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bgassassin

"grit And Grind" Needs To Die For The Future Success Of This Franchise.

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I think "Grit N Grind" is the core of the success of the Grizzlies, even though they are scoring more now. Defense always is a major factor of winning any game. If the Grizzlies drop their tough defense style, they will end up being a sub .500 team and probably not a playoff contendor. Memphis does not have the type of ownership that will spend a lot of money to get a championship team. So, in order to consistently be competitive, Memphis will now, and always, be a "Grit N Grind" team. You can have both a scoring and a defensive team. They work hand in hand with great teams. So, I don't see how scoring more means removing your defensive personna.

 

Of course, that is just an opinion.

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Bump!

 

This great article by Kevin Lipe seems related to this in an unintentional way.

http://www.memphisflyer.com/BeyondtheArc/archives/2014/04/02/is-dave-joerger-doing-a-good-job

The offense

The emphasis coming out of training camp, or at least the official word, was that the offense wasn't going to change much from last year. It was going to be last year's offense with "a few new wrinkles." When the Grizzlies—who played for several years under Lionel Hollins' (and his offensive assistant Henry Bibby's) methodical, 1975-inspired, what's-a-three-pointer, glacially violent offensive system—took the floor for the first time under Joerger, it looked like none of them had any idea what to do.

Joerger's emphasis on ball movement and his empowerment of the players to improvise had crippled the Grizzlies. Instead of making the right move, the one that came naturally, you could see guys—Mike Conley and Marc Gasol especially—holding the ball for several seconds, thinking about what to do next. Paralyzed by overthinking what they were about to do instead of playing naturally, which is ironic, because playing naturally was the whole point of the change. How many times did we see Quincy Pondexter pass up a wide-open three from the corner, where he's an excellent shooter, to drive to the rim and miss a contested layup in a crowd? It was infuriating.

Eventually, though—in part due to the Marc Gasol injury—the true image of JoergerBall started to emerge from the chaos like a developing Polaroid. It reached its apotheosis somewhere around early January, in an overtime loss to the Spurs and a home win over the Suns, right before Gasol's return: Ed Davis played 30 minutes, James Johnson played 30 minutes, mostly at the 3, Kosta Koufos started at center.

You started to get a sense that surrounding a big, skilled dude at center with a hyper-athletic power forward (Davis), a chaos-inducing athletic 3 (Johnson), and two shooters (pick two of Conley/Lee/Miller)—and this was before the Nick Calathes Era really began in earnest, so Conley was playing 40 minutes—was the key to the new Grizzlies: their offensive efficiency shot up into the top 10 in the league, the pace was furious, the chaos was palpable in the FedExForum, and they were firing on all cylinders, with Mike Conley scoring 30 more often than he ever has in his career.

And therein lies the rub: that roster is not the "real" Grizzlies roster. I'm not the only one who thinks Joerger's offensive stuff works a lot better with a guy like Davis at the power forward spot, defending pick and rolls and ranging the paint on offense looking for putbacks. With Gasol and Randolph back together, everything slows back down, like an Oldsmobile Cutlass on tank treads rolling over the other team at 15 miles an hour. There's no doubt in my mind that Joerger is an excellent coach at the X's-and-O's level—the question is whether he's the right coach for this Grizzlies roster.

 

Right now we are on a collision course with SAS in first round and if we are still playing Hollinsball then a sweep is in our future. I hate to say it; but the combination of Zbo + Gasol that has been our saviors for so long are starting to turn into our detriment. They completely "lock" us into playing one particular style and with each season there skills decline and that style gets more figured out.

Initially i thought the pace problem was completely Zbo but his time without Gasol showed that he CAN play in a faster tempo system as long as he isn't primary focal. Gasol, who according to SportsVu is slowest player in entire league, is the real killer of our pace because he likes the offense to run thru him and Zbo is always his first option.

 

The key to leaving GnG behind IMHO is figuring out how to have Top 10 defense without Gasol as the key. I am not saying we need to trade Marc I am just saying we need to know that our defensive system can be sustained if we lose the anchor. That will give us more flexibility going forward.

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Bottom line is if you don't have a superstar scorer that can dominate the ball then in order to be effective you need to be moving, cutting and passing the ball for the entire possession. The ball can't keep getting stuck in players hands. You also need players who make good decisions quickly and take open shots. An example of this team is the Spurs. The Grizzlies have some of the personnel to play this way, but aren't completely equipped at the moment.

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Bottom line is if you don't have a superstar scorer that can dominate the ball then in order to be effective you need to be moving, cutting and passing the ball for the entire possession. The ball can't keep getting stuck in players hands. You also need players who make good decisions quickly and take open shots. An example of this team is the Spurs. The Grizzlies have some of the personnel to play this way, but aren't completely equipped at the moment.

 

Irony is the Grizzlies have a full roster of guys that play that way. Lee, Tony, and Nick are great cutters and constantly move without the ball. JJ, Miller, and Prince are great passers and decent ball-handlers on the wing. Leuer Kosta and Davis are solid passers as Big men and move alot when on offense. We know Conley can do all those things as well.

 

Really only Gasol and Zbo don't consistently play that way. Which is a huge problem because the offense is built to cater to them and they play bulk of minutes.

 

I agree with you that only player that should ever be able to dominant the ball is a SuperStar scorer or playmaker. Disagree that SAS don't have those guys because they do.

 

Zbo and Gasol should be trying to emulate Duncan. He loss a ton of weight so he can operate better in a quicker offense. He doesn't demand the ball and is willing to play a "role" in the offense instead of dominating it. He exploits matchups and doesn't force it if he doesn't have a favorable one.

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Irony is the Grizzlies have a full roster of guys that play that way. Lee, Tony, and Nick are great cutters and constantly move without the ball. JJ, Miller, and Prince are great passers and decent ball-handlers on the wing. Leuer Kosta and Davis are solid passers as Big men and move alot when on offense. We know Conley can do all those things as well. Really only Gasol and Zbo don't consistently play that way. Which is a huge problem because the offense is built to cater to them and they play bulk of minutes. I agree with you that only player that should ever be able to dominant the ball is a SuperStar scorer or playmaker. Disagree that SAS don't have those guys because they do. Zbo and Gasol should be trying to emulate Duncan. He loss a ton of weight so he can operate better in a quicker offense. He doesn't demand the ball and is willing to play a "role" in the offense instead of dominating it. He exploits matchups and doesn't force it if he doesn't have a favorable one.

 

Ofcourse they have players who "can" dominate the ball. I really doubt if SA would be as tough to stop as they are or as tough to stop as a team with a dominant scorer (like a Durant, Lebron, Harden, etc) if Parker or Duncan sat around and held the ball as long as Z-bo, Gasol or Conley do.

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Ofcourse they have players who "can" dominate the ball. I really doubt if SA would be as tough to stop as they are or as tough to stop as a team with a dominant scorer (like a Durant, Lebron, Harden, etc) if Parker or Duncan sat around and held the ball as long as Z-bo, Gasol or Conley do.

 

True and i don't think LeBron really dominants the ball that much actually. MIA and SAS have some of the best ball movement in the league.

 

I give Conley a slight pass because when Gasol was out he was making much much quicker decisions with the ball. I believe his stagnation is completely due to trying to make sure Gasol and Zbo get their touches instead of just focusing on getting the ball in the hole.

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Bump! This great article by Kevin Lipe seems related to this in an unintentional way. http://www.memphisflyer.com/BeyondtheArc/archives/2014/04/02/is-dave-joerger-doing-a-good-job The offense The emphasis coming out of training camp, or at least the official word, was that the offense wasn't going to change much from last year. It was going to be last year's offense with "a few new wrinkles." When the Grizzlies—who played for several years under Lionel Hollins' (and his offensive assistant Henry Bibby's) methodical, 1975-inspired, what's-a-three-pointer, glacially violent offensive system—took the floor for the first time under Joerger, it looked like none of them had any idea what to do. Joerger's emphasis on ball movement and his empowerment of the players to improvise had crippled the Grizzlies. Instead of making the right move, the one that came naturally, you could see guys—Mike Conley and Marc Gasol especially—holding the ball for several seconds, thinking about what to do next. Paralyzed by overthinking what they were about to do instead of playing naturally, which is ironic, because playing naturally was the whole point of the change. How many times did we see Quincy Pondexter pass up a wide-open three from the corner, where he's an excellent shooter, to drive to the rim and miss a contested layup in a crowd? It was infuriating. Eventually, though—in part due to the Marc Gasol injury—the true image of JoergerBall started to emerge from the chaos like a developing Polaroid. It reached its apotheosis somewhere around early January, in an overtime loss to the Spurs and a home win over the Suns, right before Gasol's return: Ed Davis played 30 minutes, James Johnson played 30 minutes, mostly at the 3, Kosta Koufos started at center. You started to get a sense that surrounding a big, skilled dude at center with a hyper-athletic power forward (Davis), a chaos-inducing athletic 3 (Johnson), and two shooters (pick two of Conley/Lee/Miller)—and this was before the Nick Calathes Era really began in earnest, so Conley was playing 40 minutes—was the key to the new Grizzlies: their offensive efficiency shot up into the top 10 in the league, the pace was furious, the chaos was palpable in the FedExForum, and they were firing on all cylinders, with Mike Conley scoring 30 more often than he ever has in his career. And therein lies the rub: that roster is not the "real" Grizzlies roster. I'm not the only one who thinks Joerger's offensive stuff works a lot better with a guy like Davis at the power forward spot, defending pick and rolls and ranging the paint on offense looking for putbacks. With Gasol and Randolph back together, everything slows back down, like an Oldsmobile Cutlass on tank treads rolling over the other team at 15 miles an hour. There's no doubt in my mind that Joerger is an excellent coach at the X's-and-O's level—the question is whether he's the right coach for this Grizzlies roster. Right now we are on a collision course with SAS in first round and if we are still playing Hollinsball then a sweep is in our future. I hate to say it; but the combination of Zbo + Gasol that has been our saviors for so long are starting to turn into our detriment. They completely "lock" us into playing one particular style and with each season there skills decline and that style gets more figured out. Initially i thought the pace problem was completely Zbo but his time without Gasol showed that he CAN play in a faster tempo system as long as he isn't primary focal. Gasol, who according to SportsVu is slowest player in entire league, is the real killer of our pace because he likes the offense to run thru him and Zbo is always his first option. The key to leaving GnG behind IMHO is figuring out how to have Top 10 defense without Gasol as the key. I am not saying we need to trade Marc I am just saying we need to know that our defensive system can be sustained if we lose the anchor. That will give us more flexibility going forward.

 

The problem with the article, and with some of the thoughts on here, is that it blames Hollins for the offensive style that was so slow, but excuses the Joerger offense now because it has Gasol and ZBo playing together.

 

The losses earlier in the season and slow start were blamed on Gasol being out, and people want to point out that Hollins without Gasol also did poorly (in a very small sample). However, in that same sample, the offensive scoring was much higher than normal for Hollins, too.

 

It is inconsistency of thought.

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The problem with the article, and with some of the thoughts on here, is that it blames Hollins for the offensive style that was so slow, but excuses the Joerger offense now because it has Gasol and ZBo playing together. The losses earlier in the season and slow start were blamed on Gasol being out, and people want to point out that Hollins without Gasol also did poorly (in a very small sample). However, in that same sample, the offensive scoring was much higher than normal for Hollins, too. It is inconsistency of thought.

 

I disagree with that evaluation. First it's not excusing Joerger's offense. Joerger has essentially gotten away from his initial offensive philosophy. You can't excuse it if it's hardly being used in the first place. Yes Hollins gets the "blame" because he was the one who decided to run with the sets they did. As I said in this thread I understand why he felt that way, but I never agreed with it because I don't think it put the players in the best position to win.l And Joerger gets the blame for reverting to that when it is unnecessary.

 

That sample size was not very small. Gasol missed 15.8% (13 games) of the season during that injury. And just like this season the Grizzlies lost during that time as well and lost bad. The issue is that while Gasol is necessary, especially for defense, teams have adjusted to how the Grizzlies play and you need shooting to open things up for Marc, Zach, and Conley to do what they do best. Also everyone is beginning to see them getting tired from playing so much. For me it's not about taking the ball away from those three. For example I don't have an issue with Zach being ISO'd. The problem is now teams are being overly aggressive with stopping that. And just to keep it one-on-one Zach is being forced further from the goal. I want to see Zach in a position to get the ball lower in the post and be ready to kick it out when teams are more aggressive defending him in the situation.

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