Tuesday, January 20, 2004


Ahh yes. Playing the right way. Call it the Hackman Way. Bounce passes from the chest, blocking out, footwork, ball movement, spacing, getting low, don't leave your feet, rotate, clock management.

Old time hockey!

Recently, certain well adjusted members of the Association, namely Carmelo Bone Thugs And Anthony and Ron Artest have criticised the offensive strategy of their respective coaches (Jeff Bdzelik and Rick Carlisle), rebuffing the Hackman Way, if you will . Both Melo and Artest called the slow-it-down-set-it-up styles of their coaches, and I'm paraphrasing here, mad boring. Or perhaps more precisely, and I'm still paraphrasing: If we're gonna ball like Naismith, I'd rather not ball at all.

And truth be told, they have a point. I would rather watch old people eat then watch teams grind out 73-64 vicotries, characterized by staunch defense and prudent, mistake-free half court hoops.

But I would take that over what most squads trot out as their half court game. Most teams run sets that basically involve their star/number 1 option standing right outside the three point line waiting for the Red Sea of defense to part, all while some half hearted motion takes place.

Obviously there are exceptions (The Lake show when Kobe and Shaq are on the same page, Sacramento and New Jersey's variations on the Princeton offense (and not to split hairs, Denver, who are performing above everybody's expectations and Indiana who look even better then they did last year)), but for the most part teams seem uncomfortable when it comes to grinding out points.

Which is why the most oft-uttered phrase of the year seems to be, "We're gonna run."


Yeah, it's the evil that Doug Moe do. Run and gun. Everybody wants to push the ball. And I will co-sign it. I love some Bo Kimble type run the ball out of the gym type shit. But someone should send around a memo.

Just take some time watch a not so hot NBA team. Take the Clippers for example. Stocked with young talent, and led by a guy who sort of knows how to lead in Mike Dunleavy. But the last time I watched them they're offensive strategy seemed to be: push the ball up the court, get tripped up in transition by a team (in this case, the Spurs) that knows how to get back on D, then sort of throw a sausage of a play together that more times then not ended with Quentin Richardson or Corey Maggete throwing up ill-advised jumpers.

When the Orlando Magic fired Doc Rivers, and brought in Johnny Davis to coach and Paul Westheadl to assist, Tracy McGrady announced, despite having lost 19 games and perhaps because he was taking in some deep pulls of Central Florida hydro, that the Magic were gonna start 130 points a game.

Obviously, that didn't come to pass. You can't just make it so. You either have to fully commit the idea of spending the game in 4th gear, like the Mavericks do, or you have to accept the fact that sometimes the dude in the suit is gonna call the plays.


Post a Comment

<< Home