Last season, Brook Lopez grabbed 10 percent of the available rebounds when he was on the floor. Six rebounds per game.
Think about that for a second — in a perfectly even world all 10 players on the floor would grab 10 percent of the boards. But if you are a seven-footer who plays around the basket the whole night, you should grab a whole lot more than the average guy. Kris Humphries grabbed 22 percent, which is where you want an elite rebounder to be. Heck, Troy Murphy grabbed 15.4 percent.
So what was up with Lopez?
He admitted he was lazy to the New York Post.
“It was a number of things — I was being lazy, first and foremost,” Lopez said. “Hump was doing such a good job a lot of the time, that I’d see him doing his thing and kind of leak out offensively. I didn’t really crash the offensive boards. There’s really no excuse for that because I didn’t leak out defensively at all.
“It’s just been a constant focus daily. And it does help keeping those rebound attempts.”
Lopez grabbed 11 boards in the Nets first preseason game against the Knicks (with the yet unsigned Humphries not present). Better. But again, preseason is meaningless. The Nets are expecting a lot more of that when the games matter. They want him to play with the fire of his brother Robin, not the cool detachment that seems to come with Brook.
We’ll see. We could tie this back into how it’s important if the Nets have any hope of keeping Deron Williams, but really every Nets post could be tied back like that. We’ll let you do it on your own.
Robin Lopez had reason to be upset from the Bulls’ Game 5 loss to the Celtics last night.
This miss was all on him.
Dwyane Wade (26 points, 11 rebounds, eight assists) was the Bulls’ best player in their Game 5 loss to the Celtics last night.
But the 35-year-old guard clearly didn’t go all out on every possession.
Players can justify not closing out by claiming they were prioritizing rebounding position. Wade clearly has no such excuse.
The Los Angeles Clippers dropped Game 5 to the Utah Jazz on Tuesday night, and find themselves down 3-2 as they head back to Salt Lake City for Game 6. The Clippers have had to deal with Utah’s formidable defense, so much so that they’ve built in counters to Jazz defenders overplaying shooters like JJ Redick.
One example of this countering method could be found in Game 3, when the Clippers ran a split cut for Redick. Instead of fighting endlessly around screens for a 3-point shot as you might expect, LA took the easy route and simply cut Redick to the basket for an easy layup as a means to take advantage of an overeager defender.
We’ve talked about the Split Cut here on NBA Playbook before. The Los Angeles Lakers used it earlier in the season to beat the Golden State Warriors, the team that uses the split cut perhaps the most out of any team in the NBA.
Other teams, including the Portland Trail Blazers, have adapted the Warriors’ use of the split cut as a counter for their own offense this season, which is a testament to just how useful it is.
If you need a reminder, a split cut all about a screener coming up to screen, then cutting toward the basket before his screen action fully takes place. It’s about timing, and catching defenders off guard when they go to set up their recover positions for screens.
For a full breakdown on the split cut and how the Clippers used it, watch the video above.
John Wall has been super, averaging 27 points and 11 assists while leading the Wizards to a 3-2 lead over the Hawks in the first-round.