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JeffB
LX wrote:
Start by ensuring that Green gets no open threes? That’s impossible. You do realize they have plays they can run that will ensure that Danny Green gets an open three, not even necessarily by design but rather as a result of something else opening up. This team gets good shots and gives them up in favor of better shots. That’s my point. Any plan is going to be just throwing noodles at the wall. Am I saying they shouldn’t bother? Yeah. I’m just a dumb fuck. What I’m saying is that I wouldn’t want to be the guy responsible for it. Because there is nothing sensible that jumps out. Just like how you say that there is nothing that can be exploited against the defense moremilk. Should i just boil that down to you thinking teams shouldn’t even bother to run their offense? No. That’s dumb. 


They can try to contain Green/Kawhi but that leaves guys like Siakam, Lowry, Gasol, Ibaka, Fred open. Let's face it, offense shouldn't be a problem for us.
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Pzabby_2nd
JeffB_STR82DVD wrote:


They can try to contain Green/Kawhi but that leaves guys like Siakam, Lowry, Gasol, Ibaka, Fred open. Let's face it, offense shouldn't be a problem for us.


We say that every year. Let's not be too quick now. First round will be a nice test of seeing how our new roster performs in the playoffs.
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LX
Pzabby_2nd wrote:


We say that every year. Let's not be too quick now. First round will be a nice test of seeing how our new roster performs in the playoffs.


yeahyeahyeah - my wish would be for this group to have had more time, and hopefully they will. But strategically there is enough there to be able to get by with poor performances here and there. They are not going to need to make adjustments that take them out of who they are, which was the case in the past, and that meant that all of the time perfecting who they were was a bit worthless and didn’t put them any further ahead than where this squad is. These guys come into the playoffs at least a step ahead of where they’ve been before. And it’s not too quick to say that.
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JeffB
Pzabby_2nd wrote:


We say that every year. Let's not be too quick now. First round will be a nice test of seeing how our new roster performs in the playoffs.


Except we replaced DeRozan with Kawhi and we used to rely on players like Patrick Patterson, Demarre Carroll etc... and now we have players like Green, Gasol, Siakam and Lowry who is now not going to be asked to carry the load offensively. Offense de should!don't be the concern for this team. If we take care of the ball and rebound we should be fine.
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moremilk
LX wrote:
Start by ensuring that Green gets no open threes? That’s impossible. You do realize they have plays they can run that will ensure that Danny Green gets an open three, not even necessarily by design but rather as a result of something else opening up. This team gets good shots and gives them up in favor of better shots. That’s my point. Any plan is going to be just throwing noodles at the wall. Am I saying they shouldn’t bother? Yeah. I’m just a dumb fuck. What I’m saying is that I wouldn’t want to be the guy responsible for it. Because there is nothing sensible that jumps out. Just like how you say that there is nothing that can be exploited against the defense moremilk. Should i just boil that down to you thinking teams shouldn’t even bother to run their offense? No. That’s dumb.

And this is different than what we’ve seen in past seasons. In the past teams could do a lot of trapping at halfcourt in order to take a big chunk of the Toronto offense and make it much less effective. The early traps got the ball out of the hands of Kyle and Demar and took them away from where they liked to use screens from Jonas. It just wasn’t in any way as balanced an offense as it is now. They have any number of adjustments they can make vs any ploy, and are not overly reliant on any one, two, or three players, or any particular style of play. I state this as something that should make the upcoming playoffs a hell of a lot of fun with a team that has a real chance to not just gut out a way to the Finals, but get there in a somewhat masterful fashion that could set them apart as one of the legit elite teams.

The playoffs have always been where they don’t quite reach that status, and it’s precisely due to gameplans being much more detailed than say - ensure Danny Green gets no open threes and take it from there. This time feels very different in that sense, and I am simply celebrating that fact. i dunno moremilk, maybe you feel the difference is marginal at best. Personally, I’m just really happy with how everything has come together and I think this team is set up really well for the playoffs and beyond, even if Kawhi leaves.


I don't disagree in the slightest that this team is very different and that we're going to be extremely tough to beat. Even before Gasol, I always believed we're the team to beat in the east, now even more so.

There's a huge leap from this to believing that we're unstoppable though, even gsw at their peak had to work really hard in every round - nothing comes easy in the playoffs. I don't think we're going to blow teams by 20+ points every game, not even the first round. Especially on their home court.

And yes, you can plan to contain green - you ensure that whoever is guarding him never leaves him, even if it means siakam has a huge mismatch against a small guy. I don't mean they can scheme green out of the game, but you design your defense in a way that help never comes from green, and you overload kawhi's side as well. Of course, that will mean a lot of space in between those two, which can be exploited by gasol and siakam and lowry, but that's the kind of tradeoff you make. Or you play a lot of zone, like the nets did - and yes, it didn't work, and yes, for a team like the nets, nothing will work - but that's what they still have to try.
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moremilk
Pzabby_2nd wrote:


We say that every year. Let's not be too quick now. First round will be a nice test of seeing how our new roster performs in the playoffs.


some people said that, I know I didn't. I'm a big believer in the theory that the best predictor for a team's performance in the playoff is their past performance in the playoffs. And before you say that we underperformed in past year, remember that 3 of our starters have an outstanding record in the playoffs, and lowry has been very good the last playoff, and generally has been better every year we've been to the playoffs.
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LX
moremilk wrote:


I don't disagree in the slightest that this team is very different and that we're going to be extremely tough to beat. Even before Gasol, I always believed we're the team to beat in the east, now even more so.

There's a huge leap from this to believing that we're unstoppable though, even gsw at their peak had to work really hard in every round - nothing comes easy in the playoffs. I don't think we're going to blow teams by 20+ points every game, not even the first round. Especially on their home court.

And yes, you can plan to contain green - you ensure that whoever is guarding him never leaves him, even if it means siakam has a huge mismatch against a small guy. I don't mean they can scheme green out of the game, but you design your defense in a way that help never comes from green, and you overload kawhi's side as well. Of course, that will mean a lot of space in between those two, which can be exploited by gasol and siakam and lowry, but that's the kind of tradeoff you make. Or you play a lot of zone, like the nets did - and yes, it didn't work, and yes, for a team like the nets, nothing will work - but that's what they still have to try.


yeah, who said anything about unstoppable? And what does that even mean? Has there ever been a team that was never stopped?

Not helping off of Green and Kawhi is not something that will contain either one. Have you seen them run plays? There are multiple actions off of multiple triggers. They force a ton of decisions to be made beyond simply helping. Green and Kawhi will be open at various times no matter what. You can try to limit them during key plays where there are very specific schemes in play, but that’s different than ensuring Green gets no open looks.
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moremilk
Northern Neighbour wrote:
When has Kawhi ever lost his composure? The man cannot be rattled. He might ask for a call, but then he puts his head down and gets back on defence. He's a superstar that will get his share of calls in the post-season. What you're suggesting Milky is for the improbable to happen. 


the best example is the san Antonio game, but I've seen him a few times force the issue against a defense hell-bent on stopping him. I've also seen him more than a few times overcoming that, so there's that.

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I also have no idea why any team would put their worst defender on Siakam, who has shown the ability to beat anyone off the dribble or in the post. That's a mismatch that the Raptors will exploit at will. That's a disastrous strategy. If anything, you put your worst perimeter defender on Green and tell him to stick with him. 

really, is that how you read "put the best defender on kawhi and leave an inferior guy on siakam"? Even so, I would disagree with your statement - put your worst defender on green and he will shoot 15 wide open 3s when his guy gets lost in screens chasing him around. Personally, I think people should hide their worst perimeter defender on kyle, who is the least offensive threat off the dribble - but in real life it depends on which team you play - and it will change from game to game and within games, as teams adjust to who's playing better. And I guarantee you teams will try everything, they will put their worst guy on siakam and see if we exploit that successfully - if we do, they will change it. 

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The problem with trying to defend the Raptors is that they can attack teams is so many different ways. The pick-and-roll offence, especially with Gasol as the screener, is lethal. Whether it is Lowry or Kawhi handling the ball, the P&R is virtually unstoppable. The defender cannot go under the screen because either can hit the three. He cannot go over the screen because Lowry or Leonard will then attack the paint quickly or Gasol will be left often for an easy hoop. Switching is a bad strategy. If a team tries to double the ballhandler, then that leaves an easy outlet to Gasol, who then becomes a playmaker. 

An opponent's best strategy may be to attack on offence and try to get the Raptors in foul trouble. I would particularly focus on Siakam, who is still somewhat foul prone and the Raptors don't have a great backup at PF (until OG returns and even then he's inconsistent). I would also go after Gasol because Ibaka is a downgrade offensively. Even then, this approach is difficult because the Raptors are a very good defensive team and not many clubs have the offensive firepower to attack the Raptors at every position. Oh, the opposition should not poke the bear. Whatever they should not do is get Lowry riled up and motivated. If anything, try to lull him into a stupor by not engaging him on the defensive end and just playing solid defence. 


yeah, defending a top 4 team in the league is tough, but that's not the point - the point is how do you best do it. I'm skeptical you can plan your strategy in terms of get guy X in foul trouble - since that's such a random thing. That's more of a tactical thing, not a game plan.

I mentioned this multiple times, the bottom 3 playoff teams in the east will be obliterated, I expect at most 2-3 wins combined. Last year, the first round eliminated teams actually won 9 games, I don't see anything close to that happening this time around.


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moremilk
LX wrote:


yeah, who said anything about unstoppable? And what does that even mean? Has there ever been a team that was never stopped?

Not helping off of Green and Kawhi is not something that will contain either one. Have you seen them run plays? There are multiple actions off of multiple triggers. They force a ton of decisions to be made beyond simply helping. Green and Kawhi will be open at various times no matter what. You can try to limit them during key plays where there are very specific schemes in play, but that’s different than ensuring Green gets no open looks.


sure, you can't make it so green never gets an open shot, but you aim for that - you try to limit those open shots, even if it means giving even more open shots to other guys.

Generally speaking, I was describing the strategy I would employ - not the specific tactics. And, obviously, it's not like the raptors will just oblige.

Come on, this is not rocket science - every team does this in the playoffs. You try to take away as much as you can from the other team's strengths. For us, while we have a ton of ways to score, our most efficient scoring comes from green's 3pt shooting, kawhi's post game, the P&R between kyle and whoever is the big man and siakam's individual exploits. There's no way most team can stop all these - they will need to pick and choose. And they will probably pick them all, at times. They may even let kawhi go bananas and try to contain everything else (like teams do against LeBron sometimes). Teams will leave gasol wide open and dare him to shoot, they will probably cheat from siakam when he's in the corner, they may give lowry some extra space and allow him to drive - perhaps even go under screens at times and date him to shoot.

In the playoffs, it's so different how teams approach the game - that's why certain guys (like Kanter) who are fairly effective in the regular season, become unplayable.

And teams will adjust quickly, if they start the game planning to give lowry and gasol open 3s, but take away their passing, and gasol and lowry start sinking 3s in volume, they will immediately adjust. Same for siakam, some teams will give him postups against smaller guys, or leave him more space in the corner - if the kills them, they will adjust. But some nights, kyle and gasol will be missing those open 3s, and siakam will miss his layups. And on those nights, we will be vulnerable, especially if the opposing team happens to have a hot shooting game.


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Northern Neighbour
moremilk wrote:


the best example is the san Antonio game, but I've seen him a few times force the issue against a defense hell-bent on stopping him. I've also seen him more than a few times overcoming that, so there's that.


really, is that how you read "put the best defender on kawhi and leave an inferior guy on siakam"? Even so, I would disagree with your statement - put your worst defender on green and he will shoot 15 wide open 3s when his guy gets lost in screens chasing him around. Personally, I think people should hide their worst perimeter defender on kyle, who is the least offensive threat off the dribble - but in real life it depends on which team you play - and it will change from game to game and within games, as teams adjust to who's playing better. And I guarantee you teams will try everything, they will put their worst guy on siakam and see if we exploit that successfully - if we do, they will change it. 



yeah, defending a top 4 team in the league is tough, but that's not the point - the point is how do you best do it. I'm skeptical you can plan your strategy in terms of get guy X in foul trouble - since that's such a random thing. That's more of a tactical thing, not a game plan.

I mentioned this multiple times, the bottom 3 playoff teams in the east will be obliterated, I expect at most 2-3 wins combined. Last year, the first round eliminated teams actually won 9 games, I don't see anything close to that happening this time around.




Was Kawhi flustered in the SA game? It didn't look like that to me. Rather, the entire team was just overwhelmed by the situation, which happened early in the season. Rarely does anyone see Leonard lose his cool. And don't mistaken him trying to do more as becoming flustered or frustrated. In addition, what is more relevant are the games played over the last month, where the starting five has operated like a well-oiled machine and the ball is humming.

You don't put your worst defender against a guy who can score in multiple ways. You put him on a catch-and-shoot guy like Green, as it's much easier to defend a player off the ball. As the coach, you tell your player to never lose sight of Green. Don't worry about helping and just stay on his hip. It's a lot easier to defend, even with screens, than you suggest. Plus, Green seldomly puts the ball on the floor and creates, making him the easiest guy to defend. I do agree, though, that Green will get his shots, but it won't matter who is defending him. 

The main reason why you put your best defenders on Leonard, Siakam, and Lowry is to prevent them from creating. You want to take the ball out of their hands or at the very least contain them so that a second or third help defender isn't needed. That's where the Raptors are at their best. If you put your worst defender on Siakam, the Raptors' PF will either a) score with a tremendous amount of ease or b) get into the paint at easy and, thus, force help to come his way that leads to open shooters. That is just really bad strategy. Stop the ball at the point of attack, prevent players from getting into the paint, and get the ball out of the hands of the opposition's best players. Obviously this is easier said than done against a team as deep and skilled as Toronto.

Lowry, meanwhile, is far from being the easiest to guard. He gets into the paint much easier now on P&Rs with Gasol. The only difference this year is that he's looking to create and pass to open shooters instead of scoring. This again shouldn't be confused with Lowry being an easier guy to defend or the "least offensive threat off the dribble". If anything, his dribble penetration is creating havoc for the opposition and leading to open looks for his teammates. We must be watching completely different games. 

Finally, game plan is tactics. A game plan is tactical. You're splitting bloody hairs. There is no difference. The point I was making is that the opponent's best strategy is to attack offensively and go after the Raptors. Push the pace, force the Raptors to defend, and try to get one of the starters into foul trouble (Siakam being the most foul prone). Another "tactic" of the "game plan" is to play physically, which is what Detroit has done with success. Teams with a lot of length, like Milwaukee, also can create problems for Toronto since they can get into passing lanes.
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LX
Ok. So i said something about how hard it would have to be to decide where to begin trying to construct an effective gameplan against the Raptors offense. Many pages later I have no idea what is so contentious about that. But in moremilk’s mind it is something he feels compelled to argue simultaneously for and against in every obtuse way imaginable. It’ll be tough. It’s not rocket science. Jibber. Jabber. Jibberjabber jabberjibberjibber.
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