I think its a learning process. I painful learning process.
The Warriors collapsed in the last five minutes of the last quarter but they dominated the rest of the game. Unfortunately, you win games in the fourth quarter..
The Warriors are now begining to transcend into a defensive team and that is a difficult process considering the fact that it has been been “decades” this team played with a philosophy that gives little priority to defense, with more emphasis to small ball or “Nellie ball.
So to transcend into a defensive team that they are right now is really one subtle but nevertheless an impressive detail people should take note. It will not immediately result into wins but the idea is slowly being accepted. .
However, the identity of the team is not there yet and this is the reason why most of our losses are close games. It is also the main reason why they lost last night. They lost their composure, they panicked like puppies and kittens and they eventually forgot how to play basketball in the fourth quarter.
The reason they don’t have a solid identity?
It’s because they don’t have a working killer instinct the team is sold to. That’s the reason they didn’t show up in the fourth quarter on both ends of the court. They Panicked in the face of pressure! and panicking is a sign of insecurity and uncertainess. Two traits that supports the theory of lack of identity.
They have to have a solid Killer Instinct that imposes respect and most of all, FEAR to other teams. They have to have a “Take no prisoners” attitude. They have to smell blood all the time, they have to learn not to be content with a 20-30 point lead, they have to make sure there’s not just one, but two or three more final nails on the coffin before you call it a day!
Until they develop this instinct, and this will not happen unless they start believing in themselves as individuals and as a team, Perhaps learn to be “selfish” on situations where its needed, they will not establish an identity they can truly rely on and be proud of.
They need to attack the basket with confidence and reckless abandon.
Coach Jackson has a long way ahead of him. His task is a difficult one because he is not just erasing the bad habits of the past along with its philosophy, but establishing a new one. He is in the stage of laying a foundation.
So at this point, we are now witnessing the fact that it is not enough for the team to learn and play defense alone. They have to play with a Killer Instinct in stopping the opponent and attacking the basket.
Everyone is talking about how the Warriors play good defense… but do they? Or has just the pace of their games slowed down? They don’t appear to be especially good defenders to me, while the team has gotten much worse on the offensive end.
And if you ask me what’s the problem, I would say simply 1) they don’t have the roster to be a real good team (a fact the coach and front office doesn’t seem to recognize?), and 2) they have a poor tactician as head coach, one who can’t manufacture wins out of whole cloth.
In other words, I don’t see them building up some defensive mentality right now that is going to translate, in time, to a lot of wins – I see one without a real vision to improve their lot.
Allow me to support my contention that the Warriors have improved defensively with the following leads…
Check the scores of the games they lost. How many of these games were convincing losses?
Check the average of the total points they allow so far in this season compared to the past seasons…
Check how the bench players kept the team in the game in more than one occassion, especially Robinson, Rush and Mcguire. They were creating stops than scores if one is to observer closely.
So my point is this, its easy to say that if we have Kobe this, and Dwight that type of player, we can surely make a difference, but that is not the essence of the sport. It is how you play as a team! Look at Miami with their strong roster, they got beat by Dallas last year, look at the Lakers back in the day with Shaq, Kobe, Malone and Payton, they were beaten by the unsang, uncelebrated roster of Detroit led by Billups and company.
It’s all about being the same page and bringing together their collective talent and intelligence.
In the case of the Warriors, they still have a bit of work to do but they are getting there. If they could develop a Killer Instinct in both their defensive and offensive game, they will be hard to beat because the talent and athleticsm is there.
To develop this Killing Instinct, they have to despise and not just hate, losing. They have to delight in destroying the will of their opponent and settle not for any single prisoner, and most of all, they have to command fear.
This is how you develop your team identity.
In as much as i generally agree with Mark Jackson so far, I also have my questions about his coaching decisions such as..
The Basketball wisdom he has on why he opted for Earl Barron instead of a role banger like Chris Hunter. Barron is soft and a tweener, and he is not providing quality minutes at all while Biedrins is clearly regressing rapidly. Biedrins by the way is bound to be injured again before the end of the season. The reason? Aside from his injury history, He is a typical “Warrior.”
Another questionable move Jackson did which i don’t understand is how he underestimated David Lee and Ekpe Udoh in defending Dwight Howard. These guys were able to control Howard last year… They limited him to 13 pts. By doing Hack a Shaq, Jackson failed to show confidence with his guys in defending Howard…
Another question i have about Mark Jackson is his non preference with Jeremy Tyler and Chris Wright. These are two extra bodies he can use…
What Jackson should do now, is to develop a certain mentality, and that is the Killing instinct they need to subscribe to in order to establish results…
is he better than jamal crawford, I dont think so and Crawford doesnt start but is a main force to be reckoned with in the NBA. Let Curry come of the bench and bring some energy with his shots, and we can go bigger and start Klay or Brandon Rush. Nate comes in at the PG Curry at the SG and KLAY or Brandon at the 3 or McGuire. But we havew to get some easier baskets in the fourth quarter