Would OKC win more games with a different point guard?

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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#21 » by RCM88x » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:03 pm

Triples333 wrote:
RCM88x wrote:
Triples333 wrote:Well they played one game without him and won on the road. Six guys scoring between 10-20 points. Probably secretly the most fun game of the season for half their team as they actually got to touch the ball.


Yea, you're right... they'd probably go 82-0. #fakemvp

They did play Minnesota in that game, who were clearly tanking the last few weeks of the season and were bad regardless. They finished the season what... 3-13 or something like that. With two of those wins coming by 1 point and the 3rd against the Lakers.

They probably should have finished 0-16, would have moved ahead of Orlando in the Lottery.

Well I'd say getting smacked out of the 1st round while shooting 34.8% from the field on 33 attempts +6.5 turnovers a game is a better argument to back up your "#fakeMVP" comment.


They're getting beat by a team that has a far better roster 2-15. Beverly, Ariza, Gordon, Williams have all completely outplayed anyone on OKC outside of Westbrook. I mean, who's he going to defer to? Oladipo? Robertson? They have no perimeter talent outside of Westbrook and its showing.

BTW here is Oladipo's stat line for the first two games:

8.5/6/3/1/1/1.5tov on 19/8/100 for a .29 TS%, yea... He's shooting 19% from the field and 8% from 3pt with 13FGA attempts per game which is only 1FGA below his season average. ORTG of 70, DRTG of 120.

The fact that people even expect this to be a competitive series is all due to how good Westbrook is. Without him they probably would lose every game by 50, everyone on this roster has been awful outside of Robertson who's probably played two of the best offensive games of his career, scoring 18 and 12 points... just think about that.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#22 » by laika » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:04 pm

Yoshun wrote:I'm not really sure where this idea of Westbrook not passing or creating for others comes from. He's 3rd in the league APG, 0.3 being John Wall, and tops the league in Assist % (among the league's top PGs) and in 2 les MPG than Harden and Wall. Somehow, he has done this without passing the ball or creating for his teammates. Go figure.


Assists should be adjusted for usage. Westbrook had the ball an insane amount. He shattered the all time usage record.

In theory you can get a lot of assists while being a terrible offensive player. Just keep the ball the whole time. As the clock is running down dump the ball to whomever. They will be forced to shoot and you will get an assist if it goes in. Of course this offense would be awful.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#23 » by mtron929 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:14 pm

I just get the sense that it's difficult to scale up with Westbrook. For example, let's say a prime Dirk was on the team. Naturally, everyone knows that Dirk is one of the best scorers of all time (much better than Russ) and not only that Dirk is one of the best playoff performers of all time. Thus, on a team like this, you should think that Dirk should be #1 and Russ should be #2 option. And if the Thunder had point guards such as CP3 or Steve Nash, I would totally imagine that this would be the case.

However, why do I get the sense that if prime Dirk was on this team, Russ would still be the one taking the most shots and most of the shots in the 4th quarter in a tight game? That is my (negative) view of Westbrook and his approach to the game.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#24 » by Patches Perry » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:14 pm

For reference - Westbrook was point guard, 4th in MVP voting and All-NBA 1st team last season on a team that defeated a 67 win team in the playoffs, and a few plays away from defeating a 73 win team. OKC last year probably could have won a title in different years where there weren't superpowers like GS and Cleveland.

Let's not act like his skill set on an elite team is some abstract concept we have no reference for.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#25 » by Yoshun » Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:35 pm

laika wrote:
Yoshun wrote:I'm not really sure where this idea of Westbrook not passing or creating for others comes from. He's 3rd in the league APG, 0.3 being John Wall, and tops the league in Assist % (among the league's top PGs) and in 2 les MPG than Harden and Wall. Somehow, he has done this without passing the ball or creating for his teammates. Go figure.


Assists should be adjusted for usage. Westbrook had the ball an insane amount. He shattered the all time usage record.

In theory you can get a lot of assists while being a terrible offensive player. Just keep the ball the whole time. As the clock is running down dump the ball to whomever. They will be forced to shoot and you will get an assist if it goes in. Of course this offense would be awful.


Theoretically yea, but that's not what's happening in OKC. They take 71% of their shots in the first 15 seconds (42% in the first 10 seconds) of the shot clock. For quick reference, Houston takes 72% of their shots in the first 15 seconds (44% in the first 10). OKC is a fast paced team, they're not holding the ball until right before the shot clock runs out.

One of the reasons Westbrook's usage is so high is because he's grabbing a ton of rebounds and taking the ball up the floor himself as opposed to a rebound followed by a quick pass to a teammate. It's more or less the time it takes him to get up the floor, set, and play. Even though the team is taking a large majority of their shots within 15 seconds, Westbrook has the ball for slightly over 10 seconds per possession.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#26 » by DubTheVanDamage » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:00 pm

Prince187 wrote:Say you replaced Westbrook with someone like Chris Paul, Wall, Curry, harden, or anyone else you can think of. Would the Thunder win more games?


Wow, this topic is brutal on Russ.

A few things:

1) Conventional wisdom is pretty clear: LeBron is the best player in the league and the next five guys are some combination of Durant, Curry, Westbrook, Kawhi and Harden. You can have a good debate on where 2-6 shake out, but it's pretty hard to say those aren't the guys. Unless it's a case of fit or chemistry, it's difficult to argue you improve a team by replacing a player with an inferior one

2) Russ/Kobe analogies, to me, have some flaws but one way they're similar is that both players cost their teams games from time to time. There were games when Kobe couldn't buy a bucket, he kept chucking and I'd just shake my head as he'd shoot the Lakers out of the game. But he won a lot more games for the Lakers than he lost. Russ is similar -- when he's bad, he kills his team. When he's at his best, he absolutely steals games

3) I know I suffer from recency bias -- after a game like the late season wins against the Grizzlies and the Nuggets, I start thinking Russ is the second best player in the league. After the Warriors games or the two games in round 1, I put him lower on the top-6 list. But I don't think it fundamentally changes who Westbrook is as a player -- supremely talented who is far more often a huge asset to his team than a liability (although his triple doubles are a bit of a sham :D ). If the Thunder go on to lose this playoff series, hopefully Westbrook evolves his game to lessen the things that make Bad Russ (chucking threes and tunnel vision) and focuses on being Good Russ
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#27 » by nbafan38 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:08 pm

I'd actually like to see Curry and Westbrook switch places. I am really curious to see how it would go. Curry has been so pampered playing in such a great offensive system while westbrook has played with crappy offensive sets his whole career.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#28 » by mihail_petkov » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:11 pm

nbafan38 wrote:I'd actually like to see Curry and Westbrook switch places. I am really curious to see how it would go. Curry has been so pampered playing in such a great offensive system while westbrook has played with crappy offensive sets his whole career.

You understand that Curry is the system because he is of the GOAT off-ball players. When you have ball dominant player like Westbrook who is terrible off-ball player, Warriors will play in completely different system, similar to Thunder's - iso after iso.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#29 » by Andre Roberstan » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:31 pm

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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#30 » by nbafan38 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:42 pm

RCM88x wrote:
Triples333 wrote:
RCM88x wrote:
Yea, you're right... they'd probably go 82-0. #fakemvp

They did play Minnesota in that game, who were clearly tanking the last few weeks of the season and were bad regardless. They finished the season what... 3-13 or something like that. With two of those wins coming by 1 point and the 3rd against the Lakers.

They probably should have finished 0-16, would have moved ahead of Orlando in the Lottery.

Well I'd say getting smacked out of the 1st round while shooting 34.8% from the field on 33 attempts +6.5 turnovers a game is a better argument to back up your "#fakeMVP" comment.


They're getting beat by a team that has a far better roster 2-15. Beverly, Ariza, Gordon, Williams have all completely outplayed anyone on OKC outside of Westbrook. I mean, who's he going to defer to? Oladipo? Robertson? They have no perimeter talent outside of Westbrook and its showing.

BTW here is Oladipo's stat line for the first two games:

8.5/6/3/1/1/1.5tov on 19/8/100 for a .29 TS%, yea... He's shooting 19% from the field and 8% from 3pt with 13FGA attempts per game which is only 1FGA below his season average. ORTG of 70, DRTG of 120.

The fact that people even expect this to be a competitive series is all due to how good Westbrook is. Without him they probably would lose every game by 50, everyone on this roster has been awful outside of Robertson who's probably played two of the best offensive games of his career, scoring 18 and 12 points... just think about that.


Yea pretty much Thisss but the anti westbrook agenda for whatever reason is heavy on the realgm
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#31 » by Triples333 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:47 pm

nbafan38 wrote:I'd actually like to see Curry and Westbrook switch places. I am really curious to see how it would go. Curry has been so pampered playing in such a great offensive system while westbrook has played with crappy offensive sets his whole career.

Curry has excelled in every system he has ever played in dating back to Mark Jackson and before at Davidson. Hell after a slowish start to his rookie campaign alongside Monta and Co, he began taking over and averaged 21/5/7 on 47/45/90 (from January on - 50 games). This theme I have been seeing on the board lately that he's a product of the system and his teammates is laughable to say the least.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#32 » by nbafan38 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:49 pm

Triples333 wrote:
nbafan38 wrote:I'd actually like to see Curry and Westbrook switch places. I am really curious to see how it would go. Curry has been so pampered playing in such a great offensive system while westbrook has played with crappy offensive sets his whole career.

Curry has excelled in every system he has ever played in dating back to Mark Jackson and before at Davidson. Hell after a slowish start to his rookie campaign alongside Monta and Co, he began taking over and averaged 21/5/7 on 47/45/90 (from January on - 50 games). This theme I have been seeing on the board lately that he's a product of the system and his teammates is laughable to say the least.


Not a knock on Curry hes a special player but I am just saying Westbrook has never had the benefit of playing in a great offensive system that could maximize his potential. This is even the reason Durant gave for leaving OKC for GS.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#33 » by Triples333 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:50 pm

RCM88x wrote:
Triples333 wrote:
RCM88x wrote:
Yea, you're right... they'd probably go 82-0. #fakemvp

They did play Minnesota in that game, who were clearly tanking the last few weeks of the season and were bad regardless. They finished the season what... 3-13 or something like that. With two of those wins coming by 1 point and the 3rd against the Lakers.

They probably should have finished 0-16, would have moved ahead of Orlando in the Lottery.

Well I'd say getting smacked out of the 1st round while shooting 34.8% from the field on 33 attempts +6.5 turnovers a game is a better argument to back up your "#fakeMVP" comment.


They're getting beat by a team that has a far better roster 2-15. Beverly, Ariza, Gordon, Williams have all completely outplayed anyone on OKC outside of Westbrook. I mean, who's he going to defer to? Oladipo? Robertson? They have no perimeter talent outside of Westbrook and its showing.

BTW here is Oladipo's stat line for the first two games:

8.5/6/3/1/1/1.5tov on 19/8/100 for a .29 TS%, yea... He's shooting 19% from the field and 8% from 3pt with 13FGA attempts per game which is only 1FGA below his season average. ORTG of 70, DRTG of 120.

The fact that people even expect this to be a competitive series is all due to how good Westbrook is. Without him they probably would lose every game by 50, everyone on this roster has been awful outside of Robertson who's probably played two of the best offensive games of his career, scoring 18 and 12 points... just think about that.

You trust your teammates, period. 'Dipo is struggling? Who cares, you can't freeze him out. Him rounding back into form (along with everyone elses contributions) are their only chance to win. He has a 0% chance of defeating any playoff team shooting the ball 35 times a game, especially at historically poor percentages. It is far too easy to gameplan against.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#34 » by Triples333 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:53 pm

nbafan38 wrote:
Triples333 wrote:
nbafan38 wrote:I'd actually like to see Curry and Westbrook switch places. I am really curious to see how it would go. Curry has been so pampered playing in such a great offensive system while westbrook has played with crappy offensive sets his whole career.

Curry has excelled in every system he has ever played in dating back to Mark Jackson and before at Davidson. Hell after a slowish start to his rookie campaign alongside Monta and Co, he began taking over and averaged 21/5/7 on 47/45/90 (from January on - 50 games). This theme I have been seeing on the board lately that he's a product of the system and his teammates is laughable to say the least.


Not a knock on Curry hes a special player but I am just saying Westbrook has never had the benefit of playing in a great offensive system that could maximize his potential. This is even the reason Durant gave for leaving OKC for GS.

COULD Westbrook play in a system like the Warriors or Spurs? I'm not convinced he would be able to relinquish the reigns on his love off all things ISO. This is a PG who played alongside the top offensive force in the game and would routinely be the one taking the most field goal attempts (that player likely left OKC despite them being title contenders on account of this). I don't think he cares much for team orientated play. But maybe some day he will prove me/us wrong.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#35 » by nbafan38 » Fri Apr 21, 2017 3:57 pm

Triples333 wrote:
nbafan38 wrote:
Triples333 wrote:Curry has excelled in every system he has ever played in dating back to Mark Jackson and before at Davidson. Hell after a slowish start to his rookie campaign alongside Monta and Co, he began taking over and averaged 21/5/7 on 47/45/90 (from January on - 50 games). This theme I have been seeing on the board lately that he's a product of the system and his teammates is laughable to say the least.


Not a knock on Curry hes a special player but I am just saying Westbrook has never had the benefit of playing in a great offensive system that could maximize his potential. This is even the reason Durant gave for leaving OKC for GS.

COULD Westbrook play in a system like the Warriors or Spurs? I'm not convinced he would be able to relinquish the reigns on his love off all things ISO. This is a PG who played alongside the top offensive force in the game and would routinely be the one taking the most field goal attempts (that player likely left OKC despite them being title contenders on account of this). I don't think he cares much for team orientated play. But maybe some day he will prove me/us wrong.


Yes I think if you put Westbrook on an elite offensiver team he would play differently. Did you not watch the first three quarters of the last game? Westbrook was kicking it out to his teammates all night when they were hitting shots and 3's. It's only once they went cold that he went into takeover mode.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#36 » by NaturalThunder » Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:09 pm

laika wrote:
Yoshun wrote:I'm not really sure where this idea of Westbrook not passing or creating for others comes from. He's 3rd in the league APG, 0.3 being John Wall, and tops the league in Assist % (among the league's top PGs) and in 2 les MPG than Harden and Wall. Somehow, he has done this without passing the ball or creating for his teammates. Go figure.


Assists should be adjusted for usage. Westbrook had the ball an insane amount. He shattered the all time usage record.

In theory you can get a lot of assists while being a terrible offensive player. Just keep the ball the whole time. As the clock is running down dump the ball to whomever. They will be forced to shoot and you will get an assist if it goes in. Of course this offense would be awful.

I'm not sure I'm understanding your point? Westbrook still ended a higher percentage of possessions with an assist than anyone else this year. And, just to be clear, it wasn't because he was ball-dominant. I'm fairly certain he and Harden had virtually the same time of possession this year.

People still want to push the narrative that Westbrook's assist numbers are inflated or overrated, and that he's not a true PG or a good playmaking PG, even though the numbers and eye-test have denied this for several years running, now.
Said in a thread about which point guards would make OKC better if they replaced Westbrook:
Coxy wrote:I think with a PG like George Hill, they'd be better than current.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#37 » by Patches Perry » Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:09 pm

Triples333 wrote:
nbafan38 wrote:
Triples333 wrote:Curry has excelled in every system he has ever played in dating back to Mark Jackson and before at Davidson. Hell after a slowish start to his rookie campaign alongside Monta and Co, he began taking over and averaged 21/5/7 on 47/45/90 (from January on - 50 games). This theme I have been seeing on the board lately that he's a product of the system and his teammates is laughable to say the least.


Not a knock on Curry hes a special player but I am just saying Westbrook has never had the benefit of playing in a great offensive system that could maximize his potential. This is even the reason Durant gave for leaving OKC for GS.

COULD Westbrook play in a system like the Warriors or Spurs? I'm not convinced he would be able to relinquish the reigns on his love off all things ISO. This is a PG who played alongside the top offensive force in the game and would routinely be the one taking the most field goal attempts (that player likely left OKC despite them being title contenders on account of this). I don't think he cares much for team orientated play. But maybe some day he will prove me/us wrong.


As someone who watched all but a handful of Thunder games over the past near-decade, I can say with complete confidence that Westbrook being blamed for Durant's shortcomings was all too common. I can't tell you how many times Russell would be actively looking to get the ball to Durant, but Durant was simply not strong enough and unable to seal his defender to create a passing lane. Durant would be calling for the ball the entire possession, but unable to actually get open, and Westbrook would have to force some bad shot at the end of the clock. This is probably a coaching failure, but the spin on this was always "Westbrook freezing out Durant" when in reality he was looking for him the whole play and Durant couldn't get himself open. Defenders would routinely push Durant to nearly half-court just so he could get the ball in his hands.

I think Curry is better than Westbrook, and I think Westbrook would be a horrible fit in GS and GS would certainly be worse with him (although still the best team in the league, probably), but I'm also pretty sure OKC would be worse with Curry instead of Westbrook. This shouldn't surprise anyone, because GMs build their teams with their best players in mind, so simply switching two players with entirely different skills will likely yield bad results on both sides.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#38 » by Warriors Analyst » Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:14 pm

Triples333 wrote:
nbafan38 wrote:I'd actually like to see Curry and Westbrook switch places. I am really curious to see how it would go. Curry has been so pampered playing in such a great offensive system while westbrook has played with crappy offensive sets his whole career.

Curry has excelled in every system he has ever played in dating back to Mark Jackson and before at Davidson. Hell after a slowish start to his rookie campaign alongside Monta and Co, he began taking over and averaged 21/5/7 on 47/45/90 (from January on - 50 games). This theme I have been seeing on the board lately that he's a product of the system and his teammates is laughable to say the least.


To add to that, Steph Curry put up 23/7/4 on 45/45/90 splits and dragged the Warriors to a 47-35 record in 2012-2013.

For reference, David Lee was averaging 18/11/3.5 that year on 52% with and Klay Thompson 17/3/3 was shooting 42/40/84. Carl Landry and Jarrett Jack were the two big minute players off of the bench, Draymond Green was playing small forward (!) and shot a putrid 32/20/81 on the season and the Warriors only got 32 games out of Andrew Bogut. Harrison Barnes was still a rookie, which is to say, not that different from the 2016 Finals version of Harrison Barnes

Their depth chart that year was:

Curry/Jack
Thompson/Curry/Jefferson/Bazemore
Barnes/Thompson/Green
Lee/Landry/Green
Bogut (when healthy) / Ezeli or Biedrins/ Lee

Bogut was rarely healthy, Ezeli and Biedrins were fine defenders but absolute 0's on offense which meant that David Lee saw a lot of minutes at center with Landry at power forward. M-Jax, in his infinite wisdom, loved to play bench lineups with Jefferson at the shooting guard and Draymond at the small forward which led to some awful spacing, and Harrison Barnes was good for not much beyond the occasional corner three.

If Steph can drag that lineup to 47 wins, suffice to say that I think he'd be just fine in OKC. Oladipo could spend more time handling the ball and running Steph through off-ball screens to create open looks for other players. Roberson would benefit immensely as a slasher in a Curry-centric system. Players like Sabonis and Arbines would get lots of open threes with Curry on the floor, Kanter would effectively be prime David Lee (defense included) and Steven Adams would be a monster in the pick and roll. Mind you, Steph hasn't really played with many centers that are effective finishers in the pick and roll, other than Javale.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#39 » by Scizzup » Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:23 pm

Harden/Curry would be able to carry that offense better due to their superior efficiency. in terms of wins the same or 2-3 games worse (late game luck). I think Okc with Harden/Curry would have a better offense and a better MOV/SRS. Teams defend Russ in the Pnr a whole lot different than they would Curry or Harden and would be easier baskets for Adams.

The 14-15 Rockets is not much better than Okc roster when u factor in injuries and they won 56. I am not sure Last year Portland was better either last year with their 44wins, the differnce is Lillard could shoot. Oladipo was a better overall player than 15-16 Mccollum.
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Re: Would OKC win more games with a different point guard? 

Post#40 » by Yoshun » Fri Apr 21, 2017 4:32 pm

Triples333 wrote:
nbafan38 wrote:
Triples333 wrote:Curry has excelled in every system he has ever played in dating back to Mark Jackson and before at Davidson. Hell after a slowish start to his rookie campaign alongside Monta and Co, he began taking over and averaged 21/5/7 on 47/45/90 (from January on - 50 games). This theme I have been seeing on the board lately that he's a product of the system and his teammates is laughable to say the least.


Not a knock on Curry hes a special player but I am just saying Westbrook has never had the benefit of playing in a great offensive system that could maximize his potential. This is even the reason Durant gave for leaving OKC for GS.

COULD Westbrook play in a system like the Warriors or Spurs? I'm not convinced he would be able to relinquish the reigns on his love off all things ISO. This is a PG who played alongside the top offensive force in the game and would routinely be the one taking the most field goal attempts (that player likely left OKC despite them being title contenders on account of this). I don't think he cares much for team orientated play. But maybe some day he will prove me/us wrong.


Durant averaged more shots per game every season they played together with 2 exceptions: the 12/13 season and the 14/15 (during which Durant was hurt and played only 27 games).

It should be pretty obvious by now Westbrook can play with another superstar. He has done it for most of his career and it's yielded deep playoff runs and finals appearances. He's already proven you wrong.

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