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ESPN Insider: Is Raptors defense better because of Calderon not playing?

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  • ESPN Insider: Is Raptors defense better because of Calderon not playing?

    An excerpt from a pretty lengthy ESPN Insider article:

    This is a big deal because Calderon, by all accounts, had been horrid on defense. He hurt his hip two games after the Atlanta disaster and has played only seven minutes over the past 13 games, a stretch that coincides with the Raptors' best defensive effort of the season.

    As you might expect, very few Raptors fans consider this just a coincidence. As bad as Toronto has been on defense this year, it has been orders of magnitude worse with Calderon playing. The Raptors are 11.2 points per 100 possessions worse with Calderon on the floor than when he's off it -- roughly the difference between Golden State and the Celtics on defense. Subjective evaluation backs up the numbers -- he's been beaten off the dribble as easily as any other point guard I've seen this season, and that's been the case ever since he tore his hamstring early in the 2008-09 campaign.

    Of course, Calderon's supporters will argue that part of the reason his on-court versus off-court numbers are so bad is that he has been out of the lineup when his teammates have finally started defending with some zeal. And it might be a fair point: As bad as he's looked, it's extremely unlikely that a single player could have an impact as profound as Calderon's on-court versus off-court numbers imply.

    Of course, the Raptors have some recourse if it turns out Calderon was a major culprit. With Jack proving a reliable starter at the point and Weems capably filling in most of the minutes Jack left behind for the second unit, Toronto can plug Calderon into a reserve role, where his defensive shortcomings will be less glaring.

    In other words, even if Calderon was the problem, he can't hurt Toronto as much going forward unless the Raptors use him the way they did pre-injury. Given recent developments, that seems unlikely.

  • #2
    Thanks Arse.

    All the more reason why I'm scared that Jay by default will just plop (ya, I just said plop) Jose back into the starting line-up because status says so.

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    • #3
      I am for cutting back Calderon's minutes. I personally think he has been most effective in the league when playing 25-30 minutes per game in a 6th man role.

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      • #4
        Like the article says, the recent improvement in the raps D is probably a combination of jose not starting and the other players kickin it up a notch. Hopefully most of it can be attributed to the players' increased intensity and commitment on D, so when Ocho is reinserted into the matrix we will not see a significant drop off in D. I pray that is the case. Jose's D or lack thereof would be less obvious playing against second stringers so him backing up JJ imo would be the right move.

        BTW when I click on the link it's not taking me to the article.

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        • #5
          .40 Cal Flakes wrote: View Post
          Jose's D or lack thereof would be less obvious playing against second stringers so him backing up JJ imo would be the right move.
          Good point I neglected to make.

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          • #6
            right now i have Jose as the third string PG ..The often over looked Marcus Banks is playing pretty good .. and is the better defender of the 3 PG they have ..
            ~ Court Surfing ~

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            • #7
              Both JJ and Jose are not exactly your prototypical starting PGs and won't be All-Stars (ever if I believe), they will just both have to accept it and become key cogs in a team like Derek Fisher.

              Those two have to platoon for each other for PG and Marcus Banks should be ready if one of them is really getting raped on the hardwood. The big problem with Jose is not that obvious apart from his lack of lateral quicks, its just his lack of will to bump around PGs and screen recovery on D.

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              • #8
                Raptors fans cant decipher whether our improvements of the defensive end have been due to Jose's absence, or whether its due to our players finally buying in and taking it up a notch. That's because the 2 are co-related and a byproduct of each other. Yes, Raptor players are playing better defence, but it is because they are more confident with Jack as the first line of defense. If you are constantly busy filling someone else's shortcomings, you tend to forget about your man, lose him on cuts, or lend help only to be exploited. Jack is able to do an adequate job on D which allows the other players to focus on their assignments rather than cover Jose's ass. Though I think we need Jose on this team, the squad seems like it would operate better as a whole with him facing second-unit guys. Here his offense is needed and defensive shortcomings can't be easily exploited. It seems as though we're still searching to establish everyone's rolse and I'm very excited to see the Raps operate at the highest efficiency level.
                Last edited by visko23; Mon Jan 4th, 2010, 02:25 PM.

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                • #9
                  If Triano is smart J.C will be on a short leash. If he doesn't get a hand in the shooter's face or if he gets blown by, take him out stat. With Banks being a little bulldog & Turk distributing the ball we're better (as a 2nd unit) at both ends of the floor. Banks stock went way up with me after he got up in G. Wallace' face last week.

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                  • #10
                    Doc Naismith wrote: View Post
                    Thanks Arse.

                    All the more reason why I'm scared that Jay by default will just plop (ya, I just said plop) Jose back into the starting line-up because status says so.
                    If Jose will play nonetheless in Orlando, it won't really make a difference because we will be raped anyways in SCAMway Arena. Against Philly, we can sure tell a difference if Jose starts again ahead of Jack. I am routing for Jose for a good recovery and to play for our team a good or great 25 minutes a game.

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                    • #11
                      tdoto wrote: View Post
                      right now i have Jose as the third string PG ..The often over looked Marcus Banks is playing pretty good .. and is the better defender of the 3 PG they have ..
                      Agree that of the 3 PG's he is the best defensively. I gotta admit that my opinion of Banks has changed significantly over the last couple of weeks. He has definitely stepped up to the challenge and provided quality mins as the back up while Ocho has been injured. With the exception of the first couple games, he has looked solid and consistent on both ends of the floor. I like how he attacks the basket without fear (much like Jack) and doesn't settle for jumpers. More importantly his D at the 1is much needed. Of the 3 PG's he is able to keep his man in front of him with the most consistency.

                      tonious35 wrote: View Post
                      Both JJ and Jose are not exactly your prototypical starting PGs and won't be All-Stars (ever if I believe), they will just both have to accept it and become key cogs in a team like Derek Fisher.
                      I would love to see a PG system similar to the one employed in LA, here in T Dot. In LA, they basically have 3 guys (Fisher, Farmar and Brown) splitting the PG mins with a 4th guard handling the ball in crunch time (Bryant). Fisher (27 min) and Farmar (18min) get the majority of the mins at point with Brown getting 3-5 while getting the rest of his mins at the two. All three play a great deal off the ball. I could see something similar here.

                      Jack and Calderon could split PG duties with Banks getting a couple mins a game and Turk handling the ball at crunch time. Banks numbers could increase if we need some D at the point and likewise with Calderon if our 2nd unit needs more O. But seeing as the Raps are not lacking in offense I'd prefer to see Ocho's mins limited to about 18-20 mins a game.

                      Didn't Triano have both JJ and Banks on the floor at the same time last night for a couple mins? It didn't seem too bad. JJ or Banks could both play off the ball depending on the matchup. For the love of God though, I NEVER wanna see JJ and Ocho on the floor at the same time again!!

                      The only problem with this is will Jose who is getting paid something like $8 mil accept this type of role and reduced mins? And will management/ownership like that? I don't think salaries should come into play, just matchups and whoever is leaving it all out on the floor. JMO but apart from trading Calderon I think this is the best solution.

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                      • #12
                        I can see Triano easing Calderon back into the rotation, but my worst fear is that he will play both of them on the court at crunch time once again. It was always a terrible idea, in my opinion. As much as I want to see Calderon do well, I think that he must go to the bench and do his damage against opposing second units. The second unit, especially Weems and Belinelli, will greatly benefit from Jose.

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                        • #13
                          Post hoc ergo propter hoc
                          nbaroundtable

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                          • #14
                            Jose has been a good warrior for the team (giving out the Gatorades during intermission, preparing Joey G. for his passes and even getting into Garnett's face) and I kinda feel bad he is now getting the unwanted espn treatment. I cannot recall him being as slow on defense (or for that matter even more deliberate with the ball during offense) two years ago. I used to love his drives around a pick to the basket... but even those are few and far. I think his injuries have cumulatively taken a toll (all lower body/leg injuries).

                            Someone can straighten me out but hasnt he slowed down a bit leading to his troubles?

                            In keeping with the mercantile business of the nba it may indeed be time to try and move him rather than him getting slagged as a Raptor. It would have been easier I suppose if he was one with the faux swagger mentality of a TJ or Mike James.

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                            • #15
                              ^ Jose's lower body injuries have definitely slowed him down. No doubt about it. However, I think Jose can still serve a purpose on the team as long as he is utilized correctly (see my post above for an idea), and as long as he can pick up his game on the defensive end. But that goes without saying.

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