By Marcus Thompson
Sunday, January 18th, 2009 at 10:42 pm in Uncategorized.
(Note: We’ve had some technical issues with our blog. Somehow, the last post, and all the comments, disappeared. The Raiders blog is having even more problems. I am recreating the post for those who didn’t see it. For those who did, there will be some differences as I didn’t have it saved anywhere).
After watching the Hawks game, and how Crawford closed it out efficiently, I was thinking the Warriors will have a dilemma on their hands. Who are they going to designate the go-to guy.
Before I break down the options, I must say that I go into this with the belief that the closer-by-committee thing doesn’t work in basketball. In the NBA, you need to have the one guy who is THAT GUY. No matter who is rolling. No matter how bad he’s been playing. He gets the rock. Obviously, it won’t be 100 percent of the time. But for the most part, I believe, you need a guy who you go-to down the stretch, who has the skills to make something happen for himself and others, and even after the plans go awry. You win and lose with him. Doesn’t mean he has to take the shot, but he needs to be involved, the center of what happens down the stretch. Hopefully, this guy is good enough to get it done. Because if you don’t have that guy in this league, you’re not a very good team. Or if you have the wrong kind of guy in that position, you’re not a very good team.
The Warriors had that guy in Baron, now they need to deem someone his successor. So, who would you give that job, too. The options:
Pros: His midrange is money and he’s a good 3-point shooter when he gets a good look. He can post-up, which gives you another option. He is a pretty good passer for his position, so you can have faith he can set up a score for someone else. He also has experience hitting clutch shots, the often others created them for him. He’s also a good free throw shooter.
He isn’t a good ball-handler and he’s prone to make poor decisions, so he’s a high-risk for a turnover.
Pros: Because of his superior athleticism and midrange jumper, he is sometimes impossible to guard. He’s excellent at finishing his drives and he’s a solid free throw shooter. He has a scoring knack, so he can find multiple ways to put the ball in the hole – jumper, drive, offensive rebound, finishing, pull-up, free throws, fast break. Also, Monta has a killer instinct. He plays aggressive, determined and hungry.
Cons: He’s handles, though improved, still limit his ability to improvise. His court vision is limited and his passing, though improved, makes you wonder if he can consistently make plays for others. He didn’t shoot the 3-pointer well, which means you’re in trouble if you need one. Of course, all this is based on last season and it doesn’t take into consideration any improvements he may have made. With his history, it’s highly likely he’s gotten better.
Pros: Because of his excellent ball-handling ability, he can create easily for himself and others off the dribble. Can get to anywhere on the floor. Can knock down any shot on the floor. Can knock down different types of shots, especially difficult ones. His midrange is water and he has 3-point range. Really good free throw shooter. Underrated passer.
Cons: Settles for tough shots too much and takes too many unnecessary 3-pointers. Was once an explosive athlete but doesn’t finish above the rim much anymore. Isn’t as good finishing with contact as you’d like.
Pros: Excellent at getting to the basket and the free throw line, which is the kind of high-percentage opportunity you want down the stretch. Good free throw shooter. He has a nice midrange jumper and the size to post up. Handles are good enough to get to where he needs to go. Can stick a 3-pointer when he gets a good look.
Cons: Doesn’t pass well, nor does he see the floor well. Prone to offensive fouls because of his head-down drives. Decision making can be suspect (i.e., takes a jumper over a smaller defender, rushes the shot when running clock is best, etc.)
So, who gets your vote.