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2020 End of Season / Playoffs

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  • Wrote up a piece on playoff rotations. Take a look if interested.

    Biggest surprise for me in writing it came when I discovered that unlike most years, this year the Raps can actually give Lowry rest minutes without falling to pieces. Unfortunately, Pascal has taken his place, very hard to build a bench unit that I can be confident will succeed against good teams without Pascal. Won’t matter much in the first round, but as we get deeper, there might be some issues with finding rest for Pascal.

    https://www.raptorshq.com/2020/8/16/...on-projections
    twitter.com/dhackett1565

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    • DanH wrote: View Post
      Wrote up a piece on playoff rotations. Take a look if interested.

      Biggest surprise for me in writing it came when I discovered that unlike most years, this year the Raps can actually give Lowry rest minutes without falling to pieces. Unfortunately, Pascal has taken his place, very hard to build a bench unit that I can be confident will succeed against good teams without Pascal. Won’t matter much in the first round, but as we get deeper, there might be some issues with finding rest for Pascal.

      https://www.raptorshq.com/2020/8/16/...on-projections
      Fred becoming a net negative player when you take him away from Pascal did not surprise me... been saying that for a long time now. Even when he’s not scoring, Pascal’s overall positive effect has been underrated, and that goes all the way back to the 2017-18 vaunted bench mob.

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      • Interesting write-up. Specific substitution patterns will be dependent on matchups and what other teams do and some of it will depend on how OG, Powell and Ibaka are playing on any given day/night. I do think there will be games where Serge closes out over Gasol and we see Norm over OG.

        RHJ is going to get a chance to play and so is Davis but it won't be much likely.

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        • golden wrote: View Post

          Fred becoming a net negative player when you take him away from Pascal did not surprise me... been saying that for a long time now. Even when he’s not scoring, Pascal’s overall positive effect has been underrated, and that goes all the way back to the 2017-18 vaunted bench mob.
          To be fair to Fred, that’s true of basically the entire roster. Pascal has really taken over the mantle this year, even with his personal efficiency dipping and his defensive assignments getting easier most nights.
          twitter.com/dhackett1565

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          • slaw wrote: View Post
            Interesting write-up. Specific substitution patterns will be dependent on matchups and what other teams do and some of it will depend on how OG, Powell and Ibaka are playing on any given day/night. I do think there will be games where Serge closes out over Gasol and we see Norm over OG.

            RHJ is going to get a chance to play and so is Davis but it won't be much likely.
            If there are games where Serge closes out over Gasol, or Norm over OG... well they have a word for those games. Losses. Unless we have a nice cushion.

            I agree that Rondae will get his chances but I hope those are relegated to a backup plan by the time we hit the second round.
            twitter.com/dhackett1565

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            • DanH wrote: View Post

              If there are games where Serge closes out over Gasol, or Norm over OG... well they have a word for those games. Losses. Unless we have a nice cushion.

              I agree that Rondae will get his chances but I hope those are relegated to a backup plan by the time we hit the second round.
              Dude closes out the three biggest games in Raptors history while being essential in all three and still gets zero respect.

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              • slaw wrote: View Post

                Dude closes out the three biggest games in Raptors history while being essential in all three and still gets zero respect.
                Curious which three games you are referring to. I had assumed it would be three of Philly game 7, Milwaukee games 5 and 6, and GSW game 6. And yet in only one of those did Serge close over Gasol (he did close beside him in some, which is obviously much more viable) and in that one game they survived those minutes, winning them by 1 point, which means they won on the cushion they already had, the exact scenario I described.

                There’s a reason Gasol had nearly a +40 net rating in the clutch this year while Serge barely broke even.

                You want to win games down the stretch, there is an obvious choice.
                twitter.com/dhackett1565

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                • DanH wrote: View Post

                  To be fair to Fred, that’s true of basically the entire roster. Pascal has really taken over the mantle this year, even with his personal efficiency dipping and his defensive assignments getting easier most nights.
                  Sure, but I was arguing for the longest time that Fred was becoming a bit overrated because he was playing consistently with guys like Pascal & Lowry (and Gasol) while a guy like Powell had to ride shotgun with bench guys and a net negative player like Ibaka. Sure, FVV is probably better overall than Powell, but the gap isn't huge and could even be flipped if Powell consistently had a the starting SG role and FVV was tasked to lead the bench from the beginning of the season.

                  A guy like TD is very intriguing because, up until the bubble, he was almost always a net positive, regardless of who he was playing with. TD seems to have lost all the pre-bubble momentum, so hopefully he can get his head screwed on straight.

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                  • golden wrote: View Post

                    Sure, but I was arguing for the longest time that Fred was becoming a bit overrated because he was playing consistently with guys like Pascal & Lowry (and Gasol) while a guy like Powell had to ride shotgun with bench guys and a net negative player like Ibaka. Sure, FVV is probably better overall than Powell, but the gap isn't huge and could even be flipped if Powell consistently had a the starting SG role and FVV was tasked to lead the bench from the beginning of the season.

                    A guy like TD is very intriguing because, up until the bubble, he was almost always a net positive, regardless of who he was playing with. TD seems to have lost all the pre-bubble momentum, so hopefully he can get his head screwed on straight.
                    Yes, I know you were arguing that and it’s still way off. If anything it’s the opposite, as even playing with the starters Fred is asked to run the offence way more than he should be and even playing with the bench Powell gets a nice cushy finishing role. Fred is involved in 45% of the offence when on the floor this year while Powell is down at 29%. 67% of Powell’s 2s are assisted, and 95% of his 3s. Fred has only 19% of his 2’s and 65% of his 3s assisted. Regardless of the lineups they play in (and let’s just ignore how often Norm got to start due to injuries this year), Fred has been saddled with a much tougher role on both ends because the team believes he can develop into it, which admittedly is still a work in progress. While Norm really does top out as a bench gunner if you have contender aspirations.
                    twitter.com/dhackett1565

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                    • Anybody else missing basketball today?

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                      • LJ2 wrote: View Post

                        That's why he was such a great fit with Kawhi in the playoffs last year and would likely be a terrific Robin to any Batman. He posts great numbers without having to heavily impose himself. But, we will need him to be Batman this year.
                        Great Handle.. beats the hell oout of PSkills or Spicy P...

                        Pascal when he leads them to the finals will be called Batman.

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                          • DanH wrote: View Post

                            Curious which three games you are referring to. I had assumed it would be three of Philly game 7, Milwaukee games 5 and 6, and GSW game 6. And yet in only one of those did Serge close over Gasol (he did close beside him in some, which is obviously much more viable) and in that one game they survived those minutes, winning them by 1 point, which means they won on the cushion they already had, the exact scenario I described.

                            There’s a reason Gasol had nearly a +40 net rating in the clutch this year while Serge barely broke even.

                            You want to win games down the stretch, there is an obvious choice.
                            You seem to mistakenly believe that these on/off and net rating numbers provide the definitive last word on who should play and when. They do not. In large sample sizes they are certainly interesting and give us some idea as to how good certain players are but no coach in the world uses them to determine which player will play in a certain scenario against a given team on a given night. Not how it works.

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                            • slaw wrote: View Post

                              You seem to mistakenly believe that these on/off and net rating numbers provide the definitive last word on who should play and when. They do not. In large sample sizes they are certainly interesting and give us some idea as to how good certain players are but no coach in the world uses them to determine which player will play in a certain scenario against a given team on a given night. Not how it works.
                              Everyone likes to get hung up on "net ratings" and it being a statistic, but it's just a number that means "wins games for you." Pretty sure coaches are big fans of guys like that and play them when it comes time to win the game.

                              And even if we accepted your stance that winning games is not important to coaches, that doesn't mean I am wrong in saying it should be important to them.

                              My point with Serge is that there is literally not a single scenario where it is the right call to close with him over Gasol. Going big sometimes depending on the matchup - that's the sort of scenario you are talking about here. Throw Serge out at PF, sure, great. That can be beneficial against bigger opposition, or when we need rebounding, or more inside scoring. But there is no scenario where throwing out a guy who is worse on both ends and doesn't match up better on either end with any player makes sense. And that's exactly what Serge is compared to Marc.
                              twitter.com/dhackett1565

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                              • Conley out for the Jazz (left the bubble for the birth of his son). Should be back soon but not soon enough for today's game I would guess

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