When Chris Paul made the game-winning shot Monday night to beat the Grizzlies 93-91, a lot of people pointed out on twitter that Paul got room to get that shot off by pushing off on Tony Allen to create space. They are right. Allen and Paul were physical on that play but CP3 was smart in using his left arm to create enough space to get a little floater off.
Phil Jackson saw that play and came to the defense of Paul on twitter — and that led to people reminding Jackson he benefited from the most famous push-off in NBA history, when Michael Jordan pushed off on Byron Russell to hit the game winner in Game 6 of the 1998 NBA Finals against Utah (video below).
Jackson had a response for that, too.
@clarencegaines2 yeah, not only are offensive players able to push off they can use off arm to shield off defense-Heisman offensive move.
This was never a hard limit. Embiid played more than 24 minutes in five of his 12 games with a high of 27 in an overtime contest. Presumably, the new “limit” will also allow for Embiid to sometimes it.
Embiid’s numbers per 36 minutes are eye-popping: 28.6 points, 12.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 3.8 blocks and 6.4 turnovers. A small workload likely factors into his per-minute dominance, and he’s still a long way from typical starter minutes. But I’m interested to see how his production translates over a larger sample.
The 76ers, in their mission to be less bad this season, will also appreciate a few more minutes of Embiid. They defend like the NBA’s second-best defense with him on the floor and the league’s second-worst defense without him. They also score a little better with him. Overall, they get outscored by just 2.2 points per 100 possessions with him and a whopping 14.2 points per 100 possessions without him.
This could give Philadelphia a couple extra wins over the rest of the season. At minimum, it’ll make the 76ers more enjoyable to watch for a few more minutes each game.
James Johnson dunks on Rudy Gobert in crunch time (video)