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Dub Nation HQ Comments of the Week & Open Thread
Yeesh, this week was a real rollercoaster
A very efficient 32
madams (9 ♡):
EOP: come for the analysis and insight, stay for the deadpan delivery.
Asher B. (8 ♡):
I think there are two goals: coach the game in progress, a short term goal; and coach the player to learn from the action, more of a long term goal. Phil Jackson was a big advocate of leaving them out there and maybe Kerr picked up on that. I think his mindset in this game was "Let's see what happens" because he didn't have to rest everyone, and he didn't have to play Chiozza extended minutes, etc. I think at the end he wanted them to learn from being out there, because the cost of over-coaching is that the players lose confidence in trying what makes sense, making mistakes, learning from them, etc. It's hard to play with your head looking over your shoulder to see if coach is mad and we've definitely seen some overcoaching coaches in this league.
Coltraning (7 ♡):
Excellent. He’s quite the magician finishing at the rim.
tempprofile (7 ♡):
I'm just glad Poole made a few 3s early on. Those driving lanes don't open up unless there is a credible threat that he can make the jumper.
Steph, Dray, Andre, Otto clearly were holding the team back
PGBreaker (11 ♡):
To me, it had the appearance almost of a preseason game to give some guys some run and get bench guys some valuable experience. Even the stumbling down the stretch had real value for both players and coaching staff. I'm glad they clung to the win in regulation, but even an overtime game could have been a very valuable learning experience. I think this game will yield real positive results down the line. And, they escaped with a win! Perfect.
Alex (10 ♡):
Watching bits of the game again, I thought the calls were pretty accurate down the stretch in the 4th quarter. The Pistons really did earn all those free throws down the stretch. I found one moment that could've decided the game really interesting, though. When I watched it live, that last play with Jordan dribbling right into Cunningham really made me groan. But on the replay I did notice that Cade snagged Jordan's arm and pulled him down to the ground, and it seemed like maybe a clever vet move.
Watching again, it really just seems like a terrible uncalled foul. Looking at where their feet are before the grab, Jordan was actually going around Cade, not through him, and Cade's feet are clearly to the side of Jordan. Cade then jumps sideways into Jordan (which should already be a blocking foul, not a charge), reaches out with both hands while his feet are STILL IN THE AIR, grabs Jordan's arm, pulls them together so Jordan is suddenly moving straight into him, and then keeps pulling Jordan away from the ball and down to the ground.
Making it more obvious, a couple seconds before the grab, Cade looks like he's already made up his mind what he's going to do. He swipes out with his hand as soon as Jordan gets close and swipes Jordan's arm, and is quickly shaken off.
Anyway, I'm curious: Is this actually a play that happens all the time? Is it something aggressive defenders do all over the league? Are a lot of charges actually sneaky grabs?
It also made Jordan's play down the stretch seem a lot less boneheaded to me. He got grabbed and pulled down by a stronger defender. Plus, if you look at where the defense is, he's probably trying to drive there because the Piston bigs are pulled out to the perimeter and only Cory Joseph is under the basket, with Looney right behind him in the dunker's spot ready for a pass. If anything the annoying thing about Jordan on that possession isn't the foul, it's that he doesn't complain or suggest they challenge the call (had they already used their challenge?)
The Dubs are a bit short handed, but still long on talent
Sleepy Freud (14 ♡):
[Wiggins] plays 30+ minutes every freaking game, runs all day, guards everyone, just played last night in Cleveland, and dropped 27 points on 19 fga in a big road win.
Calm down, lol.
Eric Apricot (11 ♡):
LOL if anyone ever asks what a random ending is, just show them a physics force diagram of that last DET shot that went in and out
That was close
Asher B. (7 ♡):
That was a great breakdown. As usual I was watching at the time, yet missed everything. Poor Okoro just couldn't keep up. A couple of notes: 1. I LOVE when right out of the gate you haven't seen the play and you correctly predict exactly what's going to happen. It's hella entertaining. Consider doing an E1P that's like "Stump the Apricot" where you have the footage and have to guess right or wrong what's gonna happen. Even if you're wrong your logic will probably be superior to what happened. Stump the Apricot is a terrible name. 2. The smidge of daylight Steph needs to get off a clean three is so small. I mean, I already knew that, but it's underscored here so amazingly. 3. Kevin Love has his head down in his towel at times on the bench, even when the play is near him. Maybe it's nothing, maybe he's just tired, but he has mentioned mental health concerns in the past. I'm the last guy interested in shaming him. I'm a therapist -- just not his therapist. I point it out to say kinda "poor guy," and ruminate aloud about how tough it must be to have to keep a smile on your face and a bounce in your step for millions of viewers if you happen to not be feeling it. I don't know that's where he's at, but I can certainly say by the numbers that there are always going to be human beings not at their best, and they deserve our compassion, not judgment. It happens at your office, imagine it happening at an arena. Proud of Love for talking about it, takes guts in a macho sub-culture.
TwoRingTest (7 ♡):
As a casual fan (if screaming at the TV every time they turn the ball over counts as casual), I've learned more about screening watching these videos than anywhere else. Thanks for doing these breakdowns.
JamesHardon (5 ♡):
Somebody need to ask the warriors the real questions. Does the Cleveland visitors locker room still smell like champagne?
Curry goes off for 40, Dubs stage big comeback after lackluster start
Airgetlam (25 ♡):
I can't believe we got Bjelica for the minimum. Our very own Safeway-brand Diet Jokic, for pennies.
storytellinsabrina (22 ♡):
David Dennis Jr.
Steph played so well in Cleveland tonight that they named Andre Igoudala player of the game
The Sword Of The Morning (20 ♡):
Just legendary from Curry. That was one of the most "we ain't losing tonight" carry job performances I've seen from anyone in a long time.
alv66 (20 ♡):
Steve Kerr with the championship-level 4th quarter offensive strategy:
Steph assist to Lee 2
Steph assist to JTA 2
Sleepy Freud (20 ♡):
I'm old enough to remember when Steph couldn't score points in the 4th Q.
Asher B. (19 ♡):
JTA in postgame: "What's it like playing with Steph?" Our Guy Juanito: "It's like going into a streetfight and you got Mike Tyson on your side."
Captain Jack (18 ♡):
Draymond's IQ on the defensive end is seriously so elite it's terrifying for opposing teams. The angles that he takes and all of the little things he does during a possession usually throws the attacker off rhythm before he can even get a shot up. Not to mention the timing on his help defense. He doesn't need to have highlight blocks (even though he does) to protect the rim at a high level. That's my DPOY all day!
OGG Gurl (18 ♡):
Gotta give Kerr credit for having faith in JTA. Let him keep playing even after the rough start.
Curry questionable (hip), as Golden State takes the long view
Sleepy Freud (18 ♡):
Put me in the “rack up wins now and rest later in the season” camp, as long as Steph feels good to go. Both tonight’s and tomorrow’s game should be light work with extended tiempo de basura.
kinbote (12 ♡):
More Warriors love from The Ringer, whose writers might have more (ir?)rational expectations for the Dubs than even the comments here at DubNationHQ.
"Thompson’s return to the floor is approaching. Reports say he just began practicing five-on-five again. And once he does suit up, the playing style and the expectations will feel familiar. More teams are constructed and conditioned to play against fast-moving, shot-happy teams like Golden State. But the Warriors have also evolved beyond the template they created long ago. After taking two years to rebuild themselves, the Warriors are the prohibitive championship favorites once again."
pengpeiyi (12 ♡):
This is such an interesting experiment to try and develop a high lottery pick without just throwing them into the deep end on a bad team. Conventional wisdom says that is the "growing process" but thus far the Warriors seem to be proving conventional wisdom wrong. I mean, Kuminga wasn't just raw, he was RAW. I think there's a whole lot to be said about bringing him up slowly in a winning environment rather than just taking early lumps. Hopefully we can do a bit of a reset with Wiseman as well and see similar results.
Certainly, something that's been talked about a bit before, but I think we're starting to see positive results, but it's definitely still earl.
Goofus (11 ♡):
In fairness to Wiseman being “Wiseman Raw”, Kuminga was dealt a far better hand due to circumstances outside their control.
Wiseman played 3 college games and missed summer league, training camp and pre-season before his NBA debut being thrown to the wolves as a starting center.
Kuminga had 17 games of professional ball (G-League, summer league and pre-season) plus training camp. Though JK missed time with the knee, he was at least allowed in the gym.) To start his NBA career, the Warriors have had the luxury of easing him into lineups and surrounding him with vets. He’s also had the benefit of the new development coaches on the staff.
I think JW would have looked a lot better out of the gate had his circumstances not been so messed up. Was going to the G-League an option after Memphis went awry, or is the Ignite-type team a newer thing?
Plus a trip down painful memory lane
belilaugh (7 ♡):
Another great video, hitting your stride this season.
After Kerr mentioned that the rebounding this season "came out of nowhere", I checked out some of the rebounding rates compared to last season. There are a lot of standouts, especially Looney who is easily the most underrated player on the team this season imo.
Looney averaged 9.7 rebounds per 36 in his career before this season, is averaging 13.7 this season.
-Bjelica averaged 7.9 rebounds per 36 in his career before this season, is averaging 10.2 this season.
-Porter Jr averaged 6.7 rebounds per 36 in his career before this season, is averaging 9.4 this season.
-Curry averaged 4.8 rebounds per 36 in his career before this season, is averaging 6.8 this season.
-Wiggins averaged 4.5 rebounds per 36 in his career before this season, is averaging 5.5 this season.
-GP2 obviously has a more limited sample but averaged 6.6 rebounds per 36 in 808 minutes before this season, is averaging 8.4 this season.
-9.6 per 36 is not a career high rebounding rate for Draymond but his highest since 2015-2016.
Probably should have looked at Per 100 Possessions numbers given how fast the Warriors play but didn't think of it until now and don't want to look again.
crusty quips (6 ♡):
Someone at my work was asking for a good resource for Warriors X's and O's and another person brought up DNHQ's E1P series on Youtube as one of the first options. Your footprint is growing Apricot
g8tgod (6 ♡):
You're an internet phenomenon! Great stuff.
Eric Apricot (6 ♡):
Thank you very much for the feedback. Without this kind of comment, I’m never sure what people are wondering about and what’s obvious or not.
Five Alarm Freddy (5 ♡):
"The People's Court" needs to be a regular feature!! Ha ha ha!
Freaking hilarious. "Tasty dime", "skanky".. how you can work these into a super-informative video is beyond me.
Goofus (28 ♡):
Not to brag, but I’ve been Warriors fan long enough to remember the days when Kuminga was considered a project.
notoriousA.B.E. (11 ♡):
With Scottie Barnes ballin' out pretty hard so far this year, who else is pumped for the first regular season Jonathan Kuminga-Scottie Barnes grudge match on Sunday? They were going at each other's necks in summer league. I really hope Kerr gives JK some good minutes. They didn't want you Jonathan!
mDuo13 (10 ♡):
Oracle is an uncool supposedly-tech titan that employs a battalion of lawyers to enforce eye-gouging prices and harass people who actually build software.
Chase is a too-big-to-fail multinational bank with a history of dealing with dictators, gambling with customers' money, and being more willing to put their money towards fossil fuels (most investments of any major bank!) than minorities.
Crypto.com is a foreign-based digital asset exchange, which basically means they shave a percentage off people gambling on Monopoly money that's environmentally wasteful. Putting ".com" in the arena name is pretty uncool, though.
In short, all naming rights for arenas are awful. But it could be worse, we could be like the Magic and play in an arena named after a pyramid scheme.
I think Steph doesn't like that fella
stopnpop (10 ♡):
I saw a post on reddit re: the play at Q1 7:12 saying it was just like old times: Steph to Dray to KD for the touch pass back to Steph for three 😂
Captain Jack (9 ♡):
I don't know why but I'm always looking for Iguodala's approval every time the Warriors complete a magic trick. His reactions are worth more than anything and I'm so glad he's back here to finish off his career.
rcknfn (8 ♡):
Great win and we are a damn good team that will compete for championship this year.
For the nets, did anybody think KD was not on full throttle especially on the defensive end? There were few possessions where KD didn't put up any fight to us getting a bucket at the rim even though he was right there.
Not a news but I hate watching Harden play. He is and will kill the beauty that can be Nets offense built around KD (and Kyrie).
For Dubs, we have the greatest showman in sports on earth. Part magician, part circus performer, part feel good movie actor - pure unadulterated fun.
mDuo13 (7 ♡):
Part of the joy of watching the Warriors is one or two times a game Stephen Curry will do something and I just go "bfffffttt, STEPH" because what else can you say? So this video is a great reminder that yesterday it was a bit more than "one or two times".
One of the things I've noticed with Poole is he's impressively copied a bunch of Steph's tricks and craftiness, especially with handling and finishing, but it feels like he's also trying to copy Curry's ability to pull up from anywhere and make it look easy... except Steph is superhuman and Poole is just a guy. So sometimes Kerr has to remind him, "That's not a great shot (except when Steph takes it)."
Crazy thing is Steph going nuts on offense is just part of what blew the Nets up, the other part being the stifling defense. It's probably harder to find the clips to use for it, but I wish we could have gotten a view of how *that* happened. Steph has been having some of his best defensive games lately. He's staying with people without fouling (I mean, yeah, he got a kind of early 4 fouls this game, but at least half of those were BS) and he's not falling asleep or over-helping so much. His increased strength definitely seems to be helping there. On the other hand, the team kicked a lot of Nets ass even when he was sitting.
Oh, and good highlight on Moody's rotating signboard of 👌's. With how much of Dub Nation was apparently in the building you gotta make sure they all get a piece of it.
Any minute now
belilaugh (36 ♡):
On that halftime buzzer beater, Draymond got the rebound and pushed the ball down the court and then found Wiggins for the open 3 as time expired.
I wonder if after that play KD was thinking "ooooooohhhhhh, so that's what Draymond meant, maybe I shouldn't have yelled at him".
Eric Apricot (31 ♡):
Also, I just wanted to tell you I love you all
The Sword Of The Morning (26 ♡):
On Twitter -
"KD moved across the country to find a place where the fans loved him more than Steph and they still don’t my god." Yeesh lol.
Asher B. (25 ♡):
From the postgame interview with Kerr: "What makes your offensive system so difficult to defend?" Kerr: "Steph Curry." Laughter. Kerr: "I'm not kidding."
ServantOfLuna (24 ♡):
-Wiggins had to be taken out of the game with 8:32 left in the 3rd quarter due to foul trouble. Game was 71-63 Warriors.
-Curry had to be subbed out with 7:00 left in the 3rd quarter due to foul trouble. Game was 78-65 Warriors.
-Warriors then proceeded to go on a 20-11 run to make it 98-76 Warriors at the end of the 3rd quarter.
Strength in numbers.
BKisforSF (23 ♡):
That was a great show. Dubs fans everywhere, place electric anytime Steph or KD got the ball. My son’s first ballgame was a great one (Harden’s flailing notwithstanding). What a great game basketball is
BKisforSF (19 ♡):
-Tough to see Belli and JTA lose their minutes, but with Kevon and Wiggins playing like this, the team is offensively sufficient and defensively better with the lineups we saw tonight
-Saying that, I hope Kuminga starts to figure out what he’s supposed to be doing because there were definitely multiple instances of confusion out there
-Being at the game really highlighted to me just how smart OPJ is on both sides of the floor. And how effective he is on the glass and on his rotations. He doesn’t move well, but he’s very additive out there
-Most negative change I’m seeing from earlier in the season is that several guys- Moody, Lee, Poole & OPJ- really seem to be struggling from deep in ways that are bothering them. Those were the first guys out to warm up at the half and they were all very intent on what they were doing. Kevon of course was at the free throw line. Dre was effin around but not finding out
-Kerr seemed to be irked about Payton’s last foul. Not sure what happened there but the Kuminga sub was definitely spur of the monent. GP2 went straight to the locker room, so could’ve been health related. That said, that dude is a huge find for us. Big props to the FO and Myers in particular
-I count several games in a row now that Wiggins is playing up to his contract. If we’ve unlocked that Wiggins permanently, before we even get Klay back in the fold, the league is going to be in a world of hurt
-and Steph. What can you say about Steph. I left the Bay Area before he was drafted, so I’ve only ever seen him play live a few times, and never at Roaracle or Chase. But seeing him live is one of those bucket list things. We truly are lucky to have had a player like him. I saw Jordan play in Chicago many moons ago- a ho hum 30 something point game where he took over in the 4th quarter bringing the Bulls from behind to win. It reminds me of that, to watch Steph play. He makes the remarkable routine
Captain Jack (18 ♡):
Steph Curry seriously does things that makes you question why you chose basketball as your main sport. These are professional teams with the best athletes in the world that spends hours and hours working on very specific details to guard him. When he's dancing from 30ft+ on you there's ABSOLUTELY nothing you can do and he does this consistently. What a time to be alive to witness this.
TheseGuysAreF’ingGIANTS! (18 ♡):
What a lovely game! The Warriors were like the ocean sending wave after wave until the Nets just crumbled into sand. Everyone contributed! OPJ basically saying Harden can’t guard me was awesome. Poole and Wiggins going to the rack after their initial 3pt attempts showed some good growth.
And Curry ripping the crowd away from the home team and leaving them in awe as he walked off the court to adulation is MJ level. LeBron and now Durant might have the media narrative, but crowds don’t lie. It’s great to have Shaq stanning for Steph after that stuff happens.
Five Alarm Freddy (17 ♡):
Watching Harden throw his arms around to get someone to foul him is infuriating. Then to see him gesture wildly if it doesn’t get called or when he yelled “finally!” when the started to call them—is not good basketball. He is certainly talented enough to just play the game normally, but he is the insurance scammer brake checking you in the fast lane, it’s so frustrating.
It's a clash of the titans!
Daniel Hardee (18 ♡):
WIGGINS ISLAND VISAS BEING LIMITED DUE TO HIGH AMOUNT OF GENTRIFICATION
rcknfn (12 ♡):
To my untrained eyes, Joku is not only good 1-on-1 defender but have the chops to be a great help defender too. He doesn't look like a rookie. I guess Krysten Peek of Yahoo Sports was right. She was high on Joku when most of the draft talking heads had doubts about him.
Eric Apricot (11 ♡):
Well this has been fun, but wait until the schedule REALLY gets tough
Captain Jack (10 ♡):
Steph is the only guy that can make people drop their jaw from shots that doesn't even count
How revamped are these Warriors? Time to measure up against some top tier competition
crusty quips (15 ♡):
Watching Durant play for us was awesome and I'm glad I got to see it but I don't really miss him on the Warriors all that much. The thrill of the dominance the Warriors had while he played here was offset by the weight of the expectations to win every game and the relative lack of ball and player movement compared to how they play without him. I don't miss the media circus and I don't miss the chatter that Steph isn't the best player on his own team. Dominance is fun but all of those other things matter too as far as one's enjoyment of basketball. I don't know about y'all but the games the Warriors are playing this year have been more fun to watch than many of the games in say, the 2019 season.
Daniel Hardee (14 ♡):
Mark my words: today is the day Kuminga was revealed to be the KD stopper, limiting Durant to only 60 points
Eric Apricot (13 ♡):
The KD years, especially Year 1, had some of the best basketball ever and quite frankly I enjoyed the shallowest NBA fans whining the first year. But after Y1, having KD radiating “success can’t buy happiness” rays and generally seeing the team burnout and fall apart physically was a downer.
Sleepy Freud (12 ♡):
I’ll be there tonight. Kinda wanted to avoid the 80-minute schlep to Barclay’s and the mild stress of being among thousands of potentially covid-ridden fans cheering against the Warriors (not to mention dropping $140 for meh seats), but my friend’s 10 year-old son wouldn’t take no for an answer…
Another live-reaction video
Airgetlam (16 ♡):
[On PHX being the best team] I'm worried that if I make a counter argument, a rich old man will harass me with racial slurs.
Eric Apricot (14 ♡):
In my video about Kuminga in G-League I was very up on his defense. What I was was a LOT of defensive effort and versatility and pride… and complete confusion about carrying out switching, which can resemble a lack of defensive effort
Doc (12 ♡):
Kuminga is growing up fast out there, right before our eyes. I think they told him not to settle for 3s, get downhill, and be a force on d and the boards. Have active hands and get steals without fouling. And run, run, run. He’s listening. Teachable highly touted rookie, not so common. Was one stretch right after this great E1P where he looked gassed and Kerr pulled him. I hope he continues to get minutes.
Chaos_Samedi (11 ♡):
If kuminga continues to play like he did last night, you absolutely have to play him more minutes, he was a monster out there defensively and not just on ball, his off ball defense has been awesome and you combine that with him running the floor and finishing, he can contribute positively. Just wait until they start running GP2 sets for him or let him be the screener in the split action that dives to the rim
Richard (11 ♡):
The E1Ps have been amazing this season. I am getting used to seeing one of these for nearly every game. Eric you are SPOILING us!
belilaugh (10 ♡):
Defensively, a lot of the criticisms about Kuminga before the draft were about effort. Here's an example.
Sam Vecenie (Athletic):
> Kuminga is not a good defender right now. It’s all tools with some spectacular highlights. No possession-by-possession consistency. His approach was bad in the G League. Not enough consistency in his stance, and he often decided not to lock in. A lot of standing around when on the ball, where he thought his defensive tools would allow him to chase down and recover to contest. Some lazy lunging and reaching as opposed to staying solid in his stance and in position. Doesn’t know how to navigate ball screens. Really avoided contact on a lot of them and died on the vine. Also, was a bad off-ball defender. Falls asleep way too often. Still not really understanding how and when to read guys coming off screens away from the ball. Those two factors led to a lot of bad closeouts. He needs to play with better balance across the board, and defense is an example.
I don't think Kuminga has proven reports like these wrong yet (especially not off the ball, he's got a lot to learn obviously). There's a novelty to his minutes right now where he has full motivation to try as hard as possible to gain a footing in the rotation. But it's a nice glimpse at his defensive potential if he gives consistent effort, and it's smart of the team to be framing him as a defensive stopper to try to instill that mindset in him early. I hope they are also getting on him about boxouts lol.
Offensively, I'm glad the Warriors have a coach like Kerr who recognizes that right now Kuminga is a big man. Might seem obvious now but he was consistently referred to as a "wing" in the draft process so Kerr deserves credit for recognizing how Kuminga can be most effective (and coaching Paschall probably helped). Playing Kuminga at the 5 while Curry is in is the best way to get something from him this season. He can attack the space that Curry creates, run in transition, and doesn't have to make many difficult decisions. I'm still very curious how this works when Wiseman gets back because that seems like the exact role they want to put Wiseman in.
Feel bad for JTA though, not gonna lie.
Kenny Nonymous (9 ♡):
Fantastic breakdown. Every time Kuminga comes into the game (well, the last two), he has seen meaningful minutes/floor time during important times of the game. I reflect on wanting the Dubs to draft Josh Giddey, who is having a good start to his career, but then once he was gone, I thought about how impactful the multi-dimensional Kuminga could be for us once he was selected. Someone mentioned in one of the DNHQ posts yesterday, opining about the possibility of '10 minutes a game' for JK. That would mean, in my eyes, he's earned it and deserves it. Definitely paying attention. Everything I saw last night was super exciting. To find those 10 minutes I think will be a huge additive for the club. He is active, quick, and seems to be adapting/learning the 'system', and I'm quite impressed. It will be amazing to have a bench going forward in time with both Kuminga and Moody, Wiseman, and our guys Poole/Bjelica/GPII/Damion/JTA/OPJ/CC all shooting threats and average or above-average defenders. Last night shooting in Charlotte seemed an aberration. #brooklynbound #dubnationHQ
Hornets sting GSW in Charlotte.
Coltraning (13 ♡):
Excellent stuff! I’m just starting to check out this community and it seems like a good one.
Richard (11 ♡):
Obviously a loss = not a great game. But I thought this one was fun to watch with a lot of positives. 9 for 39 from 3 is the story. Shoot even respectably decently and we win.
Positives? D Lee back (though stone cold, that will get better quickly). Wiggins playing aggressively and well. Kuminga showing up and showing off. Good passing.
Learn and move on.
SoCalJusticeWarrior (10 ♡):
I’m okay with blaming Fitz for anything and everything.
DraymondWantsItMore (10 ♡):
That's about as bad a shooting game I expect us to have all year, plus we turned the ball over way too much, and it came down to two missed free throws, not worries whatsoever.
Not bad for the youngster
SoCalJusticeWarrior (8 ♡):
For a guy who purportedly had no feel for the game. It looks like he has some feel for the game. Very promising.
Five Alarm Freddy (5 ♡):
“He just saw too many zero’s...” Trying to split kab00m and gl0ve.
mDuo13 (2 ♡):
I guess this one is more of an Explain One Play[er], huh?
I'm pretty excited for how Kuminga is progressing. In his previous (garbage-time) NBA playtime, he's looked timid and all too ready to chuck up outside jumpers that aren't going in at a good rate. This time, we got to see him defend some quality players and (aside from falling for the pump fake on his first possession) he did really well. Not easy to force DeRozan into giving the ball up (with the shot clock running low!) or bother him into a long-midrange miss when he wanted to drive.
Then on offense it was great to see the rook drive to the basket, something that he did well in Summer League but hadn't gotten the chance to do against real NBA competition yet. I love that the team got him going with the simple inverse PnR with Steph—and credit to 00, he had the quickness and the handle to get around guys when they tried to help or recover to him. Seems like his aggressiveness continued into garbage time when he kept driving rather than just taking shots. He did have one wide-open 3pt attempt off a Bjelica drive-and-kick, which he took and clanked—but I don't mind as that sure looked like "a shot created [that] must be taken".
The parts I didn't really catch during the actual game were the communication—him pointing to ensure switches and stuff like that. Maybe I'm imagining things but it looks to me like he may even have called out to Porter to ensure he knew about the cross-switch. Oh, and I didn't see how the mixup on the rebound happened; the best my mind could process in the moment was, "oops, we're all out of position after an offensive rebound" which is, of course, typical. That sort of mixup is unfortunate but not something that'll hold him out of games, because pretty much everyone does it sometimes.
Honestly impressed with how both Kuminga and Moody are playing already. Kerr and the coaching staff must be very pleased, but it's only getting harder to find playing time for all the guys on this team who can contribute. We'll see about Klay and Wiseman when they're back from injury, but right now it feels like the entire roster should play every game.
MySarunas (2 ♡):
Fantastic E1P (plus, the old music)!
Kuminga looked kind of lost in the summer league, but much less so during the Bulls game. Would be really great to see his growth continue. Thanks for doing such a nice job documenting this development, Eric.