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Are we resting on offense?

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by Will, May 24, 2018.

  1. Will

    Will Clutch Crew
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    Game 1: We take too long to bring the ball up and end up with bad plays and shots late in the clock. We lose.
    Game 2: We learn our lesson. We bring the ball up faster and get better motion, ball movement, and shots. We win.

    Game 3: Same as Game 1. Slow to bring it up, bad possessions, loss.
    Game 4: Again, slow to bring it up, bad possessions ... but we play amazing defense and win.
    Game 5: Unbelievably, again, we're slow to bring it up. More bad possessions. But again, great defense, and we win.

    This makes me want to tear my hair out. Why do we still take forever to set up our possessions? How have we forgotten what worked for us in Game 2? We can't count on this level of defense to win every game.

    But then I wonder: Maybe the awesome defense isn't bailing out our slow offense and bad possessions. Maybe it's causing the slow offense and bad possessions. Maybe we're so focused on preserving energy for defense -- and, as the games goes on, exhausted from intense guarding and rotation -- that we're basically catching our breath at the other end of the floor.

    Does anyone have a better explanation for what's going on? Because right now, this feels to me like the most plausible reason for a pattern of self-destructive behavior that seems otherwise inexplicable.
     
    topfive, cbs1507, arno_ed and 12 others like this.
  2. DarkHorse

    DarkHorse Contributing Member

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    That's an interesting and plausible theory. I've been wondering the same thing myself.

    I was having this conversation with my friend tonight watching the game, a casual "Warriors fan."

    I feel like there's a fine line the Rockets need to walk to beat these Warriors. You don't want to get into a run and gun game with the Warriors, because I think the Warriors can and will beat you at that game, short of the classic "get hot from 3" variance.

    But the slowing the game down to mud, despite favoring the Rockets in theory, also stagnates the Rocket's offense and seems to cause Harden to fall into old, bad habits.

    You have to kind of ride the razor's edge of slowing down the pace, but still initiating your offense a little more creatively and ideally more like halfway through the shot clock.

    But maybe you're right. They all have to be gassed at this point with this crazy short rotation.
     
  3. SamFisher

    SamFisher Contributing Member

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    This is exactly what is happening.

    We have managed to make the whole game like the last 2 minutes. It's like we morphed into a small ball version og the Dave Joerger-Fizdale Grizzlies with no true big men in the span of about 96 hours.
     
  4. apollo33

    apollo33 Member

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    I think it's quite obvious that is what is happening. Good defense takes energy, You think it's wearing us down, look at the ugly ass iso's and bricks GSW threw up. They are switching on everything on defense too and playing really hard.

    When was the last time we saw brick brick brick from Durant and Curry, pretty much never
     
  5. SooneRockStro

    SooneRockStro Member

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    Yup, and it’s not a bad strategy at all. Rockets have looked to run off GS misses however the Worriers have played pretty good transition defense, which then forces us to slow it down.
     
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  6. tmoney1101

    tmoney1101 Contributing Member

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    The d has been unbelievable and no doubt we’re expending a ton of energy on that side of the floor. I think that could be a reason for the poor shooting but I think taking the clock down on offense has been our strategy the whole series. We’re trying to limit GS shot and fast break opportunities. We’re mucking up the game and it’s working.
     
  7. HardLin

    HardLin Member

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    I wouldn't say game 3-5 are as slow as game one. What I see:

    Game 1: Waiting until the absolute last moment to shoot the ball
    Game 2: Crisp ball movement early in the shot clock. Best ball movement (so far) in the series.
    Game 3-5: Somewhere in between game 1 & game 2. But closer to game 1 toward the end of the game.

    Instead of initiating with 4 seconds left, we're initiating with about 7-8. I'd feel more comfortable if we initiated with 10-12, because there were still multiple times where a couple more seconds would have led to points.
     
  8. threepointshot3

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    They are playing at the pistons 2004 level defense in the last two games so the offense is suffering
     
  9. v3.0

    v3.0 Contributing Member

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    Rockets want to turn this series into a rugby/smashmouth football game, game will come down to FG contest down the stretch, every possession counts. Trying to match firepower with the Dubs won't work, game 2 blowout notwithstanding.
     
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  10. Invisible Fan

    Invisible Fan Contributing Member

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    I've been thinking that James has been trying to play both ends and can't finish as well without the bailout.

    It's not big enough an excuse to bring up with everyone else bringing it.

    He's gotta go Neo, free his mind, and finish this.
     
  11. snowconeman22

    snowconeman22 Member

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    No . Golden state is an elite defense even with Iggy out .

    Curry is a below average to average individual defender ... but he's solid team wide .

    They are all solid to great team wise .

    For as much of a snake KD is , he's a defensive monster especially as a help defender .

    Our opponent is good .

    Do you think GS fans are asking if they are resting on offense ? They've been worse than us the last two games
     
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  12. DavidRocket

    DavidRocket Member

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    You give a plausible explanation......but my eyes just tell me this is the way the Rockets have been playing post All-Star Break. Of course the defense they are facing is much more consistent because it's the Worriers and they are playing the same team on consecutive nights.

    But I never thought of it as resting on offense. That sure does make sense. Either way, I'm very impressed on the Rockets' sustained elite D the past 2 games. No easy feat.
     
  13. cdxiong

    cdxiong Contributing Member

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    We are missing tons of wide open threes today, my guess is they are too tense.
     
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  14. hongxingli

    hongxingli Contributing Member

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    I think we are trying use simple ISO to create open looks, this can reduce turn over since the defense is tight, but what I don't understand is that if we push the ball, then we will have a chance to easy basket, then back to that strategy.

    back to preserve energy, I think pushing the ball up will tax other team too, if we do it for that reason, I don't think it's a good strategy
     
  15. hongxingli

    hongxingli Contributing Member

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    this is true, with so much effort on defense, we still create reasonable baskets, it just looks ugly during the game.
     
  16. Voltik

    Voltik Member

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    I thought we played better D overall in Game 4 just because Harden was more locked in that game. However, as a team other than Harden I believe we played better D. Harden wa gassed and also atrocious in turnovers and lazy standstill defense and allowing open shots and lane to the rim.

    Harden’s worst game in the playoffs and yet we still get the W.
     
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  17. DavidRocket

    DavidRocket Member

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    Is it just me or did it seem like the Worriers were trying to win all game and to keep up the intensity.....but their bodies just couldn't match what they wanted to do? They looked fatigued as well.

    Rockets are no doubt fatigued....but as some have mentioned, they appear to be more conditioned for these types of grind it out battles. Worriers players (all of them from KD on down) looked fatigued for the most part towards the end. Anyone notice this?
     
  18. Mashing

    Mashing Member

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    I noticed since Game 4 we're playing really in your face defense and they 're defending the 3 point line (especially Curry) very aggressively. They are switching everything (not new) but since Game 4 they've been playing very good help defense on top of their individual defense. It absolutely has to take fuel out of the tank for the offensive side of the game. Our pesky defensive style in the last two games has clearly bothered GS and forced them in a lot of bad ISO looks (and they're not nearly as good at that as we are). Durant took some awful shots in Game 5.
     
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  19. RudyTBag

    RudyTBag Contributing Member
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    THIS.

    We are gritngrind with CP3/Harden isos instead of ZBo/Marc postups.
     
  20. Canadiandude

    Canadiandude Member

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    In boxing, one of the most effective way of neutralizing a superior, skilled boxer is to make the fight ugly. A lot of clenching, holding, etc. Slowing the pace, if you will. The Dubs have been playing out of their comfort zone, we're up 3-2, so it's working.
     
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