the virtues of Smart-Ball

OP
OP
1

1tinsoldier

Hall of Famer
Joined
Apr 17, 2018
Posts
1,383
Reaction score
501
Location
AZ
some thoughts on where smart-ball and character intersect:

Magic, Bird, and Nash were as smart as they come, and Jordan and Kobe to a lesser degree. All tricky but maintained a high level of character. Lebron, smart, but a diva. Stockton, smart but more devious. I didn't follow Paul closely in the past but what he does today, like with his rip-through, is just exploit sloppy aggression from his opponents. imo, Crowder is the only Sun who will cross the line, but not often.

now, for Doncic and Kidd. they came up with a smart strategy in Dallas, but it was ugly and an NBA low.

Kidd was a model pg for the Suns, saying and doing the right things. The french-fry spitting at his wife was just silly but it seemed to be a clue about his character. After he left he did give the Suns a bit of the french-fry treatment, or, should i say, sour grapes, with some remarks. I read something about him, Kenyan Martin and Richard Jefferson bullying a teammate in Jersey, and his past coaching reviews turned from good to bad and distasteful.

we know the rumors of Luka being difficult before he was drafted and there's been more of those rumors in Dallas. i hadn't seen a lot of him but i liked that when i did he smiled a lot. I learned that his smile is him scoffing at what happens on the court. He's manipulative -- even to the extent of sweet-talking a female ref this year.

his strategy in Dallas, probably with support from Kidd, seemed to be that if he turned the games ugly it would break in their favor -- that is to say, if he forced a chaotic, physical game the combination of the home crowd, his star power (a few days ago an ESPN promo ad for this series featured only Luka highlights) and a preference to extend the series would all work on the refs to give them the close calls.

smart, shrewd, but bad, distasteful basketball and a reflection of character. lets see if they try it again today in Phoenix, or if they wait till Thursday.

oh, and speaking of character, disingenuous of the Mavs to rest their statement on the harassing of Paul's family on, "an unwanted hug" but that's the least of the criticisms of the Mavs in recent years (and we might find out that Sarver's been worse than Cuban, so, i've said enough)
 
OP
OP
1

1tinsoldier

Hall of Famer
Joined
Apr 17, 2018
Posts
1,383
Reaction score
501
Location
AZ
actually, at this rate, Doncic may become the evil genius of the NBA.
his nickname should become LEX LUKA
 

Russ Smith

The Original Whizzinator
Supporting Member
Joined
May 14, 2002
Posts
76,349
Reaction score
22,162
actually, at this rate, Doncic may become the evil genius of the NBA.
his nickname should become LEX LUKA

The more I watch this series the more I'm agreeing with you that it's been quite apparent without Luka there are times Dallas is better. They've been saying it over and over he doesn't play hard enough on defense to give them that 1-2 seconds for the help to come and the guys who replace him do.

I also think they hit on something last game with the 2 good shooting bigs, Bertans and Kleber they play well with Luka because he can get into the paint and both those guys can make 3's so the Suns have to decide do you send help and risk a kickout 3. But when they have Powell in, it really sort of changes things he's just not a good enough shooter to make anybody guard him outside 10 feet and that allows the Suns bigs to man the paint.
 
OP
OP
1

1tinsoldier

Hall of Famer
Joined
Apr 17, 2018
Posts
1,383
Reaction score
501
Location
AZ
well, contrary to the premise of another thread, it doesn't have to "start and end with Chris Paul" because tonight was a great example of THE PASSING OF THE GUARD

Paul still seemed somewhat rattled but with Dallas carrying over their momentum from Dallas in the first half, Devin Booker stayed cool, calm, productive, and smart. Under the conditions, one of his best games ever, imo. As i hoped, he's taken his leadership to the next level.

Monty finally wisened up too, by sitting Payne. Also, as we all hoped, Dallas couldn't continue their chaos campaign in Phoenix -- there was a big difference in how this game was called!

as for Thursday it's going to be real ugly with Lex Luka working the crowd and the refs for calls to avoid elimination. it really will be a game where the suns will have to play smart to win. if they only play hard, the Mavs will have a parade to the free-throw line.
 
Last edited:

Russ Smith

The Original Whizzinator
Supporting Member
Joined
May 14, 2002
Posts
76,349
Reaction score
22,162
You were right again it was so obvious that at the half even Shaq said Luka needs to trust his teammates and let them get involved he can't win by himself. He got a quick 11 points but then shot them out of the lead in the first half and the big run in the 3rd quarter he just kept trying to do too much

I would add I think your original point here was in part that drafting Luka over ayton might not have worked because Luka and Booker wouldn't mesh well and honestly I am now very much on that same side myself. he's a great player and I do think he's running the system Kidd wants him to run, but I don't see how that works with Booker( and CP3) only 1 ball.
 
Last edited:

Forum statistics

Threads
484,550
Posts
4,823,655
Members
6,165
Latest member
nationsrj
Top