as well as for us, that's why our defensive rating numbers can be deceiving...

illastrate
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Agreed. The same issues the team had before the season were still prevalent at season's end. Never got that wing defender, that defensive PG, or that solid backup big(s) we were yearning for. Dudley turned out to be a disappointment, Barnes can only do so much, Granger had his moments but it was apparent he was limited, and Big Baby had some good moments, but wasn't consistent enough. Those issues have to be addressed this offseason. There has to be better balance for the roster. It's year one of the Doc regime and I have already seen good things. I expect the trajectory to continue to go upwards.

BaadMaster
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Just a Big Three -- like Miami their first year -- won't do it. The Heat didn't win until they filled in some holes. If we compliment our Big Three properly, Clips win it all.

clipper*joe
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That's just one stat in terms of defense. Overall defense? What was the pace difference?

Anyway, despite the great 3pt defense, not enough to make a difference in the bigger scheme of things, right?

clipper*joe
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The luxury of 20/20 hindsight. Before the season, most thought we filled the void of SF. Hell, I did. When that didn't work, we got Granger. Most thought we hit the jackpot when we landed him. Now we had an abundance of SF's including Bullock. we threw the kitchen sink at that position. At some point, the excuses have to stop. we don't necessarily need a specialty wing defender being that no one position can be locked down. We need a balanced SF who cannot be a turnstile. Team defense helps out in situations where you have players like Durant and LBJ. We did a good job on Durant by making him more of a passer but we failed against a PG like Westbrook when it came to shutting down the lanes.

We also did a GREAT job on Curry for most of the series by making him a passer first, then a shooter. CP3 and BG did great in closing him out and making him pass. There are no excuses. While I agree we didn't get a solid back-up big, there isn't a lot of production coming from back-up bigs in this league. You get what you get but in the play-offs, your starters have to do the brunt of the work. Big Baby while undersized, kept us in a lot of games during the playoffs. Hedu got hurt so Doc should have played Hollins...Good or bad. We needed height against the the Thunder and Doc should have dug deep instead of playing small. That is another similarity between Doc and VDN. They bot used a 3 guard lineups in the playoffs.

Bottom line, We had talent in every position to at least get into the WCF. Heat can win without bigs. The Spurs can win without top talent at the center position. And the Thunder can win without top talent at the center position as well. The Thunder and heat don't have defensive PG's either. It' isn't about what we didn't get or have, it's about what our core didn't do.

clipper*joe
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Not necessarily true. The first year had to do with adjustments. Specifically with Wade and LBJ. It wasn't until Wade took and backseat along with Bosh, that things clicked. The pieces helped, but not enough to get them their first ring. Miller who came in at the same time was one of the biggest keys to their success. Birdman came in as a 10 day contract, and Allen came in after they've already won that elusive ring. Only guy that they brought in before their first ring was Battier.

namzug
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As far as stats go you are right we are only marginally better if that. I think we are much better at overall team defense, just not that talented on that side of the ball player wise. Guys like Bledsoe, Odom, Barnes helped make us look really good the year before. I think this year it was overall team effort with a big improvement from DJ. Our help the helper rotations were still lacking in my opinion. There is still work to be done, I think Doc may have been a little over confident in his defensive scheme when he got here and we still lack a true perimeter defender. In Boston he had Allen, Rondo, Pierce, then Bradley and even Green isn't half bad. I'd give our group an A for effort, but outside of Paul and Barnes on certain nights there isn't much there.

I loved the idea of Granger and thought it was a low risk high reward, and still am hoping he feels like he has something to prove here and signs for cheap (but that is unrealistic, someone will give him more than what he is currently worth). The limited time he had with us didn't help his case either.

I like the idea of Shumpert but don't have anything to trade for him. If we could get him as third party in another's team sign and trade for Carmelo would be great.

illastrate
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That's the problem, the Heat and Thunder have the two best players in the league. The Spurs have had a dynasty for the past 15 years. We are better than the other 26 teams, but those are the three teams in our way. And they will continue to be until proven otherwise. We have to create a roster built to beat them. As good as Jamal is in the regular season, his iso-ball mentality and cold shooting hurt us immensely vs OKC. That game 5 was a perfect example of that down the stretch with him jacking up 3 after 3 against the shot clock. I do agree that we did a great job on Curry and did a good job on KD at times, but didn't have the footspeed to contain Westbrook. Roster composition continues to be an issue and I'm curious to see how it is addressed this summer.

laboy
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with vinnie ...we played really good in the playoffs...the guys went all out..

more heart...this year,it was like they were expecting to be in the finals...

there was no heart there...

we were missing bledsoe...he was a change of pace for the pg position...

paul is slower...bledsoe was quick and strong...

that kept the other teams defense thinking...

this year...it was the same thing every time down the court,almost...

give the ball to blake then pass it around...blah,blah...blah..

not much penetration...too much emphasis on the 3 point shot...

Steady818
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That 3 point defense did absolutely nothing to stop russell westbrook from penetrating into the paint on every play down the court... Defense isn't determined by one stat its a complete whole and as a complete whole our defense was definitely lacking.

kjavis
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except we don't even have a big 3, until DJ starts hitting jumpers or even just layups and brings a resume close to bosh or garnett its more like 2 1/2

kjavis
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Chose doc slightly better only because of our POs result, we clearly struggled with a bogutless GSW team that stretched us to 7 and blundered a golden opportunity vs OKC.

We finish no better than we did 2 seasons ago under Vinny and this is taking into account the huge strides DJ and Blake took individually this season and having the best 6th man in the league.

Doc was suppose to bring us over the hump in the POs, if he got us to the WCF it would have been a successful 1st season but bailing 2nd round is clearly a disappointment

pageC4
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kjavis, you summed this up brilliantly. Sometimes deciding what coach has done better is not so clear cut. Like many guys here I do believe that Doc has achieved more than Vinny, and like others I also believe that Doc had a better roster than Vinny did. So despite his accolades Doc ended up exactly where Vinny left off.

I'm still shocked that we ended the season like this.

laboy
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doc blamed the officials....

what about his players???

he tried to deflect the spotlight from chris paul and the other mistakes and put it on the officials..

a few bad calls by the refs..

the players played 48 minutes...

they could have scored more..

more rebounds,more free throws..

less choking...

I am not sold on doc yet..

vinnie in my opinion over achieved..

doc was selling us a championship...well he has not delivered yet..

this year he will have a lot of pressure,to produce..

first round will not cut it..

2 round will not cut it..

this is not college where you can do the 7 year plan...

JQuick32
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We have a Big 1 and that's Blake. CP3 isn't "big" in the playoffs and DJ just isn't that great of a player.

CapsNClips
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Man, First Take is ruining this generation of sports. Now EVERYBODY and their mother wants to act like Skip Bayless.

cleepers
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Nah... on CTB it's more like Skip Clueless

CP3Best
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Cp3 made 8 3s...

jarca
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Those were the stat guys who thought it was filled. a lot of people like myself thought we abandoned defense and athleticism when we got Redick and Dudley. To be fair though, if it wasn't for CP's bonehead error, I would be eating crow right now

JQuick32
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That's one "big" game (during yet another second-round exit) compared to all his chokejobs, especially Game 5.

ClipperKyle32
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I hope Vinny gets a job. Hopefully with the Cavs! They are my second team. I pull for them. These last few seasons have been atrocious. Vinny wasn't bad at all. I just think for what....

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CapsNClips
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Phew! If Vinny goes to Minny it will assure us we won't be able to trade DJ for Love.

JQuick32
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I hope the Timberwolves do actually hire VDN.... that'll be one Western team we'll never have to worry about!

LMFAO.

JQuick32
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Translation: "We're running the Ricky Rubio offense.... please bail me out, Ricky!"

A7XDreamTheaterClipps
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Vinny didn't "develope" Chris Paul. He was already an established player when he got here.

JQuick32
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He also didn't "develop" Rose - in fact, he benched Rose for Hinrich at any opportunity. Rose didn't develop until Thibs took over.

clipper*joe
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To be fair, Rose didn't start having season ending injuries til Thibs took over. In fact, it's kinda ironic that the guy who developed him (according to you), is also the guy that can be the one to end his career. If only Thibs took Rose out in garbage time, he would still be one of the top players. Oh well...

JQuick32
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Meanwhile, your beloved VDN actually got in a physical confrontation with the GM over his refusal to limit Joakim Noah's minutes. roll

Agent0
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I think there's a bit of confusion on the Spurs because people forget Duncan is equally as capable and as good at C. They DO have top talent at C. Splitter is a good C, every bit as good as DJ as a basketball player. DJ is a better shot blocker, Splitter is a better man to man defender. DJ finishes better above the rim, Splitter is a better scorer, passer, shooter and FT shooter. DJ is a better rebounder, but Splitter still grabs his fist share. Problem is that people check the stats and they see 8/6 and think "he's not that good", but don't account for him playing 22 mpg, and it isn't because he fouls as he commits 3.3 fouls per 36. Don't account that he's a decent scorer, hits FT's now, good passer, good man to man and team defender, and he's seen as just his 8/6 counting stars.

Back to SA, when backups (Diaw) come on, a lot of times, Duncan is the C. 82 games tracked him as playing 56% of SA's C minutes, that might not be accurate, but what is accurate is that SA's main C's are actually Splitter and Duncan.

Again, that advantage of a PF that can legitimately play C and is a defensive anchor. Playoffs: Duncan (32.4) / Splitter (25.6) / Diaw (22.8)

There's a possible 96 MPG at PF/C, 81 minutes is taken up by those three guys. When Diaw is on the floor with Duncan, Duncan is the C. Ayree and Baynes have played a combined 18% of the total C minutes if we assume all their minutes were at C. Accounting for blowouts and the fact that they have played 13/16 and 10/16 games respectively, as well as from game film, we see that the majority of the time, SA has either Splitter or Duncan at C. Yes, if Blake was a PF/C, it is much easier and we'd just need a solid backup PF and a C to play here as there.


I was happy with J.J. and Dudley until we re-signed Matt Barnes (who I like, but it is based on circumstances) and kept Crawford (again, not because I don't like him, but because J.J. and Crawford seemed unneeded) and didn't make any aggressive moves at getting a defensive wing, and I was disgusted at the signings of Mullens and Jamison and didn't care much for bringing back Hollins. You can go back and check the posts, but I said over and over again that our signings basically said that Blake and DJ needed to play as high level defenders and play a lot of minutes and we need to rely heavily on team defense.

Of course in summer, we had some people being Doc homers and acting like we can't be critical of any move he makes, so it was "bad to say "what in the world are we doing signing terrible players and players whose fit makes no sense" because "Doc knows what he is doing". I don't doubt he does, but like I said all last off-season, his signings seemed to imply that he overvalued his abilities to develop players or just wasn't scouting well.

Dudley and J.J. Is whatever, we knew Dudley wasn't super athletic, but how could anyone predict he'd go from being an elite role playing shooter to being the most up and down player in the league, and how could we predict a Redick getting injured. So, yes, hindsight is 20/20, but the off-season was still very mediocre from my standpoint, and that is what I said at the time, not just a hindsight view.

I just continue to hold on to the idea that you sign players to compliment each other. Redick and Jamal don't make sense on the same team because they play all your SG minutes and have too many of the same weaknesses. Barnes doesn't make sense when you have Dudley because he doesn't have the length or athleticism to really give you a different look / option. Having no solid backup that can play C on the team just didn't make sense and put way too much pressure on Blake and DJ to play very good defense, but also stay on the floor and not foul and with no real safety net if they did. Maybe that's just me, but I'm still skeptical about Doc's actual ability to build a team / be a GM. I don't give anyone props for the easy things like re-signing Chris Paul, who wouldn't do that? It's the little moves that separate the GM's, not the obvious ones. It's the ability to fix deficiencies in the team without creating a new one.

cleepers
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And 3 years later, Noah is in the MVP conversation and Rose has only played a handful of games. Vinny and Thibs made the same "mistake", but where Vinny's mistake took a rag-tag bunch of kids and journeymen to an epic 7-game, 7-overtime series against the eventual champs, Thibs doing the same thing turned the team with the best regular-season record in the NBA into a perennial first-round out.

Paxson shot his wad too early. His instigating a fight with Vinny cost the team millions of dollars and then he couldn't even pull the same sh!t with Thibs for fear of it looking like habitual behavior. Karma is a solid gold b*tch.

clipper*joe
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Splitter is NOT top talent. He's a serviceable center that was benched in the last game...And they won. Duncan plays mostly PF now and even he is not the same player he was before. The Spurs are not a big oriented team anymore. Pops has made that clear when he handed the reigns over to Parker. Again, Splitter is not top talent. I don't think anyone looks at Splitter ans says, "Hmmm, that guy sure is top talent".

clipper*joe
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I'm pretty sure he didn't get hurt as a result. Plus, I don't think he used him in garbage time like Thibs did.

Agent0
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Sorry, you know what, you meant something different from what I was thinking. I was thinking top talent more in terms of how effective your C position is, and really I was just thinking of defense more so. I agree, he isn't top talent, but you really aren't going to get a better C combination than Duncan and Splitter on defense.

It is less about top talent at C and more about defense. All those teams you mentioned are superior defensive teams to us. The Heat have a tendency to coast defensively in the regular season, but when it comes to the post-season, they step it up. Bosh is in the top tier of big men in pick and roll defense, and in hedge and recover. People focus on the things he doesn't do "oh he doesn't rebound enough (he's out of the paint on offense and out of the paint on defense because they Heat extend their defense and have him hedging on the perimeter all game) oh he doesn't shut guys down one on one in the post and don't realize his actual defensive impact. Lebron is self explanatory, and despite his random laziness in things like transition defense, Wade covers ground and has always been a good guard help defender, not to mention Anderson (who I begged for us to sign before the Heat did, ah well)

Ibaka and Perkins (as much hate as he gets) are both better defenders than both Blake and DJ respectively, as well as Collison, and Adams seems to be quite decent. When I think of what constitutes top talent at C for this current landscape of the league I think of having players who can defend very well, and hopefully they also don't hurt you on offense.

I don't think there would be any significant drop-off in this team if we went from DJ to Mozgov for example. I'd argue that we'd be better off paying Mozgov $4.65 and $4.95M the next two seasons than paying DJ's contract, and I like DJ. I'd argue that a C rotation of Mozgov and Koufus (yes, what Denver had) would be sufficient, and cost about $7M and we can parcel money into the wing position.

You mentioned those teams not having top defensive talent at PG, and in agree, but that's a luxury, not a necessity. I'd rather my top defensive talent be at SG or SF because those players can limit opposing PG's and also SG's and SF's. It's hard to find teams with a top offensive PG, SG, and SF, so when you have wings that can defend, you can switch them on to PG's and hide/rest your PG on the weakest opposing 1/2 or 3. A top defensive PG unless they are bigger like Kidd or Payton are one position defenders. Those teams have defensive wings (Lebron, Green/Leonard, Sefolosha), and to be fair to Chalmers, he's a pretty good defender. So I can start Parker on Westbrook, give him a game plan of where I want him to funnel him, but you know later on I'm switching Green to him, and an extra two to three misses in a game from Westbrook because of Green in him changes a game.

In the end, the combination of our top guys (CP/Blake) is not as good as OKC's or Miami's, so we can't look to beat them solely on top player production beating theirs. Lebron and Durant are better than Paul. Westbrook and the Wade/Bosh combo is better than Blake. In the OKC series for example, Blake was clearly behind Paul/KD and Westbrook in high level production and Paul choked a game away too. So like SA, we need the high level defense, the wing defenders and the consistent shooting to win, and can't just rely on our stars out producing theirs. If that's our future hope, then Blake is going to need to be averaging an effoeicnt 30 PPG in those kind of series'.

Look at the SA series, Parker has scored >14 pts in 1/5 games and had >5 assists in 1 game and they are up 3-2. When Paul can average 14/2/6 while taking 13.4 FGA, and we can be up 3-2 vs a team like OKC, then we'd definitely be doing something right as a team. SA is not relying on star production. Last playoffs they went to 7 vs Miami and Parker averaged 15.7/1.9/6.4 on 14.6 FGA, again, when we can take a team to 7 with Paul basically being bad for his standards, then we know we're wining though the whole teams, not just stars.

Basically you're saying that our stars can't produce as well as the stars on two teams with the league's two best players and the team that is capable of winning playoff series' with their star PG producing like horse crap because they win on team production, and all three of those teams ALSO defend better than us. That is all true, and I agree but is that really saying anything except that we don't have one of the league's two best players or a superiorly built team, and we are worse on defense which isn't a star specific thing? It seems like it is saying more, but in the end, that's all we are actually saying. Doesn't seem so condemning to our stars in context.

So our choices are either get or somehow have (Blake development) a player that can match those top 2 guys and we still need to be better on defense, OR win due to team strength on BOTH ends.

In terms of Duncan, you can argue that he plays mostly PF, sure. Duncan certainly played mostly PF before, when Robinson was there or when they had Rasho, after that he he was playing a lot of C, but people thought the PF stating next to him was the C because the idea had been ingrained that Duncan was a PF. Really Splitter's emergence is what got him back at PF more. The point is that your C rotation is essentially Splitter/Duncan, Duncan leads you team in playoff MPG. Duncan is on the court a lot, that is a big difference on defense.

Splitter went to the bench and Duncan started at C, which again adds to my point, not detracts from it. Duncan is a PF/C who can equally play both positions and he's a defensive anchor. There's no drop off, actually even an improvement when you move him to C. Blake isn't physically capable of being that.

Our problems aren't with getting a top C or getting a PG defender, they are with defense as a team, but primarily from our big men and on the wings, and I've parroted this for three seasons and it's mostly stayed the same, though DJ and Blake have improved.

clipper*joe
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Sorry, this is as far as i got till I realized you just don't get my point. You're talking about defense and I am talking about overall talent. I ain't talking about bigs (spurs) , I am talking about a position. And when I am talking about that position, I am talking about the starter in that specific position. In other words, people seem to think that if we don't have top talent in every position, we can't get over the hump. They'll say we lost cause we needed X to win. All teams have a weak position. Some teams like the Heat just lack in bigs but they still win. Thunder have Perkins as their center yet they still win. Spurs have Splitter but they still win. We can have Barnes, Granger, or a Dudley and we should still win based on the other talent we have. This is about laying out stats. It's just a simple comment that despite not having all-stars in very position, or a specialty player, we should still win due to the roster we have and rest of talent in the starting line-up.

Oh, and if you want to bring in the rest of the bigs, the combos in that position, I'll just say that a combo of Barnes, Granger, and Dudley was more than enough to fill the void. The SF position doesn't have to be a lock-down player cause if he can't shoot, then they'll just blame him for not getting offensive production from him. The excuses have to stop. We had enough talent to win and that was my point in the original post you quoted me on. I used the other teams to show that even the top team can win without top talent in very position.

JQuick32
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.....thanks entirely to Thibs.

JQuick32
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Translation: Vinny lost in the first round as usual.

clipper*joe
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Yet he thanked VDN for improving his game...Go figure.

cleepers
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Yeah... just like Thibs has done for the last 3 years.

cleepers
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Rose has played 10 games in the last 2 years, so when you criticize Vinny for playing Noah unnecessary minutes, you don't have a leg to stand on... kinda like Derrick.

...thanks entirely to Thibs.

clipper*joe
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**Smackdown** laughing3

clipperboy24
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Vdn is good at developing talent I will give him that. I just don't think he is a good head coach. He would be a perfect assistant coach IMO

JQuick32
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Players almost never publicly badmouth a coach.

JQuick32
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Thibs has been past the second round as a head coach. Has Vinny?

cleepers
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Yeah, with the reigning MVP and in a shitty conference. Then he got backdoor swept by the only team who would have made any kind of noise in the west.

You can credit Thibs for Chicago's success if you want, but after Rose went down they lost 4 out of 5 games to the #8 seed. His coaching couldn't even GET them to the second round.

In the last 3 years, Thibs squeaked out one tight playoff series victory in a tight 4-5 matchup and probably could have done better if he hadn't had to deal with injuries...

Hmm... sounds like somebody else I know.

jarca
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Except Shaquille! He still takes subtle shots at Stan Van Gundy

cleepers
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Double post.

clipperboy24
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That Chicago team was so horrible. Even pops, red and Phil Jackson wouldn't have been able to get past the 1st round with this years squad.

I know it seems crazy but there is a reason no one hired VDN.

clipper*joe
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They also never defend a fired coach either. They also don't thank them for improving their game.

clipper*joe
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Maybe we can say the same for the following:

George Karl - coach of the year

Hollins

Byron Scott- coach of the year

Those are proven coaches and still can't find a job either.

cleepers
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Yes indeed... and that reason is that many people believe the facile nonsense that the sports media spoon-feeds them.

Chris Paul is more popular than Vinny del Negro, so obviously it must be Vinny's fault that we didn't make conference finals. However, Doc Rivers is very popular too, so only now are people beginning to question Chris Paul... the very same people who lambasted Vinny for two years.

And incidentally, Jerry Sloan and Stan Van Gundy weren't hired either and they've both been to the finals. George Karl was unemployed this year as reigning COTY, so I wouldn't read too much into Vinny not securing a head-coaching gig immediately.

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