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We are a tough defensive team. To take a major step forward on offense (and I say this all the time) Ben has to be willing to take contested shots or at least hold the ball long enough to let other guys rotate and move.
It's funny how everyone is so ready to forgive Tharpe for how poorly he played in the two overtimes just because of the one shot he actually made at the end. He was horrible defensively.
But yeah, Ben was playing freaked out and nervous. After he missed his first couple shots he just could never get comfortable. He didn't look near as good as Smart. If Smart hadn't gotten hurt we probably don't win this game.
Live to love, love to live
Tharpe played terrible tonight. He couldn't shoot (has he ever?), made some dumb plays/turnovers, committed a couple stupid fouls, and was bad, very bad on defense. While we wouldn't have most likely needed that last shot by Tharpe if Tharpe made just one or two of his 6 3-point attempts and/or if he could have ended up with more assists than turnovers, but I will give him a pass tonight for making a game winner. That shot kinda erases all of his bad play for the night. However, I still think we need to ride EJ at PG and hope he gets out of his funk as Tharpe just isn't talented enough to take this team far in March.
Thorpe had a bad shooting night but once again our wings just kept handing the ball back to him. Him having to take many o those shots was no really his fault.
I don't know if it was really "awful" all night... I thought we saw a lot of positive things, certainly in flashes and not always consistently. First, McLemore was willing to create off the bounce and attempt contested shots (they didn't fall, and it seemed to affect his shot and thinking all night). Second, the energy and attitude were really quite great all night. Johnson was smiling all night long, and the team got after it on the glass unlike they have all season. Third, we completely abandoned jump shots for drives for about the first two-thirds of the second half. Fourth, Johnson was willing and able to get into the lane often for the first time in a long time.
Man I was there up close and mclemore didn't create his own shot at all. He was absolutely terrible and had the look of a guy who didn't want the shot. Marcus Smart wants and demands it. He's a star. Ben has great potential but has a ways to go. He can't create against a good defender and I can't see how he will produce in the NBA right away. Honestly if I'm a scout watching that game Ben falls down my list if I want someone who will produce for me within 2 years. Ben has the potential to be great but right now it's very spotty. Perfect ex of a player who needs to stay but the nba will draft him high so he has to go
As a team these guys are about as bad as Self has had offensively but they get after defensively.
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