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Shaka SMART

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by Shawndme7, May 3, 2014.

  1. Shawndme7

    Shawndme7 Contributing Member

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    I've been posting it everywhere, but let me say I'm not just "trolling". There is a method to my madness. This is a LOOONG read but I promise its worth it. Im sure ill get some tl;dr

    Honestly If nothing else Im really posting this so people who lurk from teh Rockets read this. I also like Stan Van Gundy, George Karl, JVG, Sloan, and Larry Brown. All those coaches are short term solutions. They will grate you and your players if they don't win in 2-3 years. I'd love to see someone else do a similar write up on any one of them though.


    In summary there are _ reasons why I think Shaka is the man for the job.
    1) Youth.

    I think he's a coach we can build around for a long time. If we're thinking short term, I actually like Sloan or Larry Brown. They hold players accountable and have both coached teams to the finals, but they're also both 73. That means its a short term whole plug. Shaka can be a coach who becomes a Houston Rocket coacu, who transcends and outlasts current players. He reminds me a lot of Mike Tomlin (youll see this again) and Monty Williams for NOK. Young guys who just exude confidence and demand respect. WHo you can build NBA teams around that will transcend players.



    2) Stats/Analytics.

    We all know that if you're gonna coach for Morey, yu have to be stats and analytics friendly. Shaka like Brad Stevens is a coach who studies and knows the numbers for his team.
    Source: http://vcusports.blogs.timesdispatc...n-vcu-coach-shaka-smart-and-his-use-of-stats/
    Key Quote


    3) Offense.

    VCU's offense is basically a 2.0 or 3.0 version of Houston's under Mchale. It relies on read and react, but the KICKER is this: Instead of being read and reat with ISOs, its read and react with ball screens, both on the ball and off the ball. This action allos the player for the ball to get loose, and guys away from the ball. Lots of time a screener is the one who gets open for a 3 or dives to the basket. I spent a lot of time this morning when I couldn't sleep watching VCU clips on my Synergy account this morning, but for laymen, take a look at this. Imagine the beauty that our offense would be if we just made it easier for our guys.

    Here's a basic PDF you can find that Shaka and his staff have shared at coaching clinics: file:///Users/SadjatumwadeeFamily/Downloads/Shaka%20Smart%20Ballscreen%20Presentation%20Handout%20-%20FINAL.pdf

    It leaves information out cause I'm sure they filled it in via their presentation, but just reading his philosophy on ball screens page makes me wet, you see he's light years ahead of Mchale already.

    This is what helped sell me, watching the ball screens/offense in action via this 3 minute youtube clip. Optional: befor watching imagine Houston Rockets current players replacing VCU players. Staggered double screen for the pg with clear option reads off of it, clear off ball movement to catch lazy NBA defenders, big men diving to the basket. Its the stuff of wet dreams: Seriously if you do nothing else in thsi thread, watch this clip.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xv5heFZ77LM



    4. Defense

    What Shaka is best known for is his HAVOC defense. Am I crazy enough to think a press can work full time vs NBA teams? No. But I do think it can be used in spurts and would add an element of unpredictability for our opponents. Beverley in a press with his teamates helping out? Yes please.
    Source: http://www.insidethehall.com/2012/03/16/a-look-at-vcu-and-its-havoc-defense/
    Source: http://hoopshabit.com/2013/10/25/vcu-rams-breaking-shaka-smarts-havoc-defense-beat/
    key quote: What makes the “Havoc” defense so great is that it’s basic fundamentals. It’s the same things every basketball player learns in their middle school days. Smart has been able to instill a sense of determination in his team’s defense. It all starts with fundamentals. Staying between your man and the basket and seeing your man and ball. SIMPLE.

    More on the VCU press
    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/college-basketball/news/20130211/vcu-press/

    Here's a Video from 2009-2010: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AgfIm-M3V0g#t=97



    5) Intangibles

    One of the reasons I believe in Shaka most is because of what I know of his intangibles. By all accounts he's a smart guy who can adapt from a basketball traditional coach (i.e. see man see ball, stay between your man and basket) to an analytics friendly one. He's young and can relate to players, yet he has a certain sense of wisdom and maturity beyond his years. His demeanor reminds me A LOT of Mike Tomlin for the Steelers. I mean just look at his VCU bio:
    This last document really sold me, it not only shows VCU schemes on offense and defense, but also shows their Culture
    http://blueprintbasketball.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/2013-shaka-smart-clinic-notes-1.pdf
    Look at pages 13-18

    My favorite block quote from this document is unpastable since its a pdf, but it talks about Practice, use of stats in practice, Culture: play hard, play smart, think team, and his 5 core values. Good Good stuff.


    Also look at this. He isn't afraid to go after guys when he feels they slight his team. Coach K took a shot at VCU, Shaka blasted back:
    Source: http://wtvr.com/2014/03/19/shaka-smart-mike-krzyzewski/
    Key Quote:






    Now Let me say, I don't know that Shaka is really interested in an NBA job right now. I HAVE NO INSIDE INFORMATION, NO SOURCES By all accounts he's happy at VCU and he turned down some bigger places to stay last year. With that said, I think he at least deserves soem due diligence and a call by Morey. He did say this earlier this year in an interview about Brad Stevens:

    But is Smart ready — and this is the $64,000 question — to follow in his former partner-in-crime's footsteps and make the leap to the professional level, too?

    Maybe not. Or, not yet, at least.

    "I haven't really thought about it much, to be honest with you. It's just such a different level," Smart said. "I'm a fan of the of the NBA. I always enjoyed following the NBA and watching the best players in the world play basketball. But it's just so very different.

    "Somebody asked me, 'Are you ready for a new challenge?' But we have a new challenge every year," he continued. "I mean, every year is a new challenge with your new team and your new personnel. So, this is a very challenging job, being a college basketball coach. The NBA is the highest level of basketball, but I think there's certainly quite a bit of challenge here, too."

    source: http://www.masslive.com/celtics/index.ssf/2013/10/vcu_basketball_coach_shaka_sma.html
    He doesn't dismiss it totally, imo, this would be a great shot for him to coach a talented team in a Big City that has a smaller town feel


    I think if we decide to go with Shaka, we should do it sooner than later because itll harder to be able to get him closer to college basketball season.
    Also, I think it will take some time for him to install his system.


    Cons of going after Shaka:
    Inexperience winning at Pro Level. As well as Shaka has done at the college level, he's never won at this level. He's never been a coach, assistant, or player in the NBA. Does he know the NBA culture? Can he adapt? We've seen guys like Cal and Pitino fail.

    Where I think Shaka is different is his smarts, adaptability, and that he's coached well--not by being a great recruiter--but by MAXIMIZING talent. Like I said, he really reminds me a lot of Mike Tomlin.

    At the same time a team like Boston was able to go after Brad Stevens because they were rebuilding, we are NOT in that boat.


    The Press wont work in the NBA:
    I agree completely. Not the way the Rams play it--but again I think Shaka can adapt and press intermittently fullcourt, 3/4 court, and mix in half court Havoc. I'd want him to instill principles that really let us get after the ball.


    Will the NBA Players respect him and buy into the Hokey Pokey college motivation stuff?
    Can't say for sure...but again Tomlin reference. He just seems like a guy who demands respect no matter who he is with--young, old, black, white, yellow, brown, green. He has ties with Troy Daniels and Chandler (via Donovan and UF)

    Depth To play like Shaka wants to play we have to be able to go 9-10 deep. Do we have that now?
    Howard, Jones, Parsons, Harden, Bev, Lin, Asik, we'd have to play DMO, Hamilton, Troy, Casspi, and probably Canaan and Covington too.

    More reading and videos on Shaka and VCU
    HAVOC
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0kzFh5kFhw
    Look at the off ball movement on offense!

    Shaka's wife
    http://www.richmond.com/arts-entertainment/article_fa76df9d-0816-55a6-b49c-abca2582bf2e.html

    Being compared with Brad Stevens:
    http://grantland.com/features/shaka-smart-brad-stevens-butler-vcu/

    He's also got ties to USA BASKETBALL:
    http://www.usab.com/bios/smart_shaka.html
     
    #1 Shawndme7, May 3, 2014
    Last edited: May 3, 2014
  2. Jimmy Chitwood

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    Not reading that whole thing, its just a bad idea from the beginning. I don't even think Shaka is that outstanding of a college coach in the first place. He's far from NBA ready.
     
  3. RV6

    RV6 Contributing Member

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    His last name is Smart, get r done morey..


    Anyone with the last name Defender?
     
  4. Shawndme7

    Shawndme7 Contributing Member

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    So is Keith's :(
     
  5. Shawndme7

    Shawndme7 Contributing Member

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    LOL at Not that outstanding of a college coach.

    I mean not NBA ready, sure?

    Not an outstanding college coach?? Should he have 3 national titles by now at VCu or what?
     
  6. Jimmy Chitwood

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    I mean, they lost to freaking SFA in the first round....lets just hire the SFA coach. He wins a lot, too.
     
  7. Shawndme7

    Shawndme7 Contributing Member

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    Coach K lost in the 1st round too, Terrible coach.
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. Richie_Rich

    Richie_Rich Member

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    Appreciate the work you put into this, OP.

    IMO, Shaka is still some years away from being considered for an NBA head coaching position. Let's see him advance to the Final Four a few times first.

    But I do like his current trajectory.

    There's no doubt he has a bright future.
     
  9. Jimmy Chitwood

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    Did you just compare Shaka Smart to Coach K :eek::eek::eek:
     
  10. langal

    langal Contributing Member

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    Morey only has eyes for McHale apparently.
     
  11. SF3isBack!!

    SF3isBack!! Member

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    Fire Morey! lol. Seriously though I'm hoping he gives Mchale a promotion to the front office. That way we can see him less and Morey can see him more.
     
  12. Razsan

    Razsan Member

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    Richmonder here....this is not to say that Smart isn't a good coach (he is) or can't be a good NBA coach, but we had Anthony Grant before Shaka and there is no discernible difference in their records with both having about a .750 winning percentage. Shaka did have more success in the tournament.
    We were BUMMED when Grant left for Alabama....and I'm sure Bama would love to give him back at this point
     
  13. rockets13champs

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    Only college coach id get is calipari
     
  14. pahiyas

    pahiyas Member

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    Some of our players does not even follow a Hall Of Famer.
     
  15. BamBam

    BamBam Contributing Member

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    [​IMG]

    That was real Smart of you to say that!...;)
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  16. howardsucks

    howardsucks Member

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    Or just hire him as a assistant/defensive coach to replace Kelvin Sampson. Reunite with Trey Daniels and install DEFENSE HAVOC to our petty defense. He will be Beverly's Yoda.
     
  17. BamBam

    BamBam Contributing Member

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    AND Hardens kryptonite!...;)
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  18. Shawndme7

    Shawndme7 Contributing Member

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    Thatd be a great idea in theory but I doubt he would leave a good college gig (and other potential places that are looking to get him) for an NBA assistant job.

    But hey, weirder stuff has happened.
     
  19. Shawndme7

    Shawndme7 Contributing Member

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    Probably because that Hall of Famer has the demeanor of Joe Namath.
     
  20. Shawndme7

    Shawndme7 Contributing Member

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    Man, Cal is great exactly where he is. I like UK, but Calipara is an A+ recruiter, he's at best a C- x's and o's guys. Recruiting doesnt really mean **** in the NBA for coaches---so here you get Cal on a huge contract and he can't recruit--losing combination.


    These guys liek Shaka and Brad Stevens are just smart guys. Who built and sustained their programs by building a culture and philosophy.

    I mean did anyone read through the stuff I posted? Its really not as long as it seems.
     
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