Doctor MJ wrote: bondom34 wrote:
You're right, it was never a system, which is why Brooks never should have been fired to me. It was a bad move.
That said, Washington was 4th last year in assists/100, now 8th. So Brooks has actually brought that down. As well, assists aren't an inherent measure of ball movement. Wall is averaging the same time of possession per game as Westbrook this year, with fewer assists:http://stats.nba.com/players/touches/#!?sort=TIME_OF_POSS&dir=1
But if you'd like to insist that's an improvement, go for it
Not to derail it any further, but Brooks wasn't fired for any good reason, and was replaced with a worse coach. It never was a system in OKC. That's not on Westbrook. There's a point where blaming him without thought has gone too far, and that seems to be it. Durant would then be just as uncoachable. Same for Ibaka and Roberson and the whole team. Maybe it's just hiring a coach without an offensive system is why.
The thing is that Westbrook's the guy with the ball in hands. The general rule is that if there is no system, the point guard is the system. And if there are major weaknesses with performance that come from making poor use of the talents you have, well that's the system's fault, whether it's something mandated by the coach or forced in response to how the point guard chooses to play.
I feel like we go round and round in circles but to me the crux of it all is this:
Westbrook, more than anyone else, shaped how the Thunder attacked the defense, and this is either a good thing, or a bad thing.
On the current roster I don't really think there's a vastly more effective way of doing things, but my long-established philosophy is that you need something more sophisticated to make optimal use of all 5 guys on the court, and if you want to win championships, you generally need to be pretty close to optimal in your strategy.
Could my philosophy be proven wrong? Absolutely. But it's not about hating Westbrook now, it's about me saying basically the same stuff for a long time and feeling like it's pretty much held true. If Westbrook can really lead a team to a title with something close to a 40 usage, it's a brave new world for me.
So wait, it was Westbrook's fault, but not Durant's? Because that's what you're saying here. And it wasn't the coach either. Which is totally incredible when we saw Durant not only do the same stuff under 2 coaches like Westbrook, but still the same under Kerr.
And you'd also be claiming Wall isn't doing the same, which is again...something. Durant had the ball in his hands plenty, as does Wall now. Maybe it's the coach and for once, just one time in his career Westbrook isn't somehow through mind tricks at fault.
And Westbrook did not shape how the Thunder attacked the defense. Sorry, but that's on coaching as well as players, and Durant (who was still the guy in crunch time) failed there mightily.
I'm not saying a 40 percent usage is winning a title, but you're pulling some mighty goalpost shifting here Doc and I really respect you a ton, it's weird to see.
Westbrook/Durant/Brooks: Lack of ball movement
Westbrook/Durant/Donovan: Lack of ball movement
Durant goes to GSW, still finds himself isolating more than they'd like. Westbrook's fault
Brooks goes to Washington, Washington's assist numbers decrease. Westbrook's fault here too.
Meanwhile in OKC, the crunch time offense makes a sudden leap to being good from years of being terrible with Durant running the game late.